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  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

Essex Council meeting notes - Tuesday, August 3, 2021

by Sylene Argent

Regional Landfill Operations Report presented for 2019/2020

Michelle Bishop, General Manager, and Tom Marentette, Manager of Waste Disposal at the Essex-Windsor Solid Waste Authority (EWSWA), presented the 2020 Annual Regional Operations Report to Essex Council.

  Council received the report for informational purposes.

  Marentette explained the Essex-Windsor Regional Landfill site was officially opened to receive waste on July 2, 1997. Nearly 303,000 tonnes of waste were received during operations in 2020, compared to 352,000 tonnes in 2019. That decrease, he said, is most directly related to a decrease in episodic waste, which is occasional or irregular. This could include items like contaminated soil. In 2019, there were rather large construction projects, which contributed to tonnage that year.

  The average waste quantity delivered to the site in 2020 was nearly 1000 tonnes per day.

  Canadian Transfer LTD is under a multi-year contract with EWSWA to operate the authority’s heavy equipment. The work includes the placement and compaction of waste, the placement of daily, intermediate, and final cover, in addition to maintaining the access roads.

  Marentette explained the ramp method is used for landfilling at the Regional Landfill, which is used at a shallow slope to ensure maximum compaction and machine efficiency.  

  At the end of each working day, the tipping area is covered with a layer of daily cover material or soil to reduce odours, nuisance, vectors, and to prevent fires and blowing litter. He said several forms of daily cover may be combined to accomplish this and may include street sweepings, compost, or auto shredder fluff.

  Some items are banned from the landfill site, but are accepted at the Recycling Depot. This includes tires, old clean corrugated cardboard, and white goods. Brush, branches, and leaves are ground and processed into compost soil. The Municipal Hazardous or Special Waste area facilitates and encourages waste diversion activities and responsible disposal by accepting refrigerant appliances for a fee.

  In 2020, 273 residents dropped off an assortment of chemicals, electronics, tires, and blue box materials at the site, he said, adding 27,000 vehicles crossed the scale at the Regional Landfill. Of those, 5,728 entered the site for other related landfill operations, aside from waste.  

  The authority provides a fulltime onsite supervisor at the Regional Landfill.

  The Regional Landfill site is 123.5 hectares, with a waste area of 64.5 hectares. The remaining property is used as a buffer. The waste disposal area is divided into five cells and further divided into north and south cells for management of construction. At this time, Marentette added, cell 4 south and cell five north have not been constructed.

  Also in 2020, 22,755 tonnes of yard waste were delivered to the landfill for processing. 17,635 tonnes of compost, including bag-your-own and pre-packaged bags. It also operates a gas management system. A number of wells are designated to reduce gas emissions.  

Councillor Sherry Bondy said the life expectancy of the Regional Landfill is important. “There is one landfill and I want it to be around as long as possible.”

  Marentette said the projected life of the Regional Landfill in 2040. This could be pushed out with better diversion and better compaction methods. Serious evaluation and discussion will be had starting in 2030 on that.

  Mayor Larry Snively said the reps from the Regional Landfill will come back at a later date to discuss the organics program matter.

 Maintenance Securities for Phase 5 of Kimball Estates Development released

Council approved the maintenance securities of $8,483.48 for the completion of surface course asphalt be returned to the developer, Kimball Estates INC, for Phase 5 of the Kimball Estates Subdivision.

  In the Report to Council, it notes a request from Mr. David McBeth, Project Manager for the Kimball Estates Development in Ward 1, requested the release of securities for the end of the maintenance period for the surface course asphalt.

  Phase 5 is the final phase of the Kimball Estates Development.

  In the Report to Council, it notes maintenance securities are held as assurances that the owner of a development will assume responsibility for all materials, equipment, and work until all construction and installation has been completed. Maintenance securities are only released after the one-year maintenance period has expired and all deficiencies have been rectified.

  Town of Essex Infrastructure Services has confirmed that the developer has fulfilled the servicing requirements as per the executed Subdivision Agreement. 

By-Law delayed to only permit two-storey SDU units in ag district

Council delayed adopting By-Law Number 2035, which will amend the Comprehensive Zoning Bylaw for the Town of Essex, to the August 23 meeting.

  This By-Law permits and regulates Second Dwelling Units (SDUs).

  The purpose for the delay was to have administration tweak the By-Law to restrict two-storey SDUs in ancillary buildings to agriculture districts. 

  Deputy Mayor Richard Meloche put forward a motion, which the majority of Council supported, that the third reading be delayed to the August 23 meeting, so that the By-Law will allow for residential areas to have one-storey structures. Councillor Chris Vander Doelen opposed the motion.

  Meloche, Mayor Larry Snively, and Councillor Sherry Bondy expressed concern about two-storey SDUs in urban areas, such as in subdivisions.

  Rita Jabbour, Manager of Planning Services, noted there could be opportunity for urban areas to have two-storey SDUs in ancillary buildings as they can approach the Committee of Adjustment to request a minor variance that may be granted, based on how the request would fit within the neighbourhood.

