Town waives fees for Amherstburg Santa Claus Parade



By Ron Giofu


The introduction of fees for the Amherstburg Santa Claus Parade caught the Windsor Parade Corporation by surprise but their fees are now a thing of the past.

Dave Grimaldi of the Windsor Parade Corporation appeared before council at the March 21 meeting concerned about an e-mail the corporation received regarding fees.

“In the past ten years, we have never been responsible for any of the fees this e-mail is referring to,” said Grimaldi.

Grimaldi requested that town council waive the fees, adding the Windsor Parade Corporation does not pay fees anywhere else they present parades including Windsor, Kingsville and Essex.

Manager of licensing and enforcement Nicole Rubli said there is now a refundable $250 deposit for an event application, a $224 non-refundable fee for road closures and a cost for any equipment rentals that may be needed for the event. CAO John Miceli added that town council previously adopted a schedule of fees and that the town wants to be consistent with that schedule.

Chief Tim Berthiaume was asked about policing costs for such events as the Santa Claus Parade, but told town council the police service doesn’t bill back costs but rather mitigates costs through scheduling.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale praised the work of the parade corporation and believed the town should look at waiving the fees, something council would eventually do. Councillor Leo Meloche was initially apprehensive about a “forever clause,” but agreed the parade was good for the town.

“It’s something good for the community,” said Meloche.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo said council couldn’t make a “forever clause” because the next council could simply change that so town council agreed to waive the fees for the remainder of the term.

Councillor Diane Pouget disagreed with waiving the fees for that long, believing the matter should be dealt with on a year-to-year basis. Pouget and Councillor Joan Courtney were opposed to waiving the fees for the remainder of the term with DiCarlo, DiPasquale, Meloche and councillors Rick Fryer and Jason Lavigne in favour. Pouget and Councillor Joan Courtney were opposed.

The 2016 Amherstburg Santa Claus Parade is scheduled for Nov. 26. Grimaldi told council they are “extremely pleased” to present the parade and added they are happy to receive the “people’s choice” award from Tourism Windsor-Essex County-Pelee Island (TWEPI).

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