Pride Month was officially recognized by Greater Napanee council during Tuesday’s regular council meeting, the first time it had been done so by the town on record.
Deputy mayor Max Kaiser made the motion to officially recognize June as Pride Month, doing so on the advice made during a deputation by Chris Beauchesne, who attended the meeting. His friends and family offered up applause when the motion, which was seconded by councillor John McCormick, was unanimously passed.
“For future years we could maybe have some dialogue leading up to Pride Week,” said Kaiser. “If we could lead up to it earlier so we could be better prepared, flying the flag or whatever, we could have that discussion before now. At the very least I’d like to officially recognize this as Pride Month in Greater Napanee.”
Mayor Marg Isbester added a friendly amendment.
“We need to have a committee that would be part of the preparation,” said Isbester. “What I would like to see done is perhaps a proclamation of our support put on our website to begin with, and social media and also put in the paper that council is in support of this and that we wish to have a larger presence for it next year.”
Isbester noted she’d like to have a flag to fly for next year as well.
-Centre and Bridge Street’s lack of an advance green continues to be a topic on the minds of several residents.
Councillor Bob Norrie raised the issue under new business, noting he continues to get phone calls on the matter.
“All the traffic modelling indicates that what we have today is the best model,” said Peter Dafoe, general manager of infrastructure services for the Town of Greater Napanee. “Advance greens will cause more queuing of the traffic, particularly east and west.”
Kaiser said despite what the studies show, council needs to continue to push the issue with Lennox and Addington County to get the advance greens re-installed.
“We had the advance greens and people got used to them,” said Kaiser. “I heard the studied and Mr. (Chris) Wagar (director of infrastructure services with L&A County) was here from the county and explained it fully and I can’t dispute the logic or the report. But at the same time, I’ve sat at that light right over there (gesturing from the council chamber to the intersection of Bridge and Centre) facing north, watching a stream of traffic heading south and thinking there’s a snowball’s chance of getting around on this light because I’m the third vehicle and I’m probably on the next or the next. It’s frustrating.”
“I think we should have some say on it,” added Kaiser. “I know it won’t come free.”
Kaiser noted the technology is there, though there would be a cost to add it onto the existing lights.
“If the technology’s there and it’s a small cost, I’d like to see something done,” added councillor Dave Pinnell Jr.
-Councillor Terry Richardson was appointed as council’s rep on a soon to be formed physician recruitment committee.
Forming a committee was the recommendation of Charles McDonald, director of operational audits/chief building official with the Town of Greater Napanee.
The report also suggested the town invite a member of L&A County, Lennox and Addington County General Hospital, the hospital’s foundation, a family physician and a charitable organization. McDonald suggested council wait until the rest of the committee had met before they decide which charitable organization they would invite to join.
“We’re all pounding the pavement on this and it’s looking pretty hopeful,” Isbester said of the physician recruitment. “We can’t do it without partners and we need to move on this quickly.”
-Joined by mayor for a day winner Ellysa Montgomery, Greater Napanee Emergency Services fire chief Rob Serson introduced five new volunteer firefighter recruits. They were Shane Cameron (Station 3 Dorland), Justin Gifkins (Station 2 Roblin), Bill Ellam (Station 2 Roblin), Nathan Bruce (Station 1 Napanee) and Mike Magee (Station 1 Napanee).