Committee of the Whole Preview – What’s on the Agenda for the April 4 Meeting?

The first Committee of the Whole meeting for spring brings some cleaning to the council chambers. New, long-in-the-works plans will finally come before the horseshoe for consideration, and will cover the topics of water and transit. Speaking of cleaning, a key bit of government policy will get some streamlining, and committee will hear about another year of good water quality. This is what’s on the agenda for April’s Committee of the Whole meeting.

NOTE #1: Delegates will be able to appear at this meeting in-person or via tele-presense but you do have to register with the clerks office before 10 am on Friday March 31. You can also submit written delegations and correspondences for agenda items.

NOTE #2: In addition to meeting in-person, this meeting will also be live-streamed on the City of Guelph’s website here.

NOTE #3: This meeting starts at the special time of 10 am.


1) Construction Contract Administrator Samy Mohamad has received their Certified Engineering Technologist (CET) Designation.

2) Leadership Academy Participants Cohort 2 includes Manager of Employee Health, Safety and Wellness Paul Allen; Manager of Fleet Services Joe Amaral; Manager of Economic Development Christine Chapman; Program Manager of Sports and Leisure Grounds Ian Ferguson; Manager of Finance Client Services and Budget Karen Newland; Supervisor of Financial Operations and Court Services Amy Rocha; Museum Curator of Dawn Owen; Manager of Transportation Planning Jennifer Juste; Supervisor of Water Distribution Programs Kelly Beirnes; Supervisor of Wastewater Treatment Jared Karr; Supervisor of Administration and Customer Experience Beth Godfrey; Manager of Transportation Engineering Steve Anderson; and Supervisor of By-law and Security David Gooch.

Delegation of Authority By-law Update – These updates are, for the most part, administrative. No new delegations of authority are added as this process is meant to streamline the two different documents that cover the delegation of authority to create one document that’s easy to access and understand for members of council, staff and the general public.

Water and Wastewater Servicing Master Plan – Planning for this goes back over three years ago to 2020, but some of the background details date back even further to modelling work in 2015 and the Development Charges Background Study in 2018. The goal of this project was to create a portfolio of projects aimed to manage Guelph water and wastewater infrastructure out to 2051.

The majority of the projects will align with planned corridor work outlined in either the Transportation Master Plan or the Corporate Asset Management Plan, but there is more immediate study that needs to be done on the wastewater area around the site of the future Wastewater Resource Recovery Centre (aka: the Water Treatment Plant) and the Arkell Spring Grounds project, which will be located south of Stone Road and east of Watson Parkway.

Stormwater Management Master Plan – Like the previous water-based master plan, this project began in the salad days before the pandemic, and it was treated as a Municipal Class Environmental Assessment (Class EA) to fulfill all the necessary requirements. The intention of the plan is – among other things – to improve water quality, minimize flooding threats, and to protect, enhance and restore natural features.

The plan is also meant to prioritize projects from now until 2051 inlcuding stormwater management ponds, pollution prevention, watercourse erosion sites, and climate change and innovation measures. It’s also noted in the report that Bill 23 will significantly change the order that projects will have to be completed as the City has to race faster to keep up with growth. An annual operating increase of around $293,000 will be needed in order to deliver on the master plan.

2022 Water Services Annual Report and Summary Report – The inspection from the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks is still ongoing at the time of this report’s publishing, but it sounds like the City might receive the report before the end of March. In the meantime, know that there was only one “adverse drinking water quality” (AWQI) incident in 2022, which was cause by some construction work near the Dawson Road watermain. There were no serviced customers in the area and the discrepancy was corrected through to the end of construction.

Transit Fare Strategy – Some of the things explored in this strategy, which looks at the ways Guelph Transit collects fares and how much they collect, are pretty straightforward.  Unless you’re a University of Guelph student, anyone using a pass or buying rides in bulk will need an OnYourWay card, which you can get for $5. The strategy also calls for self-service terminals at City Hall plus the West End and Victoria Road Community Centres, and it recommends that buses be outfitted to accept debit and credit to pay for “cash” fares.

Now for the actual fares. The strategy recommends no new increase for the purchase of bulk rides, but it is recommending a 25 cent increase to the cash fare, which will bring it to $3.25. The monthly bus pass is recommended to be phased out for a pay-as-you-go program called the Fare Capping Loyalty Program, which gives you the benefits of a monthly pass but seems to give you the promise of savings if you don’t reach the threshold of 34 trips during the month. This new pass will cost $95.20  per month maximum, and if committee decides to not go ahead with this model and keep the same old monthly pass, an increase for all monthly passes is still being recommended.

Other changes include a new City of Guelph employee pass program, a new corporate pass program, increases to bus bay rentals, a review of the bus charter rates, and the Kids Ride Free program will be made permanent. Many of the changes, if approved, will go into effect in September.


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