Making Waves – the need for a new Swimming Pool

images-24I have been listening to the growing concerns about the numerous issues surrounding the availability and the suitability of our one remaining swimming pool since long before the Grenfell pool closed.

While I understand the frustrations of those who are faced with long lineups to register their children or themselves, equipment issues that lead to unexpected closures and the general condition of the ageing, provincially owned and operated Arts and Culture pool, I also have a responsibility to ensure that anything I do as Mayor reflects the existing needs and wants of the community while balancing our taxpayer’s ability and willingness to pay for any new infrastructure.

The concerns raised have not gone unheard. I have met and discussed ideas with our local MP Gudie Hutchings, our Federal Minister of Sport, The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, the Humber Community YMCA, representatives of the swimming community and local residents as well as members of Corner Brook City Council and staff, all of whom recognize the need for a new facility.

As with any major undertaking this all takes considerable time, effort and planning. I have been looking at other, newer facilities throughout the province and country to better understand both the capital and operational costs involved as well as the various services and programs offered, operating agreements with municipal partners and such.

All of this takes time, all of this takes research and all of this takes a willingness on the part of everyone to work towards a viable, sustainable solution for a regional facility that meets the needs of our community and the surrounding communities with a well thought out, affordable, long term plan to make this happen.

Revamping our Signage Policy

What do you think about digital signage and third party advertising ?

Residents and business owners are invited to review and comment on proposed changes to our current sign regulations.

13245321_923033574491704_1656169933891422501_nCurrently our sign regulations restrict where a sign can be placed and how big a sign may be among other things. As well, current regulations only allow a sign to advertise businesses in that particular property.

Corner Brook City Council is considering changes to advertisement (sign) regulations in some zones of the city, primarily in the commercial, industrial, and institutional zones, including the entire Downtown district.

Essentially, any business in these zones could potentially erect a digital sign on their property or replace an existing sign with a digital sign or other type of sign in accordance with any size, location or other restrictions that could be included under proposed changes.

The changes to be affected are:

  • the size of advertisement in some zones
  •  the nature of the advertisement, which may be in the form of on-site or off-site, including digital signs.

A portion of these new regulations will consider the allowance of Third Party Signage.

13227108_923033651158363_2957629873119316660_nThird Party signage can be defined as; any outdoor sign that advertises goods and services that are not available upon the same property or premises in which the sign is located. This type of signage allows a business to sell advertising space that is not directly related to their business.

In other words, the advertising space could be sold to any business wishing to pay for the advertising space, including businesses located in other parts of the city or businesses located in other towns or provinces.

Some questions for consideration include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Should advertising continue to be assessed as either on-site or off-site, or as a total amount of advertisement at a site, regardless of whether it relates to a product or service at a specific location?
  • Should the maximum size of advertisements be increased in the city and if so, to what maximum size by zone.
  • Are there are any concerns regarding digital signs or any recommendations for general/specific regulations or standards that should be applied to this type of advertising?

13240505_923033584491703_7001359574074255870_nTo view existing standards for advertising, the City of Corner Book Development Regulations set out the type, size, and zones where advertising is permitted.

These regulations may be accessed via the City’s website at: www.cornerbrook.com

Written comments should be provided to the City of Corner Brook, P.O. Box 1080, Corner Brook, NL, A2H 6E1.

It’s important to have your say before the regulations are changed.

For further information please contact the City of Corner Brook at 637-1553.

Activity Guide Fall 2016 / Winter 2017

image1-5Our Fall-Winter 2016-2017 Activity Guide has been sent to all households in the city and will soon be available on the City’s new website.

City Council and staff work hard to ensure that quality programs and services are delivered to our residents. We take pride in everything that we offer and are committed to high quality, affordable programs for residents of all ages.

 

Corner Brook and the Humber Valley Region has one of the most spectacular autumn seasons with brilliant red and golden colours blazing throughout the landscape making it a beautiful natural playground. For winter enthusiasts, our annual heavy snowfall guarantees lots of skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, winter festivals and fun in the City.

image1-7Whether you are a volunteer or a participant, becoming involved in cultural, social and recreational programs is the perfect ingredient to maintaining a healthy and balanced lifestyle. We have many City run programs and events, and programming from a variety of community groups, to keep you and your family active and engaged throughout the seasons.

