Council briefs

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Canaan Heights street light amendments coming in the new year

Kings County council has directed staff to draft amendments to the Canaan Heights street lighting bylaw.

Council approved the recommendation from the committee of the whole at the Dec. 6 session.

Engineering and public works manager Scott Quinn reported in November the developer installed ornamental streetlights at their own expense and has been paying for the operation and maintenance. However, the municipality has received notice this will be discontinued.

The municipality would take over responsibility for the lights on a full cost recovery basis only. Cost recovery would be based on road frontage and the amendments would be applicable to the sections of Canaan Heights with streetlights installed and operational as of Dec. 1. Residents would have to grant any easements required to facilitate municipal ownership and operational considerations.

Quinn said if residents decide they don’t want to provide financial support, the developer could turn off the lights. The municipality would then have to decide what to do, perhaps even take the ornamental lights down.

Quinn said staff would issue a petition on this basis to gauge resident support and they would try their best to provide a cost estimate. Staff will report back to council on the outcome. First reading of the proposed amendments could take place as early as January and second and final reading could take place by February.

County looking at changing committees’ structure

The Municipality of Kings County is looking at hosting a third monthly meeting for all council members.

Staff has been directed to look at the requirements to dissolve some committees and forming new ones that all council members would sit on.

Currently, council members are on a variety of the municipality’s 33 committees. But, Warden Diana Brothers said, sometimes council members are not aware of issues a specific committee is dealing with until it arrives on the council table for a decision.

Staff has been directed to look at the planning advisory, audit, trail and municipal economic development advisory committees.

Staff will report back to council with the intention of having the new system ready for April 1. One of the intents is to have council members better informed on the issues. It is also seen as a way of reducing overtime for staff, who currently make presentations at the committee’s evening meetings. Under the new system the presentations would be done during the workday.

Staff is also looking at council’s role in other community boards.

County wants more information regarding land proposal

A decision on whether to help purchase land in Port Williams to help protect wells from possible contamination has been put off until the new year.

The Municipality of Kings County recently deferred a decision on the funding the land purchase until further information was gained. The village had asked the county to share the $180,000 purchase for 12 acres of land with it and the province.

“Council wanted to have a meeting with the village and maybe clarify some questions they have,” Warden Diana Brothers said.

She will also meet with John MacDonell, Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations minister, to see if the province would be participating in the three-way, cost-sharing proposal.

Kentville is not interested in selling water to Port Williams.

Engineering and public works director Hal Henderson told the council advisory committee Dec. 12 the water commission received a request from the village for water. The commission said no to Port Williams. 

“They also approached Village of New Minas,” Henderson said.  “They are looking to see if they can acquire water from other utilities.

“It might be a ploy to get more reaction to their problems with their water supply,” he added. 

“Are we physically able to supply Port Williams with water?” Deputy Mayor Mark Pearl asked.

Henderson said it was possible, but the town would have to apply to the province to increase its permit to withdraw water.

“If we give away what we want for future growth,” Henderson pointed out, “we may be limiting our own growth.”

Geographic location: Canaan Heights, Port Williams, Kings Nova Scotia Kentville Village of New Minas

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