Town renews agreement with Maritime Gas Ltd.

The Amherst town council approved renewing the Municipal Operating Access Agreement it has with Maritime Gas Ltd. for another five years when it met on Monday, Dec. 20, 2021.

The agreement outlines the terms and conditions for the installation of Heritage Gas’s infrastructure within the town’s street right of ways. It covers issues such as liability, costs, damage to town infrastructure, sharing of construction information, co-ordination of proposed future work plans and safety considerations.

The current agreement expires on Dec. 31, 2021.

Rambler Contract

The council approved a new three-year agreement with the Amherst Junior A Ramblers hockey team and authorized the mayor and CAO to sign the agreement on behalf of the town.

The previous one-year agreement expired at the end of the 2020-2021 hockey season. The majority of terms in the new agreement, which is retroactive to Aug. 1, 2021, are unchanged.

For the 2021-22 season, there is no increase to the fees paid to the town by the hockey team. The fees will increase by five per cent in both Year 2 and Year 3 of the agreement.

The clauses pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic, added to the agreement in 2021, remain in effect for the duration of the new agreement.

Poverty Reduction Committee Policy repealed

The council formally repealed the town’s Advisory Committee to Reduce Poverty Issues Policy.

The policy was established in 2019 when the town created a committee to address poverty. Since then, the town has formed a joint committee to address poverty with the Town of Oxford and the Municipality of Cumberland.

The three councils have already approved new terms of reference for the joint committee. As a result, council needed to repeal the original town policy.

Emergency Shelter

Staff informed council members, during an earlier committee of the whole meeting, that the Halifax-Yarmouth Archdiocese engaged an engineering firm to design and build emergency structures that meet the national building code.

As these structures meet the code and are considered an accessory to the main church, the shelters meet the conditions of the town’s land-use bylaw and can be installed on church property.

The town has advised the local Catholic Church that permits will be issued upon receipt of an application and supporting information.

Consultant hired

The consulting firm Upland Planning & Design of Dartmouth has been awarded a contract, in accordance with the town’s procurement policies, to conduct a review of the town’s municipal planning strategy and land-use bylaw.

Upland is a prominent Nova Scotia firm that has extensive relevant planning experience throughout the Maritimes, including the recent update of the Municipality of Cumberland’s recently updated municipal planning strategy and land-use bylaw.