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Municipal

Unpaid property taxes in city lower than provincial average, audit shows

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In 2019 the city collected a little over $139 million in taxation from the citizens of Kawartha Lakes, with $5.57 remaining in unpaid taxes from 2019 currently sitting on the city’s books.

“The ratio of taxes not paid is 4.01 per cent,” Carolyn Daynes, the treasurer for Kawartha Lakes, told council at their September meeting.

“And any delinquency under 10 per cent is deemed okay by the province. The average of uncollected taxes across the province sits at 5.6 per cent so the city is generally doing a good job.”

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CAO on hot seat; Councillors demand answers on slow city response times

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Kawartha Lakes Chief Administrative Officer Ron Taylor said the city’s priority was “cost containment,” not maintaining pre-pandemic level city services, at a recent council meeting.

The CAO was responding to councillors who were not happy with city response times or city services after fielding many calls from their constituents.

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City fine tunes fireworks legislation; Ashmore opposes limits in bylaw

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By a vote of 8-1, Kawartha Lakes council passed a sweeping by-law that will limit the use of fireworks to just six different sets of days in the annual calendar. Special permits will be required for all other days.

Councillor Ron Ashmore wanted to debate the issue because he felt that the whole idea of a ban “was taking away a lot of enjoyment in people’s lives.”

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Homeless shelter needs re-imagining, says city manager

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Homeless shelter needs re-imagining, says city manager

Hope Lee, manager of human services–housing, shared a report with council laying out in stark terms the homelessness crisis in Kawartha Lakes, and how it has been affected by the pandemic.

She also shared how a re-imagination of A Place Called Home, the area’s only homeless shelter, might positively impact the number of beds available for those who have nowhere to go.

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Charitable road tolls and backyard chickens: Council presentation

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Aaron Sloan, manager of municipal law enforcement for Kawartha Lakes, had charitable toll roads and chickens on his mind in a recent presentation to council.

Charitable road tolls are typically when a group of people takes over a major intersection in Lindsay and when the flow of traffic allows, solicits donations from the people waiting to drive through.

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Council briefs: Cultural centre, road improvements, traffic calming

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Deferral of Cultural Centre Task Force

Donna Goodwin, economic development officer for arts, culture and heritage, asked council to defer the viability study of a Kawartha Lakes cultural centre until March 31, 2021.

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City to consider CHEST fund money for local charities

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When the town of Lindsay sold their hydro-electric company decades ago to Ontario Hydro there was a decision made that the money made from that sale should be invested for the benefit of the community.

Town council made a decision that every year a portion of that investment plus interest would be doled out to assist worthy groups planning capital projects of significance that would benefit residents of Lindsay proper.

In the many years since that wise investment was made, millions of dollars have been distributed to assist community based organizations that provide programs, projects, services or activities that enhance the quality of life for residents in the areas of health, arts, culture, leisure, heritage, education and the environment.

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Lake Simcoe Conservation Authority pushes for less winter salting

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“The problem that commercial users face is the fear of litigation if there is a slip and fall.”

Mike Walters, the chief executive officer of the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority, has said that in 60 years Lake Simcoe could become toxic from over-salting if something isn’t done soon.

Walters was addressing council at their committee of whole meeting about the work being done by the conservation authority to reduce the damaging use of salt during the winter months across Ontario.

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Turner proposes city use federal guidelines for conservation of local historic places

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Sir Sam Hughes' home, Lindsay. One of many lost homes that might have been saved under a heritage designation.

Economic development officer for heritage, arts and culture for Kawartha Lakes Emily Turner, in a detailed and meticulous presentation to council at the recent committee of the whole meeting, proposed that the city look at adopting the “Guidelines for Conservation of Historic Places in Canada” as the city’s guiding document for conservation moving forward.

The document, originally developed by the federal government in 2003 and updated in 2010, is used by Parks Canada to help “preserve the historic value and conserve the qualities that make the site/building valuable to all Canadians.”

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Out with a whimper, not a bang: Council restricts fireworks to 6 days a year

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“Nuisance fireworks are creating a quality of life and a noise problem in the City of Kawartha Lakes."

Kawartha Lakes City Council unanimously received a vote that would restrict the use of fireworks to just six days a year. The new bylaw will take effect on September 15 should council formally adopt the received bylaw then.

At the committee of the whole meeting, Kawartha Lakes Fire Chief Mark Pankhurst asked council to consider restricting the use of fireworks to a handful of days in the summer season and to implement an outright ban on backyard campfires in Lindsay proper.

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