Senior centre staying put


It appears that the Fort Frances Senior Centre will remain at its present location.

At tonight’s meeting, council will vote on a recommendation brought forward by the Senior Centre Board, stating the centre should remain where it’s currently housed and not be relocated to the town’s vacated daycare facility on Eighth Street East.

The decision came after thorough public consultations and considerations of cost, location, space, structure condition, and parking at both of the sites.

The Senior Centre Board began investigating the possible relocation of the facility after identifying several issues, such as limited space for running concurrent programming without disruptions, limited parking, and high ceilings in the main areas that are not conducive to good acoustics.

With those concerns and the town owned Fort Frances Daycare being declared surplus in the fall of 2019, council asked the Senior Centre Board of Management to determine if the daycare building would better suit the needs of the town’s growing senior population.

An Ad Hoc Building Committee was formed to asses the feasibility of relocating the centre and it was determined that the estimate to renovate the daycare’s interior was roughly $500,000 to $600,000.

While renovations to the current senior centre came in at a lower cost of about $280,000-$360,000 for a 24×60 addition or $360,000-$450,000 for a 30×60 addition.

Meanwhile, the derailment of 30 rail cars in Emo last Tuesday–five of which leaking crude oil–spurred Coun. Douglas Judson to table a resolution for consideration at tonight’s meeting.

The resolution seeks public information and reassurances on railway safety throughout the district, from both the rail operator and government.

Requests from the municipality for the province to change the basis for railway taxation to a more equitable model is underscored in it as well.

The resolution also notes the recent derailment in Emo is the sixth derailment along the rail corridor from Fort Frances to Chapple since 2013.

Also at tonight’s meeting, Elaine Fischer, Chris Duchrame, and Carey Basaraba are delivering a deputation to council on exploring options for a water source at the Fort Frances Community Garden.

Meanwhile, the Rainy River Future Development Corporation (RRFDC) is requesting a $7 per capita financial contribution, totalling $55,685, which has remained the same since 2017.

The RRFDC is continuing an economic diversification project which focuses on the regional economy.

Council will vote on a recommendation to include the $55,685 in its 2020 general operational budget at tonight’s meeting.

The town also has a recommendation to amend its Traffic Control Bylaw to include a provision banning on-street parking throughout the town of Fort Frances, except for the downtown core, during significant weather events.

Tonight’s regular council meeting will follow the committee of the whole meeting, which gets underway at 5:30 p.m.

The public portion of the meeting will follow two in-camera items.

The first item is about litigation or potential litigation, including matters before administrative tribunals, affecting the municipality or local board:  Agency One Matters.

The second item is regarding a proposed or pending acquisition or disposition of land by the municipality or local board:  5th Street West Property.

Other business on the agenda tonight includes:

  • a report re: Amendment to Waste Management By-law 10/04;
  • a report re: Emergency Capital Repair of Memorial Sports Centre Elevator;
  • A recommendation re: Renewal of Bearskin and Enterprise Car Rental Annual Lease;
  • A report re: Amendment to User Fee By-law – Passenger Facility Fees at the Fort Frances Airport;
  • A report re: Commencement of Comprehensive Services Contract with Honeywell Building Solutions;
  • A report re: Bus Transportation Request 2020;
  • A recommendation re: Fort Frances Royal Canadian Legion Ladies Aux. Br. #29 Sponsorship Request – PJ’S & Pearls Gala – April 4, 2020;
  • A letter from Fort Frances Girls Women’s Hockey Association re: Review of Town of Fort Frances Policy Number 2.5 (ice cancellation);
  • a letter from Fort Frances Minor Hockey Association re: Damage in Dressing Room #3; and
  • a by-law to authorize entering into an agreement with Fort Frances Community Clinic with respect to the sale of certain lands.