Mono Council discusses supportive housing, Public Works budget, church funding

December 2, 2021   ·   0 Comments

By Peter Richardson

Mono Council met Tuesday to discuss several matters of interest or concern in Mono, beginning with the conversion of the Maple Inn, formerly Knights Inn on First Street in Orangeville.

Supportive Housing in the Province (SHIP), is proposing to turn the old motel into supportive housing units. Although, Orangeville Council declined to hold a second Public Meeting at Mono’s request, SHIP held the last of three meetings, which was open to the public on Dec. 1.

Mono residents living near the motel had expressed reservations and had questions concerning the plan.

Orangeville will consider the proposal at its Dec. 6 Council meeting and residents were encouraged to take their concerns to that meeting.

Deputy Mayor Fred Nix and Coun. Melinda Davie both asked about the shelter for homeless men that recently closed in Orangeville, which is still needed. This will not be a part of the SHIP plan, she was told.

Public Works Capital Budget

During the discussion following, concerning the 2022 Public Works Capital Budget, Deputy Mayor Nix asked if Development Charges or Reserves were included in Mike Dunmore”s presentation.   The answer was no, but these were added later during the budget dates, by the treasurer.

One interesting point that came up was the allocation of $100,000 for the purchase of an electric pick-up truck and a commercial charger for it.

The presentation indicated a gas powered truck was to be purchased and the remainder of the money set aside for an electric purchase. Dunmore explained that the fleet required the purchase of one vehicle or another, every year and that currently, no electric trucks were available, from any manufacturer. He stated that a reservation had been placed with Trillium Ford, for an F150, however the delivery date was 2023 presently and the new truck is needed this year.

However, that this did not preclude purchasing another make, should it become available.

In the matter of the charger, Dunmore explained this was not going to be a public charger, but rather an indoor one for the use of the Public Works Department. He added and that with the way technology was evolving, waiting until they actually had the truck might prove financially beneficia since load capacity was at this point, unknown. The electric truck was planned to be used for driving empty.

Mayor John Creelman asked if the newly operational charger at Town Hall could be used. The answer was yes, but it was intended for the public and so tying it up with the Public Works truck might not be the best solution.

Coun. Sharon Martin then asked if any consideration was being made for the proposed South Yard, in the budget? Mike responded that a square footage requirement and a design were prepared and plans were to set up a committee in 2022 to look into land availability.

Meanwhile, Coun. Ralph Manktelow questioned the wisdom of refurbishing Mono’s Bridge #5 on Hurontario, saying that perhaps closing it was a better option.

Dunmore said in response that it would still cost $400,000 to remove it and perhaps public input should be solicited. This was endorsed by Mayor Creelman and other councillors.

Overall, the budget was $53,000 less than in 2021, but a lot of the infrastructure would need repair or worse as it was aging, which bodes ill for future Works Department Budgets.

The approved Shelburne District Fire Board budget was approved by Council. It was up by 3.65 per cent over last year.

The Rosemont Fire Department budget was also approved.

Church’s Funding Request

The Hockley Historic Community Centre and Church was again asking Mono Council for money for a leaky roof, since their fundraising events were almost nonexistent due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ask was for $8,200, which most of Council was inclined to consider.

They do not qualify for most grants and have applied for those they do, but leaky roofs usually don’t wait.

Coun. Ralph Manktelow said the church is a major cultural asset to Mono and usually costs the Town almost nothing.

Deputy Mayor Nix was still disturbed that they were asking for more money than the entire donations budget of 2021.

It was decided to consider their request in the upcoming 2022 budget deliberations. To which Coun. Sharon Martin opined that perhaps under the circumstances the Town should increase their donations budget.

Cardinal Woods Drinking Water System

Meanwhile, the final report for the Cardinal Woods Drinking Water System, was tabled for acceptance, with many grievances. Deputy Mayor Nix said perhaps it was time to reconsider the town’s options for managing the system, a thought seconded by Coun. Manktelow.

CAO Mark Early and Mike Dunmore disagreed, saying that Orangeville, the current manager had only just hired a new department head who was addressing the issues outlined and meeting the MECP deadlines, for rectifying them. As no harm occurred to the drinking water, Council agreed to wait and see.

In other business, Sally Cohen was appointed to the Recreation Advisory Committee. She fills the current vacancy, but the committee could still have two more active members should anyone be interested.

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