Amherstburg’s Open Air 2022 Barriers Part Three – Maps

Amherstburg is not Bogota.

Populations:
Amherstburg 21,936
Bogota 11, 167,000

Amherstburg’s Open Air event where, for the third year, barriers prevent the almost 5,000 persons with disabilities from equally participating in their community: barriers to the post office, banks, hair salons and parking to allow for games, patios, entertainment to occupy the streets.

Visit Amherstburg website includes two links to the same map:

“To assist you we have this map to help you best decide where to park your vehicle. You’ll see we have added additional accessible parking spots at the Open Air thresholds as well as additional bike racks to help encourage active transportation.

Click here to see additional bicycle, vehicle and accessible parking areas.”

The first map:downtown Amherstburg map closed streets during spring to fall weekends

The second map:downtown Amherstburg map closed streets during spring to fall weekends accessible parking

Who decided it was a good idea to have two links to one map on the same page?

Amherstburg’s Open Air 2022 Barriers To Inclusion Part Two

Amherstburg is not Bogota.

This is a continuation of photos showing the barriers to Amherstburg’s downtown due to its ‘Open Air’ event where open streets are closed to vehicular traffic on the weekends from May to September.

barriers to Murray Street in Amherstburg, Ontario during the weekends of summer months

Amherstburg’s Open Air event where, for the third year, barriers prevent the almost 5,000 persons with disabilities from equally participating in their community: barriers to the post office, banks, hair salons and parking to allow for games, patios, entertainment to occupy the streets.

Further Details About Ombudsman Report July 2022

The Ombudsman found that the Town did not contravene the Act’s open meeting requirements in closing these meetings to the public. However, the Town contravened section 239(4)(a) of the Act on September 13 and November 16, 2021 by failing to state by resolution the general nature of the matters to be considered in camera. The Town also contravened the requirements of section 239(7) of the Act by failing to keep a record of what occurred in camera on November 8 and November 16, 2021.

Read the full report here.

Then-Clerk Valerie Critchley’s response to concerns about in camera minutes were posted on March 4, 2022 in this post: Lack of In-camera Information = Lack of Transparency?

Also read:

Posted on June 29, 2018 Ombudsman: Council And Joint Police Advisory Committee Wrong To Discuss RFP In Camera

Posted on January 6, 2012 Ombudsman Posts ‘Behind Closed Doors’ Report

Town To Hire Financial Services Clerk

The town is filling a vacancy and applicants have until August 2 to apply.

The town’s website notes, “Reporting to either the Supervisor of Revenue or the Supervisor of Accounting, the Financial Services Clerk follows established methods for provision of services to Town departments.  Responsibilities may include Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, Utility Billing, Property Taxes and Payroll support functions for all departments under the auspices of the Town of Amherstburg.”

Full details on this page.

KPMG Makes Similar Recommendation

One of KPMG’s recommendations is similar to mine from months ago:

KPMG:

  1. The Town could consider undertaking an update of the Procurement Policy to ensure information in the Policy is sufficient and relevant to current operations at the Town.

MINE: The town’s Procurement Policy should be updated to reflect provincial legislation.

To view the full KPMG report, click on this link from the agenda.

Reader letter: Artwork should have been on display at accessible site

As published in the Windsor Star July 23, 2022.

Re: Amherstburg gets a closer look at Group of Seven artwork, by Dave Battagello, July 2

Not everyone will get a closer look.

The exhibition was being hosted in a downtown bookstore owned by Richard Peddie.

Victoria Little, chairwoman of the Board of Directors of Art Windsor-Essex, stated recently, “AWE regrets hosting this exhibition in a space that is not accessible in Amherstburg.”

In her letter, Ms. Little explained: “AWE also undertakes partnerships when our overarching goals for a program align with those of community visionaries, such as Richard Peddie.”

But if the goal was to bring this exhibit to Amherstburg, AWE could have selected accessible locations like the downtown Gibson Gallery or the Libro Centre.

The livability of communities cannot be improved if persons with disabilities continue to experience discrimination because of attitudinal and physical barriers.

AWE needs to adopt an accessibility policy and align its goals with legislation that ensures every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to services, goods and facilities without discrimination.

Ms. Little asked for my “patience and understanding that the organization operates within the broader systems of obligations that may conflict with our overarching accessible vision.”

I have been more than patient as I have advocated for improved accessibility for over 30 years. There’s the Ontarians with Disabilities Act 2001, the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act 2005, the Human Rights Code, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, along with the goal of a fully accessible province in 2025.

Yet, a public art organization decided it was okay to exclude persons with disabilities with this recent exhibition. Linda Saxon, Amherstburg

KPMG Report For 3 pm Council Meeting July 25

KPMG states, ‘our report may not be disclosed, copied, quoted or referred to in whole or in part, for any purpose, without our prior written consent in each specific instance.’

To view the full report, click on this link from the agenda for the 3 pm July 25 meeting.

Councillor Courtney’s Notice of Motion to be debated at December 13, 2021 meeting:

NOTICE OF MOTION OF COUNCILLOR COURTNEY TO BE DEBATED DECEMBER 13, 2021

WHEREAS section 224 of the Municipal Act clearly defines the role of Council and includes the following:

It is the role of council,

(a) To represent the public and to consider the well-being and interests of the municipality;

(d) To ensure that administrative policies, practices and procedures and controllership policies, practices and procedures are in place to implement the decisions of Council;

(d.1) To ensure the accountability and transparency of the operations of the municipality, including the activities of the senior management of the municipality; and

(e) To maintain the financial integrity of the municipality;

AND WHEREAS it is a best practice to periodically review the internal controls, budgetary variances and management of capital projects in order to ensure Council is carrying out its role pursuant to section 224 of the Municipal Act;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED:

1. That Council AUTHORIZE the Town’s audit services provider, KPMG, to UNDERTAKE an audit review of the following items:

  1. a)  Internal Controls in place at the Town;
  2. b)  Operating Budget Variances that have occurred for the fiscal years 2018-2021; and
  3. c)  Capital Projects completed and/or underway for fiscal years 2018-2021with a project value greater than $300,000, including the development of the 320 Richmond Street Hub Project;

2. That Council AUTHORIZE the CAO to sign all the necessary documents required to undertake the noted work;

  1. That KPMG’s findings resulting from this engagement BE REPORTED to Council in accordance with the Municipal Act;
  2. That, should the work done by KPMG as authorized by this resolution result in the need for further investigation, that KPMG report on the same to Council for its consideration; and
  3. That the cost of this engagement be charged to CAO’s Office – Professional Services.

Big Ticket Items For 3 pm Council Meeting July 25

Instead of the usual 6 pm meeting, this ‘special council meeting’ will start at 3 pm; view the full agenda on the town’s website.

Kings Navy Yard Park Extension – Phase 1 Shoreline Improvements an upset limit of $2,000,000; two options include

  1. WAIVE the Purchasing By-law to execute an agreement with AMICO
  2. Council DIRECT Administration to proceed with a standard RFP for the preparation of full construction tender documents.

Malden Park Shelter – Award of Tender an amount of $129,985.13 plus HST;

Skate Park – Contract Award an upset limit of $240,000 plus HST

Libro Trail Tender No. 2022- 031 amount of $543,552.60