Community Presentation: Deputy Fire Chief Rocco Volpe, Central York Fire Services
Deputy Fire Chief Rocco Volpe from the Central York Fire Services made a presentation to Aurora Town Council regarding changes to the cost recovery program. On January 1, 2020, Central York Fire Services (CYFS) initiated a program which assisted the fire service to recover costs associated with responding to motor vehicle collisions on municipal roadways in Aurora and Newmarket. The two-year pilot program to recover costs associated with responding to motor vehicle collisions in the Towns of Aurora and Newmarket. On October 1, 2020 the CYFS will be expanding the cost recovery program to include more applicable services. The expanded list includes the following additional services:

  • Natural gas leaks (when proper locates not completed)
  • Hydro incidents (downed wires)
  • Drug labs / grow ops & clandestine labs
  • Post fire investigations

Currently CYFS recovers cost for attending the following incidents/inspections: motor vehicle collisions, outdoor burning (not following outdoor guidelines), false alarms (preventable cause), hazardous materials response, industrial and commercial inspections, apartment / office inspections, property file / fire reports, fire extinguisher training and fireworks permit (large displays)

Library Square Project Monitoring Task Force:
On August 25,2020, the Library Square construction tender was awarded to Chandos Construction Ltd. At that time, the main motion to award the tender was amended to include the following clauses: “That a Library Square Construction Budget Control Task Force be established to monitor and examine all financial and budgetary aspects of Library Square during its construction phase and the spending of the project contingency…” The Terms of Reference for the Task Force were approved, and Councillors Kim and Thompson were appointed to it.

Downtown Parking Update Resulting from Library Square
An update was provided at the General Committee meeting on September 22, 2020 regarding the parking considerations at play in downtown Aurora within the context of the imminent construction of Library Square. A Downtown Parking Working Group already exists and will continue to monitor and address parking-related issues within the Library Square precinct during construction and report to Council as required. Council requested and staff committed to bringing back an approach to Council that reflected the desire to engage local business owners as part of the Working Group.

Explore Aurora Campaign Funding Request
Ms. Sandra Ferri, President and CEO of the Aurora Chamber of Commerce, presented to Council to request funding in the amount of $12,000 to support the second phase of the Explore Aurora campaign. The campaign launched earlier in 2020 and was designed to ensure the economic viability and continuity of Aurora-based businesses during the pandemic and after the reopening of the economy. The first phase of the campaign was managed by the Aurora Chamber of Commerce with the support of a marketing agency. Phase 1 ran for three months from June to August 2020 and was funded by private sector contributions. Phase 2 of the Explore Aurora campaign is expected to run from September 2020 to February 2021. The total estimated cost for this phase is $34,000. The Aurora Chamber of Commerce has already agreed to contribute $12,000 in support of a new Plan Management contract position and magazine software. The Explore Aurora campaign requires $22,000 in funding in support of its website redevelopment, further social media development and implementation, as well as the development and on-going management of a key stakeholder email list. This funding is being sought from the Town. The Town has already budgeted $10,000 in 2020 towards the print version of Explore Aurora which will be reallocated to this campaign, however an additional $12,000 is being requested from the Town. Council approved the request, and further asked that the Aurora Chamber of Commerce report back to them at a later date regarding the success of the campaign.

Sidewalk Installation Policy
Aurora Town Council approved a motion put forward by Councillor Harold Kim requesting that staff bring back a report reviewing the Town’s Sidewalk Installation Policy. The report will look at revisions including providing staff with delegated authority to install sidewalks for existing areas of the Town when a road is scheduled for reconstruction. Staff will bring back a report to General Committee in the first quarter of 2021.

Audio Recordings of Closed Session Meetings
Aurora Town Council approved a motion put forward by Councillor Michael Thompson seeking a report from staff on audio recording future closed session meetings of Council, including recommendations on how to ensure security, privacy, confidentiality and retention of recordings. Staff will bring back a report by year end.

Construction of a Gymnasium at the SARC
Aurora Town Council approved a motion put forward by Councillor Michael Thompson regarding the construction of a gymnasium at the Stronach Aurora Recreation Complex (SARC) being added to the 2021 capital budget discussions. The addition of a gymnasium at that location has been under discussion since 2017 and has been identified on a number of occasions as potentially beneficial to the community. Council will debate the matter as part of the 2021 capital budget process.

Re-establishment of the Environmental Advisory Committee
Aurora Town Council approved a motion put forward by Councillor Rachel Gilliland and Mayor Tom Mrakas regarding the re-establishment of a dedicated Environmental Advisory Committee to support the Town in taking meaningful action to address environmental and climate change issues in Aurora. The committee will be made up of one Councillor, and five citizen members.

Lake Simcoe Protection Plan
Aurora Town Council approved a motion put forward by Councillor Sandra Humfryes requesting that the Ontario Government work collaboratively with affected Provincial Ministries and all levels of government, including First Nations and Métis, to achieve the goals and targets of the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan and to resource the programs that improve Lake Simcoe's water quality during the provincial statutory review of the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan. A copy of the motion will be provided to provincial representatives. The motion came about as a result of a presentation from Ms. Malcolmson at the September 22 General Committee meeting, on behalf of the Lake Simcoe Coalition, regarding the 10-year review of the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan. Ms. Malcolmson provided a brief history of the charity organization and presented an overview of their ongoing efforts in protecting the Lake Simcoe watershed. She spoke to the value of goods and services provided by the Lake Simcoe watershed, concerns of increasing levels of phosphorous in the lake, the outcomes from strengthening the Lake Simcoe Protection Act and its upcoming review by the Province, and the organization's efforts in improving public and municipal participation for the review. She also presented a resolution for Council's consideration which demonstrates commitment to protect the health of Lake Simcoe. General Committee received the comments of the delegation.

The next meetings of Council are as follows:
• General Committee Meeting - Tuesday, October 6, 2020, 7 p.m. (virtual)
• Finance Advisory Committee – Tuesday, October 13, 2020, 5:45 p.m. (virtual)
• Public Planning Meeting – Tuesday, October 13, 2020, 7 p.m. (Town Hall)
• General Committee Meeting - Tuesday, October 20, 2020, 7 p.m. (virtual)
• Council Meeting - Tuesday, October 27, 2020, 7 p.m. (Town Hall)

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Comprehensive minutes of Aurora Town Council meetings, which detail the full list of Council decisions, are available under Agendas and Minutes on the Town of Aurora website. Minutes are available on the Friday afternoon following Council.