Message From The President - Upper Rideau Lake Association

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					    June 2006                              URLA NEWS
                         Upper Rideau Lake Association
                         Box 67, Westport, Ontario,
Inside this    

                         Message From The President

   Notice of
                    I want to express appreciation to    burden onto waterfront         URLA for sharing their
    URLA’s AGM
                    residents of our lake community      property owners.               time and skills with the
    Saturday July
      th            who have been sustaining                                            lake association for the
    15 - 9:30
    a.m. –
                    members of this association –        All are cordially invited to   past year. Two very
    Westport        your support has meant a great       attend the Annual General      special members have
    Legion          deal to the volunteers, your         Meeting held at the            sold their cottage and will
                    neighbours, who work diligently      Westport Legion on July        be leaving us – Sandy and
   Commercial      year after year to protect the       15 at 9:30 a.m. This           Randy Jones. This couple
    Fishery         lake environment. I also want to     year we have invited           has been producing our
    Update          encourage those cottagers who        guests from the                newsletter and website
                    have not had the time, or            Commercial Fisheries’          and will be greatly missed.
   Septic          inclination to send in the           Association and the            On behalf of the entire
    Systems         membership form and fee, to do       Ministry of Natural            membership, I want to
                    so this year – it will make a        Resources to discuss the       thank you both for your
   Aquatic         difference.                          bi-annual panfish harvest      years of service and wish
    Vegetation                                           on the Upper Rideau, and       your family all the best in
    (Weeds)         What’s new in 2006? Look for         a proposal to change the       the future.
                    improved marker buoys on the         method by which the
                    Little Brothers and Drummers         lake’s productivity is         Wendy Stewart
   Shoreline       shoals thanks to George Ingram       measured (there is real
    Work            and his Coast Guard contacts.        concern that this new
    Restrictions    There was no commercial              proposal may damage the
                    fishery last fall or this past       fishery before the level of
                    spring on our lake, but plans        productivity is
   Township of
                    include another fall harvest this    determined). Business
    Rideau Lakes
    Summer Fun
                    year – there is more information     and tourist operations that
    Program         on this issue inside. The Loon       have been impacted by
                    Watch program is officially          poor fishing in the past
                    underway and needs volunteers        couple of years will want
   Rideau          for just one or two counts per       to attend. The Mayors of
    Environmental   season. Watershed Watch will         Rideau Lakes Township
   Action League   continue testing water quality       and the Village of
                    this summer and the invasive         Westport have also been
                    species testing will be expanded     invited to take your
   The Heron       as well. Together with the           questions in this election
    Says            Federation of Cottagers              year.
                    Association of Ontario we are
   URLA            taking an interest in the fairness   Finally, I want to thank the
    Membership      of distributing the taxation         Board of Directors of
URLA NEWS                                                                   Page 2
Commercial Fishery Update
 It was an early ice-out this year, and one
of the most welcome sights was what           Lake, Upper Rideau Lake and the
wasn’t there – the bobbing buoys marking      Newboro group of lakes). MNR also
dozens of submerged nets comprising the       advises that the tonnage of panfish
commercial fishing operation on the           permitted to be harvested on Upper
Upper Rideau were absent this spring.         Rideau has been lowered somewhat.

In response to concerns expressed at last     Unfortunately, the licensed operator may
summer’s Annual General Meeting               appeal the reduced quota on our lake.
followed by a letter to the Honourable        This process involves a hearing under the
David Ramsay, the Ontario Minister of         Fish and Wildlife Hearing Board. URLA
Natural Resources, URLA was assured           has requested status at this tribunal and
that provincial staff were modeling the       will be looking into hiring professional
total fish biomass production potential of    services to interpret studies and provide
our lake to determine what impact, if any,    the association with expert testimony, if
the commercial fishery has on the Upper       required. We have also filed a request
Rideau. The Ministry felt that the            under the Freedom of Information and
commercial operation was legitimate and       Protection of Privacy legislation to access
responsible, and cautioned that any           information on the exact quota on Upper
changes made to the license would have        Rideau, in preparation for this hearing.
to be biologically justified.
                                              URLA has also invited representatives
This year MNR has made some changes.          from the Ontario Commercial Fisheries’
First, the permit that allowed the operator   Association and the Ministry to address
to take his entire quota from a single lake   the AGM in July to continue discussion on
has been split between the 3 water bodies     this important issue. Please plan to
where he is licensed to net (Lower Rideau     attend.

