Algonquin Highlands councilors struggled with an almost two-decade long issue at their meeting yesterday. It’s about some residents of Bear Lake Road asking for the township to maintain their road in the winter. However, the road can’t be open in the winter right now because it doesn’t meet MTO standards as a year-round road.

Councilors said they’ve heard from people who want the maintenance and from people that don’t, but there isn’t a majority either way. Because it’s not something all of the residents are asking for, the Township can’t afford the high cost of bringing the road up to code. In the same breath, if that was done, the Township plows still wouldn’t be able to service the entire length of the road because a bridge that’s located about 4km in is too small for a plow to get across. All of the residents who have made this request to council, live past the bridge, so they still wouldn’t see the road in front of their driveways plowed. Plus, as Reeve Carol Moffatt said, there’s the small issue of the road and concerns that the trucks wouldn’t be able to maneuver through the steep hills and low valleys.

The solution they voted on was to support the residents if they wanted to start a Local Improvement Area, meaning they would have to come up with the money for work to be done on the road to bring it up to code.

Details about yesterday’s discussion will be brought to the person representing the residents, and the conversation will either continue to include a Local Improvement Area, or if they don’t want to pay, the conversation will have to end there.