Current press releases are shown below when issued.
South Shore Regional Airport Lands New Leases
December 12, 2017; Liverpool, NS: South Shore Flying Club (SSF Club) and the Region of Queens Municipality have entered into two new lease agreements that will allow the programs and activities of the SSF Club to take off. At the December 12, 2017 Regular Council meeting, Council approved entering into a 13 year lease with the Club for the terminal building at the airport, and also a 13 year lease for the 40,800 square feet of land located at 80 Airport Drive, Greenfield with the intent that it be used by the SSF Club to build hangars.
“Following a period of growth and development over the past year and a half since they began the lease for the South Shore Regional Airport, the South Shore Flying Club determined some additional needs that would increase the capacity of the group,” said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality. “Council has been happy to see the Flying Club moving forward, actively promoting the airport, and growing its membership as well as increasing and improving on the infrastructure at the airport.”
The 13 year leases will come into effect on January 1, 2018 and continue through to May 31, 2031, which is also the renewal date for the current airport lease that the SSF Club has with the Region of Queens Municipality.
“We signed the Management lease to operate the South Shore Regional Airport in June 2016. It is our hope that we can grow the facility to attract new pilots, and existing pilots from other areas, and around the South Shore. Also to attract new businesses to the area; knowing they would have a viable airport within the South Shore to help grow their business. Obviously this could be a vital link to getting their products or clients in and out of the area quickly and efficiently,” said Peter Gow, Vice President of the South Shore Flying Club. “The area would also benefit from having this airport in place, in case of fire (as happened 2 years ago) to get fire fighting aircraft in to the fire area quickly, or in case of natural disaster, to be able to move people in and out effectively. Air ambulance services would also be able to use the airport. A long term goal would be to offer fuel for aircraft which we do not have now. This is a very expensive endeavour; so we want to start small and get established before we look into that possibility.”
During the first 18 months of operating the airport, the SSF Club has made steady progress, with members painting the runway markings and taxiway lines to give pilots better visibility both on the tarmac and from the air coming in to land, and also installed new flags and a new windsock, which had its location moved from the north to the south side of the runway to give a better reading of winds. Two members spent about 50 hours redesigning and painting a compass rose which is used to adjust aircraft on board compasses. The SSF Club held a fundraiser in March of 2016 for their annual insurance premiums, and noted that they were well supported by the community in donations of items for silent auction, as well as in their bids.
The South Shore Regional Airport is located at 80 Airport Drive, Greenfield, Queens County, Nova Scotia, and is airport code CYAU. Featuring a 75 foot wide by 3,933 foot long paved unlit runway, with no fuel on site, the South Shore Regional Airport is operated by the South Shore Flying Club, and is also home to the Greenfield Dragway, operated by the Nova Scotia Drag Racers Association.
Region of Queens Municipality Celebrates Staff Milestones
December 12, 2017; Liverpool, NS: The staff of the Region of Queens Municipality is a diverse and varied workforce, providing services and programs that are significant in the lives of residents and visitors alike. They are the voice on the phone when you call looking for information about waste collection schedules or supports for non profit organizations, they are the smiling caregiver at Hillsview caring for your loved one, they are the heavy equipment operator working on infrastructure projects to make the community stronger, they are the ones who maintain our parks, and they are the people who coordinate recreational programs for you and your family to enjoy. The operations and services provided by the Region of Queens are diverse, and include the administration office, Engineering and Public Works, parks and playgrounds, Queens Place Emera Centre, the Municipal landfill and recycling facility, as well as Hillsview Acres Home for Special Care. Milestone achievements of staff were recognized with Years of Service Awards at the December 12, 2017 Region of Queens Regular Council meeting.
“The Region of Queens has a skilled workforce which is committed to excellence in public service. Each year, Council recognizes and celebrates the milestones that staff has attained in their career,” said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality. “We are proud of the level of service provided by Region’s staff. All staff members are positive ambassadors of Council and the Region of Queens; their work is greatly appreciated.”
Five employees were recognized for five, 10, 15, 20, and 25 years of service; those employees represent 75 years of cumulative employment. Julie Oickle reaching five years of employment; ten years of service was reached by Adam Grant; Roma Whynot with 15 years of employment; Mike MacLeod marked 20 years of service; and a 25 year milestone was reached by Wanda Allison.
