Summary of the municipal council meeting of May 4, 2022
The Town Council meeting was held in public on Wednesday, May 4, 2022. Its video recording is available on our YouTube channel and its official minutes (in French only) are available on our website.
The mayor did the follow up of the current files:
- The Interim Control Resolution (ICR) on the freeze of all new construction in the mountain sector, requested by the Town of Sutton to the Brome-Missisquoi MRC, was adopted by the council of mayors.
- Since the repeal of the Short Term Rental Policy, the Town has been applying the C507 use which limits the zones where it is allowed, while waiting for a more rigorous bylaw.
- The membership of the two committees (Environment and Quality of Life) is being finalized. The appointed councillors are : Marie-José Auclair, Carole Lebel and Marc-André Blain for the environment committee; Lynda Graham and Thérèse Leclerc for the quality of life committee.
- The deployment of fiber optics by IHR Telecom remains a concern, not only because of delays due to shortage of manpower and parts, but also because of unfair competition from Bell. The mayor has alerted our federal and provincial MPs to this issue (see the article in La Voix de l’Est «Prendre la crème sur le gâteau» – in French).
- The SQ will deploy a motorcycle noise control operation.
- The Town is participating in the Dandelion Challenge, which involves not mowing the lawn for the entire month of May to help pollinators. The public is invited to join the movement.
- Biodiversity Day on May 22: 400 trees will be offered to our citizens.
- The project ” À vélo, à l’école “ presented to the council by the 1st and 2nd grade students of the École de Sutton is progressing. The project won the nomination of Regional Winner (Montérégie) in the school section of the Défi OSEntreprendre!
- Zero tolerance : no invective or verbal violence, no lack of respect will be tolerated towards employees of the Town or elected officials. The interventions of citizens during the question period are reframed: the person must first give his or her name and ask the question. A short explanation of the context is accepted, but no debate (read the article in the Voix de l’Est Échos du conseil municipal de Sutton, « Le maire appelle au respect » – in French).
The council adopted :
- the first draft of By-law number 115-16-2022 entitled “By-law amending Zoning By-law number 115-2, as amended, in order to modify the applicable areas for accessory buildings”;
- the second draft of By-law number 116-3-2021 entitled “By-law amending Subdivision By-law number 116-1, as amended, in order to add section 2.11”.
The council approved the following expenditures:
- $63,836.24 to Bessette Automobiles for the supply of a plug-in hybrid utility vehicle for the Public Works Department.
- $65,000 to Forage Technico for the construction of three piezometers around the Academy well to collect data on the water table
- $25,000 for the temporary installation of pumping equipment as part of the hydrogeological study of the village sector aquifer.
- $16,913 to SNC Lavalin for a comprehensive review of all hydrogeological studies conducted by the tpwn.
- $4,151 to SNC Lavalin for a technical opinion on the drinking water supply potential of the mountain sector.
- $21,710 to Polygeo to explore the possibility of the presence of other aquifers to the north and south of the village.
The council approved the deposit of an agreement from the Minister of Transport for a reimbursement of $7,100 for the maintenance of municipal crossings.
- Council voted (6 in favour, 1 against) regarding the conditional use request for the construction of a single family residence on lot 4 867 240, located on Chemin du Loup. On this occasion, the councillors expressed their motivation for their vote. The Mayor also expressed his opinion and the reason for his vote in his statement.
- All discretionary decisions related to the applications dealt with in urban planning are available in the PDF document presenting the applications, in the minutes of the meeting (in French only), or in the recording of the meeting on YouTube.
Only the questions asked are included, as the full speeches can be heard online on YouTube.
- Why was the municipal contribution to the Galerie Arts Sutton organization cut in half? ANSWER: The decision was made by the municipality according to an established policy.
- What is the definition of cultural mediation required of organizations by the Town? Do you consider the presence of André Fournelle to be important? ANSWER : Yes.
- Can the decision regarding Galerie Arts Sutton be reconsidered? ANSWER: No.
- Can a social committee be created to address affordable housing issues? ANSWER: The Town is already working on this issue through economic development and the revision of the urban plan. Citizens will be able to participate.
- Will the Town consider a review of the conditional use by-law? RESPONSE: We will review all criteria.
