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Council considers plan for recognition of excellence

by Patrick Raftis

MAPLETON - Council here is considering the best way to recognize local youth athletes and teams excelling at the provincial or national level, as well as those studying abroad.

At the April 23 meeting, council considered a parks recreation and culture committee recommendation that the municipality recognize individual athletes and athletic teams that place at the top of their sport provincially, or top three nationally. The proposal calls for the athletes to receive a recognition pin and a bursary.

A figure of $500 for team bursaries and $100 for individual athletes was suggested, with recognition to occur semi-annually at council meetings.

The proposal also recommends recognition with a cultural scholarship of $250 any student under the age of 25 who is culturally enhancing their life by studying abroad.

The committee felt, “The youth are encouraged to expand their life experiences through the vehicle of sport or culture with the hope they will, through their experiences, enhance/expand the local cultural and athletic realm in our township.”

While in favor of the recognition aspect, Mayor Bruce Whale suggested financial recognition may not be realistic.

“While I think it’s good to recognize these people in our community, I do struggle a bit with the bursary element of it in terms of funding by the municipality,” said Whale.

The mayor suggested it might be better to set up a fund which others could contribute to, to be administered by the municipality.

“I think we can do both,” commented councillor Mike Downey, who suggested council could provide the financial component of the bursary until the donation fund was set up.

Councillor Neil Driscoll said, “if it’s just giving a pin and a scroll, I am in favour of it.” However, he cautioned the expenses could add up quickly at the amounts suggested.

Downey suggested a limited pool of money could be established “and when it’s gone, it’s gone.”

Council agreed to support the concept in principal, and directed staff to provide a report providing options and criteria for various forms of recognition.

May 3, 2013


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