What You Should Know About Your Septic System
The rules for installation, operation and               traffic or weight can crush the
maintenance of septic system are covered                pipes or compact the soil
by the Ontario Building Code. The                   -   have an effluent filter installed in
Province suggests the tips for properly                 the septic tank to reduce the
maintaining and extending the life of your              amount of solids entering the
septic system:                                          leaching bed and prevent clogs
                                                    -   avoid planting trees or shrubs
    -   conserve water and reduce                       on the leaching bed, as roots
        wasteflow into the system                       can clog the pipes
    -   ensure septic tanks are inspected           -   minimize grass watering around
        at least every two years by a                   the leaching bed area. Extra
        qualified person and pump tanks                 water can reduce the bed’s
        out every 3-5 years                             ability to absorb and treat
    -   to not impair access to the septic              wastewater
        so that proper maintenance and              -   never put fats, oils, solvents,
        servicing can occur                             drain and toilet bowl cleaners,
    -   reduce the use of phosphate-base                bleach, pesticides, cat box litter,
        detergents, soaps and cleaners to               or kitchen waste into your septic
        minimize algae growth in nearby                 system
    -   avoid creating parking areas,           The effectiveness of your septic system
        patios or decks in the area of or       is only as good as the degree to which it
        over the leaching bed. The extra        is properly maintained.
Page 3                                                          URLA News

Aquatic Vegetation - Weeds

Last summer, many of us noticed large           Aquatic vegetation is an important part of the
clumps of aquatic vegetation (weeds) floating   ecosystem of the lake. It provides habitat for
on the surface of Upper Rideau at various       fish and helps to maintain and improve the
times throughout the summer. This               water quality of the lake by stabilizing
prompted questions about the regulations        sediment and absorbing harmful pollutants.
regarding cutting of this vegetation by Parks
Canada and individual landowners.               Excessive weed growth may be caused in
                                                part by nutrient run off. You can limit
Parks Canada routinely cuts and removes         nutrient run off on your property by following
aquatic vegetation from the Rideau systems      the guidelines for a healthy shoreline, as
in 20 locations where weed growth interferes    outlined in the “Shore Primer”, which is
with navigation. They are also engaged in       available on line at .
ongoing monitoring and research of aquatic      Resist the use of fertilizers on your
vegetation in the Rideau Canal.                 waterfront property, leave a buffer of natural
                                                vegetation along the shoreline, opt for a
Individual land owners who wish to remove       “soft” natural shoreline, rather than a “hard”
the vegetation from the water adjacent to       man-made shoreline, ensure that your septic
their properties, must apply to Parks Canada    system is in good working order.
for a vegetation cutting permit. These
permits are issued only for the cutting and
harvesting of vegetation. The use of            Further information about vegetation and
chemicals to control weeds is prohibited.       permit requirements may be obtained from:

Permits are valid for 5 years, at a cost of             Parks Canada –Rideau Canal
$53.50. No cutting may be carried out                   34a Beckwith St. South
between March 15 and June 30. The                       Smith Falls, Ontario
contractor or land owner who undertakes the             K7A 2A8
cutting, must make a reasonable attempt to              (613)283-5170
remove the cut vegetation from the water                1-888-773-8888
and place it well above the high water mark.  
Properties with frontage of greater than 75
feet, may cut to a width no greater than 50
feet and to a maximum of 100 feet from
shore. Properties of less than 75 feet, may
cut to a width of no greater than 26 feet and
100 feet out from shore. Land owners who
cut weeds without obtaining the
necessary permits, or without following
the regulations, may be fined.

Vegetation that is cut, but not removed from
the water may actually contribute further to
the problem of weed growth, as these
cuttings may re-root themselves. So if you do
cut weeds, be sure to remove them from the
  URLA News                                                                     Page 4

Shoreline Work Restrictions for Fish Spawning
 Rideau Valley Conservation Authority
                                                The timing windows are researched and
and its environmental partners remind
waterfront property landowners, cottagers      set annually by the Ontario
and construction project managers that          Ministry of Natural Resources staff who
                                               have the mandate to set, enforce and
there are restrictions for in-water work in
                                               allow exceptions or extensions. People
various waterways and lakes in our area.
                                               wishing to report violations, ongoing in-
Many are in place now although they vary
                                               water work or other problems are
with weather, thermal conditions and
types of fish that inhabit the waterways.      encouraged to contact their local
These timing windows restrict                  Conservation Authority, Department of
                                               Fisheries and Oceans or Ontario Ministry
construction activity in or near the water.
                                               of Natural Resources office.
The best advice is avoid the fines and
penalties under the provincial and federal
                                               It is also a wise idea to call the Rideau
legislation and delay your in-water work
until after the restrictions have passed.      Canal National Historic Site office. The
The purpose of these timing windows is to      contact for information or to report illegal
                                               work on the bed of the Rideau Canal is
allow an appropriate time and stress-free
                                               John Simzer, Compliance Officer at
environment for fish to spawn and raise
                                               (613) 283-7199, ext 225.
their young in our local lakes and
streams. Fishing, including associated
recreational activities, is a multi-million
dollar industry in Ontario. Approximately      The LandOwner Resource Centre (LRC)
                                               in Manotick (613)692-3571 or 1-800-387-
$1.7 billion is spent annually in the
                                               5304) can assist if you are considering
province on a range of goods and
                                               shoreline work such as docks, boat slips
services related to recreational fishing. It
provides employment for thousands of           or shoreline erosion protection measures.
people in the commercial and recreational      Staff can assist and advise you on permit
                                               requirements or restrictions.
fishing industries as well as the related
service industry supporting it. Fewer fish
mean fewer jobs and degraded river
         Here are the main timing
restrictions when no in-water work may
occur in areas of the Rideau Valley:

