Township Watch - January 2014

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Muskoka Watershed Council

Peter Sale, incoming chair of the Muskoka Watershed Council, was in attendance at the January 17th council meeting to speak briefly about three large projects:

  1. The third Muskoka Summit on the Environment,
  2. The fourth report card on Muskoka’s environment and
  3. Their Planning for the Environment Handbook. 

A short but interesting and informative video about Muskoka’s lakes, ponds and waterfalls was shown.  If you are interested in finding out more about MWC and the new organization, Friends of the Muskoka Watershed visit

Dark Sky Lighting

CAO Chris Wray, Councillors Kruckel and Brent and Director of Public Works Jason Krynicki drafted a dark sky lighting by-law, which was presented to the planning committee on January 20th.   The by-law appears to be more subjective then quantitative as there were no firm parameters for glare and light trespass and no hard facts about what was measurable.  Included in the by-law is that lights on bubbler systems are to be amber colour and not red.  A “sunset clause” was included for fixtures that are “grandfathered”; there was a discussion if the date would be 2020 or 2023.  It was brought forth that a public meeting was going to be required for this by-law and should be held in the summer when seasonal residents could attend.  Two members of the committee disagreed saying council should not postpone its business to the summer for the convenience of seasonal residents.  It is our understanding that the by-law was to be mentioned in the Mayor’s letter to inform the public that it would be re-discussed at the February committee of the whole meeting.

Comprehensive Zoning By-Law

Director of planning, David Pink, presented zoning by-law 2014-14 to the planning committee on January 20th.  He explained that the by-law is an ever evolving document and that if the need arises property owners can apply for amendments.  Mr. Pink walked the committee through the by-law section by section, explaining that it is a complex document and that some special meetings may be required to complete the review.

The Township received 121 submissions regarding the by-law, fifty percent of them voiced concerns about section 3.26.3 “Storage or Sale of Boats”.  This portion of the by-law has been removed and will be dealt with under the Property Standards by-law.   It appears that there are a number of properties across the Township that are being rezoned without the knowledge of the owners.  The MRA encourages you to visit the township web site (go to departments, planning and then scroll down to the by-law) to make sure that your property rights are not being effected without your knowledge. 

Music on Outdoor Patios

A compelling delegation presented at the committee of the whole regarding live and amplified music being allowed on outdoor restaurant patios.  The Residents Association of Port Carling was concerned that Turtle Jack’s will be requesting live bands/amplified music on their outdoor deck from 11 AM to 11 PM.  The delegate spoke passionately about how live music has disrupted the village of Port Carling in the past, how restaurants can thrive without live music, and asked that the noise by-law be reviewed.

Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Fire Chief Hayes reported to the committee that as of January 2014 changes to the Fire Prevention and Protection Act will require that every home with a fuel fired appliance, (which according to the Fire Chief is “anything with a flame”) have a carbon monoxide detector.  Chief Hayes recommended that these units be placed in a common hallway near sleeping areas.


January is budget month in Muskoka.  Stay tuned for a report following the next budget meeting on Thursday, January 30, 2014.

Winter is certainly in full swing!!  Stay warm!!


Upcoming Events - Monthly Calendar

TML - Committee of the Whole
Apr 11, 2019 9:00am to 12:00pm
TML - Council
Apr 12, 2019 9:00am to 12:00pm
MRA - Board Meeting
Apr 27, 2019 9:00am to 1:00pm
MRA - AGM 2019
Jul 20, 2019 10:00am to 12:00pm
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