Lionesses Laugh and Learn at Con­fer­ence

Wiarton Echo - - PAST AND PRESENT -

About 135 Lioness Club mem­bers from 22 clubs across south­ern On­tario laughed it up Satur­day morn­ing as Judy Croon, mo­ti­va­tional hu­morist, en­ter­tained at the “Laugh and Learn” con­fer­ence, Nov. 10-12, hosted by the Fern­dale/Lion’s Head & Dis­trict Lions Club at the Best Western Inn on the Bay in Owen Sound.

In spite of the Friends of Cabot Head’s high hopes for re­open­ing, the Cabot Head Light Sta­tion will con­tinue to be closed through­out 2018.

The pop­u­lar tourist des­ti­na­tion in North­ern Bruce Penin­sula was closed this year due to con­cerns of Fish­eries and Oceans Canada (DFO), which arose after en­vi­ron­men­tal stud­ies had been com­pleted at the site.

A time­line for com­ple­tion of on­go­ing re­me­di­a­tion work has not yet been fi­nal­ized, Ros­aleen O’Ma­hony, com­mu­ni­ca­tions ad­viser for the DFO said in an email.

Ina Tox­opeus, Pres­i­dent of Friends of Cabot Head (FOCH), the group which runs the site’s day-to-day op­er­a­tions, said the board of di­rec­tors has not yet met to dis­cuss the sit­u­a­tion.

“We are plan­ning on do­ing some meet­ings over the win­ter,” she said.

Cur­rently, FOCH con­tin­ues to pay var­i­ous bills at the site in con­nec­tion with their on­go­ing op­er­a­tions, with­out hav­ing been open for the 2017 sea­son.

The group also main­tained the site through­out 2017, cut­ting the grass and per­form­ing var­i­ous tasks to en­sure the build­ings and grounds re­main in good re­pair even though the site has been closed to the pub­lic.

“We re­ally have to look at are we go­ing to keep go­ing or aren’t we,” Tox­opeus said.

The group con­tin­ues to need ac­tive, paid-up FOCH mem­bers and Board Mem­bers to sur­vive, she said. Tox­opeus has been in­volved with FOCH for nearly 28 years.

“Be­cause we are in limbo, I haven’t pur­sued the busi­ness plan. It’s al­most ready to go,” she said.

The busi­ness plan for the site’s op­er­a­tion is re­quired by the Mu­nic­i­pal­ity of North­ern Bruce Penin­sula, who lease the site from DFO, the site’s owner.

Since Au­gust, the DFO has com­pleted an ini­tial soil sam­pling pro­gram; a des­ig­nated sub­stance sur­vey, which in­cluded a mer­cury sur­vey; a struc­tural assess­ment of the build­ings and an ad­di­tional soil sam­pling pro­gram on Oct. 24 and 25, O’Ma­hony said.

Re­ports are be­ing pre­pared as a re­sult of th­ese re­me­di­a­tion tasks and will be used to de­velop plans and spec­i­fi­ca­tions for lead paint abate­ment and soil re­me­di­a­tion, and to as­sist the De­part­ment in de­ter­min­ing if any ad­di­tional mea­sures are re­quired to ad­dress mer­cury vapours, she said.

The DFO will not do any re­me­di­a­tion work at the site over the win­ter months.

“Lead paint abate­ment and soil re­me­di­a­tion is an­tic­i­pated to oc­cur be­tween April and Oc­to­ber next year (2018). Due to the na­ture of this con­struc­tion, ac­cess to the pub­lic will not be granted while the work is on­go­ing,” O’Ma­hony said.

In re­gard to the site’s up­keep, in­te­rior main­te­nance work can con­tinue un­der two stip­u­la­tions: that Fish­eries and Oceans Canada is not con­duct­ing any other con­struc­tion at that time, and that those work­ing at the site do not ex­ceed the lim­its pre­sented in the risk assess­ment which was com­pleted this year.

As for the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, Mayor Milt McIver said in an in­ter­view council had not yet dis­cussed the site’s fu­ture.

In ad­di­tion to the DFO’s re­me­di­a­tion, council and lo­cal res­i­dents have safety con­cerns aris­ing from the in­creased amount of tourist traf­fic on the road lead­ing to the site – which will also need to be con­sid­ered, he said.

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