Council can’t expand winter control schedule without approval from union

A proposed expansion of the Township’s winter control schedule will not proceed this season.

Following a conversation last month, Ward 1 Councillor Mike Jubb brought forward a suggestion during budget deliberations Friday (Feb. 1) that would have resulted in municipal patrols starting at 3 a.m., an hour earlier than they’re currently scheduled.

Works Director Nick Colucci explained that such a move could cost anywhere from $32,000 to $95,000 each year, depending on the number of winter events, and would ultimately require the approval of the employee bargaining committee.

“Our guys can only be on the roads for a certain amount of time. By moving it up an hour, what are you trying to attain? The people complaining want 24-hour service. There would be a huge cost to that,” Colucci said.

“It’s not going to happen this season,” added CAO/Clerk Thom Gettinby, noting that the current contract expires on March 31 of this year.

Despite those responses, Coun. Jubb was adamant that “something needs to be done” to address the concerns of residents.

Ward 2 Councillor Claire Doble agreed,

“The main thing we’re hearing from residents…is that the snow isn’t being cleared early enough,” she said.

While it could be a topic of negotiations with the bargaining unit, not all members of council seemed on board with the proposed expansion.

“I’ve had very, very few snow complaints. We’ve got a great staff doing a great job under difficult conditions,” said Regional Councillor Ted Smith.

“We can only do so much with the people we have and the equipment we have.”


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