Annual General Meeting, 2007

Lake Matinenda Cottage Association
Annual General Meeting Minutes
For Saturday, 28 July 2007

Registration for the 2007 Annual General Meeting (AGM) started on a beautiful Saturday morning about 9:20 a.m. on The Lodge’s barn deck. A wide variety of Tim Horton’s Donuts, along with coffee and tea were available. Water, juice and ice were also available from Ed Pilon’s efforts. Linda Brennan did registration table.

The Meeting started at 10:05 a.m. President Jerry Behnke asked all those present to introduce themselves. Nancy Harz was recognized for her job with the newsletter and because she wasn’t present, hoped she would do it again.

President’s Remarks: Included mention of voting for 2 directors for elections this year and 3 for next year. Also, 911 signs were available for each property from the dock attendants – everyone should pick up their sign(s) and post them prominently on their property. Jerry said Beth Wood was here with Andrew Ludgate to talk about the Algoma Public Health Unit and contractors and vendor representatives were here to discuss waste water management. Contractors and lake residents Don Udell and Steve Watson were present. Ken Mar Enterprises with Ken Westlake for “EZflow Canada,” (alternative drainage solutions for traditional gravel aggregate systems) and vendor president John Winkup for EZflow Canada from Windsor, also vendor rep Kurt Behnke for “Infiltrator” (waste water management systems) were available to speak and consult at the end of the meeting.

Secretary Ron Servatius summarized the 2006 AGM Minutes attached to the printed agenda and published in the Newsletter. Ron said the issues of last years meeting are being addressed in this year’s meeting. Ron moved for acceptance contingent upon additions and corrections. Von Dilloway seconded. No changes or discussion. Motion carried/no dissent.

Treasurer Ed Pilon gave the 2006-2007 Financial report: Ending for 2006, to the nearest dollar, Revenues were $1330, Disbursements were $1033, Checking account balance as of 31 December, 2006 was $1785 and Savings GIC’s were $10,692. Membership was up from 92 to 106. The 17 July 2007 chequing balance to the nearest dollar was $1822 and Savings GIC’s were $10787. Renewed rates will be 4% non-redeemable for 18 months and 2.8% redeemable for 12 months. Memberships paid to 17 July 2007 was 46, to July 25th was 67 and in this meeting 84. Ed reminded everyone to indicate change of address and email when paying. He also said we have a lot of money and asked again what should we do with it. Myrna Ziebert said “horde it till we really need it.” Von Dilloway motioned that an additional john for “Women” be obtained quickly, either from the city or elsewhere and both johns be taken to the top of the hill for privacy. Dick Brennan seconded. One comment was that men find women’s toilet facilities fair usage in similar settings. Another comment included a request with a time line for action to the town be made before we take things in our own hands. Motion passed with hardy support. Motion by Ed Pilon for Approval of Financial Report. Ben Kaufman seconded. No discussion. Motion carried with no objections.

Water Quality and Lake Level Updates: Beth Wood, APHU officer, jumped in to say there have been increasing Blue-Green Algae blooms found floating in some lakes. She asked if you see them here in Matinenda, or are suspicious to contact her office so they can map, collect and test sample this toxic growth. Dick Brennan reported this is our 5th year with the Lake Partnership Project of Ontario. He explained the mission of the project is to study water degradation and clarity issues. A 5th year summary report will be available on a website in December. One should “google” Ontario Lake Partners, and search for Matinenda. Dick said McDonald’s Bay is least clear because of high population density. Dick said December will yield the 5 year summary report on phosphate and clarity data for all the lakes in the partnership. Von Dilloway asked what affects water clarity. Answer: many things, including phosphates from soaps, natural runoff and fertilizer. Von mentioned most detergents can be obtained “phosphate free.” Dorothy Faegre asked how much degradation there has been of water quality. Dick said “little change over the short term.” Years of study are needed for a trend, but water quality is definitely not as good around the shore as it has been. Jerry said we have sent samples for independent analysis and the coliform and E. coli are on the increase.E. coli comes from carnivorous animal feces. Mention was made of the lack of algae in Emerald Lake and it was suggested the acidic rain affects growth in a smaller unpopulated lake. Don Udell motioned after explanation that we do comparative depth testing of Matinenda water for trends at the 50′ level at the end of Baker’s Bay and McDonald’s Bay. Carolyn Lee seconded. No discussion. Motion unanimously carried.

