MINUTES of the

August 5, 2018 at the Ojibway Club

The AGM, held in the dining room of the Ojibway Club, was well attended, following the 8th annual Pancake Breakfast prepared and served by Club staff.  Child care was provided.

President’s Remarks – Tom Scoon

Tom welcomed the many members present and thanked them for attending.  

Member Survey

In his opening remarks, Tom announced an important initiative to be undertaken by the PaBIA Board, an updated member survey. The last PaBIA survey was 10 years ago.

By way of introduction, PaBIA was founded in 1908 – 110 years ago – in order to advance the interests of its members.  Currently, PaBIA has 715 members of which 480 or 67% are Canadian, 222 are American or 31% and 13 are from other parts of our planet.  81 or just over 10% are Junior Members. The Township of the Archipelago (ToA) was founded in 1980 making PaBIA is 72 years older than the ToA. The establishment of the ToA allowed for planned community development.

In the view of the Board, it is important to canvass PaBIA members directly from time to time on a number of topics of relevance to the PaBIA community including PaBIA’s role in representing the membership on matters before the ToA; the direction for goals around land use planning and development; protecting the environment; critical emergency response initiatives for our island-based community. 

While the survey will canvass a broad range of topics, the Board hopes to garner the views of our members so that we may communicate those views to the ToA.  PaBIA’s relationship with the ToA is very important. Where supported by the community, we have a responsibility to provide input and influence on long range planning policy at the ToA. PaBIA and its members offer an important perspective and are a source of wisdom and support for ToA initiatives.  To that end, the Board will survey its members so that we can convey our collective opinions and wisdom to the ToA.

 Municipal Election Update

2018 is an election year.  Council consists of a Reeve (or Mayor) and 10 Councillors.  The position of Reeve has been acclaimed. Bert Liverance is from the Sans Souci area and currently serves as a Councillor for Ward 4.  He will take over from Peter Ketchum. Peter has served ToA and PaBIA well for a long time and is to be thanked for his years of service.  Peter’s tenure has been highlighted by his close attention to the finances of the ToA which are in relatively excellent shape.

Ward 3 (Islands Ward in Pointe au Baril) has been served by Gary French (18 years) and Ken Williams (12 years) as Councillors. Both have lengthy resumes including serving previously as Presidents of PaBIA. Since the beginnings of their terms on Council, they have been always been elected by acclamation.  

This year, there are races in both Ward 1 (Station and Sturgeon Bay) and Ward 3.  Joining Gary and Ken in the race for ToA Council in Ward 3 are Scott Sheard and Earl Manners.  Both Scott and Earl have served as Directors of PaBIA. Both have resigned from the PaBIA Board while they run for office. A further resignation has been received from Dave Sharpe who has volunteered to work with Earl and Scott on their campaigns.  In Ward 1, where PaBIA also has members, we have incumbents Tom Lundy and Greg Andrews are running along with challenger Laurie Emery.  

Tom emphasized that the PaBIA Board has neither promoted nor endorsed any candidate in the October municipal election.  PaBIA’s role is to provide information and communication to its members. PaBIA therefore intends to put written questions to all candidates prior to the election asking for their written answers.  The questions and candidate responses will be published on PaBIA’s website and in the Connections eBlast.  It is hoped that this information will allow eligible PaBIA members to decide on their choice of Councillors. It is also hoped that the information gathered from the membership survey will help inform whoever become our Councillors as to the priorities of the PaBIA community.  

Sandy Boeckh requested that a ‘Town Hall’ meeting of candidates be arranged so that voters could ask their own questions.  Tom replied that he would consult the PaBIA Board and respond by Wed., August 8th.  [Addendum – Tom subsequently advised that given the lateness of the season, the PaBIA Board was unable to arrange such a meeting but invited anyone in the community who had the resources to make such arrangements possible to let Hilde Clark know. We would be pleased to carry the information in the Connections eBlast].   

Secretary-Treasurer’s Report – Nancy Rogers

The In Memoriam list of the names of PaBIA and community members whose deaths had been reported to us since the printing of the 2018 Yearbook was read:  Jonathan Barker, Rob Burbank, Robert Greene, Ella Higman, Jerry McIntosh, Jane McIntosh, Michael Mosley, Jim Riches, Joan Carter Roberts, Rosemary Tiffin.

