Council Preview

By John Swartz

Monday afternoon’s 4 p.m. regular council meeting begins with a couple deputations. Deputations, remember those? There has been only one since emergency measures were enacted last March.

First up is a group called Making Change SC (SC stands for Simcoe County).  Michele Newton, Stephanie Gourlie and Shelly Skinner will present information about the work of the organization in areas of anti-racism, inclusion and diversity.

Next, Claire Malcolmson of Rescue Lake Simcoe Coalition will speak about environment changes in the Lake Simcoe watershed. Points raised are the group’s displeasure with the light tone of the province’s Minister’s 10-Year Report on Lake Simcoe and the importance of taking action on municipal stormwater discharges into the lake.

Following deputations, council has a letter from the YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka. They are informing council the YMCA is exploring a desire to convert their Peter Street facility, which is closed, into a youth hub. They are considering creating a temporary and transitional housing hub. They would like inclusion from a member of council on their working group and have already invited the director of the Orillia Youth Centre, a member of the Sunshine Youth Senate and from the Affordable Housing Committee.

When the report from last week’s committee meeting comes up next, viewers can expect more debate on the waterfront parks master plan.

Councillor Mason Ainsworth has a notice of motion to amend chapter 832 of the City of Orillia Municipal Code.  Chapter 832 outlines regulations for signs, and this action is to make amendments regarding children at play signs. This item was on the agenda last week and defeated.

The consent agenda has two items of interest. The solicitor General wrote to inform council new regulations under the  Community Safety and Policing Act, 2019, are being developed and brought into force relating to police training on human rights and racism, de-escalation and mental health response, and oversight.

Another letter from the ministry of municipal affairs and housing is advising a freeze on residential rents in calendar year 2021 in a variety of housing types including new housing, apartments, sites in mobile home parks, retirement homes and affordable housing units.

The public meeting is preceded by a planning meeting to consider zoning by-law amendments for 69 Albert Street, 325 Peter Street South and 2 Hunter Valley Road. This council meeting is a video conference and the chamber is closed to the public. The public can watch it live, on Rogers TV.

(Photos by Swartz – SUNonline/Orillia)


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