At the April 25th meeting of Carleton Place council’s committee of the whole, councilors tackled a plateful of business items and motions.
Watch what you pour down the sink
During a routine and provincially mandated waste-water treatment report, councilor Mark Hinton asked about the number of plugged lateral line complaints (this refers to sewage lines (or lateral) that connect homes and businesses to the main street pipes. Town director Guy Bourgon responded that the number on the most recent report (9 in total) didn’t represent anything out of the ordinary, but noted a common cause that homeowners could avoid; congealed greases and fats that are poured down kitchen drains. He stated that sink drains were no place to dispose of bacon grease or oils as they will build up in the laterals and inevitably lead to a clog. If town public works’ crews find this to be the case (through pipe cameras) the clearing and any resultant works are the responsibility of the property owner.
Additional road work approved
Bourgon also provided a request to approve 3 new road-works projects in addition to those already green-lighted for the 2023 season. Town staff has recently become aware that both Ferrill Crescent and Mailey Avenue only have a single lift of asphalt (after a recent rebuild) instead of the normal two coats. They were proposing removing the existing asphalt in its entirety and installing two lifts of asphalt on the roadway, which is the standard for all new or reconstructed roads. The section of Coleman Street between McNeely Avenue and McGregor Street is in poor condition and would greatly benefit from the removal of the existing asphalt and repaving of two lifts of new asphalt. And finally Concession 8 from Industrial Avenue to Townline is equally in poor condition and requires full removal and replacement of the two lifts of asphalt as well as gravel shouldering. Bourgon noted that the road budget had enough funds to cover these extra projects this year (approximately $443K) without going over. The committee approved the requests and will send them to the next council meeting for ratification.
Food for fines
The town’s director of protective services, Pascal Meunier brought a proposal from bylaw staff to give drivers levied with parking tickets in May, an alternative method of payment. Instead of paying money at the town-hall, they can choose to donate cash or an equivalent in nonperishable food items to the Hunger Stop (Lanark County Food-bank). On average he noted that the town collects about $650 in parking fines in May. The committee approved this request.
Childcare lunches and bussing
The town’s director of childcare services, Tracy Freill brought forward two proposals to her department that created a lot of discussion around the table. She was looking for approval to stop supplying lunches as part of their program on days that school-aged children attend full childcare effective June 2023. Parents would be instructed to provide packed lunches instead and the centre would still provide morning and afternoon snacks. Freill noted this was standard practice at neighbouring facilities and it would free up staff time for more interactions with the children as well as saving funds. The second change would have parents request of their school bus provider to make Carambeck Community Centre their child’s one bus stop effective September 2023 resulting in the removal of the requirement for the town’s centre to provide additional transportation. Currently Student Transportation of Eastern Ontario only allows one stop per student despite repeated requests from municipal childcare providers to allow two. Both these options would bring a total reduction in costs of $75K. The committee approved both proposals after much debate.