Beachfront in need of repair

More than a month after torrential rains hit the district, the water at Pither’s Point Park beach has receded enough to reveal a headache for the town.
Operations and Facilities manager Pat Hickerson told councillors Monday night that “serious damage” has been done to the retaining wall at the part of the beach closest to the Lookout Tower—and it needs to repaired as soon as possible.
“We either need to tear it apart and recede a minimum distance, and allow further erosion, or rebuild it,” he remarked, passing photos of the washed out beach around the committee of the whole table.
“The pressure from the water has pushed some of it in, taken out posts, and it’s falling down,” noted Hickerson. “I will put it forward for coverage under ODRAP, but we need to repair this quickly.”
“Can we be assured it will be a good repair and not just a quick fix?” asked Coun. Struchan Gilson.
“It’s the best we can get for our money,” replied Hickerson, adding the job will go out for tender as soon as possible.
The budgeted cost for repairs wasn’t released prior to the bidding process.
Council later agreed to begin the tender process that evening. Hickerson noted a contractor should be decided in a couple of weeks.
In other business at Monday night’s meeting, council heard a presentation by resident Bill Martin regarding his riverfront dock, which included a request to let him keep it despite a request by the town to replace it as part of the La Verendrye Parkway development project.
Martin’s request was forwarded to the Community Services executive committee and the Operations and Facilities executive committee for review.
Also Monday, council:
•authorized retaining Asselin Transportation to supply residential recycling collection within the Town of Fort Frances;
•amended the Memberships and Grants policy to provide for denial of requests which are received after the event occurs;
•approved a $200 contribution payable to the Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association for Thunder Bay Mayor Ken Boshcoff’s campaign for the presidency of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario, funded from council’s public relations expense account;
•awarded the tender for sanitary sewer rehabilitations to Bay City Contractors in the amount of $341,590.01, with the roughly $20,000 shortfall to be funded from the capital sewer reserve;
•passed a bylaw approving the contract of employment and appointment of Christine Ruppenstein as the town’s new human resources manager;
•received a withdrawal notice of two grievances filed by CUPE Local #65;
•agreed to a request for support from the Rainy River Future Development Corp. to endorse the Connect Ontario/Geo Smart community project (the purpose of the endeavour is to represent the region on the Internet);
•referred a request from the Rainy River Future Development Corp., on behalf of Bruce LaVigne, for permission to park his airplane along the waterfront to both the Operations and Facilities executive committee and the Community Services executive committee;
•approved a report directing Community Services manager George Bell to try and accommodate a person with special needs using the change room at the public swimming pool;
•referred a letter from Stan and Karen Sockolotuk regarding sewer back-up to the Operations and Facilities executive committee and to the town’s insurers;
•passed a bylaw approving the contract award with consulting firm Hilderman, Thomas, Frank and Cran of Winnipeg for the “Re-Inventing Fort Frances” feasibility study;
•passed a bylaw prohibiting smoking in buildings and vehicles under the jurisdiction of the Town of Fort Frances (Mayor Glenn Witherspoon noted a decision on whether or not the town will declare all enclosed public areas smoke-free may be addressed at the Aug. 6 council meeting); and
•passed a bylaw to approve a contract awarded through the tendering process for asphalt patching to Towland-Hewitson Construction Ltd.