DRAYTON – Mapleton representatives were invited to a meeting with Stephen Crawford, parliamentary assistant to the minister of infrastructure, at the Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) conference.
The conference took place Jan. 19 to 21 in Toronto.
“This is a meeting that was asked for by the ministry, not something that we asked for, which was quite interesting,” Mayor Gregg Davidson said.
“Usually you ask for a delegation, you get your 10 minutes.”
The ministry wanted an update on the township’s water and wastewater RFP.
Crawford asked for another meeting the next day and Davidson, CAO Manny Barron and councillors Michael Martin and Marlene Ottens spoke to the parliamentary secretary and his staff for an hour.
“They’re quite interested in … look(ing) at what we’re going to do with water and wastewater and our RFP process,” Davidson said.
“They’re quite excited at looking at this not just for Mapleton but right across the province. So it’s quite a feather in our cap that the ministry is looking at us in that light here in Mapleton as we lead the way for Ontario in this new wave of building and maintaining our infrastructure.”
The regular council meeting scheduled for Feb. 25 is cancelled.
Councillor Marlene Ottens made a motion for council to direct staff to look at the feasibility of increasing property taxes on vacant commercial properties to encourage them to be rented out.
She added attention should be given to properties owned by absentee landlords, especially with long periods of vacancy.
The motion was scheduled to be discussed at the regular council meeting on Feb. 11.
Council chose to provide a letter of endorsement to Mornington Communications for the CRTC Broadband Fund Program to secure funds for fibre to the home service in rural Mapleton.
The project would provide fibre for Glenn Allan and surrounding areas, with potential for additional areas to be serviced as more information becomes available.
Local Rotary Club members will be organizing a Tulip Festival on May 9 in conjunction with the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Holland.
Ottens said the Rotary Club members are looking at closing down Main Street in Drayton from the Drayton Chophouse to the traffic lights at Wellington Street.
She said the clubs are also talking about expanding the festival to the evening for a street dance.
“There’s a long history of tulip festivals in this community, going all the way back to the ‘70s so this is a perfect opportunity to bring it back another time again,” Ottens said.