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Collective political opinions of the community

Mayor Don’s Update June 10, 2021

Ontario’s Roadmap to Reopen

As of the writing of this update, the Province is scheduled to enter Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen the week of June 14. This three-step plan was implemented to safely and cautiously reopen the province by gradually lifting public health measures based on vaccination rates and improvements in key public health indicators. Step One will see the ease of some restrictions, with an initial focus on outdoor settings. A simple, easy-to-understand summary of the restrictions can be found on the Province’s “Reopening Ontario” webpage at www.ontario.ca/page/reopening-ontario

Though the stay-at-home order has lifted, the current emergency brake shutdown restrictions will remain in effect until we are cleared to enter Step One of the Roadmap. As always, anyone who may have been exposed to COVID-19 or who may be exhibiting symptoms of the virus should use the Province’s self-assessment tool to determine what they should do next, including getting a test and isolating if necessary.

Farmers’ Market Open for the Season

The Springwater Farmers’ Market – Elmvale opens on Friday, June 18 to kick off the summer! We are thrilled to work once again with our local vendors and carry this important community tradition forward under the proper safety precautions.

The Farmers’ Market will operate every Friday, 9 am to 2 pm, through September 17 in the municipal parking lot at 33 Queen Street West. Please wear a mask, practice safe physical distancing and do not attend the market if you are feeling unwell.

If you are interested in becoming a vendor, you can obtain more information at www.springwater.ca/farmersmarket.

Community Safety and Wellbeing

Everyone has a role to play in safety and well-being, and over the past year, local municipalities have come together with police and community partners across different sectors to develop a Community Safety and Well-Being Plan (CSWP) for South Georgian Bay and Springwater. The plan, which is required under the Province’s Safer Ontario Act, 2018, will outline strategies and actions to ensure that all residents enjoy the opportunity to feel safe, connected and well.

We recognize that not everyone experiences the same sense of safety and well-being and that the struggles are unique to each person. Our CSWB Plan has prioritized three areas of focus: mental health and addictions, housing, and access to services. With strong, committed partners and by engaging those with lived experience, we can leverage and aid efforts that support safety and well-being already underway, and find new ways to work together to address these areas of risk.

We are very excited to move the strategies forward with our residents and community partners.

Municipal Comprehensive Review Update

Under the Province’s Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, all upper tier municipalities are required to bring their Official Plans into conformity with provincial policy by July 2022 through a Municipal Comprehensive Review (MCR). The County of Simcoe initiated its MCR process in 2018 to specifically review and update planning policy regarding key themes. 

In accordance with provincial requirements, the Township has launched its own Official Plan Review (OPR), focusing on many of the same planning policy considerations at a local level. The revised plan will shape how the Township grows and changes over the next 20 years and provide guidance on housing, industry, retail and community amenities, with protections for environmental and heritage features. See more information on springwater.ca/business-and-development/official-plan regarding the OPR.

The public and had the opportunity to express during this County process by submitting comments for a Public Meeting held on June 8. Springwater Council approved staff comments regarding the MCR which were submitted to the County. More information on https://www.simcoe.ca/Planning/Pages/MCR.aspx.

Building Services Impacts

The Township’s Building Services Department will be migrating to a new building permit system during the months of May, June and July. The new system will allow for enhanced features, such as online permitting, a user-friendly data interface and online payments.

In order to facilitate the implementation, residents may experience temporary service disruption to allow for training, migration of data and testing of the new software. Thank you for your patience and understanding as our staff work through this transition.

Swaley Drain

The Township’s consultant, Kenn Smart, made a presentation to the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority Board of Directors regarding issues with the Swaley Drain outlet. The Township was successful in obtaining Board approval of a motion it brought forward in line with the recommendations of Kenn Smart. As a result of this NVCA staff will work with Kenn and Springwater staff to move towards the issuance of a work permit, while ensuring any environmental concerns are met. We are pleased to move forward with this project, which has been in the works for many years and is now targeting to commence by December 2021.

Cannabis Production Facility Update

Council continues to review potential policy amendments to the Official Plan and Zoning By-law for cannabis production in Springwater. Preliminary draft policy amendments have been presented based on recommendations of the Cannabis Production Review Study prepared by WSP consultants. In accordance with the Planning Act, a virtual public meeting was held regarding this on May 31st. Input was received from various parties and staff will consider these and any other comments received in future to prepare a final recommendation report for Council’s decision on the proposed amendments.  

Council in its meeting last week agreed to extend the Township one-year Interim Control By-law related to cannabis production (ICBL) put in place June 2020, for an further 6 month period to enable finalization of the appropriate policy amendments. Further information regarding this and an opportunity to submit your comments can be found under cannabis production at: 

https://www.springwater.ca/en/business-and-development/planning-and-development.aspx

These comments reflect my thoughts and not necessarily those of Council. 

