Minutes of meeting

Thursday, June 16, 2011, 10:00 – 12 noon

 South River Council Chambers


Present:  Merv Mulligan, McMurrich Monteith;  Kay Tod, Magnetawan; Bill de Vries, Sundridge; Ron Begin, FedNor; Jim Coleman, Mayor, South River; David Stewart, Almaguin Highlands Inc.; Karen Insley Stewart, Almaguin Highlands Inc., David Hunks, Kearney; Brenda Scott, WORC; Jessica Busch, iBrand Almaguin; Don Carter, Whitestone; John Dunn, Mayor of Perry, MaryAnne Love, Perry  Guest Speaker:  John F. Michels

  1. Welcome
  2. Call to order: Merv Mulligan,  10:00 a.m.
  3. Declaration of Pecuniary Interest: N/A

Guest Presentation: 

4.  Guest Presentation:  John Michels, PhD  Candidate at the University of Illinois at Chicago.  Department of Anthropology.  John has been studying Rural Change and Rural Economic development in rural North America.  He has been visiting the Almaguin region since March 2008 and examining the shift from extraction (forestry, mining, etc.) to attractive (tourism) industries. He has completed extensive archival research, conducted more than 100 interviews and will be here now until early 2012, with a few breaks.  Major topics of interest have been the highway by-pass; changing economics and demographics; tourism & recreation (the cottage as home); hi-speed/broadband; dynamics between groups and how they work together.  Roles and strategic plans; goals, funding and implementation.  When the study is completed it will be presented in his thesis to the University of Illinois, Government of Canada and the National Science Foundation.

5.  Adoption of Minutes of May 19, 2011 as amended.

Moved by: Kay Tod   Seconded by: David Stewart

All in favour

6.  AHED Business

The AHED Committee expresses a big Thank You to South River for hosting this month’s meeting.

7.  Reports from Community and Resource Partners

7.1 Ministry of Northern Development and Mines & Forestry             Sharma/Hamilton

7.2 NECO                                                                                        Aspin Lecour

7.3  FedNOR                                                                                            Begin

Will be meeting with municipalities to discuss good projects under their strategic and economic development plans.

7.4  WORC                                                                                                Scott

WORC still in transition period, new Program Manager – Kara Mitchell has been hired and the position for Program Assistant is being posted.

7.5  Township of Chisholm                                                                    

7.6  Ryerson, Armour, Burk’s Falls                                                         Hall

7.7 Municipality of Whitestone

Northern Lights Steel Orchestra will perform Sept. 3rd in the pavilion through partnerships and sponsorship with municipal and local businesses.  4000 copies of the 15th Edition of the Welcome to Whitestone directory are now available and some copies were distributed as well as copies of the Great North Arrow newspaper.                                        

7.8  Powassan Economic Development Report                                           Gibson Olajos

7.9  McMurrich/Monteith                                                                          Mulligan

Final touches are being made to the rink and a baseball tournament was held.  Check their website for details about the upcoming Community Day in August.

7.10 Kearney Economic Development                                        Tomlinson/Hunks

Economic Dev. Officer David Hunks reported that the Huntsville Forester is sending Blogger to tour the area in response to Muskoka in the RTO12 being named one of the TOP 10 summer destinations. 

7.11  Central Almaguin Economic Development Association                      de Vries

Bill de Vries reported job description for an economic development officer is being developed and the group are deciding on fair and equitable support for this position.  MTO is giving a tour of the new highway to determine where signage will be established.  The new exit to Hwy. 124 is open.  MTO is reviewing all of their signage criteria in response to pressure from municipal and business presentations.

7.12  Magnetawan Area Business Association                                              Tod

Update info was given re the costs for MABA Minutes on 105.5 in Huntsville.  All interested members were encouraged to participate and MABA would match the cost up to $1,000 for the summer months.  Plans continue for the 5k/10kRun/Walk on Sept. 10, 2011  The Magnetawan Library will be assisting at this event.  Proceeds will be split 50/50 with a charitable community organization and MABA.  Evening entertainment information tba.  Last year’s proceeds of $4,000 from the run went to the Magnetawan Library’s Children’s Corner and the grand opening was held on June 4, 2011.  The Magnetawan Recreation Committee has offered a FREE table at the Canada Day celebration for businesses to promote themselves.  Magnetawan booklets will be ready this week and are going to be distributed to the various Tourist Information Centres in Ontario.  The Farmer’s Market in Magnetawan has offered MABA a FREE table for the 17 Saturdays in the summer months as long as MABA members will take turns operating the table from 9:30 – 1:00 p.m.  The Amgun Fishing Improvement Association has a survey they would like completed and MABA has agreed to assist.  This organization has recently been allowed to continue the work they do in restocking of fish in Cecile and Haemic Lakes.  The survey will monitor the local catches and will be used as guideline when restocking again in future years.  AMBA donated $250 to fund this project.  James Murphy, Mgr. RTO12, will be invited to the September meeting to be held at Woodland Echoes.  The next meeting is a pot luck dinner at Camp Kumquat on Nipissing Road.  All members are being asked to invite a possible new candidate for membership.

7.13  Westwind Forest Services                                                   Munro/Coleman

Jim Coleman reported that the audit for forest re-certification has been postponed to September 19 – 26th.

7.14  Citizenship & Immigration (Culture Health Promotion)                         Loiselle

7.15  Almaguin Highlands Inc.                                                                Stewart

Attended Social planning and Healthy Communities meetings.  The mapping project is going well; marketing and promotion opportunities are growing. 

7.16  Municipality of Magnetawan                                                                   Urbanski

7.17  Nipissing                                                                                Negrinotti

7.18  Almaguin Highlands Council for the Arts                                               Hornibrook

7.19  Village of South River                                                                    Coleman

Mayor Coleman reported that the Strategic Plan is underway focusing on short term, ongoing and future goals.  South River and Machar are discussing signage for the new highway.  Carl Hann is retiring after 30 years as Arena Manager and tomorrow night a thank you reception will be held at the Community Centre.

7.20  Perry Township                                                 Dunn/Love

Mayor Dunn reported the Steering Committee has approached them for a cooperative initiative to erect signage at the highway 11 south entrance such as Welcome to the Almaguin Highlands.  They are looking to improve the info centre from a tourism perspective and are considering a youth internship through FedNor.

7.21  OMAFRA                                                                               Dukhia

7.22  Region 12 RTO                                                                               Murphy

The new board is in place and has held their first meeting establishing committees. There are many initiatives underway and all are encouraged to check the RTO12 website for ongoing projects and developments.

7.23  Park 2 Park                                                                                      Searle

7.24  Kearney, Perry Business Association                                                   Johnston

  1. Sundridge                                                                               DeVries

Monday business breakfast meeting was held with 70 attendees.  MTO, government and other agencies were present to discuss issues of importance with the business owners.  The Arena manager will now be overseeing recreational programs and the ballfields, etc. 

  1. Discovery Routes                                                                           McCourt

Unveiling of the Discover Routes kiosk was held yesterday.  They are beautifully done and will be a great asset to the regions trail systems.  65 signs have been ordered.  Congratulations to Jennifer McCourt, Trillium, FedNor and the supporting associations and municipalities.

8.   Correspondence

9.  In – Camera    

10.  Adjournment: 12:15  Motion:  Bill de Vries

11.  Next Meeting Date:  Thursday, September 15th  10 am.  Perry Council Chambers.  To be confirmed.


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