The Minutes of the 2017 Annual General Meeting were circulated in a Connections e-newsletter and posted on our website.  Motion: to accept the 2017 AGM Minutes as read.  Shelagh Grant, Faye White. Carried.

The financial statement for 2017 was printed in the Yearbook and has been approved by the PaBIA Board.  Motion: to approve the published 2017 Financial Statement.  Bill Culp, Dan Kuhn. Carried. 

Once again, revenues from advertising sales completely paid for both the printing and mailing of the book.  

To date, the paid membership numbers are 634 senior and 81 junior members.  We are pleased by the growth of support by the junior members and thank Virginia Walker for serving as Chair of that group.  

Membership dues unchanged since 2012.  Many generous members year after year make donations in addition to their dues and purchase extra yearbooks and flagpole burgees.  The PaBIA Board of Directors and all our committee members work tirelessly on a totally volunteer basis. The Secretary-Treasurer is the only Director who receives an honorarium.  We need, once again, to thank Hilde Clark for producing another fabulous edition of the yearbook and the Connections eBlast.   

Before our fiscal year end (December 31st), the Board will assess PaBIA’s financial position and will set due for 2019 dues. Members will be informed of any increase.

Election of Directors – Tom Scoon 

Motion: to accept the following individuals for appointment as PaBIA Directors for 2018 – 2019, as follows:

Erica Allen

Hilde Clark

Ian MacLeod

Nancy Rogers

Tom Scoon 

Julia Sievwright

Mary Thomson

Jane Wilkins

Seconded: Terry Clark.  Carried


Government & Regulatory Affairs – Ian MacLeod

Ian MacLeod reported on current matters being followed by the G&RA Committee. The PaBIA Review Committee members are Ian, Cam Richardson, Katie Finlay and Doug McNair.  Jamie Bunston also served on the committee before becoming a GBA representative.  


The Official Plan (OP) Review is a 5 year process. The Committee has studied the OP for 2 years and presented PaBIA’s proposals to the ToA. None was accepted. The 2013 OP Review is now at the provincial government approval stage. The Committee will be continuing the process of studying the By-laws related to any changes in the OP to provide informed input.  

As noted, this is an election year.  Those on the current voters’ list will receive information about voting mailed to their home address.  Information about eligibility to vote and how to apply to be on the voters’ list is also posted on the ToA website. A link to the ToA website will be included in the Connections eBlast.  Also the ToA town clerk, Maryann Weaver, may be contacted by individuals to confirm that a resident is on the voters’ list.  Voting will be conducted by phone or internet, from October 9th to 22nd.  


Environment – Jane Wilkins

This portfolio has 5 sub-sections.  

  • Forestry and Forest Health are covered by Gill Cameron and Shelagh Grant.  Concerns have been raised about the pine sawfly which may be a problem again this year especially in trees already stressed by the hot dry conditions.  Shelagh, who is resigning her position, has been reporting on current and future plans for logging in our area for many years. The Fishing section has been taken on by Phil Jenkins.  Reports from sampling have found good inshore populations but fish in offshore areas are stressed.


  • Phragmites clearing efforts were carried out in 2017 under the leadership of Scott Sheard.  This year, the major patch cleared is only 2% the size of what it was. Marine Patrol Supervisor, Cath Fairlie, asked for more volunteers for this year’s Phrag cutting sessions on August 12th and 19th.


  • Katie Johnson is developing improved water testing protocols.


  • Sandy McCoy is the Naturalist Chair, providing articles for the yearbook and the July speaker’s event. Jane made arrangements for the speakers (and turtles) from the Turtle Rescue Centre as the Junior Naturalist event.  David Bywater from GBBR will be presenting the new State of the Bay report.  


Georgian Bay Association – Jamie Bunston and Michael Berton

Jamie began volunteering with PaBIA on the OP Committee.  For the past 6 months, he has served as one of our two representatives to GBA.  New initiatives at GBA are communicating with Ministers in the newly appointed provincial government and preparing questions for candidates for the municipal elections as well as promoting Guardians of the Bay, which is collecting stories of actions taken and could be taken to preserve and protect the Bay.  Submissions by anyone are welcome. GBA’s website has been updated. Members should sign up there to receive via the Connections e-Blast

Mike reported that the Water Levels Committee is still working with all levels of government.  Signs are being posted in several locations to remind boaters of the importance of washing out bilges, hulls and engines before transporting boats from one body of water to another to prevent the spread of invasive species.  GBA continues to work with First Nations. GBA will hold a public meeting in the Fall in Toronto.  


