Oliver Paipoonge, Ont. — A spirited 43-minute deputation by Thunder City Speedway co-owner Norm Nadin kicked off the Municipality of Oliver Paipoonge regular council meeting on Tuesday as the racetrack proprietor lobbied for a later closing time and to hold special events on his property other than racing.

In a letter to council from the organization, the racetrack initially wanted to see the closing time of 10 p.m. moved up to 10:30 p.m., but Nadin pushed to have the closing time upped to 11 p.m. which is in line with the municipality’s noise curfew.

“Maybe we can consider trying to follow under the 11 o’clock regulation that everyone else is following,” said Nadin, who said the municipality’s noise curfew time was amended to 11 p.m. in 2015. “I think the racetrack has done an immense contribution to our community. It looks like every business in Oliver Paipoonge has sponsored us from the car dealerships, the truck dealerships, the restaurants and everybody has our backs. It’s obviously a very positive thing for our community, so we want to see this thing grow.

“The last thing I want to do is one day maybe we have a whole bunch of Americans show up, people from Winnipeg and then we have to turn them away and say, ‘We’re not going to be able to fit our show in by 10 o’clock.’ That would be detrimental to our city and to our racetrack. We’re hoping to definitely have that changed and supported.”

Oliver Paipoonge Coun. Allan Vis took issue with the racetrack owner wanting to see amendments to a pair of bylaws, saying the organization has already broken conditions laid out in the current bylaw.

“Mr. Nadin, I had no problem with the raceway there, I supported that when we got this all in place,” said Vis. “The reason I have difficulties dealing with you and you said that right here in a public meeting that you’re not going to abide by the rules and regulations that we have and I really have a problem with that.

“I have probably thousands of people that are phoning me up and saying, ‘You’ve got that agreement.’ See where I’m coming from?

“I think it’s a wonderful thing you guys are doing, but let’s work together. All summer long we get calls after calls, what do we say? ‘Yes, I know they broke the (bylaw rules), but what are you going to do? Well, the man said he’s not going to abide by it.’”

Nadin’s deputation, which saw 80 per cent of the full house leave after his speech was finished, indicated that the property also wanted to hold events that didn’t involve racing such as a fall fair, farmer’s markets, horse shows and already has a Canada Day event planned where a current condition of the bylaw would have to see race cars being run.

Council deferred voting on the noise curfew time change to the next meeting on May 23 and voted 3-2 in favour of changing the special events bylaw to allow commercial zones to accommodate up to 1,000 people from 300 as long as they’re not obstructing a highway.

In other business Tuesday, the municipality awarded a crushing, screening and stockpiling gravel tender to BJ Halow and Sons Contractors Ltd. with a price tag of $236,226.50.

The Rosslyn Village water system witnessed three topics discussed including purchasing water meters for homes on the system with the vendor supplying, delivering and installing the water meters with the municipality picking up payment of the meters and installation.

Council also debated the instalment of a water filling station for the residents on the Rosslyn Village water system and that they were looking at ways to lessen the arsenic volume in the water supply with a possible filtration process, but acknowledged that it will still be several months before Rosslyn Village water system residents can drink water from the tap.

Various buildings on the newly-named Oliver Paipoonge Heritage Park came under scrutiny with a number of repairs being needed totalling approximately $670,000 with work mapped out for the Goodfellow’s General Store, Village Square, Pioneer Home, Walter’s Auto & Cycle Shop and William’s Wood Working Carpenter Shop, although there’s only $93,000 in the reserve fund to help with the repairs.

By John Nagy, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on May 11, 2023 at 10:00

This item reprinted with permission from   The Chronicle-Journal   Thunder Bay, Ontario
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