Trash Updates: Jerry said the next large item pickup was August 13. Dumper’s should call ahead to warn recyclers about what to expect. Electric refrigerators need an approval stamp for removal. It cost about $50 or $60 dollars (to have the Freon evacuated.) No sticker is required for propane refrigerators. Ron will post the dates of the remaining pickup dates at the Welcome House. Recycling is an on going issue. Jerry recognized Moe Bell to speak about recycling. She thanked Don Udell for his cans which are by the Welcome House to collect returnable (all) beer and liquor container from the LCBO which is a source of funds for the Animal Rescue League. There is a garbage can there for small items like wrappers etc. which seems to be confused with recycling containers Moe said she would relabel the cans. Hazardous waste pickup was scheduled this day between 10 a.m. and 2.00 pm. in town, Jerry reported.

911 Signs were mentioned earlier.

Communications – CB/Cell Phones: Ron reported he adjusted the CB at the Welcome House and asked for input about transmissions. Satisfaction seemed to prevail. He also said Cell Phone activity at best seemed spotty, stating that the new Algoma Mills tower apparently has not been activated. It seems Bell is still digital and analog, Rogers service is only digital, Verizon is digital and analog, but connections are best after sunset. Location is important, whether or not you have a yagi (directional) antenna or omni-directional dual-band antenna. Margo Faegre said AllTel was another service and reliable with a BAG Phone. Jim Hogg vividly described the importance of location, saying his phone only worked in his outhouse.

Helo Pad/Ranger Report: Ron gave the report of Beetli Kiernicki on the helo pad project which was an action item from last year. Von Dilloway gave the coordinates for the proposed location of the helo pad. Rangers will paint “Seagull Rock” on August 9, 2007 and remove rusted metal frames littering the island. Dick Hagman stated that the MNR may not have issues with the location, but the air ambulance company needs to be contacted. The province company is ORNGE and Fred Rusk is the contact at 647-428-2036. After this contact, another was suggested by Hagman, who is Christopher Russell responsible for “non-transport Canada” and approves helo pads for ORNGE. Beetli passed on coordinated of Seagull Rock so “non-transport-Canada” can survey the location themselves. They are to get back to us. Discussion: Phil Rice offered that Ted Thiel thought his location was better and had docking facilities which is needed and another maintenance item for the Association. Also, it is a reliable communication point. Where ever, a windsock is needed and must be maintained.

Memorials: Ron remembered all the long time residents lake who passed on: Sharon Dupuis’ son, Terry, after a long illness, Colleen Sullivan, Larry’s wife from Sullivan’s Bay, Lee Hagen (husband Reed, last year) from Teacher’s Bay, and Bruce Walker from Brundage Bay, (Quonset Cottage) just two weeks ago.

Ed Pilon described his new volunteer position as a board member on the MNR/FOCA fisheries commission. The mission he explained is to improve fish management. Many stakeholders are on the board to discuss fish preservation issues. The fish of concern are presently lake trout, walleye, small mouth bass. Matinenda was netted in 2004 and was found self-sustaining. We are in Zone 10 which replaces 6 districts in Ontario. It was discussed and found that fish tournaments are detrimental to fish populations and cormorants are having eggs oiled. For input to Ed, Brad Mitchell suggested fishing limits be reduced. Another member suggested large (breeding stock) fish be photographed immediately and released. Ben Kaufman asked about closing lakes on a rotating basis.

