Four consultation events were held last week by the seven municipalities in North Hastings as work continues on the joint Community Safety and Well-being plan.

“The plan needs to be adopted by each council by January 2021,” Bancroft’s Clerk Lianne Sauter says. That means the seven councils in the area will receive the plan no later than fall 2020.

The events held in Bancroft, Carlow/Mayo, Hastings Highlands and Limerick were to help people fill-out the surveys that will help shape the joint plan. Sauter noted that while turn-out to the event in Bancroft was “poor” they have gotten “pretty amazing” feedback online and through people sending their survey in by mail.

“We’ve been meeting on this since 2012 with a formal (Community Safety and Well-being plan) in place since 2017,” Sauter notes about the work the town of Bancroft has already done. “We’ve worked on harm reduction ideas, we’ve had a lot of conversations regarding housing and homelessness and transient housing and the need for other opportunities within the town of Bancroft for housing.”

The next steps will be compiling the surveys done in-person during last week’s events, the ones that have been done online along with the ones that have been mailed in.

With the provincial government mandating that all municipalities in Ontario have a Community Safety and Well-being plan by January 2021, Sauter says she hopes the work being done in North Hastings can be seen as a positive influence.