Latest Council Minutes

Municipality of the District of Clare
REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING
Wednesday, September 18, 2019 at 7:00 pm

PRESENT:
Council: Warden Ronnie LeBlanc, Deputy Warden Nil Doucet; Councillors, Hector Thibault, Carl Deveau, Brian Comeau, Eric Pothier and Yvon LeBlanc

Staff: CAO Stéphane Cyr, Communications Officer, Amy Paradis, Director of Finance, Ginette Cheff, and Executive Assistant, Ashley Hanks

Presenters: Ryan Porter and Martin Gatien of the Inspection Compliance and Enforcement Division of the Nova Scotia Department of Environment, and Brandon Doucet and Gloria Banks of Grant Thornton LLP

ABSENT: Councillor Danny Hill

1) Call to Order
Warden Ronnie LeBlanc called the Council meeting to order at 7:00 pm.

2) (a) Approval of the Agenda
Warden Ronnie LeBlanc asked that the following items be changed or added to the Agenda:

  • • 10.1 to be presented by Deputy Warden Nil Doucet in the absence of Councillor Danny Hill
    • 10.2 Police Advisory Board
    • 10.3 Audit Committee
    • 11.1 Change the amount from $ 1,125,658 to $408,916
    • 11.10 Motion to Award Tender – Refurbishing of Storage Building Next to the Clare Health Centre

MOVED BY Councillor Hector Thibault and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the proposed agenda be approved with the above noted changes and additions.
MOTION CARRIED

(b) Declaration of conflict of interest
Warden Ronnie LeBlanc asked for any declarations of conflict of interest.
None declared

3) Presentations
3.1 Off-Highway Vehicles – Ryan Potter, Inspection Compliance and Enforcement Division, Nova Scotia Environment
Ryan Porter and Martin Gatien of the Inspection Compliance and Enforcement Division of the Nova Scotia Department of Environment provided a presentation about the Off-highway Vehicle Act and off-highway vehicle safety (See attached).

Councillor Brian Comeau thanked Mr. Porter and Mr. Gatien for their presentation and their presence in Meteghan River which has helped deter illegal and/or unsafe off highway vehicle activity. Area residents are very thankful.

3.2 2018/2019 Audited Financial Statements – Brandon Doucet and Gloria Banks, Grant Thornton LLP
Brandon Doucet of Grant Thornton presented the 2018/2019 Audited Financial Statement (See attached).

4)Adoption of the Minutes from Previous Council Meetings
4.1 July 17, 2019 – Regular Council Meeting
MOVED BY Councillor Carl Deveau and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the minutes of July 17, 2019 be accepted as circulated.
MOTION CARRIED

4.2 August 5, 2019 – Special Session of Council
MOVED BY Councillor Eric Pothier and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the minutes of August 5, 2019 be accepted as circulated.
MOTION CARRIED

4.3 September 4, 2019 – Council-In-Committee Meeting
MOVED BY Councillor Hector Thibault and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the minutes of September 4, 2019 be accepted as circulated.
MOTION CARRIED

5) Business Arising from Previous Meetings
None.

6) Warden’s Activity Report – Warden Ronnie LeBlanc
The Warden provided a summary of the meetings and events the he attended since the last Council meeting.

July 19 – Attended a reception for a delegation of Chinese students from Taicang.

July 24 – Attended the Board of Directors meeting of the Harborside Lodge in Yarmouth.

July 27 – Attended the opening ceremonies for the Festival acadien de Clare at Université Sainte-Anne.

August 15-17 – Attended a meeting of the Réseau des villes francophones et francophiles d’Amérique in Moncton.

August 24 – Attended a ceremony during the CMA 2019 – “Vers le CMA 2024”.

August 27 – Attended the Board of Directors meeting for Université Sainte-Anne.

September 9 – Attended an Audit Committee conference call for CDÉNÉ.

September 10 – Attended the Board of Directors meeting of the CDÉNÉ in Halifax.

September 11 – Attended a celebration for the 20th anniversary of the CDÉNÉ in Halifax.

September 12 – Attended a Digby Community-NSHA Stakeholders Group meeting in Digby.

September 14 – Attended the Board of Governors meeting for Université Sainte-Anne.

7) Official Statements from Members of Council
Councillor Carl Deveau congratulated Clara and Pius Leblanc on their 60th wedding anniversary that took place on August 21, 2019. Council has sent them a certificate.

