Annual Community Meeting Minutes

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November 22, 2018

Regal Heights Residents’ Association Fall General Meeting

Tuesday, November 20, 2018, 7 pm, Garrison Creek Family Health Centre

Introductions/Greetings/ Presentations:

John Keating called to order the second public meeting of the year. He introduced and thanked Gem Lee, Health Education Specialist at the Clinic, for hosting the meeting. Gem extended a welcome to everyone on behalf of the Health Centre.

John noted that the RHRA is almost 40 years old and thanked all the volunteers who throughout the years have supported many community activities and events in the neighbourhood. The RHRA has liaised successfully with local council on many issues to benefit the community.

Harry Lay thanked Cesar Palacio, outgoing city councillor, for his years of active support for the Regal Heights community through restorations, commemorations, beautification and other community improvements. Harry presented Cesar with a gift from the RHRA as an expression of thanks. Cesar offered his reflections on the privilege of serving the community over the years.

Marit Stiles, MPP for Davenport,greeted the audience and provided an update on various actions and initiatives at Queens Park. Marit knows the community, having served as trustee, and attested that our community cares for and looks out for each other.

Brandon Leal brought greetings from Ana Bailão, city councillor representing our neighbourhood in the newly defined ward. Ana could not attend as she was in Ottawa on business. 

Street Beautification Programs

Mary Ann Quance spoke about the plantings in neighbourhood public spaces, which was envisioned over 20 years ago by Florence Watts. Many volunteers have made this vision possible,including the planting on Daffodil Hill at Dufferin and Davenport, 20 barrels adding blooms and charm throughout the neighbourhood, and the irrigation system along Rosemount to keep the spaces green. Anyone who wants to help with the gardens – even a couple of hours a year – or who has additional gardening ideas is asked to contact the RHRA at

MaryAnn also reminded everyone to continue to report graffiti to the City’s 311 hotline.

Communications and Planning

a) The RHRA website:

The website, maintained by Peter Norman, offers a wealth of engaging and helpful information about the neighbourhood in an accessible format. John reported on Peter’s behalf. Anyone wishing to signup for emails should visit and complete the form.

b) Newsletter

Dave Meslin proposed the production of a neighbourhood glossy publication, perhaps entitled the Regal Heights Review, to be delivered door-to-door to inform and spark more involvement among residents. There would be volunteer opportunities for residents to write material, help with the design, and deliver the newsletter door to door. We could pay Canada Post for delivery to apartment buildings. The cost for the printing of 1,000 copies and Canada Post delivery would be approximately $1,000. A motion was passed to authorize a one-time expense of up to $1,000 to create the newsletter.

c) Proposed Development at 49-51 Springmount Defeated

Andrew Tay provided an overview of the process that lead to the defeat of the proposed development at 49-51 Springmount (demolition of two houses containing rental units to be replaced with three townhomes). After a lengthy process that included a Committee of Adjustment hearing and a hearing at the Toronto Local Appeal Body (TLAB), the developers have dropped their latest appeal. The Springmount Collective, a group of concerned residents that includes Andrew, say their victory preserves the quality and integrity of the streetscape, but at considerable personal financial expense.  They set up a GoFundMe page to defray these costs. There was an opportunity to contribute funds at the meeting. There was discussion about ways to have the city recognize and preserve the unique quality of the Springmount ravine. Andrew thanked the community and former councillor Cesar Palacio for all the support throughout the process.

d) Traffic light initiative for Oakwood and Rosemount

Kevin Johnston gave an update on an initiative to secure a traffic light at the corner of Oakwood and Rosemount. The first step is complete, which was a traffic study that determined that alight is warranted. For the next step, likely later this winter, city council needs to address the request and consider implications for the TTC. If the decision moves forward, then the job will be designed and contracted out. Kevin holds out the goal to have the light installed by September 2019.

e) Regal Road/Springmount intersection Pilot Project Update

Dave Meslin gave a recap of the proposals and ideas put forth by the neighbourhood and the City for changes to the intersection. The current modifications were put into place by the city after a public meeting at the Dufferin Library last spring. This pilot is for one year. There have been a lot negative responses to this particular configuration. There will be another public city-sponsored consultation meeting in January; notice of this meeting will be delivered door to door throughout the neighbourhood and through email.

Sal Ritacca proposed a motion,which passed, that all future discussions on the issue proceed with an air of mutual respect and a willingness to listen to all sides of the issue.

