OLRA Board members volunteer their time and effort, to work on your behalf to protect Otter Lake and the surrounding area. Here are some examples of our representation and involvement over the years:
In the early 1990's, OLRA successfully lead a campaign to stop the location of a dump adjacent to Otter Lake. The dump would have negatively impacted the environment and water quality of Salmon Lake, Otter Lake, Oastler Lake and the Boyne River into Georgian Bay.
In the early 1990's, Georgian Greens proposed to build a 400-unit multi-residential community, with a 9-hole golf course, bounding on Wright Lake, adjacent to Otter Lake, past the Narrows. There were a considerable number of issues that would have negatively impacted Otter Lake. We met with the developer's lawyer and our Reeve at the time. The development of now 200 units is locating elsewhere within former Foley Township.
In the Fall of 1998, OLRA organized the first meeting of all ratepayer associations within the Township of Seguin to share information and to support each other with common concerns. In the following years, OLRA has been active with organizing these meetings. Each ratepayer association takes their turn chairing the meetings. In recent years, the meetings are generally held approximately once a year. OLRA continues to maintain contact with Seguin ratepayer associations.
We continue to be active in working on our Lake Trout Rehabilitation Project. We work with MNR, PSAH (Parry Sound Anglers & Hunters), Township of Seguin and Otter Lake volunteers. In August 2001, we built six new spawning beds with volunteers from PSAH and OLRA. This is an ongoing project.
In 2002, OLRA attended the public meeting and then met with AMEC, the consultants doing a study of our dam. The consultants recommended to MNR to change our stop-log dam to a fixed weir. We studied the impact this change would have to our water levels, to our lake trout and other fish species population, communicated with all residents on Otter Lake, and responded against the change. The consultants' recommendation was based on economics as opposed to environmental. In January 2003, the decision was made to maintain the stop-log dam.
OLRA Board members met with Hedman in February 2003, a company that wanted to purchase and operate a chemical industry to produce Magnesium Chloride and Hydrochloric Acid in the old factory on Industrial Blvd., adjacent to Otter Lake. OLRA made presentations to Council with our concerns and objections to this company and to other similar businesses locating in the factory. In the end, Hedman did not purchase the factory. We continue to monitor what is planned for the site.
In the fall of each Municipal Election year, OLRA organizes, holds and chairs an All Candidates Meeting. Questions concerning Otter Lake and Sequin are composed by OLRA board members and given to candidates running for Mayor and Wards 1 & 2 of Sequin. Following our All Candidates Meeting, OLRA publishes the candidates' answers to these questions in a newsletter for our members to assist them in their voting choices.
OLRA members have taken water samples every Spring for many years in order to maintain a history on the water quality of Otter Lake. These samples are analyzed by the Ministry of Environment.
Board members serve on committees of Council - such as the Official Plan, Comprehensive New Zoning By-Law, Finance and Waste Management Committees.
OLRA has sponsored a number of regattas and BBQ's to provide recreational and social opportunities for Otter Lake residents.