Staffing crisis averted in Cupids

Terry Roberts
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Ross Dawe is the acting mayor for the Town of Cupids.

A potential staffing crisis in the Town of Cupids was averted late last week following an emergency meeting of council.

The town clerk had tendered her resignation, and the maintenance employee was also threatening to quit.

The dispute erupted after council rejected a proposal by the finance committee to approve a five per cent pay increase for the two staff members. The proposal was defeated by a vote of 5-2.

Faced with the possibility of losing both employees, a privileged meeting was convened on Friday, Feb. 1, at which time councillors voted by a margin of 5-1 to approve a $1 per hour wage increase for staff.

The decision will be ratified during a regular public meeting of council tonight (Feb. 5) at 7 p.m.

“They both accepted the offer” of more money, Ross Dawe, the town’s acting mayor, said. “This will mean a lot less headaches.”

The pay raise is not the only matter on tonight’s agenda. Council will also deal with a leadership vacuum created by the resignation last week of mayor Ron Laracy.

Council must decide whether Dawe, who previously served as deputy mayor, will continue as mayor until the current council’s term ends in September, or consider other options.

Dawe said he is “still debating” whether he wants to stay on as mayor.

Geographic location: Cupids

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Recent comments

  • Shari Porter
    February 12, 2013 - 10:03

    I believe we work in a day and age where a raise is expected. Even seasonal workers at Fishplants get raises...These people work hard for us here in Cupids and put up with a lot of negative comments. Our roads are snow cleared and for the most part in great shape and there's always a courteous voice at the other end of the phone when we call the Council Office. These Councillers put up with a lot of flack and give freely of their time at the office and at home. Lets give them the thanks they deserve.

  • Philip Bishop
    February 06, 2013 - 14:05

    'Quiet Observer's' observations must be confined to a small area of Cupid's. At another location in Cupid's, from land backfilled out into the harbour and owned or operated privately, during the hot days of summer, there emits sites and odours which could be deemed anything but pleasurable. This existed through 2010 until last summer. Probably this area of Cupid's was not meant to be in the International eye.

  • like it or leave it
    February 06, 2013 - 10:21

    if your not getting enough pay (ie town of cupids employe) get out and find a higher paying job stop complaining and pass the position on to someone that will be happy to have it at the current rate of pay ,,, love it or leave it i say ..

  • concerned citizen
    February 06, 2013 - 09:35

    The land in question may very well be small in nature,but it is private and,to the owners quite valuable.The council of 1993-2001 let Cupids go in debt,quite a sum of money,trying to take ownership of this land.The council of 2002-2010 didn"t have much money to do any work with because they had to take care of this debt,now we are going down this road again.Wake up taxpayers of Cupids and realize just what is happening here.I will agree Point Beach certainly was an eyesore,However in 2001 money was made available by the goverment to crib the beach but the gov.recieved a letter of protest from the very people who wanted it done.An hidden agenda I guess.