Enjoy everything Corner Brook has to offer. Without a doubt we are a four-season destination offering activities and programs that everyone can enjoy.

City of Corner Brook Business Improvement Program (BIP)

IMG_3082The Business Improvement Program (BIP) is currently accepting applications from Corner Brook businesses wishing to avail of this tax credit to improve their properties.

The application and approval processes have been made simpler to encourage more applications. The deadline for receiving completed applications is 4:00 pm on Friday, 16 September 2016.

Applications pertaining to work not yet started or completed must be pre-approved before the actual work is undertaken. Applications for work that has already commenced or which has been completed will also be considered provided the relevant building permit was obtained in 2016.

IMG_9228In both cases, all work must be completed before 31 December 2016.
Approved projects will be given a one-time tax credit of 50% of the total actual expenses, subject to a maximum credit limit of $10,000.

A property can be considered only once under the BIP.

Applications must be complete in all respects to be considered. An evaluation committee will examine all applications according to established, pre-defined criteria. It should be emphasized that the total tax credit budget for 2016 is $50,000 and that some applications, even though complete, may not qualify for this tax credit.

For more information on BIP 2016, please contact the Business Facilitator Manas Mukhopadhyay, 637-1551, mmukhopadhyay@cornerbrook.com

Street Paving Program Moves to Westside

FullSizeRender-7The city’s $3.7 million street paving program for 2016 is in full swing. Contractors have completed their work in the Curling area of the city and have now moved to the Westside of the city.

The city’s paving contractor, Marine Contractors, has already milled much of Lundrigan Drive in the Lundrigan Drive Business Park in preparation for paving.

IMG_2877As well, upper Sunnyslope Drive has been milled with a section of the sub-grade materials having had to be replaced prior to paving. This road is still closed to through traffic.

Dyke’s Road off O’connell Drive has been milled as well as Oake’s Rd., upper Country Rd., and sections of Green Garden Rd and Hendon Drive.

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Our Contractor paved Country Road today and has moved on to pave Green Garden Road this afternoon.

There is still a significant amount of work to do. We ask motorists to use caution in these areas or to avoid if possible.

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Daily updates are issued by the city on our website and through our social media to alert the public as Marine Contractors moves from one street to another.

 

Bartlett’s Point Redevelopment Nearing Completion

IMG_2349After years of planning and much work, the transformation of Bartlett’s Point into a new City Park is nearing completion.

The land was purchased by the City in 1998 however it was not until 2009 during my first term as Mayor that the City undertook to invest $100 000 in the development of a municipal park on the site. We were also successful in working with ACOA to invest an additional $160 000 into the project later that same year.

The Corner Brook Stream Development Corporation was engaged to carry out the design and ground work at the 6.7 acre site, and a significant amount of work was carried out, however by 2012, work had stalled as funding had run out.

IMG_2352Given the importance of this project to the City, we have continued to seek out funding for this project and earlier this year we were very pleased to join our MP Gudie Hutchings in announcing that the Federal Government, through the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program, has agreed to invest close to $94,000 for improvements to Bartlett’s Point Park. The City of Corner Brook is also investing another almost $100, 000 this year to support completion of Bartlett’s Point Park.

IMG_2369The project includes upgrades to the entrance, parking area and site lighting, installation of playground equipment, improvement to beach access, installation of a rock wall and pavers, and improvements to signage. This project will help complete the construction necessary to open the park to the public in this fall.

 

Mayor Pender appointed to FCM Standing Committees

FB_Federation_of_Canadian_MunicipalitiesAs Mayor of the City of Corner Brook, and a member of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Board of Directors I was recently appointed to serve on several standing committees of the FCM Board.

FCM’s Board of Directors comprises elected municipal officials and affiliate members from all regions and various-sized communities throughout Canada. It forms a broad base of support and carries the municipal message to the Government of Canada.

The Board of Directors sets policy priorities that reflect the concerns of municipal governments and affiliate members. It meets quarterly to develop policy positions on key national municipal issues.

