Pool project priority takes toll on other recreation, green spaces
The ongoing renovation project at the Carbonear Swimming Pool has taken up so much of the recreation and tourism department’s time and attention, the priority given to it has been at the expense of the town’s other recreation facilities, Coun. David Kennedy feels.
Coun. Kennedy raised the issue at the last regular council meeting June 6.
“ Now everything else is after because of it,” Kennedy suggested.
The councillor was referring to other recreation facilities and green spaces around town, where in some cases grass has not been cut.
Coun. Gladys Mercer agreed. “ There should be a plan in place for the maintenance of our green spaces, which are so vital to the town,” she said.
The focus of attention on the pool has meant a late start on cutting the grass on the town’s green spaces, which didn’t get started until last Monday.
“If you don’t have ample staff,” Mercer suggested to recreation and tourism director Rob Button, “see the town administrator to get the help you need. Everybody else has to take care of their property.”
Dep. Mayor Ches Ash said, “there comes a point in time when the grass has to be mowed. My suggestion to the recreation director would be if you don’t have the workers, address it with council.”
Mercer suggested, “ you’ve got to have a plan — if we don’t have the staff, someone’s got to do it, supposing we have to hire someone else to do it.”
Efficient work order system needed
Kennedy would like to see some kind of online work-order reporting system implemented in the town. He complained the current system is too slow, which makes it hard to keep up-to-date with what has or has not been done.
“I don’t think the town is trying hard enough to bring in a new system, and I’m not sure why,” he said. “I’m with Coun. Kennedy on this,” said Ash. He said they looked at one system, which seemed to fit the bill, and they were waiting on another firm to demonstrate another system. “But we can only wait so long for a demonstration.”
Director of operations and public works Brian O’Grady acknowledged the town has looked at some systems and town administrator Cynthia Davis has looked into the costs.
Requesting the town administrator to ask the company for a demonstration as soon as possible, Ash said, “ we really need that in place. It would be of great benefit to both council and administration. We really don’t have to be bothering them about work orders if it were in place.”
Ash said he would like to see the system in place for the next council meeting.
Coffee shop approved
Council has approved an application to renovate a building at 179 Water Street to be operated as a coffee shop.
The permit to renovate is subject to it meeting the Town of Carbonear Municipal Plan and Development Regulations and the required approvals of the Department of Government Services and Lands and other applicable government departments and agencies.
Built in 1929 by Avalon Telephone Co. as a telephone office, the concrete structure also served as an art gallery before becoming vacant several years ago.
The application was one of motions recommended by the development committee, which were passed at the June 6 regular council meeting.
New collective agreement
Council adopted a new three-year collective agreement. The deal was negotiated between the town and the Transport and Allied Union/Teamsters, which represents the town’s workers. It is effective from Jan. 1, 2011 to Dec. 31, 2013.
Acting on a recommendation from the public works committee, council decided to rent a screener from Concord Paving Ltd. The device is used to screen Class A and topsoil. The town has an option to purchase the screener, where the total payout (including rental) to Concord Paving would not exceed $20,000.
Describing the savings from renting the screener as “quite significant,” O’Grady, noted, “savings in Class A and topsoil would allow the screener to pay for itself within its first year.”
A clean-up order is to be sent to the owner of property at 33B O’Driscoll’s Lane to remove scrapped vehicles and other debris.
Special Events Committee
Krista Pike, Chris O’Keefe and Elizabeth Slade are the newest volunteer members of the town’s Special Events Committee. Council approved the new additions recommended by Coun. Gladys Mercer, who chairs the recreation, tourism and culture committee.
Coun. Mercer told council Florence Button, project manager of the Carbonear Island Project, has nominated Bert Parsons for the 2011 provincial Seniors Distinction Award.
Parsons, who heads the Carbonear Heritage Society, was nominated for his considerable contributions to the preservation of the town’s history through that group.
Mayor Sam Slade also supported the nomination in a letter to the provincial Department of Health and Community Services, which sponsors the award.
The Lifesaving Society has awarded its Anniversary Cup to the Carbonear Swimming Pool.
The award goes to a year-round facility with the highest number of lifesaving program points in a community with a population under 5,000. The Carbonear Swimming Pool had the top standing of facilities in this category for 2010.
Elizabeth Evely, aquatics director at the swimming pool, accepted the award on the town’s behalf June 3.