<strong>Digby town council notes:</strong> doctor incentives, dog control and snow clearing equipment

Jonathan Riley, Digby Courier jriley@digbycourier.ca
Published on May 13, 2014
Digby town council news

Doctor recruitment money

Digby town council has agreed to provide a physician incentive of $3,333.33 to a doctor working in Digby’s emergency department.

Dr. S. Ashley McCormick began working at the Digby General Hospital and the Yarmouth hospital in February.

He also works at the Valley Regional Hospital and Soldiers Memorial and on Baffin Island.

McCormick will receive an incentive package totalling $10,000, with the town, the Municipality of the District of Digby and the Digby and Area Health Services Charitable Foundation each providing one third of the funds. In exchange McCormick will work at least five emergency room shifts a month in Digby for four years.

McCormick will not be opening a family practice in Digby.

The town’s share will be coming out of the town’s 2014-2015 budget, which should be approved in June.

This is the second year of the town’s four-year commitment to provide up to $25,000 per year for doctor recruitment.

The town will also pay one-third of the costs of a recent visit from the Dalhousie Family Medicine Interest Group.

A group of 12 medical students visited Digby on April 11 and 12.

South West Health wrote to the town asking for $722.87, one-third of the total cost of $2,168.61.

The costs included $1400 for food and one night’s stay at the Fundy Complex and, breakfast from the Digby General Hospital kitchen and lunch from Pizza Delight.

South West Health organized a reception for the students Friday where they met with various people from the community. Saturday they toured the hospital and after lunch, Mayor Ben Cleveland led the group on a shore hike from Point Prim to the Princess Louise monument.

“The students expressed how impressed and appreciative they were of the planning and organizing that was done for them,” said the letter from South West Health dated April 22.

Dog control

The Town of Digby will share dog control services with the Municipality of the District of Digby.

Town council approved a memorandum of understanding with the municipality whereby the town will pay the municipality a flat fee of $300 per month for dog control services.

The Dog Control officer will respond to dog at large complaints, collect dogs at large and house collected dogs.

The town’s by-law enforcement officer will take care of administration and enforcement issues.

No new snow-clearing equipment

The town won’t be buying a new skid steer loader and snowblower. Till the fall anyway.

The town received 4 bids but none of the compliant bids were within the budget of $35,000.

Council decided to cancel the call for tender on April 7 “in light of Council’s duty to spend taxpayers’ money prudently.”

The town was looking for a new skid steer with a 45 horsepower engine, hydrostatic drive and capable of moving 1300 pounds.

The skid steer was to come with a snowblower attached.

The snowblower was to have a 14-inch auger powered by a hydraulic motor capable of throwing snow up to 40 feet.

Town CAO Tom Ossinger says they are expecting to tender again this fall depending on the outcome of up-coming budget deliberations.

Draft budget

The town is still planning to release a draft of the 2014-15 budget sometime in mid-May.

The next meeting of Digby’s town council is a committee of the whole meeting on Tuesday, May 20.