  • Don II
    February 05, 2013 - 18:45

    In response to "Quiet Observer". I agree with you that the land dispute at Salt Water Pond should be settled amicably. However, it is my opinion that the land dispute should never have occurred in the first place. I place the blame completely on the Town of Cupids Council which has for nearly 40 years used intimidation, unreasonable trespass, Court actions, Stop Work Orders, threats to expropriate and even went so far as to destroy over 300 feet of a land owners ranch fence! It appears that the Town of Cupids has been the well documented aggressor in the so called land dispute at Salt Water Pond in Cupids. It appears that the Town of Cupids is not the least bit interested in settling the dispute amicably and fairly. It appears that the Town of Cupids wants all of the land around the Salt Water Pond with the tax payer paying the cost of obtaining it. The Town of Cupid is obsessively fixated on taking away all of the land around the Salt Water Pond from its owners. The Town of Cupids has been abusing its authority and wasting large amounts of tax payers money on numerous failed schemes and attempts to acquire the land around the Salt Water Pond. It appears at one point the Town of Cupids claimed that it owned most of the land around the Salt Water Pond. When the land owners requested that the Town of Cupids produce the title documents and Bills of Sale for the land in its possession, the Town of Cupids could not do so! The Town of Cupids then threatened to expropriate the privately owned land around the Salt Water Pond which confirmed that the Town of Cupids did not own the land that it claimed! The contradictory position of the Town of Cupids proved that the Town was never the legal owner of most of the land around the Salt Water Pond! It appears that the Town of Cupids went to Court and claimed that it owned privately owned land at Salt Water Pond because it had placed water and sewer pipes in the land. When investigation and surveys showed that there were no water and sewer pipes in the claimed land the Court dismissed the Town of Cupids claim against the land owner. The land owners at Salt Water Pond live in a free and democratic society called Canada. While there are some people in Cupids who do not respect that fact, the land owners who posted protest signs or no parking signs on their lands were well within their rights to do so. The Town of Cupids should stop harassing the land owners as it has for almost 40 years! As for the town of Cupids being in the International Eye, there are a number of concerns regarding the Cupids 400 Celebrations which will be revealed for public attention in the foreseeable future. For example, the Government of Newfoundland expropriated several privately owned properties to establish a Provincial Historic Site in Cupids. The Government of Newfoundland designated the expropriated land as the site of the Cupids Cove Plantation Provincial Historic Site. The Government of Newfoundland apparently did not do any due diligence or obtain independent authentication of the purported historic site or else it would have discovered that a place called the Cupids Cove Plantation NEVER previously existed. The purported Cupids Cove Plantation is NEVER mentioned anywhere in the entire historical record of Newfoundland! It appears that the Government of Newfoundland expropriated privately owned land to create the completely fictional Cupids Cove Plantation! Historical documents, maps, letters and Crown Land Grants exist which show beyond doubt that Cupids is NOT Cupers Cove! All Town Councils which abuse their authority or abuse the rights of their citizens and expropriate land from land owners for ulterior motives should be removed from office.

    February 05, 2013 - 15:14

    I`m all for a deacent wadge for everyone but this sends the wrong message to other town employees . All they have to do is wait for a storm and stay home until the town coffs up some extrs dollars.It was a way to settle things down but at what cost.I think they took the easy way out.My how they can change their minds so quickly

  • Quiet Observer
    February 05, 2013 - 12:38

    Don II. My point is that this land dispute has been in existence for decades and while landowners have their rights, the conduct of some of these people is questionable. Particularly when the community was in the International Eye and there were all of those no parking signs and protest signs, derelict vehicles and buildings front and center for the world to see. This dispute has gone on forever and it is time for it to be settled either amicably or by legal process. Everyone is entitled to their own personal opinion and I respect yours.

  • Don II
    February 05, 2013 - 11:51

    In response to "Quiet Observer" with respect to comments regarding the land at Salt Water Pond. The Expropriation Act was never intended to be used to allow a Government to forcibly take someone's land from them simply because somebody else wanted the land or because of personal gain or to satisfy some petty personal vendetta! If that were the case, nobody would be safe in their own home! A number of years ago the land around the Salt Water Pond was back filled along only a several feet wide area of shoreline by the Town of Cupids. The back filling was done as part of a project to build wood cribbing around the pond. Most of the untreated wood cribbing has rotted away and the back filled shoreline has washed and eroded away over the years.The back filling of the shoreline by the Town of Cupids did not in any way affect the ownership of the waterfront land which belonged to the private riparian land owners. The use of the land along the shoreline and out onto the bottom of the water for the building of stages, flakes and moorings for boats has been a practice in Newfoundland since the 1500's which continues in bays and harbors to this day! It appears that the Town of Cupids which prides itself on portraying itself as a significant historic place does not know about historic Riparian land ownership or recognize the history of Fishing Rooms which the privately owned lands around Salt Water Pond are! I am informed that in 1975 at least one land owner sent a letter to the Town of Cupids and refused permission to have his land back filled by the Town. However, the Town of Cupids went ahead and back filled his land anyway and then tried to claim ownership of the land. That action by the Town of Cupids was disrespectful of the land owners rights. It appears that the land owner also objected to the Town of Cupids using raw, "green" untreated wood to build the cribbing around the Salt Water Pond because he knew the untreated wood cribbing would soon deteriorate and cause an eyesore which is exactly what happened! It appears that the land owners have been blamed for the deteriorated untreated wood cribbing along their waterfront properties but the fact is that the Town of Cupids is responsible for the mess made by using untreated wood cribbing in the first place! As for the ownership of the land, the properties are privately owned and are registered in the Plantation Book as Fishing Rooms and Plantations dating back to the 1700's. The land owners have every right to use their waterfront property for docks and mooring their boats. It appears that the Town of Cupids wants to spend large amounts of tax payers money to build a commercial marina in order to prevent land owners from building their own docks and to allow the operator of the marina to charge fees to local boat owners to tie up at the moorings they have used for free for decades! It appears that the Town of Cupids has a hidden agenda and is prepared to waste large amounts of tax payers dollars to build a marina which is not been proven to be financially feasible or even needed. It appears that Cupidity and personal Ego are out of control in the Town of Cupids! It appears that the Town of Cupids is planning to expropriate land and dispossess people from their properties and to require people to pay for mooring their boats on their own moorings. As for the value of the waterfront land at Salt Water Pond, the nearby Town of Clarke's Beach recently paid $40,000 for a much smaller piece of waterfront land. It appears that the Town of Cupids is attempting to ram through its highly questionable commercial marina plan with the tax payer paying the full and ever increasing cost!

