Pontiac council report – Public questions spending and composting

0
66

Mo Laidlaw

MUNICIPALITY OF PONTIAC – Over 20 residents attended the regular Pontiac council meeting, March 12 at the Luskville Community Centre.

Mo Laidlaw

MUNICIPALITY OF PONTIAC – Over 20 residents attended the regular Pontiac council meeting, March 12 at the Luskville Community Centre.
There were several questions from the public about municipal spending. Entrepreneur Siri Ingebrigtsen again questioned the recent tax increases for businesses. She denounced the lack of adequate communication from the municipality and said her emails haven’t been acknowledged. Mayor Joanne Labadie apologized and said she assumed municipal staff members addressed in the emails would have responded.
Kevin Brady asked again for exact figures on the losses of taxable property and other costs due to the flooding in 2017 and the tornado in 2018. Labadie said that about 29 houses were a complete loss. “So there’s about $120,000 in lost tax revenue?” suggested Brady. Labadie replied that other properties have also lost substantial value due to the events. “The Director of Finance is meeting the auditor on March 21, so [we can] put the numbers together after that,” she added. 
Sue Lamont said she’s worried the municipality is overspending; “There’s only $6 million to last the year.” Labadie will ask the Director of Finance to attend the April council meeting to answer budget and spending related questions.
A petition about composting, and brochures are available at local dépanneurs, the town hall, and online, noted Sheila McCrindle.  Andrea Goffart asked if there has been a turnaround in thinking on the issue. “There has been more of a slowing down than a turnaround. Since Dominic Labrie left in September, there is no one to manage this file. The existing garbage and recycling contract (ending in May) will soon be renewed for another year,” replied Labadie.
Christian Lauzon commented that Public Works’ maintenance of the Davis-Soulière ice rink this year is inadequate as it is not maintained Monday to Friday and the boards are leaning. Labadie said this is the first year Public Works has maintained the municipal rinks and that they will assess what they need to improve for the future.
With the large amounts of snow, Blake Draper cautioned that sewer covers and culverts must be steamed before the thaw to prevent flooding. “The steamer has already been out and high-risk areas have been identified,” replied Labadie. 
Councillor Nancy Maxsom’s request to remove four items from the agenda because she was not able to attend the caucus meeting was allowed. The approval of grants to local community groups was one of the postponed resolutions, as well as the mandate of citizen members of the planning committee (CCU).
The Fire Chief’s monthly report was read: six deer accidents, six vehicle crashes, three house fires (one fatal), one open fire and three alarms were responded to in February. The level of firefighter training and need for equipment, like air tanks that last 45 minutes, was mentioned in the report.
The draft borrowing bylaw for $2 million over 20 years for road work, including Chemin de la Montagne, was adopted.
Another property on Chemin Bord de l’Eau (#85) was acquired by the municipality for $1 following the spring 2017 floods.
Voir la version française à www.journalpontiac.com.