Service Awards are presented each year in December by Council to staff as they achieve 5 year milestone increments.
Pictured are: Mayor David Dagley, Wanda Allison, Mike MacLeod, and Julie Oickle. Missing from picture are Adam Grant and Roma Whynot.
Queens Community Aquatic Society Receives Funding Support for Consultants Report
October 24; Liverpool, NS: The Queens Community Aquatic Society (QCAS) intends to hire independent consultants to define the proposed community pool project and outline costs for the project. The Society requested funding support from the Council of the Region of Queens Municipality. At the October 24, 2017 Regular Council meeting, Council approved a grant of $6,000 to be paid from the previous year’s operating surplus to assist the QCAS to proceed with their consulting report.
The report, with an expected cost of $24,000, will also require provincial funding. Having a detailed plan is a necessary step for the QCAS before they can proceed to the funding stage of the project. Once a plan has been finalized through the consultant, a report will be brought back to Council the end of February which will include a detailed plan that includes a project definition, construction costs and operating costs.
The QCAS held a Public meeting in February 2017 with approximately 80 people in attendance, and also conducted an independent survey with 946 respondents, in which they advise that 83% of respondents believe it is important to have a year round pool. A fundraising subcommittee of the QCAS has been formed who have investigated possible funding options, and determined that funds may soon become available through federal and provincial programs, as well as from the private/corporate sector and a public campaign.
“Council is appreciative of the work that members of the Queens Community Aquatic Society are putting into researching the viability of a community indoor pool for Queens County. Their due diligence in reaching out to hire independent consultants to source the best information as to the capacity, use and needs of the community in a pool is very important,” said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality.
Region of Queens Municipality Approves Flag Flying Policy
October 24, 2017; Liverpool, NS: A new policy approval by the Council of the Region of Queens Municipality provides guidelines and protocols for flag flying on municipally owned flag poles. At the October 24, 2017 Regular Council meeting, Council approved Operational Policy 84- Flag Flying , a new policy that outlines protocol for the appropriate manner for flying and displaying flags on municipally owned flag poles, protocol and location for flying flags of non- profit organizations’ flags, and protocol for flying flags at half mast.
“In developing and approving a policy on flag flying, Council has established reasonable parameters for flying flags requested by organizations as well as guidelines as to when it is appropriate to fly flags at half mast in the Region of Queens,” said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality.
Council has approved a policy that includes an opportunity for non profit organizations to fly their flags, or to denote occasions of significance in the community, using the Region’s special purpose flag pole located next to the VIC and bridge on the Liverpool waterfront. Flags will be flown for a two week period. Among the flags that will be flown in two week increments are the Pan African Flag for African Heritage Month in February, National Volunteer Week flag in April, the Pride flag in June, the Mi’kmaq Nation flag for National Aboriginal Day in June and for Mi’kmaq History Month in October, and the Veterans Flag during Veterans Week in November. Non profit organizations may submit a completed application one month prior to the date they would like their flag flown.
The policy also outlines when flags will fly at half mast at the Region of Queens Administration Building and at Queens Place Emera Centre, which includes observing the death of specific heads of state; current or former Mayors, Wardens or Councillors of the Region of Queens Municipality, the former Town of Liverpool, and the former Municipality of Queens; along with other dates of national or international importance, following the provincial example. On the following dates, flags will also be flown at half mast: November 11 in respect for Remembrance Day, April 28 in respect of the Day of Mourning for Persons Killed or Injured in the Workplace, and December 6 in respect of National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.
Operational Policy 84 is effective immediately, and the policy and application for usage of the Special Purpose Flag Pole may be viewed on the Region of Queens website (http://www.regionofqueens.com/council-governance/policies-overview/operational-policies , or contact the Region of Queens Municipality for a copy by calling 902-354-3453 or in person at the Administration Building, 249 White Point Road, Liverpool, NS.
Council Looking at Future of Former Mount Pleasant School Building
Sept. 26, 2017; Liverpool, NS: At the Sept. 26th Regular Council meeting, the Council of the Region of Queens Municipality today approved a staff recommendation to declare the property surplus and to have tenants vacate the former Mount Pleasant School by June of 2019. The recommendation also included giving direction to staff to work with the four tenants, the Queens County Food Bank, Queens Day Care, Queens Learning Network and the Queens Family Resource Centre, to consider relocating these important community services to other acceptable locations.