- On agenda item 10.1: Has Council received legal advice on the legality of this permit application? RESPONSE: Yes
- What is council’s decision-making authority? ANSWER: The council members must decide whether or not to accept the application.
- Have all obligations of the parties in the agreement signed by the Town in 2014 been fulfilled? RESPONSE: All of the Town’s obligations and rights have been met, but we do not know if the other parties have.
- Since MECA has fulfilled its obligations, but the other party has not, would the Town be willing to work with MECA to achieve satisfaction? RESPONSE: It is not the role of the Town to be a lever in negotiations between two parties.
- Are the consultants tied to a Town business line? ANSWER: No.
- Is the history of grants received by organizations shared with the committee that makes the recommendations? ANSWER: This is not a criterion for evaluation.
- Does the committee receive direction on grant levels? ANSWER: No.
- When the board makes the decision on grants to organizations, is the board informed of the amounts that were previously awarded to the organization? ANSWER: The board made its decision based on all the information and arguments provided by the committee.
- Can the board revise its criteria to take into consideration funding gaps and their impact on an organization? RESPONSE: Yes.
- Will the Town hold a meeting with citizens to clearly explain the water issue? ANSWER: Yes, we are looking for a coordinator to organize this.
- Was the press conference on the subject held before or after the council meeting? ANSWER: It was held on the morning of the April 6 council meeting.
- Why were citizens not informed before the press? ANSWER: Press conferences allow information to be disseminated more widely to the public through the press. The Town was transparent: the Tetra Tech report and press release were issued the same day.
- Did Council decide whether communications would be bilingual? RESPONSE: All Town news releases are published in both languages.
- Has any action been taken on the light pollution issue that was resubmitted last January? RESPONSE: This issue is part of the nuisance topic that the upcoming Quality of Life Committee will be considering in its mandate in due course.
- Why has the Urban and Land-Use Planning Department approved plans with exterior lights that are in violation of the regulations? ANSWER: You can report problem situations.
- Why hasn’t the Town published the light pollution report done under the Pelland administration? ANSWER: We publish reports on municipal infrastructure. And the Town does not wish to publish a report that points the finger at specific citizens.
- Regarding the first responder service, did the Town rely on the wrong team members? ANSWER: The situation in Brome Lake does not concern Sutton and has no connection with Sutton.
- Why are the vehicles of the Director and the Assistant Director of Public Security equipped when we already have two first responder vehicles? ANSWER: No additional expenses or equipment have been added to these vehicles.
- Why are new equipment being purchased for the PR? RESPONSE: No new equipment has been purchased to date. The intent is to purchase only a bib marked PR, which will cost much less than a full outfit.
- The Town’s website still states that PRs receive 60 hours of training? ANSWER: This will be corrected to 30 hours [since corrected].
- Why was the PR budget increased by 34% from 2021 to 2022? ANSWER: The decision to budget for an increase in RP compensation was made long before a change in operations was considered.
- Why was there no follow-up to the petition regarding pedestrian safety on Maple Street submitted under the Dandenault administration? RESPONSE: Things have been done, but this issue will be referred to the Mobility Task Force.
- When will the applications submitted to the CCUDD that met the day before the meeting be submitted to Council? RESPONSE: Committee items are always brought to the next month’s meeting.
- Will the Town do anything about the fact that the Urban and Land-UsePlanning Department is overwhelmed? RESPONSE: The Town is taking steps to improve the department. We are in the process of hiring a new urbanism inspector and an environment and urbanism inspector and it is taking time to become familiar with our urbanism by-laws which are very complex in Sutton.
- Under item 11.3, shouldn’t this be taken from the unrestricted water surplus? ANSWER: There is not enough money left in this surplus.
- Are we allowed to take from the general unrestricted surplus? ANSWER: Yes, this is a temporary practice. All these projects that will lead to infrastructure projects will be financed by borrowing by-laws. The payment for these studies will then be reimbursed by this funding.
- When permits are requested for sloped lots, does the Urban and Land-Use Planning Department pay attention to the height of the fill, based on the height of the house? RESPONSE: We require contour lines. The new resources committed will verify that the work done is in accordance with the original plan.
Next council meeting: Wednesday, May 4, 2022 at 7:30 p.m. (See the 2022 meeting schedule).