  • citizen of cupids
    February 05, 2013 - 10:38

    First of all dm dawe should read his rule book when you have a privileged meeting nothing is to be made public until it is ratified at a public meeting.Now about the raises whoever BEENTHERE is should realize there is only a certian amount of money to go around in a small town ,we the taxpayers have to pay for all the raises and the town clerk should realize that, she is one who helps to do the budget .Also when the bills for the town amounts more then the money in the towns account.....WHERE IS THE MONEY COMING FROM......

  • Quiet Observer
    February 05, 2013 - 09:46

    The long time ongoing battle of the land ownership of the small amount of land, that has been increased in size by back filling over the decades, has been a black eye on the community and a small number of people for years. I truly don't understand the problem, the land holds no significant, financial, value but certainly has been a thorn in the side of far too many people. The marina that is now there, is a significant improvement to the hazardous farce that was there before and I understand that, again, a small number of people want it torn down. There is something wrong with this mentality. Everyone would be better off, if this land squabble was resolved once and for all. Either the Provincial or Federal Government acquires the land through reasonable negotiation or seize the land legally. Problem then solved. What you have is a small number of people controlling what could be a great opportunity for the community.

  • Don II
    February 05, 2013 - 09:04

    This so called "staffing crisis" which the Town Council created for itself is the least of the concerns involving the Town of Cupids. It appears that the Town of Cupids obtained $1.5 Million in funding from the Government of Newfoundland for "Municipal improvements" and promptly spent a substantial portion of that funding to construct a commercial marina without Government approval on land that the Town of Cupids did not own! The Government of Newfoundland ordered the Town of Cupids to cease operation of the commercial marina and ordered the Town to vacate the Crown land that was being unlawfully occupied and used for the marina. It now appears that the Town of Cupids is spending a substantial amount of tax payer money to hire a land planning consultant to investigate changing the existing Town of Cupids Municipal Development Plan to allow for the Town to legally construct docks and marina infrastructure at the Salt Water Pond and Pointe Beach in Cupids. It appears that the cost of land planning consultants, Crown land acquisition and expropriation of a number of privately owned lands near the Salt Water Pond and Pointe Beach to pursue a marina project will be substantial. It appears that additional funds will have to be spent to conduct a financial feasibility study and environmental impact study regarding the construction of a marina. Meanwhile, it appears that the Town of Cupids may have to defer the payment of outstanding debts owed by the Town!

  • Beenthere
    February 05, 2013 - 08:41

    Small town Council's have nickled and dimed pay increases for staff for years. Then, they wonder why they can't retain experienced employees. Larger municipalities have several office staff doing the work one person does in a smaller much higher wages for all concerned. Many years ago PMA and DMA recommeded salary guidelines for senior staff, but the Councils wouldn't buy into it. Some municipalities still have town clerks working for minimum wage..or slightly higher. Councils need to realize the responsibilty and work load of these positions, and pay accordingly.