Southgate Council held its regular meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 6 in council chambers in Egremont, with all members in attendance.
SVCA RE-JIGS FEES
Southgate will pay the same amount to the Saugeen Valley Conservation Authority for services, but those fees have been re-distributed in keeping with provincial changes.
A separate agreement is now required for activities that the province has called “Category 3”. Along with tree planting and education, that includes further watershed monitoring – a service Mayor Brian Milne described as “canary in a coal mine” in revealing potential hazards.
Category 1 are programs the province has deemed mandatory. Category 2 include services to do with the Clean Water Act, management of Grey County’s forested properties, the former CP rail line and the Forest Management bylaw.
Total Category 3 costs for Southgate will be $8,609, which will be the decrease to the general SVCA levy from the township.
DIVERSITY, EQUITY & INCLUSION POLICY
Council unanimously passed a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Policy presented by staff.
The purpose “is to show the Township’s commitment to fostering, cultivating and preserving that culture in the workplace and community, the staff report said.
Clerk Lindsey Green in introducing the policy said that it was “one step in the journey.”
The policy provides the framework, and can be adapted as needed, council heard.
HR POLICY UPDATE
The performance appraisal policy was changed to include a first step of having staff do a self-evaluation.
That way the staff member can identify their own strengths and needs for improvement, which the supervisor will review to add their thoughts. A “Milestone meeting” will be held with a record of any points from the discussion.
The language around merit pay was changed, but not the requirements, the staff report said.
A zoning change was approved to allow an on-farm diversified use (shop) on a 100-acre farm on the north side of Southgate Road 14, east of Sideroad 21.
NB Wood Machining proposed a shop up to the township’s maximum, 750 sq. m., and outside storage no more than the 500 sq. m. maximum.
The public meeting was held Aug. 23. The planner reported that buildings will be along the eastern lot line, to avoid the need for a further Environmental Impact Study by moving away from the watercourse and hazard lands.
An EIS was required last year by the SVCA when a larger parcel was severed into two 100-acre lots.
A paved entranceway will be required at the site plan stage.
Council also approved a zoning change to allow an on-farm shop for Martin Fabrication Inc. on Hwy. 89, east of Southgate Rd. 15. The shop, office, lunchroom and power room will be up to the 750 sq. m. maximum, with storage under the 500 m maximum.
The fire department is requiring a water reservoir to be installed at the property, able to supply 30 minutes of firefighting.
M.T. Fernandes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Dundalk Herald