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McTaggart named ‘Citizen of the Year’


John McTaggart was approved as “Citizen of the Year 2001” by the committee of the whole Tuesday night during the regular council meeting here.

The decision came after a recommendation was made by the “Citizen of the Year” selection committee, consisting of Mayor Glenn Witherspoon, Coun. Deane Cunningham, and two former “Citizens of the Year”—Bill Gushulak and Mark Kowalchuk.

McTaggart has been an active volunteer in the community, participating with groups like the Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship, Riverside Foundation for Health Care’s “Care Close to Home” campaign, and the waterfront development committee.

Mayor Witherspoon congratulated McTaggart—who happened to be at last night’s meeting for other business—on the award, which will be formally presented to him at the town’s annual appreciation dinner Nov. 23.

McTaggart’s “other business” was to request council consider Phase Two of the Waterfront Development Project when drawing up the 2002 municipal budget.

McTaggart, who chairs the committee, had offered council three suggested options, the largest of which was a request for about $3.5-million.

“I know the request is extremely large. But I ask if you could consider paying for this project over two years, or with a debenture,” he noted.

Improvements to the waterfront range from fixing the shoreline to extending the walkway from the Sorting Gap Marina to La Verendrye hospital on Victoria Avenue.

Mayor Witherspoon replied that council would take the request “under consideration.”

Meanwhile, council Tuesday night received a report from CAO Bill Naturkach on the River Walk condominium project, who noted the committee’s next meeting Nov. 22.

He added the architects are slated to meet with the committee Dec. 13, at which time the project will go out for tender. Tenders will close in mid-January.

Construction should be completed by October, 2002, Naturkach said.

Also at Tuesday night’s meeting, council:

•agreed to meet next Monday, and Tuesday if necessary, to continue working on the 2002 budget (while the public was welcome to offer their input on the budget at last night’s meeting, no one attended);

•agreed to pay $5,000 in funding in support of the Connect Ontario/GeoSmart project business plan;

•heard an update that final tax bills for 2001 were sent out last Thursday (Administration and Finance manager Darryl Allan noted residents should keep an eye out for them, and shouldn’t be suspicious of the postmarks on the envelopes because they were processed and sent out by a company other than the town);

•briefly discussed Bill 111—The Municipal Act (CAO Bill Naturkach noted copies of the 350-page document would be given to all councillors so they could review it before it goes before Queen’s Park on Nov. 29);

•consented to have a crossing guard at the corner of Second Street East and Frenette Avenue, and another at the corner of Scott Street and the east side of Williams Avenue;

•consented to the construction of a continual sidewalk on the south side of King’s Highway from Alexander MacKenzie School to Scott Street; and

•agreed to a request by the BIA to block off the 200 and 300 blocks of Scott Street for the “Winter Wonderland” celebrations next Saturday (Nov. 24) in conjunction with the annual Santa Claus parade.

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