  In addition, she explained a SDU in a detached building will not be permitted in a required backyard. The Zoning By-Law requires 25-feet be kept between the rear lot line and the main dwelling, so nothing will be permitted in that 25-feet. A SDU can be built outside of the 25-feet in the building envelope.

  Jabbour noted the Planning Department has been working on this project for quite a while. She informed Council that the County of Essex has approved the adoption of Official Plan Amendment Number 8, which is an amendment to update the policy framework for SDUs within the Town of Essex to allow them in main dwellings and in ancillary buildings.

  In addition, 1037, to permit the addition of a SDU in a main dwelling or detached structure in the Agricultural District and select Residential Districts throughout the Municipality, was also approved.

  The Town, she said, needed County approval, which was achieved. There were some revisions that needed to be made to Bylaw 2035, particularly respecting the location of SDUs and required yards. So, a provision was added to prohibit them in required yards, being a required front or rear yard. Regulations were also added prohibiting the gross floor area of a SDU in an ancillary building to exceed the gross floor area of the main dwelling. The regulations were also amended to make it clear that a short-term rental is not permitted in a SDU.

  Deputy Mayor Meloche asked if the number of permits of SDUs will be based on dollars allocated in the budget for that current year, as Development Charges are waived for SDUs through provincial mandate.

  Lori Chadwick, Director of Development Services, said there is a mandate that under the DC Act that these Development Charges be exempt, as mandated through the Province. So, there is no wiggle room for a cap. She suggested looking at 2022 as a full year of SDUs, to judge the impact to the bottom line and then look at the By-Law to see if there is wiggle room to soften the blow.

  Councillor Sherry Bondy said this is really exciting as there are families ready to grab some permits. She gave accolades for the Town leading the pack in implementing the program.  

Mayor Snively said he is disappointed with the Development Charges as he thinks it will be a big burden on money needed to put into infrastructure. It is unbelievable senior levels of government are not stepping in to help municipalities out, he noted.

  Councillor Chris Vander Doelen is happy with the waiver of Development Fees as the point of the issuance is to encourage more construction of housing units. “If you tax it, you get less of it,” he said.

 St. Peter ACHS to lease second floor at Harrow Arena instead

Council approved entering into an agreement to allow St. Peter’s All Canadian Hockey School (ACHS), an independent academic Catholic day and or residential boys school for grades 1-8, to lease the second floor of the Harrow Arena for one-year.  

  This will commence on August 16, 2021 and will conclude on July 31, 2022. There will be an option to renew for an additional two-years.

  In addition, Council passed Bylaw 2049 and repeal By-Law 2044, which was passed at the July 5 meeting, that allowed the school to lease the Harrow Lions Hall.

  At the June 7 Council meeting, Peter Thyrring, Head of the School, approached Council about leasing space at the former Harrow High School. Since the Town does not own that facility, Council directed Administration to see if another location would suffice. Soon after, Council approved allowing the school to lease its Lions Hall.

  It notes in the Report to Council that since the July 5 meeting, the second-floor at the Harrow Arena has become available for lease. The second floor at the Harrow Arena is a bit larger, has its own washroom facilities, as well as common area space.

  The tenant will pay an annual rate of $11,060.44 to lease the second floor of the Harrow Arena.

  Doug Sweet, Director of Community Services/Deputy CAO, said the space is more conducive for the school.

  Mayor Larry Snively said he is happy this is happening.

  Councillor Sherry Bondy said this is a good fit, but it is unfortunate a karate club was lost.

  “I see this school as a pillar to keeping our Harrow Arena nice and full and using that ice time during the day. This is such an exciting time for Harrow and our community and everything that could be coming. I am thrilled.”

 Month of September Proclaimed as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Council received and supported the request from Childcan’s Windsor Support Liaison, Lorraine Jewell, to proclaim September 2021 as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in the Town of Essex.

  In the correspondence, it notes September is officially recognized internationally as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and that the most recent data shows cancer remains the leading cause of disease-related death in children.

 By-Law to recover capital costs for watermain crossing Highway 3 given two readings

Council gave two readings and provisionally adopted By-Law 2050, to recover the capital cost related to the watermain installation crossing Highway 3 at the 14th Concession.

  This is for those receiving a present or future benefit from the services and activities of the Town of Essex to extend services.

  At the June 21 meeting, Council directed administration to develop a by-law to impose a special charge, on benefitting property owners, to fully recover the costs of the watermain crossing Highway 3, at the 14th Concession Road, upon connection to the municipal water supply.

  At the March 1, 2021 regular Council meeting, Council provided the direction to install the watermain across Highway 3 at the 14th Concession. At that time, members of administration noted they would research potential cost-recovery strategies and bring a strategy forward for Council consideration.

  After review of current legislation, it was determined that the best means to recover these costs are through Part 12 of the Municipal Act, which authorizes a municipality, via by-law, to impose fees or charges on persons for services or activities provided.

  Town staff worked with the design builders of the Highway 3 expansion project, Dillon Consulting and Coco Paving Inc., to extend the watermain across the highway, at the 14th Concession, to allow any potential developers on the south side of the thoroughfare to connect in the future.

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