Apologies for the delay in sending these notes…
Attending the meeting: QW Mayor Jim Harrison, QW Councillor and LTRCA Chair Jim Alyea, QW Councillor David McCue, Brian Harcastle, George Novotny, Charlene Marcus, Orv Francescone, Jack Dingle, Tim Colasante, Pat Wright, Nigel Redford, Dave Dingle
Updates from other meetings shared at the start of this meeting:
LT and Quinte Conservation Authority CAO Meeting last Wednesday Jan 22, 2020 – agreed that group concurrent applications are encouraged
MPP Kramp – Jan. 24th – mentioned new mandates may be coming down for Conservation Authority’s, likely on Jan. 31st.
Wood Plc – agreed group permitting is possible
Baird Consulting discussion – agreed expedited engineering review is desirable
Brighton Council Motion – February 3rd.. two Notices of Motion on the lake levels will be read.. 1. Regarding seeking legal advice.. 2. Regarding getting costs to bring on a flood mitigation expert/team so that we can discuss costs with the province. Post Meeting Note: Motion to get costs will be voted on Feb 18th Council Meeting – It’s frustrating to see 2 weeks burnt up to vote on a motion without doing anything to gather information ahead of time. We’re working to present a brief at that meeting to ensure the facts are considered. Will discuss at our next meeting!
Notes from our meeting
Key Messages from Various Attendees (All – this is my paraphrase attempt after several days – don’t hesitate to suggest wording changes to better reflect what got said!)
Mayor Jim Harrison:
- Mentioned a conversation with Premier Ford: A waterfront property owner is the best steward of its’ own property.
- Recommended the how other groups are emphasizing safety and human health concerns associated with shoreline emergencies as a key dimension in their efforts to get flood help, resources etc. (Dave’s note: this aligns well with our approach for expedited shoreline work approvals.)
- Mentioned that during the previous flood water bags work better than sand bags to quickly protect Hotspots at low cost/labour etc. – various products available – for Quinte West, Deputy Chief Dan Smith can help with bulk orders
- Mentioned that NY State has already provided flood funding to some shoreline property owners
- Discussed concerns about the IJC. Only one IJC representative is from Ontario, the rest are from PQ. Downstream of the Moses Saunders dam, and in PQ seems to experience disproportionately less suffering then above the dam in Ontario. There is a need for more equitable shared pain in flood events. This is the key IJC issue.
- Mentioned Mohawk-Tyendinaga Chief Don Maracle’s emphasis on health and safety issues as an effective approach to get high lake level flood assistance/help
- Mentioned Min of Natural Resources Yakabuski as a key player for advocacy reach-out – we need everyone at the table
- Mentioned that Premier Ford has sent a letter to Prime Minister Trudeau requesting assistance dealing with lake level issues, no indication of a reply
- Mentioned Municipal Affairs Minister MPP Steve Clark – possibility of funding through his Ministry – therefore another key player for advocacy reach-out
Quinte West Councillor David McCue:
- Advised his concern that groups working to address different aspects of the lake level emergency shouldn’t lose focus on the issue of resolving the root cause
- (Dave Dingle’s note – This is a key consideration to keep in mind while we work on protecting our properties. We need to avoid in any way ‘normalizing’ that these flood levels might continue to happen – they MUST NOT!)
Quinte West Councillor/LRTCA Chair Jim Alyea:
- Mentioned the possibility of Conservation Authority mandate changes coming at the end of January 2020
- Emphasized the many valuable roles the CA’s play and the need for us to find ways to work with them – there’s important work they do
- Mentioned there are board appeal processes are in place to appeal unfavourable CA decisions
Concerns/topics raised by meeting attendees:
- Concurrent permit applications by a group of adjacent shoreline owners and one or more owners can’t pay. Then what do you do? How can this be addressed?
- Someone mentioned: Steve Urich is Conservation Authority responsible minister – new mandates coming down for CA’s, likely on Jan. 31st.
- Concern with water bags standing up to big waves – more research needed.
- Tim Colasante – Sacketts Harbour – Aqua bags – 6 feet across these are big ones – Jim H. says you can get any size – check with fire department and Orv on these minutes
- Emergency permits can’t be issued until its ‘an emergency’.
- Tim Colasante: why are we being treated differently when water is high compared to when water was low? – when water was low businesses were allowed to protect themselvesUnevaluated wetland – discretion/common sense needs to be applied.
- Unevaluated wetland – discretion of common sense needs to be applied.
HMCD Responses Dave and others suggested in response to these discussions:
- Continued effort to find ways to work with CA and to comply with regulations as much as is possible and sensible while expecting CA’s to exercise the full limits of their discretion.
- Elevated non-permit material limits under certain conditions.
- Quick permitting/Early ‘emergency permits’ with technical input from flood mitigation experts.
- Early group permits with quick input from flood mitigation experts.
- Register contractors with flood mitigation experts.
- Organize neighbourhood groups.
- Standards for quick permits
If any notes or corrections, please let us know.