As society slowly emerged from the tightest restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic we were
able to have face to face general meetings in the fall of 2022 and the spring and fall of
2023. The spring 2023 meeting was held at Lakehurst Hall and the fall meeting was held at
the pavilion. Both were well attended with lively discussion of issues such as access to the
waterfront, the state of our community water distribution system and Air BnBs.

BLECA sponsored several community events in 2023: a roadside clean-up in April, a golf
tournament in June, annual weed clearing in July, and a Safe Hallowe’en event in October.
Similar events are planned for 2024. The Board conducted two major improvements to the
waterfront area in 2023. We substantially improved security at the waterfront by installing
new chain link fencing in front of docks 1 -5 and adjacent to the main gate, and we
extended the community dock to facilitate easier launching of boats.

An emerging issue in our community is the increase in the number of rental properties.
Many concerns have been raised by community members related to noise, parking, excess
use of our water system, unauthorized use of the waterfront area and concerns about
capacity of septic systems. Trent Lakes Municipality conducted a public consultation
process about short term rental properties (STRs) in the township via an online survey in fall
2021. The Short Term Rental Working Group summarised the input received for Council in
February 2022, and recommended a phased-in approach to the issue. In 2023, Council
enacted a generic (i.e., not specific to STRs) Nuisance Bylaw (Noise, parking, swearing,
shouting, trespassing, littering, unlawful burning or fireworks, etc.) to address some of the
issues created by STRs. Council also implemented an Administrative Municipal Penalty
(AMP) system for non-parking offenses. An AMP is a civil penalty imposed by a
contravention of a by-law. It is issued upon discovery of an unlawful event. This approach
aids in reducing congestion in the courts as well as providing a more local and accessible
dispute resolution system. Additionally, the Municipality keeps the total amount of the fines.
In 2024, Council will revisit the potential for implementing a STR licensing program.

The Board of Directors continues to meet via Zoom from November to April because some
members are seasonal. All are welcome to our communities spring General Meeting; usually held in late May.

Volunteers are the life-blood of our community. There will be a call for volunteers to assist
with planned re-roofing of the pavilion in May 2024 and with weed harvesting in July.

2024 is an election year for the Board of Directors. If you are interested in joining the Board,
please send a message via the Contact Page.

Martyn Obbard
President, BLECA