The Royal Canadian Legion Br. #99 in Emo is struggling desperately to make ends meet and is requesting assistance from the municipality.
“We want to get some relief to help retain the costs of maintaining the building,” Kay Nichol, secretary of the Legion executive, told Emo council at its meeting last Tuesday night (Feb. 27).
Nichol, along with executive president Jane Allan, asked to retain 10 percent of the profits from the Legion’s 50/50 draws, which run 11 times a year.
“Right now, it all goes out to charity,” Nichol noted, adding generally about $1,400 comes in and half is given to the winner.
“We keep nothing other than money for the lottery licence and paper for the tickets.”
Nichol added they had been told it was council’s decision whether the Legion is able to retain any of the funds.
“Any consideration given to this would be greatly appreciated,” she remarked.
But council was unsure whether it really is their decision.
“We need someone to say yes indeed we can do that,” Emo Reeve Ed Carlson. “We’ll certainly support the Legion if we can. . . .
“It’s nice to be able to help give to charities but if you can’t help yourself, it doesn’t work,” he added.
“We won’t be able to help anyone if we have to close our doors,” Nichol agreed.
If the local Legion is granted its request, it would retain less than $2,000 a year.
“That’s not a lot for heat and lights,” said Reeve Carlson.
In addition, Nichol and Allan asked for the municipality to be the applicant for a grant through the Ministry of Veteran Affairs to repair and maintain the cenotaph in the community.
“[It’s] cracking quite badly,” Allan noted. “If we can use money from the 50/50 draw for the cenotaph, we are prepared to do that.”
The pair also requested a tax exemption of the municipal general portion of the 2007 Legion taxes.
Although no decisions were made during the meeting, Emo council promised to look into these requests.
Also at last Tuesday’s meeting, Emo council:
•approved the 2007 Policing Services levy in the amount of $12,766 a month;
•authorized payment of $593 to the Rainy River Valley Safety Coalition as its per capita levy;
•agreed to enter into the Municipal Forest Fire Management Agreement with the Ministry of Natural Resources;
•approved the 2007 semi-annual levy for Rainycrest Home for the Aged in the amount of $29,838;
•defeated a petition submitted by STRONG (Saving the Region of Ontario North Group), which had requested changes in the government policies that contribute to the destruction of the economic and social fabric of Northern Ontario, because they were not in agreement with all points; and
•chose a date to meet with Thunder Bay-Rainy River MP Ken Boshcoff.
Due to the March Break, Emo council’s next regular meeting won’t be held until Tuesday, March 20 at 7 p.m. at the municipal office.