Warden Ronnie LeBlanc thanked Nova Scotia Power for their communication with elected officials during hurricane Dorian. The direct line with elected officials was very beneficial in terms of prioritizing local restoration efforts.

Councillor Carl Deveau thanked the fire departments, gas stations and all other residents and businesses that opened during hurricane Dorian to help the community.

Deputy Warden Nil Doucet congratulated Chez Jean on their 11,111 consecutive days open and asked that a letter of congratulations be sent on behalf of Council. Council agreed.

8) Correspondence
8.1 Letter – Odette Deveau, C.O.R.D
The CAO read a letter from Odette Deveau of C.O.R.D (See attached)

The Municipality has commissioned a plan looking at the development and improvement of key public tourism spaces in Clare. Accessibility of these spaces will be an integral part of this planning effort.

8.2 Letter – Chloe Nickerson, Wedgeport Tuna Tournament & Festival
The CAO read a letter from Chloe Nickerson of the Wedgeport Tuna Tournament & Festival. (See attached)

The CAO clarified that the Municipality does not contribute financially to the tournament. It does however rent its tent to the Wedgeport Tuna Tournament & Festival and coordinates logistics with event organizers. This has often proven challenging given the short amount of time between the Wedgeport Tuna Tournament & Festival and the Festival acadien de Clare, which also rents the tent.

8.3 Letter – The Honourable Lena Metlege Diab, Minister, Acadian Affairs and Franocophonie
The CAO read a letter from the Honourable Lena Metlege Diab, Minister, Acadian Affairs and Franocophonie. (See attached)

8.4 Letter – The Honourable Leo Glavine, Minister, Communities, Culture and Heritage
The CAO read a letter from the Honourable Leo Glavine, Minister, Communities, Culture and Heritage (See attached)

8.5 Letter – The Electric City / La Nouvelle France Society
The CAO read a letter from the Electric City / La Nouvelle France Society. (See attached)

8.6 Letter – The Honourable Lloyd Hines, Minister, Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal
The CAO read a letter from the Honourable Lloyd Hines, Minister, Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. (See attached)

8.7 Letter – Mary Surette, Yarmouth Hospital Foundation
The CAO read a letter from Mary Surette of the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation (See attached)

8.8 Letter – Mayor Pam Mood, Town of Yarmouth
The CAO read a letter from Pam Mood, Mayor of the Town of Yarmouth. (See attached)

8.9 Letter – Clients and staff, Meteghan Library
The CAO read a letter from the clients and staff of the Meteghan Library. (See attached)

9) CAO Report – Chief Administrative Officer - Stéphane Cyr
The CAO presented his report for the month of September 2019. (See attached)

10) Committee Reports
10.1 Building Permits Report – Deputy Warden Nil Doucet
Deputy Warden Nil Doucet read the building permits report for the months of July and August.

July 2019
Year      Permits    Construction Value         Year to Date
2018     18             $638,445                        $4,843,580
2019     33             $1,087,544                     $5,712,474

August 2019
Year        Permits    Construction     Value Year to Date
2018       41             $1,005,127       $5,848,707
2019       25             $226,000          $5,938,474


10.2 Police Advisory Board
The Police Advisory Board met on Monday, September 16. Corporal Jeff LeBlanc will be moved next week to Clare from Yarmouth. Oceanne Persico is another new officer and has been in Clare for 6 weeks. Officer Jamie Lutes has moved to Yarmouth. Deputy Warden Nil Doucet would like to send a thank you letter to Ms. Lutes in recognition of her service to the Municipality.

Sgt. Daniel Gaudet provided the following statistics for the period of April to September 2019:

Break and Entre (Business) – 2
Break and Entre (Other) – 5 reported, 4 charged
Break and Entre (Residences) – 6
Impaired Driving – 23 Total, 6 cleared by charge and 17 pending
Assaults – 16, 7 cleared by charge and 9 pending

Common Police Activities
911 Act – 28
Check Stops – 32
Mental Health Act – 32
Suspicious Persons with Vehicles - 21
Wellbeing Checks – 13
Off-road Vehicle Act – 22

Traffic Offences
Speeding – 47
Other Moving Traffic – 7
Other Non-moving Traffic – 17
Seatbelt violations – 20

When compared to other similar areas in the province, the numbers for Clare are thankfully low.

