Highlights of the March 21st, 2023 Council Meeting

Winners of the Bicentennial colouring contest were announced and presented with a Bicentennial coin:

  1. Abby Dueck – grade 6 – Holy Name of Mary
  2. Brooklyn Burns – grade 5 – Holy Name of Mary
  3. Makenna Wing – grade 6 – Pakenham Public school

Congratulations to the winners and to everyone who participated! Abby’s colouring has been made into a sticker and will also be featured on various promotional items such as t-shirts and tote bags.

A deputation from Goss Gilroy presented the findings of the Community Services Public Consultation Survey conducted in fall 2022. The survey focused on recreation and cultural activities and addressed strengths, gaps and next steps. 

Council approved the 2023 Budget. The total municipal plus policing levy is $12,881,582 representing a 3% overall increase to the combined municipal and policing levy over 2022. This would mean based on the average assessment of $334,000.00 a household would see a yearly increase of $46.10. There are four components to the tax rate that the Municipality levies on residents – Municipal, Police, County and School.

Some key projects for 2023 include:

  • $4.3M Road & Bridge work
  • $365K Tandem Plow Truck
  • $263K Sidewalk Repairs
  • $198K in Community Safety and Well-Being including Traffic Calming
  • $125K for a Digital Master Plan
  • $240K for Mississippi Mills 2048 planning projects including How we Grow, How we Flow, How we Go, How we Dispose, How we Play, How we Pay, How We Prosper - essential for the Municipality to grow in an effective and fiscally responsible manner.

Council approved the tendering for replacement of the Almonte Curling Refrigeration plant and authorized a Trillium Grant application submitted by the Municipality upwards of $150,000 towards plant. The project will only be awarded if funding is secured.

Council directed staff to bring back updates and/or changes to various sections of a Governance Report including Procedural Bylaw, community engagement framework, the Property Standards Terms of Reference and By-law, Council and Committee Code of Conduct, and Council Staff Relations Policy.  

Committee of the Whole also heard the following items, which will be brought forward for consideration at a future Council meeting:

The 2022 Almonte Drinking Water System Annual Report was presented. Ontario Regulation 170/03 requires all Municipal Drinking Water System Operating Authorities to submit an Annual Summary Report prior to March 31st of each year. The Municipality and Ontario Clean Water Agency’s ongoing commitment to invest in system management, operational improvements and efficiencies, capital investments and training continues to reflect in system performance.

  • Recommend that Council approve the Mayors’ Monarch Pledge Workplan, approve $5,000 be funded through the 2023 Vegetation Management account to implement the Workplan and endorse and sign the National Wildlife Federation Mayors’ Monarch Pledge. The Pledge is an initiative where Municipal leaders commit to implementing action items with the goal of developing habitat for the Monarch butterfly and raising community awareness about the decline in the Monarch population.

  • Recommend that Council approve the directional plan for the completion of the Community Services Master Plan. The final community services plan will include recreation, culture and childcare services and programs, incorporate age friendly planning principles and be considered using a lens of to ensure equality, diversity and inclusivity. Council will hold a Special Meeting to provide further direction on the scope of the Community Services Master Plan.

  • Recommend that Council approve appointing Mayor Lowry, Deputy Mayor Minnille and Councillor Souter to Carebridge Community Support’s steering committee for an affordable housing project located at 34 Victoria Street in Almonte. 

Upcoming Meetings:

  • Hybrid Council Meeting – April 4th, 2023 at 6:00 pm. Committee of the Whole Meeting to follow Council.
  • Hybrid Council Meeting – April 25th, 2023 at 6:00 pm. Committee of the Whole Meeting to follow Council. 

Upcoming Bicentennial Events:

  • March 25 - Celebrate Almonte - Celebrate Almonte's past and present. This event is for the whole family and runs from 11am - 3pm.
  • March 26 – Community Information Session to introduce Ginawaydaganuc Village. 12pm - 4pm at Almonte Old Town Hall. Ginawaydaganuc Village is an innovative, Indigenous-led, multicultural economic development plan slated for Almonte, with an anticipated opening in 2024-2026. This business hub will feature a restaurant, a small hotel, retail space, academy/workshop space and an Indigenous Elder’s Lodge.
  • March to May - MM Community Reads!" The Days of Toil and Tears: The Child Labour Diary of Flora Rutherford" by Sarah Ellis. This story is set in Almonte about an orphan who works in a textile mill. 
  • April 6 - Community Luncheon from 11:30am - 1pm, hosted by the Almonte Civitan.