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Counties becomes fire dispatch contractor

new contract would take effect onMarch 1. Fire dispatch has been a burning issue for the counties for several months now as the number of clients for Hawkesbury dwindled with North Stormont and North Glengarry townships deciding to go with the City of Cornwall for their fire dispatch. Clarence-Rockland enjoys a lower fee rate for its fire dispatch contract with Ottawa and last year the remaining six municipalities began looking into becoming part of the Ottawa system. Hawkesbury also expressed its own interest in joining the system. But Ottawa has stated that it will not accept any- thing other than a single regional contract for all of Prescott-Russell. Charlebois questioned whether or not the counties had the legal right, under the provincial Fire Protection Act, to take over as contractor for the other municipalities. She and Barton then had a heated discus- sion concerning the past history of the fire dispatch issue and the urgency to have a new temporary contract setup to ensure the six municipalities still under contract with Hawkesbury continue to have fire dispatch after the end of February. “If we don’t work together as a group, we’re just shooting ourselves in the foot,” said Barton. “We’re past the ‘What if?’ stage. We need an agreement and we need it now.” Administrator Stéphane Parisien told council that a number of counties serve as fire dispatch service contractor for their member municipalities. He said the UCPR would only bill the sixmunicipalities which now contract with Hawkesbury, but not Hawkesbury and Clarence-Rockland. The 2017 billing would be based on eachmuni- cipality’s population, while the 2018 billing would be through direct assessment. This arrangement would continue until the counties and its member municipalities can agree on a combined long-termcontract with a service provider of UCPR council’s choice.

Lemaire Pierre Leroux du canton de Russell a présenté une proposition pour que les Comtés unis de Prescott et Russell prennent la relève en tant qu’entrepreneur du service de répartition des services des incendies entre la Ville de Hawkesbury et sixmunicipalités des Comtés unis de Prescott et Russell. L’approbation a eu lieu lors d’une session spéciale du conseil des comtés, et a exigé un vote enregistré qui est allé 6-2 en faveur, avec Hawkesbury et Clarence-Rockland votant contre. L’administration des comtés entamera des pourparlers avec les hauts fonctionnaires de Hawkesbury sur les termes du nouveau contrat qui maintiendrait le service d’expédition des services d’incendie pour les sixmunicipalités, tandis que les CUPR continueront à s’entretenir avec la ville d’Ottawa pour inclure les huit municipalités de Prescott-Russell dans le cadre de son service d’expédition des services d’incendie. Clarence-Rockland a déjà un contrat avec Ottawa pour le service. —photo Gregg Chamberlain

paying for fire service dispatch through the Town of Hawkesbury. Approval took place during a special session of counties council, Jan. 11, and required a registered vote that went 6-2 in favour, withmayors Jeanne Char- lebois of Hawkesbury and Guy Desjardins of Clarence-Rockland voting against. Desjardins’ objection hinged on a sugges- tion the UCPRwould assume responsibility for contracting fire dispatch for Clarence- Rockland in 2018.The City has been a client of the City of Ottawa’s fire dispatch service RE/MAX Citywide Realty Inc. Brokerage 685 Notre-Dame Embrun ON 613-443-9901

for more than a decade. “I have a contract,” said Desjardins. “I don’t intend on getting out of it. I do not plan on cancellingmy contract with the City of Ottawa, I assure you of that right now.” “I do not think the counties can force you to cancel,” replied warden Gary Barton. Hawkesbury has fire dispatch contracts with the townships of Champlain, Russell, Alfred-Plantagenet, the Village of Cassel- man, and The Nation Municipality. Those contracts end at the end of February. The


The counties will become the contractor for a while for fire dispatch services for sixmunicipalities within Prescott-Russell. The United Counties of Prescott-Russell council (UCPR) approved, through a split vote, a resolution from Russell Township mayor Pierre Leroux for the counties to assume responsibility for negotiating and


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