Member Activities – Erica Allen

The first event of the Summer was another successful Triathlon, organized by Virginia Walker.  This was followed by the Junior Regatta with 90 participants led by Margaret Berton. There are opportunities for sponsors for more trophies.  Katie, Everett and Patrick Findlay were thanked as they completed their third year as the organizers of the Senior Regatta. The Watson Family will be taking over next year.  Rainer Kaufmann will be stepping down as Sailing Commodore so a new person for this position is being sought. Brad Honsberger has led the fishing derby and picnics.

PaBIA membership remains strong but is down this year.  We are looking for growth in the age group 35+ and encourage them to support us by becoming members.  


Communications & Marketing – Hilde Clark

Nurse Patty Riches has retired from the Pointe au Baril Nursing Station after over 30 years serving the community.  A celebration is to be held at the Community Centre on Sat. August 11th.  Those present at the AGM were invited to sign a large card that had been prepared thanking her for her dedication and support to the PaBIA community.

Hilde thanked all those who contributed to the production of the Yearbook:  Nancy Rogers for the membership database and advertising; Dave Hitchcock and Mike Berton for the photography; Barry and Rebecca Middleton for their articles and all others who contributed articles and reports.  

The PaBIA website is maintained and kept up to date by David Anderson and Alexander Hepburn.  

The Connections e-Blasts go out once a week during the summer.  Hilde asked for comments, suggestions and other input.  She has been including information on the Parry Sound 33 Fire that is as up to date as possible.  


Succession Planning – Tom Scoon reporting for Earl Manners


The strength of PaBIA lies in the tireless work of more than 70 dedicated volunteers. We owe all of them our sincere thanks. Volunteers who serve on Board Committees have been named in the relevant Directors’ reports. 


The Board is always seeking new committee members and volunteers. In addition, new directors are often recruited through committee work. Volunteers are needed for the Maps and Markers Committee, the Junior Naturalist position and in the Forestry area. All volunteers are welcome to join a committee.    


Governance Review – Tom Scoon reporting for Earl Manners

With the passage of the Ontario Not-For-Profit Act in 2010, all not-for-profit organizations are required to review their By-laws and ensure their alignment with the ONCA template. The Act, under the auspices of the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services, must be proclaimed in 2020 and will give not-for-profits generous addition time to review and update non-compliant by-laws.  


The goals of ONCA are i) to increase the governing rules and increase accountability for not-for-profits, particularly regarding financial transparency and accountability (audit, review engagement or waiver); ii) to enhance member rights; and iii) to clarify liability standards including conflict of interest. The Ministry’s website has the template, rationale and other details. PaBIA’s Governance Committee has undertaken a bylaw review, headed by Earl Manners with the assistance of Mary Thomson and Julia Sievwright.  In due course, the new draft bylaws will be posted on the PaBIA website. Input from members is welcomed.  


Member Safety – Tom Scoon reporting for Scott Sheard


The work and fellowship of the late Mike Mosley was generously acknowledged.  Mike began as Maps & Markers Chair and for many years, ran the Committee boat for the sailing group as well.  

Jim Rogers volunteered to work on the new map and Nancy Rogers will assist. Properties on the map will be identified using the ToA municipal numbers as these will be consistent with the 911 and municipal databases.  Some areas (Sturgeon Bay, Skerryvore and road access property identities) must be changed on the map. It is important that emergency services know our resident’s cottage locations in order to interface with 911. It is proposed that property identification will be limited to PaBIA members only.  Under review is the possibility of connecting GPS coordinates with the markers on the map or to have a like resource available to accompany the map.  


Our 130 markers are a highly visible PaBIA service to residents. PaBIA is also responsible for the stationary lights at the S-Turn and Jergen’s Point. All markers and stationary lights are maintained by Desmasdon’s. Jim Rogers is also working on a private marker conformity study.  No new markers will be placed until the study is completed. Bill Culp has joined this committee and Andy Blenkarn has offered to provide technical advice and support.