Then a two-part motion regarding the intersection was passed as follows:

Moved that:

Motion Part I-a RHRA ensure that all residents have an opportunity to have their voices heard and serious attempts be made to invite all residents to future meetings about the intersection.
Motion Part I-b Any design proposal should as much as possible respect legitimate concerns that have been raised by residents including: water draining, leaf and snow removal, garbage collection, maintenance, safety (road, pedestrian, cyclist), and the preservation of the natural open nature of the space.
Motion Part II Those who live at the intersection be given an amplified voice.

Election of RHRA Executive Members

Dave Meslin nominated the current executive, all members at large, for re-election.  Everyone present was invited to join the executive. No new nominations were put forward and the current executive was returned for another year. The RHRA gives an open invitation to anyone in the neighbourhood to attend any executive meeting and get involved in any of our projects.

Police Community Partnership

Rosa Cordiano reported that Regal Heights is part of 13 Division and all are welcome to attend the open monthly community liaison meetings. The main current concern in our neighbourhood is car break-ins. Rosa stressed the absolute necessity to report any incidents so that police are aware and can take action. There is an online reporting method for minor issues. Click here for the Toronto Police Services “Core” reporting.

Special Events

a) Regal Heights Family Pub Nights

The Pub Nights at the Fox and the Fiddle on St. Clair continue to be organized for the coming year, thanks to the efforts of Beth Marcilio. Children are welcome! The next one is Thursday, December 6th at 6:30. It will be a Christmas Pub Night jointly held with the Northcliffe Village Residents’Association, just to the north of us.

b) Regal Heights Family Games Night

John Keating announced a family games nights to be held on January 17, 2019, at Spielhaus on St. Clair. All are invited for a night of board games and fun to brighten a winter evening with neighbours.

c) Carol Sing

Theannual Carol Sing will be held on December 14th at 7 pm at the corner of Oakwood and St. Clair. Brigid Higgins conjured up delightful images of festive cheer and winter magic. All are invited.

d) New Syrian Refugee Sponsorship

John Keating announced that a sponsorship drive is underway to bring another Syrian family to Toronto. This is extended family of the Alaalyans who have thrived since their arrival two years ago. Anyone wanting to help can do so HERE to to donate. All donations will be used to support the new family during their first year in Canada.

e) Regal Heights Maple Syrup

Dave Meslin reported that the spring tapping in the neighbourhood yielded 100 gallons of sap that produced delicious syrup through a coordinated neighbourhood boil-down operation. He is looking forward to next spring. 

f) Street Party 2019

It was decided that Lauder would host the street party next summer; the date is June 22nd. Dave Meslin will spearhead a team of volunteers to get the ball rolling.

Community Welcome Project

Harry Lay explained that welcome packages are distributed to newly arrived residents on an ongoing basis. Local realtors provide the names of residents when there is change-over, but everyone is encouraged to forward names of newcomers to Harry Lay and Beth Marcilio to help keep the RHRA abreast of such arrivals. The general email is


a) New Membership and Fundraising

Dave Meslin explained that at the Spring meeting a motion had been passed to change from paid membership to open membership with fundraising drives to generate money, rather than a membership fee. The recent online drive raised $5,000 and there are now about 450 names on the RHRA email list up from approximately 300 at the start of the year. This shows that the new approach is working well. A motion was passed to maintain the new Membership and Outreach Program as it is currently running. Residents can make contributions as they wish through the RHRA website at


Linda DeGiorgio reported the finances as below. She noted the following amendments:

The Garden Tour funds were donation, not participation fee; for the tentative budget the Street Party cost will be considerably higher than posted; there will be a $200 cost incurred for new Carol songsheets; The Regal Heights newsletter will have an allocation of $1,000 as per the motion passed at the meeting.

RHRA finances as of November 2018

Operating Fund $10,491
Heritage Fund $276
Street Sale Fund $192
Petty Cash $250
TOTAL $11,209

Income sources, 2018                       

Donations $200
Go Fund Me campaign $5,000
Tree For Me grants $900
Street Sale income $650
Garden tour participant fees $120
TOTAL: $6, 870

Tentative Event Budget Nov. 2018 – Oct. 2019

Canada Day Parade $50
Carol Sing $125
Street Beautification $300
Seed swap $25
Neighbourhood cleanup $50
Garden tour $50
Street Party $350
Pumpkin carving $65
Federal election debate $250
Web Hosting $200
Outreach (printing, flyer delivery etc.) $650
Refreshments at General Meetings $50 ($25 per meeting)
Rent for Meetings $200
TOTAL: $2,365

New Business

a) Reimagine Galleria

Elizabeth Cinello briefly reported on thoughts she formed about the proposed Galleria redevelopment after attending a recent public meeting. She urged residents to be aware and stay informed about the proposals and to keep in mind long-term developments along Dupont. She will post more information on the RHRA website.

Meeting adjourned at 8:50 pm