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  • Writer's pictureAnn MacDiarmid

Wishing you a happy healthy holiday season!

Santa has been very busy in Seguin Township. Over 100 people joined him for breakfast in Foley on Saturday December 14 and lots of families came to skate with Santa on Sunday December 15 for the 10th annual Santa skate at the Humphrey arena.

The Township Council and I have been your representatives for just over a year. We have completed a new Strategic Plan, launched into our 2020 Budget Planning and learned an enormous amount about the priorities of our ratepayers.

Maintaining the roads for your safety remains a top priority. Our Operations folks struggled with a very wet spring, many freeze thaw cycles and lots and lots of heavy trucks and machinery that tear up our roads. Your Council is looking at what will need to occur for us to advance some of our priority road projects while maintaining low tax increases.

Finally, the Province has announced that Seguin and West Parry Sound will be the site of a high speed broadband text. This text under the Next Generation of Networks project will see improved broadband service in an area around the old Lands and Forest Tower in Parry Sound and the introduction of some fibre to homes - likely in Carling Township. We will be closely monitoring this test to see how it can be expanded to more areas within the next few months. Good, reliable and affordable connectivity has been slow to come to rural Ontario but we really are pushing everywhere to bring it to your home.

With an "Environment First" mandate in our Strategic Plan we are pleased to report that Seguin has joined the Integrated Community Energy and Climate Action Plan (ICECAP) which is designed to measure and reduce Green House Gases (GHG's) throughout our region. The Township of Seguin has already done an outstanding job of reducing GHG in our municipal buildings. Amazingly, however, 99% of the G

HG in our area comes from the general population - not from our public buildings. So long term GHG reductions will involve broadscale behaviour changes in all of our homes and in all of our activities. The ICECAP program will be presenting you with opportunities to help reduce your own GHG footprint.

Winter in Seguin is a very special adventure and there are lots of activities fo young and old to enjoy. The Park to Park Seguin trail is open for skidooing. The trails behind the Humphrey Fire Station are lovely for cross country skiing and snow shoeing. The 36th annual Sled Dog run is planned for Saturday February 15th, 2020. We hope to see you and your family out at some of these events.

Your Council has received a significant number of complaints about short term cottage rentals negatively affecting their own enjoyment of their own properties. Council is working on the development of a very specific short term rental policy that will be available this spring. However, it is important for anyone considering advertising their property that short term rentals are not permitted in any areas that are zoned as Limited Service Residential (LSR) or Shoreline Residential One (SR1). These areas do not allow for any commercial activity.

With 75 cm of new snow having fallen in the last week, winter is upon Seguin. I wish you all a very safe and happy holiday season. Be cognizant of winter driving conditions and know that our plow drivers are working hard to keep your roads cleared - usually starting at 4:00AM.

All the best for wonderful holidays and a healthy 2020.

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