Around the council table
Grand Bank council briefs
Grand Bank council met on Monday, Aug. 15. Cat conundrum continues
Mayor Rex Matthews said the problem of stray and feral cats in the town has become too much to handle.
“We’re taking dozens and dozens of cats out of the systems and there’s dozens and dozens more cats rebounding back there,” he said.
Dealing with one cat can cost hundreds of dollars when all expenses are factored in, the mayor said.
He proposed a meeting of council members to discuss the logistics of a new strategy.
“There’s no way we can keep going at the rate (we are). We’ll be broke on cats,” he said.
House a hazard
A dilapidated house on Bayview Place has become an ongoing concern.
Council is weighing its options as the property has apparently been abandoned.
The town is planning to investigate whether the building can be removed for safety reasons.
Town manager Wayne Bolt said he would meet with the town’s fire chief and the Department of Health, and report back to council at the next meeting.
The house is falling down, Bolt said.
Mayor Rex Matthews said the town will need to build a case and consult with its lawyer before demolishing the building, and expressed concern about taxpayers having to foot the bill.
“We just can’t go in without knowing what the consequences are,” he said.
The discovery process over the insurance claim for the municipal centre is underway.
Mayor Rex Matthews, recreation director/facilities manager Tom Burton and town clerk Cathy Follett testified under oath earlier this month.
A date has yet to be scheduled for town manager Wayne Bolt’s testimony, the last witness from the town’s side.
The municipal centre suffered extensive damage from major leaks in the roof in February 2014.
The discovery will determine whether the dispute will go to trial or if a settlement can be reached, Matthews said.
Solid season for theatre
The Grand Bank Regional Theatre wrapped up the summer with its finale on Saturday.
Coun. Stan Burt, who represents council on the theatre’s board of directors along with Deputy Mayor Clayton Welsh, said the season has been a strong one.
“Attendance has been really great,” Burt said.
Town manager Wayne Bolt said five of the eight dinner theatres offered this summer sold out.
“I’d say we’ll triple the attendance from last year,” he said.
Levi Curtis was brought in as the artistic director for the 2016 summer season and the theatre placed an increased emphasis on community.
Thursday was the last day of operation this season for the Grand Bank Swimming Pool.
Mayor Rex Matthews said he had spoken with recreation director Tom Burton and was told the facility had an average year.
Matthews said, however, there were a lot of positive comments about the pool’s programs.
Whether the pool will open next year remains a question mark at this point. The facility is in need of significant upgrades. The town has applied for funding under the Small Communities Fund, a component of the New Building Canada Plan, which involves the cost sharing of infrastructure projects by all three levels of government.
Matthews said he has followed up and the application is going through the system.
Several councillors offered up congratulations to the Special Events committee for the effort put into this year’s summer festival.
Coun. Stan Burt was among them and pointed out the group is comprised of mostly new members.
“People worked a little harder this year, I think, but it went fairly smoothly,” he said.
Mayor Rex Matthews was pleased overall with the festival but said there were challenges.
A meeting will be held in the near future to discuss whether any improvements can be made or if changes are necessary, he said.
“It’s getting pretty tough for the number of volunteers that we had,” he said.
New barbecue approved
Council approved a motion to invest in a new industrial barbecue at an approximate cost of $750.
Coun. Bruce Warren proposed the purchase, pointing out the town’s barbecue is old and dated.
A barbecue is a necessity for many town events and functions, Mayor Rex Matthews said, adding he had heard complaints from workers about the current equipment.