During the quarterly meetings, the various standing committees meet to discuss and develop policy positions on these key issues. These recommendations are then forwarded to the Board of Directors who discuss and adopt the recommendations.

All positions on FCM’s Board of Directors are filled by election on an annual basis, with the exception of those designated for affiliate members and the immediate past president, as outlined in the FCM by-laws, during the Annual Conference.

2015_boardFCM’s Board of Directors established standing committees to enable more comprehensive discussion and provide the board with recommendations on priority policy and program issues. Each committee has municipal elected officials and board members.

As a Director on the FCM board, I have recently been appointed to participate in the following standing committees;

1. Environmental Issues & Sustainable Development:

Green economy, climate change adaptation, clean air, water, waste, wastewater, brownfields, toxic substances (including pesticides), energy, invasive species, green infrastructure

2. Social Economic Development

Housing and homelessness; cultural and community infrastructure, immigration and municipal‐Aboriginal relations, aging.

In addition to my participation n these two standing committees, I will also participate in both the Atlantic Caucus as well as the Rural Forum.

I look forward to participating in FCM’s programming, policy and advocacy work on behalf of all Canadians and Canadian municipalities.

Our next FCM Board of Directors meeting will be held in Oakville, ON September 14-17, 2016.

Corner Brook Launches New Web Site

image2On Tuesday, I  officially launched the City’s new website today at City Hall along with our City Manager, Melissa Wiklund.

The City of Corner Brook has been working on a new website for six months. The new site reflects the needs and viewing patterns of residents, businesses, and visitors. Staying connected with the community and beyond is essential.

As a City we strive to provide exceptional service, openness, and transparency. We are becoming more relevant, adapting, transforming and embracing our world of change.

image1-1“I would like to acknowledge the excellent work of City staff in completing this extensive project,” said City Manager Melissa Wiklund. “Every department has been responsible for revising information based on the services they provide to our residents, businesses, and visitors. The deployment and launch of our new website is a demonstration of the City’s commitment and team approach to providing service excellence to our community and to all stakeholders.”

Cornerbrook.com will have new features and improved functionality, and it is designed to give website users a better experience. The new site will look completely different to the previous one and is fresh, modern, and uncluttered. Additionally, the new website includes: an improved layout; easier navigation; advanced functionality and performance; great mobile experience; and easier searching ability.

By streamlining the majority of our web content we’ve been able to present it in a way that makes navigating around the site easier. The City of Corner Brook’s new website will expand the ability of citizens to find everything they need to know online, and better serve and communicate with citizens.

Let’s make Corner Brook Litter Free

13939540_979855092142885_1814426731961253698_nAs a city we all take great pride in the natural beauty that Corner Brook has to offer.
We work very hard to keep our city clean and attractive for our residents, business community and tourists.

We know that most people appreciate our efforts and that most people do go out of their way to keep our city litter free … But unfortunately that isn’t everyone.
We can complain and we can shame but perhaps the best way is simply to lead by example. If you see litter on the ground how about simply picking it up and disposing of it properly.

If you notice a particularly messy spot, let us know and we will send crews to investigate and take appropriate action.

Business owners can also help by keeping the property around and in front of their businesses clean and tidy.

13935137_979855082142886_7791697303891778245_nOur employees take great pride in the work they do to keep our city clean but we can’t be everywhere all the time, so let’s Team Up to Clean Up and together we can keep our city tidy and clean for everyone.

 

 

Here are a few facts:

  • We regularly use our Madvac sucker to pick up litter. (unfortunately it is down for repairs at the moment)
  • The City of Corner Brook has placed in the 80+ waste containers throughout the city
  • Public Works crews change garbage containers daily.
  • The team is out daily cleaning up around the garbage bins.
  • We also send the sweeper out if a street has had heavy rain or is very dirty.
  • Report a ‘litter hot spot’ if you spot illegally dumped garbage, overflowing street bins or an unusually dirty public space, staff will investigate. Call 709-637-1666

13935070_979855032142891_6799081164911655974_nA clean, litter free green public space, sidewalk or street is a beautiful thing for every resident, visitor, and business.

Remember: it’s everyone’s responsibility to make sure our city’s public spaces stay that way. We need every resident to please do their part.

Make a commitment to not litter. The results will be obvious.