Public Health Officer Beth Wood introduced Andrew Ludgate, her university assistant. She immediately brought to everyone’s attention the problem of rabid bats in the Espanola area. The problem has the potential to move next to Algoma Mills . . . . She also alerted everyone about the West Nile Virus. Studies with mosquito traps are being conducted and anyone finding a dead crow or raven should call her office. An elk or deer was found dead on the lake and the question about livestock susceptibility to the west Nile virus came up. Beth/Andrew said horses and humans can contract it. Then, the mention of rats came up. Bob Henderson, Dorothy Faegre and Moe Bell had seen one each in their respective areas. Dick Brennan suggested that Northern Brown or Wood Rats are not strangers to this environment. As discussion continued, Beth advised that all animal bites should be reported and pets vaccinated. Dumb rabies are slow to show. Keep bats out and away by moving lights from doorways at night. Most of the world’s rabies deaths are from bats. Beth and Andrew then moved discussed waste water management and said Teacher’s and Sullivan’s Bay have been inspected and reports generated. Letters about possible problems have been mailed to 10 of 40 locations. Receivers of the letters should call the APHU and discuss corrective measures. In general, because of light activity in early June, sampling showed a “less than 10” ecoli count, which is quite low. Beth was pleased “Ontario Health Unit APPROVED” companies EZFLOW, and INFILTRATION had reps at the meeting to speak to interested persons. Jim Hogg (Island) briefly described his “no toilet composting system” and relatively low cost. The system is described in a book by Joseph Jenkins, Natural composting of human manure. It is apparently effective because the Island blueberries are beautiful. Beth Wood reiterated that individual needs for every cottage differed based on the number of users, soil, location, etc. She warned that systems having the building code minimum are good, but more is better. No permits are required for outhouses. Leaching pits are “class 2 systems” which means if you apply for a permit the APHU has to go out and inspect and certify it is to “standard.” Don Udell asked if a basic guideline sheet for self builders could be generated to assess feasibility of intended systems and based on “pumped water” and gravity fed water. Again, individual need still must meet code, said Beth. The object is to be kind to the lake. Permits approved and systems inspected by the APHU are file documentation for buyers of cottages on the lake. Qualified contractors of OHU approved systems present at this meeting were Steve Watson and Don Udell, who is now receiving his approvals by the Board of Health. Other well known lake residents and contractors where not present. The bottom is all begins and ends with the APHU application for and approval of waste water systems. If anyone is on your property you don’t know, ask for ID. APHU personnel have ID and badges. When asked about blue-green algae blooms, Beth said they were on the increase in some locations . . . where, not said.

Nominations for the election of two Directors were opened by Jerry. No response. Jerry said the nominations would be for director slots occupied by Ron and Jerry and if there were no new names forthcoming, Ron and Jerry would stay on. No other names were presented. Carolyn Ruley asked that the “misery continue.” Margo Faegre seconded the motion. Discussion: Von Dilloway asked why we couldn’t vote for specific people in specific offices, because she wanted to vote for Ed Pilon for president. Jerry explained we vote for 2 directors on a rotating board, who decide the officers within the board of directors each year. The next year there will be 3 other directors up for re-election, and officers may change again. When we were incorporated, elections where done for an entire board and specific positions had to be voted on by Charter rules. We are not incorporated anymore, said Jerry. (It is noted that the point is made for the board to consider a “shuffle.”) The vote was without objection to keep Ron Servatius and Jerry Behnke as directors.

Other Business: Membership Input included a reminder by members that all lake residents are members of the Association, whether or not dues are paid, as it has always been. ( Let me explain membership dues: One paid membership gives one vote for purposes of conducting business and memberships are based on a non-extended family paying the current $10 for one lot. Example: Myrna has 1 lot. = $10. Her family includes late-husband Bob’s daughter Robin, who has 2 children. If Robin were living up here with her younger kids and with Myrna, it would be expected another $10 be donated to the Association, especially if Robin and Myrna both wanted to vote my “misery” to continue. If a retired couple had two lots they kept open and functioning for visiting friends and relatives and wanted 2 votes, they would pay $20 = $10 for one lot and one vote by the wife/husband and $10 for the significant other’s vote and the other lot. Now, if relatives said, “I want to vote and live here sometimes,” they, too, could pay $10 for the lot they live on and get one vote. If someone, anyone, wanted to make a “helping hand donation” of no specific amount, the treasurer never objects and duly records the entry and makes the deposit to the Association’s bank.) A reminder to send changes to board members of changes in email or snail mail addresses was made.

