Leech Lake, Muskoka

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Thursday, August 01, 2013

Mayor Smith Visits Leech Lake

At this year’s Annual Meeting as usual a good deal of time was spent discussing the lake road system. One of the issues was Lorne Road. The Township, for the past couple of years had listed Lorne RD for repair in 2014, however the latest Township list show that Lorne Rd. was now off the Town’s priority list. A discussion followed this news and the best advice was that the squeaky wheel gets the grease.

Greg Wolfe of 1064 Lakeshore Rd S took this to heart and the week following the Annual Meeting he phoned the Bracebridge Mayor, Graydon Smith and complained bitterly that the Township had taken the rate payers of our little lake community for granted over the past 40 years. He invited the mayor to come out and meet with him to get an appreciation of the deplorable condition of the road and discuss how we could get action on the improvement of Lorne Rd. sooner rather than later. The Mayor agreed to meet.

The meeting was arranged to take place on Friday July 26th at Greg’s cottage. A bulletin via the executive e-mail and the Blog was sent out urging for all concerned cottagers to attend to show support for repairs to Lorne Rd.

At 4:00 pm on July 26th there were about 20-25 cottagers (including Larry Jacobs, Pres. LL Association, & Bob Hoolans, Road Chair) in attendance when Mayor Graydon Smith and Counsellor
Barb McMurray arrived.

After introductions Larry lead the discussion. Larry was well prepared with background information and was quite aggressive in holding the Mayor and the Township to account for lack of action over 30-40 years when it came to Leech Lake and especially Lorne Rd. As Greg stated we want action on Lorne Rd NOW

Mayor Smith was sympathetic, however explained that there is a process for improvement spending and how the process worked. He would not guarantee our improvements this year or next but he would go back and with the Townships professionals and review again Leech Lake’s plight and rework the metric for spending improvements on Lorne Rd.  After their review the Mayor and Township professionals will meet with a committee for LL to work toward a solution.

Personally I impressed with Greg’s position and I was also pleased that the Mayor did make a hollow promise to extract himself from an uncomfortable situation. The solution he did map out is a positive step forward and I went away feeling comfortable that we will get action and it will be better that a patch job.

 Good Job Greg!!


At 3:47 PM, Anonymous Larry Jacobs said...

Follow Up Meeting with Mayor Smith
On Friday September 6th, Bob Hoolans and I met with Mayor Smith, Town Engineer, Walter Schmid, and Councillor Barb McMullin to follow up on the meeting on the condition of Lorne Road.

The meeting included discussion about a potential pilot project suggested by the Mayor, which could, and I emphasize "could" be deployed to improve Lorne Road within the next year. The pilot project, if approved by Council, would see the Lorne Road bed stabilized, boulders removed, and turned temporarily into a gravel road. This technique has been used successfully on other roads in the area.

This work would be done in 2014 if approved. At a point after that, the improved road base would form the base for paving Lorne Rd.

Again, all of this is preliminary and needs to be costed and then approved by Council. We expect this to be dealt with by Town Council by the end of October.

Larry Jacobs

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