Grey County Council met on Tuesday, November 22, at 9:00 a.m. in the Council Chamber. Below are highlights from the meeting.
- Council passed the 2017 budget. The combined $144-million operating and capital budget focuses on maintaining high-quality day-to-day services and investing in projects that make Grey County a better place to live, work and play.
- Warden Barfoot gave his closing address for 2016 and highlighted the work that has been accomplished in the past year. The full address can be found below.
- Gilbert Rice, a 50-year volunteer with Grey Roots Museum, was presented the Ontario Museum Association’s 2016 Award of Excellence.
- The review of Paramedic Services in Grey and Bruce counties found both services running efficiently and cost effectively. Staff will continue to look for opportunities to collaborate. Report
- An economic development position will be moved from Owen Sound to Grey County. The position will support economic development throughout the entire county. Report
- Year-end financial projections for various Grey County departments were received.
- The roof on the existing Administration Building will be replaced to address leaks and other issues. Minutes
- A public tender was awarded to Danval Construction Company for $475,000 to replace the roof at the Alpha Street apartments. Report
- A public tender was awarded to Van Dolder’s Custom Exteriors for $210,000 to replace railings at the Parkway apartments. Report
- Grey County will request a meeting at the Rural Ontario Municipal Association conference with the Ministry of Energy to discuss the impact of high energy costs on home owners and businesses.
- A new procedure will help staff regulate when hidden entrance signs need to be installed. Report
- Changes to formal procedures were approved by Council to allow for the Committee of the Whole Pilot Project to begin in January. Report
- A public meeting will be scheduled to discuss an official plan amendment to re-designate lands in West Grey for a seasonal property. Report
- Grey County will work with Owen Sound to allow the extension of a sanitary sewer. The project is adjacent to a portion of the CP Rail Trail. Report
- Councillors voted to appoint members on to various committees, agencies and boards. Report
The Clerk’s Department maintains the official record for Grey County. This publication is intended to provide meeting highlights only. For official records, please refer to the meeting minutes, or contact the Clerk’s Department at 1-800-567-4739.
Warden's Closing Address 2016
To my fellow County Councillors and County Staff:
It has been an honour to work with all of you and to have been Grey County’s voice in 2016. As a group, we have worked hard over this past year to make decisions that will make Grey County a better place to work and live. There were many times that we did not all agree on certain matters, but all were allowed to voice their opinions, we made a decision, and moved on to the next item of business.
The past year has gone by very quickly, and has included many accomplishments. I would be remiss if I did not mention a few of them.
Construction of the roundabout at Alvanley has been a highlight, as we have been advocating for that project for over ten years. We will see that project completed early in 2017.
The commitment of funding from both the Federal and Provincial governments to the SWIFT project that enables us to work on achieving high speed internet for all residents of Grey County in the upcoming years.
The addition to this county building will bring together our county services under one roof. We will have a new provincial offences court area that will meet the provincial standards. That work will continue on throughout 2017. As a group, we worked through the issue of allowing ATV’s on County Roads. This gives us a base to work with, knowing that changes will need to be made in the future to satisfy everyone’s needs.
The proposed re-designation and expansion of the Niagara Escarpment area certainly took up much of council’s time. We worked together to hear our constituents concerns and pass them onto the provincial government. Now we wait to hear if they really listened.
Grey County has been a familiar area for the provincial government to do pilot projects. This past year was no different where they announced another one for us in the Health Care field. The Community Health Assessment Program, through our Emergency Medical Services will find out if health care monitoring and education can improve tenant health and reduce 911 calls to our social housing buildings. We look forward to seeing the results.
The Ag 4.0 Summit held at the Meaford Hall and Innovation Tour celebrated the many innovative agricultural producers in Grey County. It was a tremendous success and we are already receiving inquiries about another one for next year.
Grey County being named as one of the top 21 Smart Communities in the world for 2017 has certainly put Grey County in the spotlight. We continue to embrace technology to improve prosperity and inclusiveness and we look forward to early in 2017 to see if we make the top seven.
As a government, we are in the Customer Service business, and I am pleased with some initiatives that have come forward this year. Of note is the Recolour Grey project led by the Planning staff to engage our residents to provide input into our update of the Official Plan. The other is the streamlined special event permit process now in place for people wanting to use County roads in their events. The permit steps have been simplified and it is now available through an online application.
Economic Development continues to be a driving force within our County, and I look forward to new developments as a result of the changes that were made in that department over this past year.
Everything that has been accomplished could not have been done without the support of you, Grey County Council, our Directors, their staff and under the leadership of our CAO, Kim Wingrove. Kim, thank you for all your help over this past year.
To Penny Colton, thank you for arranging all my meetings and keeping my calendar up to date.
THANK YOU again for the privilege of being Warden in 2016