Don Udell submitted a letter to the Board about his concrete barrier concerns by the break-wall. He summarized his letter. Lively discussion ensued. He explained it was hard, time-consuming and dangerous for everyone to shuffle around contractor/resident/visitor activities at a single put-in point. He said he had to use the handicap dock/on-off loading dock area now to do his work for his efforts to help cottagers upgrade their grey-water and septic systems to comply with the Clean Water Act. A second slot owned by “The Lodge” allows some activity there, but if new ownership made changes, problems could exist. Nevertheless, his concern was that the concrete barriers are a poor, band-aid approach to the major problem of an aging, collapsing wooden sea wall at a narrow, much-used, single, public, put-in point. The barriers were placed to prevent the wall from collapsing under the weight of vehicles and contractor payloads. Don suggested that a new wall, preferably concrete, be built. He offered an idea that donations of time, tools, and materials purchased in kind with town help could get quickly get a wall in place and dock area moved down with Association members. The moving of docks easterly could provide space for additional rampage to launch or extract boats. Under present conditions, he thought the safety of people and expedient movement of land and water vehicles was definitely lacking. Other members jumped in with concerns about the dock area and tie-up docks. Ron Servatius, seeing urgency of need, after Ed Pilon stated his agreement with Don, asked if there was a window that this needed to be done to prevent fish spawn disruption. Don said the last week in July through August was the action time for this to happen. Obvious is the interruption to HEAVY lake resident presence and tourism flow. Nonetheless, this, according to a member, should be a complete town responsibility, after all we have been receiving less service for more tax. No objection was heard from the membership, but the need for action now was felt. Additional urgency for safety issues on the dock were expressed by Lynn Lopez when she said her husband, Joe, fell out of the boat by the dock and almost drowned because he could not swim and there were no ladders to climb on and the rocks were slippery. Membership Inputs included putting in ladders, perhaps at the end of the dock so boats wouldn’t block them, having throwing rings with line (as required by Canada boating regulations for boats) and ropes along the side of the docks to hold onto and work toward a ladder as safety features. Moe Bell thought sending Mayor Gallagher and Town Council members each a copy of our yearly newsletter might let them know what isn’t being done and what our concerns are. Frank Lee made a motion that the Board approach the Town about a new dock wall, improved dock access for contractors and more space for expedient boat movement and people’s safety, which invites tourism. Brennan second. Discussion: Frank Lee suggested we work this through the Province of Ontario, rather than the Town. There was approval without objection.

Other issues: Navigation lights are not always visible from the landing. Answer: they are a private individual’s help markers. Get out in the water and you should be able to see the markers. 2) A shirt with names of Cottager’s is being worked up by Hagger’s Clothing in town. Ron saw the shirt proof prototype with inaccurate locations, misspellings, or changes needed. He asked people check it and make changes. 3) Ron asked about the website in the town for our Association. Jerry said the Town would continue the service for a price. But Yahoo is a place to develop a website at low or no price. 4) A question was raised about how to get the Town to act on issues of concern, since it doesn’t seem to be happening. Jerry responded by saying “Write individual letters.”

The Meeting was shifted to Vendor Presentations at 12:17 p.m. However, the unexpected length and intensity of the meeting pretty much dissolved the membership away from Vendor Presentations which Jerry reminded everyone of at this point. (Ron since has heard several comments from long time members that this was one of the “best” and most informative meetings ever and that people knew vendors were present but, felt their systems were adequate for their needs.)

Respectfully submitted by
Ronald Frank Servatius, Secretary/Director