10.3 Audit Committee
The Audit Committee met with representatives from Grant Thornton LLP on September 17, 2019 to review the draft financial statements for the Municipality for the year ending March 31, 2019. Following this meeting, the Audit Committee is recommending Council:

1) Transfer $408,916 from the Operating Fund to the Capital Reserve Fund
2) Approve the 2018/2019 Audited Financial Statements

11) New Business
11.1 Motion to transfer $408,916 from the Operating Fund to the Capital Reserve Fund

PROPOSED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc and SECONDED BY Councillor Hector Thibault that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare transfer the annual surplus of $408,916 for the 2018-2019 fiscal year from the Operating Fund to the Capital Reserve.
MOTION CARRIED

11.2 Motion to approve the 2018/2019 Audited Financial Statements

PROPOSED BY Councillor Eric Pothier and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare approve the 2018/2019 Audited Financial Statements for the Municipality of the District of Clare, as prepared by Grant Thornton.
MOTION CARRIED

11.3 Motion to write a letter to the Honourable Stephen McNeil, Premier of Nova Scotia, requesting an extension of the Boat Harbour Act deadline

PROPOSED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet and SECONDED BY Councillor Eric Pothier that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare write a letter to the Honourable Stephen McNeil, Premier of Nova Scotia, respectfully requesting an immediate extension of the Boat Harbour Act deadline of January 1, 2020, in order to allow for the completion of the proposed effluent treatment plant and outflow pipeline.
MOTION CARRIED

11.4 Motion to send the proposed amendment to By-law 27 (Land-use By-law) to the Planning Advisory Committee for review and consideration
Richard Carbonnier presented to Council at the September 4 meeting asking the Municipality to consider an amendment to By-law 27 (Land-use By-law) to include a section on nuisances (i.e. noise, smell, etc.) and introduce a review process to ensure future commercial or industrial uses of land do not interfere with a resident’s peaceful enjoyment of their land. The Municipality of Clare does not presently have any zoning other than a general zone (GR). The possibility of amending this by-law to include other zones (commercial, agricultural, industrial, etc.) has been explored by this and previous municipal councils and has consistently met with much public opposition. This notwithstanding, Council agreed to refer the proposed amendment to the Planning Advisory Committee.

PROPOSED BY Councillor Carl Deveau and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare send the proposed amendment to By-law 27 (Land-use By-law), as presented by Mr. Richard Carbonnier, to the Planning Advisory Committee for further review and consideration.
MOTION CARRIED

11.5 Motion to accept proposal – RFP, Former Saint-Albert Elementary School
A Request for Proposals (RFP) was issued by municipal staff on December 6, 2018 for the sale of the former Saint-Albert Elementary School. The RFP closed January 31, 2019. Two bids were received. The first proposed the establishment of a commercial cannabis micro-cultivation operation. The second proposed transforming the building into a seniors housing complex. Both proposals were deemed eligible under the RFP. Staff started their review shortly thereafter and began questioning both proponents and reporting back to Council over the course of the next several months.

On August 7, 2019 the CAO was advised by the second proponent that they were respectfully

withdrawing their proposal, effective immediately. The review of the remaining proposal was completed and deemed to have merit. As part of this review, the following points were taken into consideration:

  • The cultivation of cannabis is now legal
  •  It is a growth industry. Highlighting this fact, cannabis cultivation has recently been added to the suite of programs offered at NSCC.
  •  The memoire presented by Mr. Carbonnier dated June 16, 2019.
  •  The Municipality of Clare has no by-laws preventing the cultivation of cannabis
  •  There is nothing preventing the proponent from purchasing a privately-owned building or building a new facility and proceeding with this business activity.
  •  By selling to the proponent, the Municipality has the ability to impose certain restrictive covenants
  •  The proposed business is subject to strict licensing requirements mandated by the federal government and in this particular case, is completely export based (i.e. no retail sales).

In light of the aforementioned considerations, the CAO is recommending the following:

  • That Council make a motion to recommend the sale of the former Saint-Albert Elementary School to Pound Cannabis Inc. in the amount of $40,100 subject to the purchaser obtaining the necessary cannabis licensing permit within the first 12 months from the closing date.