Randy Johnson, the Fire & Boat Safety Chair, has professional certifications in fire safety, boating first aid plus others. He has provided boat handling courses, PCOC testing and fire pump demonstrations.  PaBIA maintains 4 fire pumps. A request for an additional pump in the lighthouse area has been received. A new pump and gear will cost approximately $8,000.  


Cath Fairlie has taken on the Marine Patrol Supervisor position and has rewritten the MP protocols handbook as they take on new initiatives. Reporting has been enhanced by Cath utilizing computing and network capabilities.  We were surprised to experience a blue green algae boom during last year’s cool summer. MP continues testing water clarity and temperature.  

A new Memorandum of Understanding has been signed with the Georgian Bay Biosphere Reserved to perform water stratification testing in Sturgeon Bay.  This area has been studied by MNR previously. The Marine Patrol is testing the four deepest locations. This is the first testing of this type in Ontario and may provide a major contribution to understanding blue green algae blooms.  We continue testing specific sites for Phosphorus and participating in the Lake Partner Program.  

Mike Evans is our Medical Chair and his contributions in handling emergency situations are greatly appreciated.  

For the past two years, the Emergency Services Committee has been comprised of Ed Garner, Julia Sievwright, Tonia Blenkarn, Gary French, Bill Watts, Mike Evans and Scott Sheard.  The Matthews’ Bay group deserves special recognition for organizing in their area an action plan for fire and medical emergencies. An AED (defibrillator) has been purchased for the MP boat.  There is a cottage model available as well. Special services of free delivery and a complete training session are offered by the vendor if 4 or 5 AEDs are ordered.  

The EMS issue continues to be one of general concern for our island-based community. We are seeking volunteers to form a committee or organization separate from PaBIA to review the possibility of creating a local certified transportation agency to transport first responders to off-shore locations as needed.  


Guest Speaker – Vince Pawis Sr.


Vince is the Executive Director of the White Buffalo Healing Lodge Inc., managing all Indigenous, Inuit and Metis Justice and Re-integration Youth Programs.  He was the founder and lead negotiator on all Aboriginal, Inuit and Metis Ontario Parole Board Circle hearings and served for 22 years with the Ministry of Corrections.  Vince is a member of the Shawanaga First Nation. His late Mother was Irene Pawis, well known to many in our community. From the age of 10, Vince was a guide for Pointe au Baril fishermen. 


Vince spoke about the many Indigenous traditional teachers who have been strong influences in his life as well as those he met and worked with in this area and who he considers were his teachers too.  In June this year, Vince brought twenty-six people from Ontario Government agencies to an island for a one-day experience of cultural teaching. Stephen Griggs and Tom Scoon participated in a Change of Season feast.  Vince concluded by noting that we need to continue our connections and to learn from one another.  

Stephen Griggs, who has been working with Vince and his group, thanked Vince for joining us and for inspiring us with his efforts aimed at greater understanding.  Tom Scoon presented Vince with gifts for himself as well as Donna Longlade and Marilyn Capreol who accompanied Vince to the meeting.


President’s Closing Remarks – Tom Scoon


In closing, Tom again thanked all the many volunteers for their continuing service to PaBIA and the community.  He highlighted one such volunteer who deserved special thanks. Shelagh Grant, for many years, has provided expertise related to forest health in and around our area.  She has developed excellent relationships for PaBIA with MNRF and with Westwind, the group that determines where logging is or will happen. The relationship between logging of the forests and water health has been examined.  Shelagh made sure throughout that we were all provided with the most up-to-date information on Invasive Pine Sawfly, Emerald Ash Borer and Pine Shoot Beetle. Her knowledge and dedication to the trees and waterways that define our community will be greatly missed. As a token of our appreciation, Tom presented Shelagh with the book ‘The Hidden Life of Trees’.  

Lastly, all of us have been aware of the forest fire to the north that continues to burn.  It is a tragedy for many people and the natural world. To close the meeting, Marilyn Capreol performed a traditional drum song entitled “Honour Song for Lands and Water as We Know It.”   


Nancy Rogers

Recording Secretary


[Directors were available after the meeting for any questions related to their portfolios.]