PARRY SOUND - The town wants to ensure all its budgeted municipal assistance program (MAP) dollars are being spent.
Town staff came to the May 1 council meeting with a percentage breakdown of the MAP set for non-profit groups, organizations and economic development-related agencies.
“Typically, applications are received from approximately 15 groups with a total request of approximately $65,000,” said town leisure services coordinator April McNamara in her report to council. “Historically, the budget for the program has been $25,000. In 2011 the budget for the program was $20,000 and at the end of the program allocation $1,084 was left un-disbursed. In 2012 there is a proposed budget allocation of $15,000.”
The new disbursement will have 45 per cent, or $6,750, of the MAP funding going to non-profit community groups/organizations and 55 per cent, or $8,250, going to economic development-related agencies.
Coun. Dan McCauley took issue with the application form that is filled out by groups seeking funding that requires a township-by-township break down of where members live.
“Most of these are small organizations, (run) by volunteers. What’s being asked of them...instead of (listing) every municipality and having them find how many are from Seguin or McDougall, why can’t it just be ‘Town of Parry Sound’ and ‘other,’” said McCauley. “To save a little bit work for these organizations. We don’t need to know what the make-up is of McDougall and Seguin, McKellar, Dunchurch (members), we just need to know what’s Parry Sound and what’s outside.”
Coun. Bonnie Keith disagreed; she thought it was important to see where organizations members live.
“I think (there is a) benefit of knowing the breakdown - and yes I realize it might take a little longer for that agency that’s applying to fill in that questionnaire,” said Keith. “As a corporation we try to run like a business and in trying to do that at times to be able to follow through and know how many other members, how many people are from other townships. I think that may be helpful to us when we are planning other activities in our corporation. I think having more knowledge base is a good thing. I don’t think it takes that long to fill out that questionnaire. The Town of Parry Sound it seems, is looking after and providing services that other municipalities have the benefit of.”
Keith asked why the breakdown of municipal membership was included in the form.
“The survey, in terms of municipal membership is on there as a question because these are Town of Parry Sound tax dollars,” said McNamara. “Council should be aware who they’re funding and where these members are coming from.”
Although McCauley wanted an amendment to the report, removing each municipality from the application form and replacing it with ‘other’ no other council member seconded the motion. The report was passed by council with no further discussion.