       -warm water fish communities:
from March 15 to June 30

      -mixed fish communities:
from October 1 to June 30 (e.g. Big
Rideau Lake)

      -cold-water fish communities:
October 1 to May 31

       -Ottawa River (only):
work restricted from March 15 to July 15
 Page 5                                                          URLA News

Township of Rideau Lakes – Summer Fun Programs

The Township of Rideau Lakes offers three        program is held in Elgin for children ages 18
different summer programs for children. The      mos. to 4 years.
Rideau Lakes Day Camp is held at Sand
Lake in Elgin and offers children (ages 4-12)    Registration is accepted on a first come
sports, games, drama, music, arts and            basis. For more information regarding these
crafts, special events and swimming. The         programs please contact Susan Dunfield or
Township also offers 2-week sessions of          Jessica Marshall at 1-800-928-2250 or 982-
swimming lessons at the day camps and in         2251.
Delta and Portland. A weekly Tiny Tots

The Real Deal Store and Environment Centre

The Real Deal Store is a retail operation that   The store is a project of the Rideau Lakes
sells new and quality used building materials,   Environmental Action League and is located at
home improvement products and pre-owned          72 Lombard Street, Smith Falls (across from the
furniture at huge discounts. There is also a     Beer Store). It is open Tues. – Fri., 9 a.m. – 5
“free store” where you can find all kinds of     p.m. and Sat. 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. For more
small household items and appliance …and         information call 283-7999, or on the web at
they are FREE!                         

Many Thanks to the Cove

The Upper Rideau Lake Association would
like to take this opportunity to thank The
Cove for its generous support over the past
years. URLA encourages business in the
Upper Rideau area to become involved. The
viability of many local business is directly
linked to the health of the lake.
                         The Heron Says…
                               It’s time to renew your URLA membership. You can renew by completing and
Upper Rideau lake               returning the attached form to URLA’s mailing address on or before July 15 ,
                                2006. Alternatively, you can renew your membership in person at URLA’s Annual
  Association                   General Meeting.
                               Have you got new neighbours? Pass on this newsletter to them and bring them
     Box 67                     along to the AGM on Saturday July 15, 2006.
 Westport, Ontario
    K0G 1X0                    Help us put more of your membership dollars to work for you. URLA is seeking
                                your assistance to reduce printing and postal expenses. When renewing your
                                membership with the attached form, please consider “opting-in” for email delivery
                                of URLA correspondence. By “opting-in” you’ll receive URLA material sooner and
                                help reduce our operating costs. If you cannot or don’t wish to use email, don’t
                                worry, we will continue to send you correspondence via conventional postal

                              About URLA

                              The Upper Rideau Lake       consisting of seasonal and     the natural environment of
                              Association (URLA) is an    permanent residents of         the Upper Rideau Lake.
                              incorporated non-profit     the Upper Rideau Lake,
                              organization. The           holiday lake users, and
                              organization, headed by a   residents of the village of
                              Board of Directors, is a    Westport, interested in
                              volunteer association       promoting and protecting

                              URLA Executive Members
We’re on the Web!             The URLA Executive Board is comprised of volunteers elected by the membership.
     Visit us at:             Board members along with their email addresses are provided below for your
                              convenience. If you have an issue of interest to URLA please do not hesitate to contact                 a board member.

                  Executive                 Position                       Email
              Wendy Stewart        President           
              George Ingram        Past President      
              Cathy Rollo          Vice-President      
              Jennifer Davis       Secretary           
              Jayne MacDonald      Water Quality       
              Keith Davis          Membership          
              Colleen Lahey        Lakeshore           
               Paul Hudson         Treasurer
              Murray Kane          Community Affairs   
                                             URLA Membership Form

If you wish to renew your membership or join URLA for the first time, please forward your cheque for $30 payable to
Upper Rideau Lake Association along with the contact information below to;
         Upper Rideau Lake Association
         P.O. Box 67,
         K0G 1X0.
Contact Information
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below. This information is used solely for the purposes of URLA records and communications.

Name: _______________________

Mailing address (if different from label):




Lake address (if different from mailing address):




E-mail address (if available): _______________________

Primary residence telephone number:________________

Lake residence telephone number: __________________

        Yes, I’m interested in reducing URLA’s expenses by receiving correspondence by email.

If you do not check the box above, you will continue to receive correspondence via regular post.

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