Stay well.

A Message from Doug Shipley, MP

Across the country, Canadians have shared a heavy sense of mourning and grief in recent days.   I want to express my deepest sympathy to the Indigenous communities that are sharing in this trauma.

Early on the morning of June 1st I visited Springwater Provincial Park to attend the Sacred Fire and it was a very moving experience.  I was humbled to give my offering and say a prayer in tribute to the 215 children found buried in a mass grave at the former site of a residential school in Kamloops, B.C.

The legacy of residential schools is a national shame that has had a lasting and damaging impact on Indigenous culture, heritage and language in Canada.  This discovery has increased awareness around the conditions and purpose of these schools and the unspeakable abuse that attendees experienced.  

While communities and families deal with this unthinkable revelation, we must come together to provide whatever assistance is necessary to aid in the healing process, including the resources needed to protect, honour and identify the children.   

Together, we must ensure that this is not a forgotten headline and that these children and the families that mourn them are not forgotten.  In the wake of this discovery many Canadians have come to realize how little they know about the dark history of residential schools. It is important that we address this and develop resources to educate Canadians of all ages about the tragic history of residential schools in Canada.  

In honour of National Indigenous History Month, I commit to learning and sharing more about the customs and culture that Indigenous communities in Simcoe County work to preserve and pass on to future generations.  I hope that many of you can join me in that commitment. 

Sincerely, 

Doug Shipley, Member of Parliament

Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte

Tanya Saari to Run for the Federal Liberals in Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte

Barrie business women Tanya Saari has agreed to run as the federal Liberal candidate in the riding of Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte (BSOM) in the next election.

“I am excited to accept this challenge and I look forward to meeting more people in the riding on doorsteps and at events even as we follow pandemic protocols and social distancing. Political issues have always been a passion for me and I believe I can advocate strongly for the people of this riding in Parliament,” says Saari.

She is a well-known, self-employed realtor in the Barrie area, but is a relative newcomer to elected politics. Saari did run for Barrie Council in the municipal election of 2018 and a by-election in 2019. She said there are three major issues that are important to people in the BSOM riding that need to be addressed at the national level: the environment and global warming; building a stronger, better and more inclusive economy after the pandemic; and protecting and improving social infrastructure from child care to support for seniors.

BSOM Liberal Electoral Riding Association Chairperson Scott MacLeod said his Executive is thrilled to have a candidate of Saari’s calibre run in the next election.

“We had several high-quality candidates consider running in BSOM, but in the end Tanya was the person ready to commit fully to the grind of a political campaign and she did the work to be ready when the call came. She was acclaimed as the nominee by the National Party and our Executive,” says MacLeod.

Saari is already busy organizing her campaign but will continue to operate her business until the writ for the election is dropped.

A Message from Doug Downey

Ontario Moves Into Step One Ahead of Schedule  

Ontario is moving into Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen at 12:01 am on Friday, June 11, 2021. Ontario was originally supposed to move into Step One on June 14, but key health indicators and vaccination rates have allowed for us to begin reopening sooner.  

In order to safely enter Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen, Ontario needed to have vaccinated 60 per cent of adults with at least one dose for two weeks or longer, ensuring a stronger level of protection against COVID-19. As of June 6, 2021 at 8:00pm, 72 per cent of the 18+ population in Ontario had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccination, with over 10 million doses being administered in the province   

Before entering Step One, the province also needed to see continued improvement in key public health and health system indicators. During the period of May 25 to 31, 2021, the provincial case rate decreased by 35.1 per cent. As of June 6, the number of patients with COVID-19 in ICUs is 497, including 31 patients from Manitoba, as compared to 687 two weeks ago. The public health situation currently exceeds the best-case scenario for recent modelling, which indicated the province would reach below 1,000 new daily infections by June 30, 2021.  

Step One of the Roadmap focuses on the resumption of more outdoor activities with smaller crowds where risk of transmission is lower. It will also permit more limited indoor settings to be open, all with restrictions in place. In consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government has amended Step One to also permit indoor religious services, rites and ceremonies, including wedding and funeral services limited to 15 per cent capacity. 

Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen includes but is not limited to: 

Outdoor social gatherings and organized public events with up to 10 people; 

Outdoor religious services, rites, or ceremonies, including wedding services and funeral services, capped at the number of people that can maintain a physical distance of two metres; 

Indoor religious services, rites, or ceremonies, including wedding services and funeral services permitted at up to 15 per cent capacity of the particular room; 

Non-essential retail permitted at 15 per cent capacity, with no restrictions on the goods that can be sold; 

Essential and other select retail permitted at 25 per cent capacity, with no restrictions on the goods that can be sold; 

Outdoor dining with up to four people per table, with exceptions for larger households; 

Outdoor fitness classes, outdoor groups in personal training and outdoor individual/team sport training to be permitted with up to 10 people, among other restrictions; 

Day camps for children permitted to operate in a manner consistent with the safety guidelines for COVID-19 produced by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health; 

Overnight camping at campgrounds and campsites, including Ontario Parks, and short-term rentals; 

Concert venues, theatres and cinemas may open outdoors for the purpose of rehearsing or performing a recorded or broadcasted concert, artistic event, theatrical performance or other performance with no more than 10 performers, among other restrictions; 

Outdoor horse racing tracks and motor speedways permitted to operate without spectators; and 

Outdoor attractions such as zoos, landmarks, historic sites, botanical gardens with capacity and other restrictions. 

The province will remain in Step One for at least 21 days to evaluate any impacts on key public health and health system indicators. If at the end of the 21 days the province has vaccinated 70 per cent of adults with one dose and 20 per cent of adults with two doses, and there are continued improvements in other key public health and health system indicators, the province will move to Step Two of the Roadmap. 

All public health and workplace safety measures currently in place will remain in effect until the province moves to Step One on June 11, 2021 at 12:01 a.m. During this time, the government will continue to work with stakeholders on their reopening plans, including targeted measures for specific sectors, institutions and other settings to ensure that they have full awareness of when they can begin to safely reopen and how.

NVCA May 2021 Board Meeting Highlights

Next Meeting: June 25, 2021, held virtually

Springwater Township Swaley Drain

Presentation

Kenn Smart, P. Eng from K. Smart Associates

provided an update to NVCA’s Board of

Directors regarding the Swaley Drain in

Springwater Township.

NVCA will continue to work with town staff to

extend the Swaley Drain while mitigating

environmental impacts in the Minesing

Wetlands.

Board Hearing Training

Under the Conservation Authorities Act Section

28 (12), permit applicants who are denied a

permit have the rights to a hearing in front of

the NVCA Board.

NVCA’s Board of Directors received a

presentation from Colin A. Brown, Partner, HHL

Law Firm LLP, regarding the hearings process

under the Conservation Authorities Act.

Presentation on NVCA Permitting

Process

Meagan Kieferle, Regulations Technician at

NVCA gave a presentation on the NVCA

Permitting Process.

NVCA is responsible for the administration of

Provincial Regulations under Section 28 of the

Conservation Authorities Act. These regulations

are in place to prevent injuries and loss of life,

minimize property damage and restoration

costs as well as protect the natural benefits of

wetlands, watercourses and shorelines.

Areas that are regulated by NVCA include

Flooding and erosion hazards associated

with watercourses and shorelines;

Steep slopes when associated with river and

streams, hazardous lands and unstable

soils;

Wetlands and wetland buffers;

Dynamic beaches.

Any development in these areas require a

permit from NVCA. These activities include:

Construction of a dwelling or addition;

Reconstruction of a dwelling;

Construction of any other structure such as

shorewall, inground pool or driveway;

Placing or constructing a detached accessory

structure such as a barn, shed or pool

house;

Changes to a building or structure that

alters the use, increases the size or

increases the occupancy such as, enclosing

a carport to create a garage, or an “in-law”

suite;

Site grading

Temporary or permanent, removal or

importation of material such as fill, gravel,

soils, even if the material originated on the

site.

The following activities do not require a permit

or prior approvals:

Ground level decks (provided they are not

enclosed or cover a walk out from below);

Seasonal docks;

Fences;

Above ground swimming pools or hot tubs;

Landscaping activities such as planting trees

or garden beds;

Removal of singular or small group of trees

where stumps remain in place may not

require permission from the NVCA, if such

works are demonstrated to not interfere

with wetlands, alter watercourses and

shorelines, or impact land conservation.

NVCA’s permit handling process.

In general, a permit application will go through

policy and technical reviews before a permit is

issued.

Please refer to NVCA’s Permit Application flow

chart for more information.

Applying for a permit

Step 1: Pre-consultations with NVCA’s

regulations staff is highly recommended prior to

applying for a permit. NVCA’s regulations staff

will review your proposal with our technical

staff before you apply.

Pre-consultations can save time and money by

giving a clear direction on the policy and

technical guidelines before plans are completed.

By speaking with our regulations officers,

iterations to plans and back and forth with

consultants or hired contractors can be

reduced.

Here are several ways to consult with NVCA’s

regulations staff

Complete an Online Inquiry on NVCA’s

Website

 Send an email to permits@nvca.on.ca

Contact the NVCA regulations team by

calling 705-424-1479

In person “walk-in” services (currently

suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic),

however Regulations staff are happy to set

up a telephone appointment.

