“I do not recommend that we get involved with the snow plowing on these two plots,” said South Dundas Manager of Public Works, Hugh Garlough.
Garlough addressed council at the February 7th meeting where he lobbied against a request made by South Nation Conservation’s (SNC) Josée Brizard for help in maintaining the parking lots for two SNC conservation areas within South Dundas.
In her letter to council, Brizard wrote, “it has come to our attention that many residents use both trails at Bob Graham and Two Creeks during the winter months. To facilitate the usage of these trails, SNC is inquiring about the possibility for the township of South Dundas to assist with the plowing of these two parking lots.”
She emphasized that “SNC will inspect the trails on a weekly basis and also will be grooming the trails when needed.”
According to Garlough, “there is a cost involved and the road department does not have time to send a truck or backhoe to these remote locations.”
He went on to say that he and his crew “worked with South Nation this summer. It went okay, but South Nation didn’t really consider my time or my men’s time. They just called at the last minute.”
As Deputy-Mayor Jim Locke pointed out, however, Two Creeks “has become quite a recreational spot and it’s going to grow.”
In response to not plowing the parking lot, he added, “I guess it’ll mean parking on the highway.”
Debate ensued, revolving around two opposing facts: the importance of recreational opportunities for South Dundas residents and the inconvenience and cost of having to plow the parking lots.
Mayor Steven Byvelds reminded everyone that these are trails within South Dundas, saying, “I thought it was a great idea. It’s an opportunity where we can partner with them (SNC).”
“People are interested in it,” he added.
Locke suggested moving the topic to budget time. It was agreed that plowing could be covered in the recreation budget since, as Chief Administrative Officer Stephen McDonald pointed out, “Ben (Macpherson) may have plans for recreation there in winter as well.” Macpherson is the South Dundas Recreation Program Coordinator.
Council inevitably agreed to refer the topic to budget.