Clips from MV Council meeting June 18

The Current reports selected items from the Township of Madawaska Valley Regular Council meeting on June 18.

Mayor’s address

Mayor Kim Love said the municipality had now returned to the CAO/Clerk organizational structure. This structure enables the CAO/Clerk to make certain decisions without the involvement of Council, a process which Love said makes the municipality’s administration “more efficient and effective.” She commended new CAO/Clerk Suzanne Klatt for her accomplishments in the short period she has been in the role, citing as examples the completion of the 2018 municipal budget, preparations for a comprehensive organizational review, reports, recommendations and the need for fewer in camera sessions. She said,

Having shared the workload of the CAO/Clerk with Ms. Dombroski for many months over the past year and a half, I can honestly say I am thrilled to return solely to my role as Mayor once again.

Valley Manor delegation

Valley Manor representatives led by CEO Trisha Sammon informed Council about plans for the re-development of Valley Manor at a new site near St. Francis Memorial Hospital. The Current will publish more details soon but briefly the aim is to provide a new facility that better meets the needs of the local community. The target move in date is December 2020. The estimated total cost of the new facility is $27.5 million including $23 million construction costs. A financial shortfall of $7 million is expected. There will be a community fund-raising component to this project.

2018 budget

Council approved the Minutes of the Special Council Meeting of June 14 at which the 2018 municipal budget was passed. Council approved the Minutes of the Finance & Administration Committee Meeting of June 5 which recommended total taxation of $3,752,144 in the 2018 budget.

Tennis courts

CAO Suzanne Klatt proposed a resolution that until she could meet with the executive of Lakeshore Tennis Club resulting in either a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or agreement, tennis memberships could be purchased from the Township at 2017 rates. Tennis players who have last year’s keys could continue to use them and the Township would cut new keys for any new members. Councillor Maika expressed concern that people with last year’s keys might try to play tennis for free. However, Klatt pointed out that because it was the people who hold last year’s keys who were inquiring how they could pay, she was confident that they would not play without paying. Council approved the resolution.

Monthly Revenue & Expenditure Report

The CAO also suggested that Council receive a month-end Revenue & Expenditure Report which would be available to the public instead of the present Accounts agenda item which contains confidential information. The Finance Clerk would highlight any anomalies in the monthly report with reference to specific budget lines. Councillor Maika stated she would prefer to see the voucher list to know who receives each cheque. Klatt explained that vouchers were available for Council to look at, but that the Revenue & Expenditure Report would provide on-going year-to-date information for the benefit of both department heads and committee chairs. She pointed out that the proposed Report would be public. Council agreed to the new procedure commencing July 2018.

Election year arrangements

As 2018 is an election year, Council re-scheduled its July meeting for July 23 so as to conclude as much business as possible prior to the “Lame Duck Period” deadline. Council passed the appropriate By-Law to ensure that the CAO could run the Township should Madawaska Valley be placed into a Lame Duck situation.

Fire Department

Chief Fire Official Corwin Quade spoke to his proposal to fill a Deputy Fire Chief vacancy in one hall. A Fire meeting will be held to discuss succession planning for the department and recruitment of new volunteer firefighters.

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