Greetings and Happy New Year from Council and Staff:

 

As we begin this new year we look ahead to the challenges before us. Most notably is the issue of declining water levels in Georgian Bay. This past fall we saw the water drop to levels lower than 1964. Docks and cribs that were functional last year are now “high and dry”. This is most evident in narrow shallow bays. We are anticipating that many waterfront property owners and especially Marinas will be severely impacted and be compelled to perform extensive dock reconstruction and dredging.

For our part, at our February Council Meeting, we will enact a By-law that will allow dock reconstruction to be performed without minor variances or re-zonings. A notice is included in this package. The By-law will allow those changes for a period of three years. Additionally, to ensure continued and uninterrupted access, we have approved reconstruction at all of our Georgian Bay boat launches, as well as, a reconstruction of the dock facility at Snug Harbour. To further assist with this issue, we will be meeting with other Georgian Bay municipalities in hopes that we might jointly petition Provincial and Federal Ministries to streamline their application processes in order that reconstructions, dredging and other related activities can be performed quickly in the spring.

These are actions that can be done in the short term to alleviate the difficulties many property owners will find themselves in this year. As part of a longer-term strategy we will continue to add our voice to those that are petitioning the United States and Canadian Governments to take immediate steps to address the causes of the loss of water.

We are proposing to amend our Official Plan as it relates to the construction of boathouses. Currently, boathouses are permitted, following a successful rezoning. The Official Plan Amendment will prohibit the construction of new boathouses. Council is taking this course of action in order to achieve the overall theme of the Official Plan, which is to preserve the natural features of our Township.

Please remember that there are public processes that both the passage of the By-law and the Official Plan Amendment must follow. Please take advantage of this opportunity to provide your point of view; your comments will be most welcome.

A newsletter will be coming to you in the spring, which will provide information on many other Township initiatives and events.

On behalf of Council and Staff, we wish you all the best in 2013.

 

Best regards,


Gord Harrison

Mayor

2 West Carling Bay Road
Nobel, Ontario
P0G 1G0

P - 705 342 5856
F - 705 342 9527

8am-4pm Monday - Friday