“Declaring the property surplus to Municipal Requirements is a technical term which allows options, and the building is in need of short term repairs. A long term increase in the maintenance budget would have an impact on taxes, but the services provided at the old Mount Pleasant School are important services for the community,” said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality. “Many residents in Queens depend upon the services provided by the Queens County Food Bank, the South Shore Family Resource Centre, the Queens Learning Network , the Queens County Daycare Association, and the volunteer initiative Plant To Plate. Council is supportive of these organizations. Prior to a move becoming necessary, we will work with the tenants to help them find suitable space in the community, and will give them adequate notice to help facilitate their move to ensure these valuable services continue to be provided in our community.”
In support of long term capital planning, a building condition assessment was completed on the facility. The assessment revealed that current deferred maintenance is escalating to the point where the current level of maintenance will need to double over the next 25 years to keep it in suitable condition for tenants. This reality may not be financially sustainable for the municipality, the tenants, or their clients. Based on this imminent cost, it was recommended that the municipality work with each of the four tenants to look at alternative location options. The four services provided are important to citizens of Queens and finding other financially sustainable locations is something that the Region may need to address over the next two years.
The four tenants currently utilize the former Mount Pleasant School, 108 College St., Liverpool, NS. This building was constructed in 1957, had been transferred to the Region of Queens Municipality many years ago, after it was declared surplus by the South Shore Regional School Board.
Region of Queens Municipality’s 2016/2017 Audited Financial Statement Released
Sept. 26, 2017; Liverpool, NS: During their September 26th, 2017 Regular Council meeting, the Region of Queens Council approved a motion to accept the Audited Financial Statements and the Trust Fund Statements for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2017. Earlier in the morning, the auditor for the Region of Queens Municipality, Michael Metcalfe, of the firm Belliveau Veinotte Inc., presented the audited financial statements for the 2016/2017 fiscal year at the Region of Queens Municipality’s Audit Committee meeting.
“We were pleased to receive confirmation that the Region of Queens remains sound financially. This is largely resulting from careful financial management, and establishing capital and operating reserves in anticipation of specific capital and operating needs,” said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality. “In these times of increasing pressures on tax dollars, prudent planning and careful budgeting continues to be a priority of this Council’s mandate.”
Property taxes remained consistent and general operations ended the fiscal year, March 31, 2017 with an operating surplus. This was mainly attributable to unexpected revenue in the deed transfer tax, and will be reserved for future needs. The water utility's operating statement was static this year, finishing with a small surplus of $3,873.
RQM Appoints Interim Chief Administration Officer
September 12, 2017; Liverpool, NS: This afternoon, the Council of the Region of Queens Municipality appointed Jennifer Keating Hubley, Director of Finance who is a 13 year employee of the Region of Queens Municipality, as Interim Chief Administrative Officer (ICAO). This will become effective upon the departure of the current CAO in early October.
Council also approved commencing advertisement of the position to seek a candidate for the permanent appointment of a Chief Administrative Officer. The objective at the Region of Queens is to provide opportunity for career advancement to staff, while ensuring that the Region enjoys a robust, transparent, and competitive selection process for the next Chief Administrative Officer. Council will take the time to properly complete this hiring process, and will strive to hire the best candidate for Queens. In this regard, both internal and external candidates will be considered.
August 22, 2017; Liverpool, NS: The Council of the Region of Queens Municipality would like to publicly advise that Mayor Dagley has accepted the resignation of Chief Administrative Officer Richard MacLellan today. Council will work with MacLellan on a transition plan over the next few months.
Planning for Future Road Resurfacing in Queens County
August 8, 2017; Liverpool, NS: The Region of Queens Council is looking to the future and making plans for down the road by setting up funding reserves and a long range plan to improve road conditions in the Municipality. At the August 8th Regular Council meeting, approval was given to sign the standard, recurring 3 year agreement to be eligible to “apply at a future date” for Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal (TIR) approval to cost-share on surface upgrades. Staff will include a list of possible improvement needs to be included in the future capital plan, along with a funding suggestion to be considered at 2017/18 budget discussions.
The suggested solution would be to begin building a reserve as early as the 2018/19 budget, which would then be used in the recapitalization of Local Roads under the Municipal Service Exchange. The second item included a motion to authorize the Mayor and Chief Administrative Office (CAO) to sign the three year cost sharing agreement for paving subdivision roads; this is a document that is renewed every three years, and enables future consideration of joint paving projects with the Province.
