April 23, 2019 County Council Highlights

County Tourism Cruiser – New Engine

For the past seven years, the County has utilized the former Library delivery van for Tourism activities to promote tourism throughout Elgin County and the surrounding areas. The operational life of the current tourism van has come to an end. Changing of this vehicle with the recently replaced Library delivery van was planned for 2019. However, in order to make this transition possible a new motor was required. Council consented to the installation of a new engine at a cost of $6850 to extend the life of the Library Delivery Van for an additional five years of tourism activities. If needed, the Warden has the authority to replace the transmission as well. Click here for more information about the County Tourism Cruiser repairs.

Culvert Sliplining and Culvert Replacement – Tender Award

Significant culvert work is required and will be undertaken on County Road 48 (Ferguson Line) in the Municipality of Central Elgin. Gary D. Robinson Contracting was awarded the contract for the culvert sliplining and culvert replacement project on Ferguson Line at a total price of $277,500 which covers the County’s portion of the project. Click here to review the tender results.

Traffic Calming Measures – Port Bruce

As a result of the collapse of the Imperial Road Bridge, a temporary bridge was installed in August 2018. To prepare for the launch of the temporary bridge, a traffic detour plan was established by Council with input from third party traffic specialists. Based on a traffic count evaluation completed by Engineering Services, it was recommended that the existing posted speed limits remain as is. As a result of the unique demolition and construction project undertaken by the County in this area, Council recognized the need for and authorized the immediate implementation of traffic calming measures in the area. A combination of public education and the use of flexible raised pavement markers or bollards will be installed to create a centre median. In anticipation of increased traffic volumes in the area during the spring and summer seasons, traffic counts, particularly on bridge approaches, will be taken on a regular basis to allow for a proactive response by Elgin County in the future. Click here for the County Engineer’s report on Port Bruce Traffic Calming measures.

Resident Request to Rename Elgin-St. Thomas Ambulance Headquarters

In November 2017, County Council received a delegation from Dave Rock requesting that County Council give consideration to naming the Elgin-St. Thomas Ambulance Headquarters building located at 125 Edward Street, St. Thomas after Charles (Chuck)
Leverne Brubaker. In the latter part of 2017 and the first quarter of 2018, County Council carefully considered a number of factors related to this request and in March 2018, approved a Municipal Property and Building Commemorative Naming Policy. County Council revisited the request and directed the Warden to contact Mr. Rock requesting a status update and, if appropriate, invite Mr. Rock to provide a delegation to County Council at an upcoming meeting.

Community Flag Raising

The County is exploring the costs associated with the purchase and installation of a Community Flag Pole in front of the County Building at 450 Sunset Drive, St. Thomas. Stay tuned for more details!

2019 Provincial Budget Highlights

The release of the 2019 Provincial Budget has announced the following but not limited to:
– Land Ambulance service will be streamlined by integrating Ontario’s 59 emergency health services operators (52 Emergency Medical Services, 6 First Nations, Ornge) to 10 regional services.
– The process of consolidating six (6) existing Provincial Health Local Integration Networks (LHINS) into a new, single agency is ongoing.
– Capital funding for high-speed rail in Southwestern Ontario is on hold. A transportation plan for Southwestern Ontario is expected to be delivered by fall 2019.
– By 2020-2021, the province will establish 10 regional public health entities and 10 new regional boards of health with one common governance model.
– Provincial commitment of $315 million over five (5) years to support rural high speed broadband has been announced.
– The Southern Ontario Library Service Budget will be reduced by just over 50%. This is a substantial cut which will mean some valued services, which could include cuts to training and interlibrary loan services.
– The province is exploring opportunities to save approximately $30 million annually starting in 2019-2020 without impacting front-line policing and community safety. For more information, click here to access the AMO budget report.

The complete April 23, 2019 County Council Agenda package can be found here.

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