Association of Oakville Harbour StakeholdersPosted on: August 27, 2012
Have an issue that needs attention in the Harbour? Are you wondering what Oakville's harbours will look like in 15 years? Working on your behalf, AOHS is here. aohs_article_for_website_aug_23_12_updated.pdf (22.3 KB)
AOHS – responsible advocates for the sustainability of Oakville’s harbours
Wondering what Oakville’s harbours will look like in 15 years? Concerned about safety provisions in the harbours? Have an issue that you feel needs to be brought to the attention of the Town of Oakville?
Working on your behalf is a group that some know of, some do not. It’s called the Association of Oakville Harbours’ Stakeholders.
Who makes up AOHS?
AOHS includes representation by boating clubs in both Oakville and Bronte Harbours, by non-club boaters, by anglers, by Charterability, and as it moves forward, increasingly by other interested parties such as local BIA’s, residents’ associations and the community as a whole. AOHS strives to engage all stakeholders who have an interest in Oakville’s harbours, who are impacted by the welfare of these prime waterfront assets, and who wish to see them sustained for the enjoyment of future generations.
Why was it formed?
In early 2010, the Town of Oakville commissioned the Hemson Consulting Group to prepare an Oakville Harbours Financial Strategic Business Plan. Acutely aware of the significance of any proposed financial strategy to the harbours and those who use them, a number of concerned stakeholders came together and created AOHS in April of that year.
A strictly volunteer-based organization, AOHS carefully analyzed the draft report. Carrying out its own research, AOHS called into question certain assumptions in the Hemson Report on which the report’s recommendations were based. AOHS consulted with the Town and provided input on matters addressed in the report, including watercourse sedimentation and dredging, and planning and development affecting the harbours, among others.
These early deliberations set the stage for a number of activities and issues that AOHS continues to tackle. These include:
Sedimentation and Dredging: Both are a fact of life in Oakville’s two harbours; however, the degree of siltation, and the frequency and cost of dredging are increasing. AOHS strongly urged for the retention of the Sediment Management Study in the Town’s 2012 budget and provided input to the development of the study’s terms of reference. AOHS also monitors development projects throughout the Town that potentially contribute to harbour siltation, and continues to lobby for the improvement and proper application of Erosion and Sediment Control guidelines.
Feasibility and Capacity: Harbours capacity will become even more an issue down the way. Initially cut from the Town’s 2012 budget, AOHS lobbied for the retention of a proposed Feasibility & Capacity study. The study will now go ahead, co-funded by Oakville, Burlington, and the Region of Halton. It will be a valuable precursor to the drafting of much needed Master Plans for both Oakville and Bronte Harbours that will guide their future development. Again, AOHS has provided input to this study’s terms of reference
Harbours By-law: AOHS reviewed the Town’s draft Harbours’ By-law and had extensive consultations with Town staff at the latter’s invitation, helping to make the By-law more relevant and user-friendly.
Safety: AOHS believes that safety and security – within the harbours and for all boaters – should always be a top priority. AOHS monitors safety-related matters within the harbours and brings these and any incidents to the attention of Town staff.
Rates and fees: In 2011, AOHS carried out its own review of harbour rates and fees, and the services offered by marinas in this end of Lake Ontario. A similar analysis of market rates is now being conducted by the Town of Oakville. AOHS is revisiting and updating its earlier study and will offer its findings to the Town to ensure that both parties are on the same page.
Financial management: AOHS continues to monitor any and all matters related to the fiscal management of Oakville’s harbours, and to advocate for the transparency of financial reporting.
AOHS is a self-help, volunteer-driven association. There is no membership fee. However, AOHS is like any association; it’s only as strong as its membership and their collective voice. If you would like to join AOHS and be kept informed of issues that it is working on, go to their website at www.oakvilleboaters.com or email email@example.com with your name, address, and telephone number, as well as affiliation (boating club or other, as applicable).