The motion gives staff the flexibility to investigate the various funding solutions. At an estimated $250,000 per kilometer, and nearly 47 km of roads identified as being in need of resurfacing, there are over $11 million in infrastructure costs currently not funded. There is an annual financial cap on the Province of Nova Scotia’s cost sharing program, which currently funds up to 50% of project costs. Establishing a reserve to fund the municipal portion of the resurfacing of the identified roads will help to systematically, over a long period of time, enable roads to be resurfaced that would not otherwise be resurfaced. Some of the roads identified in the 46.84 km of roads require more immediate assistance, and will been attended to first. Roads eligible for paving under the Municipal Service Exchange agreement are those constructed prior to April 1995. Currently, fees paid by municipalities for operational maintenance (ie; winter operations, drainage, ditch maintenance, and pot hole repairs) do not cover resurfacing, and are adjusted annually by the consumer Price Index for Canada, with the rate for 2015/2016 being $5,064 per kilometer; the 2017/2018 Region of Queens budget allocated $244,613 to pay the Province for these services.
Public Advisory: Daytime work Schedule Resumes at Intersection of School and Waterloo Streets
August 8, 2017: Liverpool, NS: the evening work taking place at the intersection of School and Waterloo Streets in Liverpool, NS has now concluded, effective August 8, 2017. Regular daytime construction work has resumed.
The Region of Queens Municipality appreciates the patience of shown by the public during the evening construction.
Public Advisory: Temporary Work Schedule Change at Intersection of School and Waterloo Streets
August 2, 2017: After-hours work will be undertaken within the School and Waterloo Street Intersection over the next week. This is necessary to accommodate the traffic flow through the intersection.
The evening work schedule will commence on Thursday, August 3, 2017 from 8:00 p.m. until 8 a.m. Friday, August 4, 2017, then will resume on Sunday, August 6 from 8 p.m. until 8 a.m. for throughout the weekdays. Typical day work scheduling will resume upon completion.
The Region of Queens Municipality regrets any inconvenience this may cause.
World Championship Event to come to Queens County in February 2019
August 2, 2017; Liverpool, NS: The mood was celebratory at Queens Place Emera Centre today as the Liverpool Championship Host Society announced they will host the World Junior Curling Championships in Liverpool, NS from February 17 – 24, 2019.
“The Liverpool Championship Host Society has done a great job in securing this event, which will bring 140 of the world’s top young curlers, their coaches, families and fans to Queens County in February, 2019,” said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality. Queens County has a reputation of hosting great events, having strong volunteer support, and bringing the crowds in support of all events, whether it is sport, cultural, or entertainment. We are excited to welcome the world to Liverpool, Queens County, Nova Scotia in February, 2019.”
President of the Liverpool Championship Host Society, Greg Thorbourne, announced that the Society had been successful in their bid to host the World Junior Curling Championships, and reflected on the previous success that the community had experienced in hosting the 2014 Canadian Junior Curling Championships. During the event announcement, the Honorable Leo Glavine, Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage, advised of Provincial support for the week long world championships, contributing $100,000. Region of Queens Municipality’s Mayor David Dagley confirmed that Council’s July 25, 2017, pre-budget approval of $50,000 in the 2018/2019 was in support of the World Junior Curling Championships. Shirley Osborne spoke on behalf of Curling Canada, advising that the 2019 Championships will be the 10 year anniversary of the event being held in Canada, which was in Vancouver in 2009. Also attending the event were representatives from the Nova Scotia Curling Association, Liverpool Curling Club, Member of Parliament Bernadette Jordan’s Office, members of the Region of Queens Council, Events Nova Scotia and Communities Culture and Heritage.
The arena at Queens Place Emera Centre will be transformed to contain five sheets of curling ice, and will be the venue for the weeklong event. At least 10 countries will compete in Liverpool at this event with world class curlers aged 21 and under, with 10 men’s and 10 women’s teams. The top six countries in each gender from the 2018 World Juniors in Aberdeen, Scotland will compete in the 2019 Worlds; three more countries in each gender will qualify out of the 2019 World Junior-B Curling Championships, and Canada’s entries will be decided at the 2019 New Holland Canadian Junior Championships.