The Mayor’s page
A word from the Mayor
Since the election in 2017, and according to the strategic plan adopted in February 2018, the municipal council has had the mission to carry out several projects, among others, those of attracting young families to settle in the township and to better serve them; to implement the Internet in areas neglected by providers, and complete the development of the Round Barn etc.
Today, I am pleased to tell you that after 4 years of work, some of our projects have been completed. The best example of this is the multifunctional shelter, a place that will now host quality sports, cultural and recreational activities for families, citizens and visitors for a long time to come.
I would also like to inform you about several other development projects that are either underway or under study in our township:
HIGH SPEED INTERNET
This is without a doubt the biggest request from citizens to date. For several years, the municipality has put a lot of effort into offering this essential service to all households in the township, but the problem is complex, as internet providers are not interested in serving the less populated areas, and therefore, less revenue is generated for these providers. There is also the question of the availability of poles to run the fiber optics that are currently located on private land and being monopolized by Bell and Hydro-Québec. Recently, the problem has been taken over by the provincial government. The municipality continues to follow the issue closely. For more information: https://www.lerefletdulac.com/2021/03/19/internet-haute-vitesse-en-region-le-depute-dorford-toujours-pret-a-livrer-la-marchandise-pour-2022/
In order to accommodate resident-users of the wharf, the municipality had no choice but to modify the access procedure. Since space is very limited at the wharf (40 parking spaces max), parking spots will now be reserved for citizens during the high season. The municipality has ruled out the idea of enlarging the wharf for the time being as the work would be very costly and citizens would see their taxes increase. For the past 2 years, the parking rates have remained the same for non-residents. This pricing structure is the same at all the wharves of the MRC.
THE ROUND BARN
I would like to thank all the members of the Potton Municipal Volunteer Group (GBMP) who have worked hard over the past decade to raise funds to restore the Round Barn. Solely, they have raised $1.1 million! Thanks to their perseverance, the Round Barn has been saved.
We are now at the next stage, the use of the Round Barn. Given the many possible uses of this heritage building, the Municipality has mandated a professional architectural firm to evaluate the extent of the renovations required to bring the barn up to standard for its intended use (fire exits, sprinklers, fireproofing, toilets, etc.). As the Round Barn remains under evaluation, and work can begin at any time, it will remain closed to the public this summer.
PLACE DE LA GRANGE-RONDE – PUBLIC MARKET
We have applied for 3 grants from MAPAQ to improve the public market, the projects include the installation of more vendor booths (in addition to the 3 already existing), rest areas for visitors, a terrace for a food truck and a small coffee kiosk.
CONTRIBUTION FOR PARK PURPOSES OR “PARK FUND“
The Park Fund may be imposed by a municipality at the time of application for an allotment or building permit. In other words, it is a tax that applies to undeveloped private land. The municipality can tax up to 10% of the value of the land in exchange for an allotment permit. The municipality can choose between a transfer of part of the land or a financial contribution or a combination of both. In all cases, the land or money can only be used for parks, playgrounds, or the protection of natural areas. Almost every municipality in our MRC has been collecting this tax for years. The municipality is considering a 6% tax, which is the same tax used by Eastman. According to Mayor Yvon Laramée, in 2020, Eastman received $162,000 in taxes from the “Park Fund. “Note that Eastman taxes 3% in cash and 3% in land, the 162k represents collections based on 3% and not 6%.
With the arrival of new citizen-owners, the municipal council, on the recommendation of the town’s administration, has decided to open the Ecocentre one more day per week, on Wednesdays, in addition to Saturdays, in the hope that this will reduce waiting times.
The current municipal bylaws make it almost impossible to operate a food truck in the Township of Potton. The municipal council has made changes to the bylaws to facilitate the arrival of food trucks on the territory.
MISSISQUOI NORTH PARK, ANDRÉ-GAGNON SECTOR
Thanks to the Parks Fund (explained earlier), the municipal council is considering a series of projects for the Missisquoi North Park, André-Gagnon sector. It should be noted that not all the projects listed have been approved yet. Some projects need to be evaluated before Council makes a final decision.
- Water Games
Council is happy to report that water games will be part of the new features at the park and will be open to the public in summer 2022!
- Tennis Court Resurfacing
Two tennis courts will be resurfaced. This work is essential as the courts have not been maintained for 15 years. The cost of the work has already been included in the 2021 municipal budget.
- Pumptrack and SkillsTrack
This project was made possible by a grant from the provincial government that will cover 50% of the construction cost.
- Walking and Cycling Trails
Project funded at 80% by the provincial government: Creation of 2 combined trails for 1 km of trail in the park. The trails will be used for walking and cycling.
- Children’s Playground
The municipal council has given the green light for the creation of a children’s playground in the park. They need it!
Two removable pickleball structures will be available under the multifunctional shelter this summer!
- DEK Hockey Surface
Council is evaluating the possibility of reusing the old rink boards and adding a DEK Hockey surface. In the winter, there would be 2 surfaces for hockey AND free skating respectively, one inside the shelter and one outside. The cost to the town would be $23,000.00, not including the asphalt base.
- Shade Shelters
The Town will add 4 permanent shelters to create shade. Each shelter will include a picnic table to invite people to stop and spend time in the park.
- Ice Trail Maintenance Equipment
The Municipality would like to provide quality skating trails in the park next winter. It is believed that this activity will be popular if quality of ice can be provided. The project is currently under study.
- Ice Refrigeration
The Town is in the process of evaluating the cost and procedures to equip the rink with a cooling mat. This system would allow Pottoneers to skate from mid-October to April, as well as open a range of activities for field hockey leagues, skating lessons, curling, outdoor tournaments. The council will not consider this project if it means raising taxes for citizens.
Do you have other interesting and unifying ideas for the Township? Do not hesitate to write to me, just below.
Michael Laplume, Mayor of the Municipality of the Township of Potton
Mansonville, May 3, 2021