Review our Planning and Regulation

Guidelines

Step 2: If NVCA regulations staff have

determined a permit is required, submit a

complete application with required documents.

Applicants will be informed within 21 businesses

days what additional information is required.

Timelines

Initial Policy Review: 21 business days

Technical Review for Minor Works

Applications: 30 business days.

Applicable projects include:

• Utilities

• Pools

• Septic

• Minor additions (not within the hazard

 lands)

Detached accessory structures (under 500

sq.ft. and/or not within the hazard lands)

Technical Review for Major Works

Applications: 90 business days.

Applicable projects include:

• New dwelling or reconstruction

• Shorewalls/shoreline alteration

• Minor additions (within the hazard lands)

• Watercourse alteration/Drainage Act

• Detached accessory structures (over 500

sq.ft. and/or within the hazard lands)

Timelines can be delayed and sometimes

are not avoidable. Some of the common

reasons include:

• Incomplete application submitted for

“review”

• Delays from applicants completing

payments or providing zoning approvals

• Volume of permits at the time of application

• Applicant did not consult with the NVCA

prior to submitting their application and

their proposal does not comply with Policy.

In these circumstances the applicant is

provided comments to address in order to

comply with policy. Once the revised

information is received then the technical

review can commence and timelines start.

Township of Springwater Council Meeting Highlights: June 2, 2021

Next Council Meeting: June 16, 2021

This summary is not a full representation of the meeting. For the official record, please refer to the minutes in the next Council Agenda. Past Council Meetings are available for viewing on the Township’s Youtube channel.

Springwater Township Public Library 

Council received a delegation from Library CEO Jodie Player Delgado, who provided an overview of the Springwater Township Public Library’s activities over the last several months. In addition to adding new digital resources, the Library is now offering curbside pick-up for a wide variety of collection items and take-home program supports. Programing will largely continue in a virtual capacity this summer, though the Library expects to reopen in July when the Province enters Stage Two. Player Delgado announced that the Library has received an Ontario Trillium Fund Seed Grant to develop new virtual programs for seniors, offered at no cost to the participants.

Service Delivery Review 

Council has agreed to seek new consultants as part of the Township’s ongoing Service Delivery Review. Paid for through Covid-19 relief funds, the process will see the creation of a Technology Master Plan, ensuring the Township’s technological capacities are adequate to meet service delivery requirements in an increasingly virtual environment. Furthermore, staff have been directed to complete Activity Worksheets in an effort to provide a better understanding of their current roles and responsibilities. Funded through the $50,000 allocated budget, consultants will analyze data collected from staff, provide industry benchmarks, and define and recommend Service Level Standards and Key Performance Indicators.

Road Surface Treatment 

Council awarded the tender for single, double and micro surface treatment to Duncor Enterprises Inc at a cost of $721,313.10. The work is part of ongoing road maintenance and will provide a new riding surface for various roads throughout the Township.

Award for Facility Assessment Study 

Council awarded the tender for the Non-Provisional Sites – Facility Assessment Study to WalterFedy in the amount of $49,700, excluding HST. The study will provide the Township with the information required to be compliant with O.Reg 588/17: Asset Management Planning for Municipal Infrastructure.

Cannabis Production Facility Interim Control By-law Extension 

An Interim Control By-law was enacted by Council on June 3, 2020 to place a one-year moratorium on the establishment of new cannabis facilities for lands in Springwater, zoned Industrial and Agricultural. The by-law was enacted to provide time for the municipality to complete a Cannabis Production Review Study. During the moratorium, WSP Group completed the study and presented it to Council on March 17, 2021. The Study recommended Council update the Township Official Plan and Zoning By-law with guidance policies to permit and regulate Cannabis Production Facilities. A public meeting regarding the proposed changes was held on May 31, 2021.

The Interim Control By-law will have lapsed prior to the Township collecting all public comments and considering a final recommendation from staff. As such, Council has approved a 6-month extension to the By-law to provide sufficient time to approve and implement the appropriate policy amendments.

Park Benches and Memorial Tree 

New metal community benches will be installed within Township of Springwater parks, as part of a donation made by the Elmvale and District Lions Club. In addition, the Lions Club will supply and plant a memorial tree with a plaque at Heritage Park in honour of longtime Elmvale resident Stan McNutt. The memorial will serve to recognize McNutt for his service as a member of the Canadian Air Force, long service as an Ontario Provincial Police Officer posted to the Elmvale Detachment and active volunteerism through many Elmvale organizations, including the Presbyterian Church and the Lions Club.