 

  •  That the following restrictive covenants apply:
    1. Shall not emit noise pollution that persist long enough to affect the reasonable enjoyment of property; and
    2. Shall not emit smells from industrial or agricultural activities such that the intensity and frequency cause injury to health and/or linger long enough to affect the reasonable enjoyment of property; and
    3. Shall not cause waste to the property or accumulate garbage such that it becomes unsightly and affects the reasonable enjoyment of property; and
    4. Shall not emit any airborne particles or pollution of any kind.

Council agreed with the CAO’s recommendations and passed the following motion:

PROPOSED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc and SECONDED BY Councillor Hector Thibault that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare accept the proposal submitted by Pound Cannabis Inc. for the purchase and use of the former Saint-Albert Elementary School, in the amount of $40,100 plus HST.
MOTION CARRIED


11.6 Motion to award tender – Refurbishing of guard rails at the Meteghan Library

PROPOSED BY Councillor Hector Thibault and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare award the tender for the refurbishing of the guard rails at the Meteghan Library to Joe Bengivenni in the amount of $5,500 plus HST and that this amount be taken from the Municipality’s Capital Fund.
MOTION CARRIED

11.7 Motion to name road – Green Way Road

PROPOSED BY Councillor Carl Deveau and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare name the road shared by the properties PID (Property Identification Number) 30319917, 30276778, 30087985, 30377964, 30377972, 30377980 and 30377998 as follows:

In English: Green Way Road
In French: chemin de la Voie Verte
MOTION CARRIED

11.8 Motion to approve project funding – CACL Clare
At the invitation of Carolyn Sloan (CACL Clare), the CAO and Tourism Manager met with her and Allister Surette of Université Sainte-Anne to discuss a concept project involving incremental capital investments in the building currently housing the CACL Clare as well as an interior redesign of the Rendez-Vous de la Baie with the goal of modernizing the space and making it more functional. Discussions to date with prospective government funding partners have been very positive and both the CACL Clare and Université Sainte-Anne have each confirmed a contribution of $30,000 towards this estimated $721,000 project. As a key stakeholder in this initiative, the CAO is recommending the Municipality match the $30,000 funding contribution put forward by the two other project partners.

PROPOSED BY Councillor Eric Pothier and SECONDED BY Councillor Hector Thibault that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare contribute $30,000 to CACL Clare in support of its project entitled Workforce Inclusion and Community Economic Development in Clare, conditional upon confirmation of balance of funding, and that this amount be taken from the Municipality’s Capital Fund.
MOTION CARRIED

11.9 Motion to accept proposal – RFP, Tourism Public Spaces Development and Improvement.

PROPOSED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc and SECONDED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare accept the proposal submitted by Upland Planning + Design Studio in response to the Tourism Public Spaces Development and Improvement Request for Proposal, in the amount of $98,900 inclusive of applicable HST.
MOTION CARRIED

This project will dependant on external funding which has yet to be confirmed.

11.10 Motion to Award Tender – Refurbishing of Storage Building Next to the Clare Health Centre
An invitational tender was issued to refurbish the storage building next to the Clare Health Centre. Two bids were received. Following a review of the bids, the CAO is recommending council award the bid to Us-Two Construction Ltd. in the amount of $3,780 plus HST. Council passed the following motion:

PROPOSED BY Councillor Eric Pothier and SECONDED BY Councillor Carl Deveau that the Council for the Municipality of the District of Clare award the tender for the refurbishing of the storage building next to the Clare Health Centre to Us-Two Construction Ltd. in the amount of $3,780 plus HST and that this amount be taken from the Municipality’s Capital Fund.
MOTION CARRIED

12) In Camera Session

PROPOSED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that Council proceed to an In-Camera Session.
MOTION CARRIED

Topics discussed:
12.1 Rural Internet

PROPOSED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet and SECONDED BY Councillor Yvon LeBlanc that Council proceed to the Regular Council Meeting.
MOTION CARRIED

13) Date and time of the next Regular Council Meeting
The next Regular Council Meeting will be held on October 16, 2019 at 7:00 pm.

14) Adjournment
MOVED BY Deputy Warden Nil Doucet to adjourn the meeting at 9:50 pm.

Submitted by:

Ashley Hanks
Executive Assistant

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1185 Highway 1

Little Brook, Nova Scotia
B0W 1Z0

Phone: 902-769-2031
Fax: 902-769-3773

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Monday to Friday, 8:30am - 4:30pm