Sharbot Lake Property Owners’ Association
Annual General Meeting 19 July 03
Held at the Sharbot Lake Legion

Ken Waller

Paul King, President, Sharbot Lake Property Owners Association, opened the meeting at approximately 10:05 a.m. on July 19th, 2003. Approximately 61 members (and 4 guests) were in attendance; this constituted a quorum and the meeting was officially convened.

Mr. King welcomed the members and introduced the Executive.

Adoption of the 2002 AGM Minutes

The minutes of the last AGM were read. A motion was moved by Bob Noonan, seconded by Alex McLeod, that the minutes be accepted as read. Carried.

Financial and Membership Reports

Ken Waller presented a brief report on the finances of the Association including the number of present members (195) and the health of the finances. In addition, Ken made a plea for members to volunteer as representatives for the ten areas presently without a rep. Moved by A. M. Taylor, seconded by Janet Tripp, that the financial report be accepted as read. Carried.

Fish Derby
The president made a request for volunteers to take on the task of running the Annual Fish Derby for next year (the derby was cancelled in 2001, 02 & 03 due to lack of volunteers). A list was provided so that those wiling to assist in the 04 Derby could sign up (3 volunteers signed up).

Federation of Ontario Cottagers Associations (FOCA)
Ken Waller explained the goals and objectives and why SLPOA had decided in the past not to renew its membership (mostly a cost issue). Moved by Roberta Anderson, seconded by Barry Alexander, that SLPOA renew its membership to FOCA. Carried unanimously.

Election of Executive

The President, Secretary-Treasurer and two Member-at-Large positions were up for election. Paul King agreed to stand for nomination for President, Ken Waller for Sec/Treas and Lloyd Dalton and Peter Moore for Members-at-Large. There were no further nominations and all four were elected by acclamation.

Year in Review

The President reviewed activities of the past year. The Association through its Lake Stewards continued to participate in the water quality-monitoring program of the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. The participation included the annual “Great Dip-in” which is a Spring water sampling task to assess the run off and any contaminate loading that might occur. In addition they undertook their periodic readings and provided the details to the MOE for their database.

The association continued its’ monitoring of severance applications as well as minor variance requests.
We have been active in the efforts by some members of other local associations in the creation of a Frontenac County parent group of Associations. The intention is to investigate the interest of local Frontenac associations in forming a larger, possibly more vocal group, of environmentally interested associations with the intention of sharing ideas, concerns and if necessary spearheading campaigns with the voice of many hundreds of cottagers and concerned citizens rather than the seemingly minor voice of a few hundred. In addition the intention is to share resources in areas such as lake planning, resource management and other related topics. The efforts will continue.

Guest Speaker – Jay de Bernardi, Director of Fire & Emergency Services, Township of Central Frontenac

Mr. De Bernardi provided an interesting and informative presentation on the role of his department. He also discussed:

•Campfires as defined wrt burning regulations, are a maximum 3 feet in diameter and no more than 2 feet high.

•There are three levels in the Burn Ban system: No ban, Restricted (campfires and incinerators only) and Total Ban.

•The 911 system is almost ready for implementation. An accuracy of information of at least 98% is required before induction. A pamphlet, 9-1-1 Important Request, was mailed out to all residents with their tax info.

•The current fire-fighting equipment meets our requirements however there is an age problem. The insurance industry does not recognize equipment over 20 years of age when considering the firefighting capabilities of a local fire department. If we do not replace the current equipment over the next 7 years, Sharbot Lake faces a reduction of its assessment from 3A (the best) to 5A. The impact would be an increase in fire-insurance rates by as much as $100 per household.

•As for fire protection for island residents, the Sharbot Lake Fire Department does not have boats to transport equipment to an island fire. Residents would be expected to provide some assistance. Currently, firefighters are also using their own personal boats when dealing with island fires.

Guest Speaker - Art Merrill and Marty Kapitan, Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC)

They provided a one-hour briefing and question-and-answer session. Some of the points raised included:

•MPAC is a not-for-profit organization funded by each and every municipality in Ontario.

•There are 4.2 million properties in Ontario with a value in excess of one trillion dollars ($1,000,000,000,000) that form the basis for $1-billion in tax revenue.

•The current assessment is based on 2001 values. MPAC will be re-assessing properties in the fall of this year and those values will be used for the 2004 tax year. In 2005, assessed values will be an average of 03 and 04 value and in subsequent years, a rolling average of the previous 3 years will be used. This should prevent sharp changes in assessed value.

•A Notice of Assessed Values is provided to the municipalities each year in Dec. This allows the municipalities to set their tax rates for the following year. (Your taxes are calculated by multiplying your assessed value by the tax rate.)

•You can contact MPAC through their central call centre at 1-866-296-6722 (between 08:00 and 17:00 hrs) or you can log into MPAC’s website at http://www.mpac.ca

•Central Frontenac has 5870 properties with a total assessment of $376M (2001 assessment). 2002 added $3.4M.

•Central Frontenac’s budget rose from $305M in 2002 to $340M in 2003. With the new (higher) assessments of properties in the township, an increase in the tax rate of only 3.9% was needed. If property assessments had not increased, an increase of 12% in the tax rate would have been required.

•Property owners who feel their assessment is too high can submit a “Request for Reconsideration” in writing. This is free. You need to provide info as to why you feel it is too high (removed buildings, sold part of the property, etc). MPAC would then contact you to discuss. If you can’t resolve it to your satisfaction, you can appeal to the Assessment Review Board (ARB). This process has a fee of $50 for residential property. See the MPAC website for more info.

Following the MPAC presentation and a rather lively Q&A session, it was moved by John Pariselli, seconded by Luc Salvador, that a committee be formed to investigate the issue of property assessment. Rem Westland agreed to chair the committee and a volunteer sign-up sheet was made available for interested members to sign on.

Guest Speaker: Paul Lehman, General Manager, Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority

Paul Lehman discussed the MVCA water management plan, created in response to the Energy Competition Act of 1998, to define the restraints to be imposed on hydro-electric plants (of which there are 40 in Ontario). There are 5 generating stations and 20 control dams in the MVCA area. The plan’s objective: To maximize the net benefit to society. The plan will focus on the 5 generating stations and 7 of the control dams. Sharbot Lake is not directly involved since it has no dams or generating stations. Paul also briefed on other MVCA programs including:

•Provincial Groundwater Monitoring Program involvement. Ten monitoring wells have been installed in the MVCA area to monitor water levels and quality. Sharbot Lake is the largest unregulated lake in the watershed. A stream-flow monitoring station has been installed at the lake’s outflow into the Fall River.

•Clean Water Program. There are provisions for financial incentives for rural landowners (up to 50%) for water quality-related projects (e.g. raising buried wellheads to above-ground).

•MVCA is looking for volunteer observers to monitor local rainfall. FOCA is also actively involved in water quality issues.

•MVCA will come to property owners to discuss the possible impact of proposed construction.

Island Septic Systems

There were only 3 island property owners in attendance and all three expressed an interest in SLPOA’s investigation into having a septic pumping barge brought onto the lake. SLPOA’s role would be one of co-ordination and communication and not financial assistance.

Following an open forum session where questions from the floor were fielded, the meeting was adjourned at 12:40.

Prepared by: Ken Waller
Approved by: Paul King Sec/Treas President--
SLPOA Forum Administrator

Attached is a copy of the MPAC presentation.