C-K council briefs

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Need for another crosswalk on Park Avenue?

Whether there is a need for a crosswalk on Park Avenue East in Chatham from Creek/Sass Road to Park Lane is about to be examined by the municipality.

The investigation comes following council’s approval of a motion by Chatham Coun. Marjorie Crew, who is concerned about the safety of pedestrians accessing the CK Brain Injury Association on Maple Leaf Drive. The transit shelter for anyone accessing the association is on the north side of Park Avenue, east of the CSX railway tracks, with no continuous sidewalks and Crew wants to know how citizens, with or without accessibility issues, cross four lanes of traffic to access the shelter. The administrative report, which includes finding a source of funding is expected to come back before council in July.

Grass cutting deals inked

Chatham-Kent council has inked several five-year grass cutting contracts with several different companies. On March 6, council approved the long-term agreements to cover off grass cutting on municipal property.

According to an administrative report 16 different companies made bids to cut grass over a four-week period RFP period at the beginning of the year. However, higher than normal number of the bids were found to be non-compliant and were disqualified.

Chatham-Kent had budgeted just under $1-million for grass cutting in

2023, however the actual cost for cutting grass has been pegged at $1,305,234. The shortfall gets reported back in the municipality’s variance report and then starts as a budget shortfall in the next cycle.

Brokering a new deal?

Chatham-Kent is going to look to other municipalities to try and solve the problem of escalating insurance costs. On March 6, council approved a motion from South Kent Coun. Ryan Doyle for administration to engage with other regions and organizations such as the Association of Municipalities of Ontario, to find a collective solution to the runaway costs. This is going to continue until we do something, Doyle told council. The solution could include the cooperative purchasing of insurance or the possible creation of a reciprocal insurance provider, as well as legislative changes to address insurance costs that are severely affecting municipal budgets across the province.

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