Consultation Meeting Presentation

Report
Agenda
o Opening Remarks – Scott Stafford, Division
Manager of Parks and Community Sports
o Policy Framework
o Policy Discussion
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Overarching Policy
Code of Conduct
Existing Community Gardens
New Community Gardens
Community Garden Composting
o Next Steps, Cheryl Smith, Manager, Community
Partnerships & Funding
Why Do We Need Policies?
o The City of London is accountable for ensuring the
Community Gardens (on municipal land) are safe,
secure, accessible and appropriately maintained and
cared for.
o In general, people prefer to have a consistent set of
standards / guidelines to work within.
o Over the years, issues have arisen that have pointed to
the need for standardized policies.
o Policies allow us to be more efficient and effective in
how we manage the Community Gardens.
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Guiding Principles for Policy
Development
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Evidence based
Use of best practices
Ensure that polices are principle-based
Simplify the language used in policies
Provide clarity and transparency
Create common understanding for all stakeholders
Ensure consistency in how the gardens operate,
while providing flexibility to staff in responding to
issues that arise
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Policy #1 – Overarching Policy
Statement
Purpose
oTo provide London residents with guidelines and procedures for the development and operation of
Community Gardens on municipally owned lands.
Overarching Policy Statement
oThe City of London and the Coordinating Agency strive to provide a welcoming and safe environment at all
Community Gardens on municipally owned land for the use and enjoyment of all Londoners.
oWhen at the Community Gardens, Gardeners and other parties are required to act with respect and
consideration for others and for the Community Garden and surrounding properties.
oCity of London and Coordinating Agency staff is entrusted with the responsibility to ensure that policies for
use of Community Gardens are followed and will apply these policies and procedures in an impartial and
respectful way for the benefit of all.
oIn the event of non-compliance with the Community Garden policies and procedures, the Coordinating
Agency will issue a verbal or written notice to the Gardener. If at the end of a two-week period, the problem
has not been resolved, the plot may be reassigned and the Gardener’s privileges cancelled.
Policy #2 – Code of Conduct &
Conditions of Use
Purpose
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The purpose of this policy is to provide London residents with guidelines and procedures for how to
conduct themselves when gardening in or visiting a City of London Community Garden.
Policy
Gardeners, members of the public and staff from the City of London and Coordinating Agency are required to
act with respect and consideration for all people. The following behaviours and activities are prohibited in
London Community Gardens:
o Behaviour or language that is disorderly, intrusive, rude or threatening.
o Abusive or obscene language.
o Installing any type of fencing, boards or other materials in or around a Community Garden plot, unless
agreed to in advance by the Coordinating Agency and City of London in special circumstances.
o The use of insecticides and herbicides.
o Harvesting illegal plants, trees, woody plants or perennials.
o Selling produce or flowers from the garden; they may be traded or exchanged with other Gardeners.
o Loud use of cell phones.
o Loud playing of music.
o Damage, vandalism or theft of community garden harvests, equipment and property.
o Smoking on Community Garden property.
o Bringing pets onto the Community Garden, unless they are on a leash and supervised by the owner.
o The City of London has the right to prohibit pets from a specific Community Garden, at its sole discretion.
o
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Code of Conduct Cont…
The following conditions of use must be adhered to:
o Each garden must be under cultivation during the entire open period from May
1st to November 30th of each calendar year, weather permitting.
o Vegetables, grains, berries, fruits, beans, herbs and flowers may be grown on
community garden plots.
o Parents, guardians or caregivers must provide supervision and care of children
while on Community Garden property.
o Gardeners must immediately report any vandalism or illicit behaviour that occurs
at their Garden site to the Coordinating Agency or proper authorities, dependent
on the situation.
o Pet owners must remove all pet droppings.
o Gardeners agree to indemnify and hold the City of London and the Coordinating
Agency harmless from any liability, loss, damage or claim that arises or results
from their use of their plot and garden area including their invitees.
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Code of Conduct Cont…
Consequences of Failing to Comply
o City of London and Coordinating Agency staff will conduct regular inspection of
garden areas.
o If any violation of the above rules is found, the Coordinating Agency will issue a
written notice to the Gardener immediately.
o If at the end of a two-week period, the problem has not been resolved, the
Coordinating Agency will review the issue with the City Division Manager, Parks
& Community Sports or designate, and the plot may be reassigned and the
Gardener’s gardening privileges cancelled.
o The unused portion of the garden plot rental fee would be refunded to the
Gardener.
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Policy #3 – Existing Community
Gardens
Purpose
To provide information about the responsibilities associated with operating and maintaining the London
Community Gardens program and individual garden plots and how to apply for a plot in an existing
Community Garden.
Policy
Responsibilities of Community Gardeners:
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Read and sign the Annual Garden Plot License (Rental) Agreement.
Make full payment of the annual fee to the Coordinating Agency by the annual deadline.
Contact the Coordinating Agency for support if concerns, questions or complaints arise.
If a Gardener is going to be away from his / her garden for more than 14 days, the Gardener must make
arrangements to have an alternative Gardener tend to the plot or notify the Coordinating Agency so that
other arrangements can be made.
Maintain the garden in a safe, clean and sanitary condition, including normal watering, weeding and
general care of the assigned plot, to the satisfaction of the Coordinating Agency.
Use only compost and composted manures for soil conditioning and fertilization of Gardens. Adhere to
the Pest-Resistant Composting Policy, #1305.
Use water sparingly as supply is limited.
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Existing Community Gardens
cont…
Responsibilities of Community Gardeners cont…
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Maintain the pathways adjacent to a Gardener’s plot(s), keeping them free of weeds and garbage.
Dispose of all litter (i.e. wrappers, uneaten food, cups, etc.) into City of London garbage containers
located within designated areas of the Community Garden.
Leave garden waste materials (i.e. plant and tree trimmings as well as brush, leaves, stumps, etc.) at
the roadside for pickup by City of London based on the Yard Materials Collection schedule for each
Garden as identified in the City’s Waste Reduction and Conservation Calendar.
Protect all tools or personal property brought into the Community Garden. The City of London and the
Coordinating Agency are not responsible for any lost or stolen personal property of Community
Gardeners, their families or friends.
Purchase any permanent structures the Gardener requests for the Garden, as approved by the
Coordinating Agency on behalf of the City of London.
Completely clear the plots at the end of the season, no later than November 30th (weather dependent).
The community gardens must be ‘put to bed’ which means there is no above ground material left
behind.
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Existing Community Gardens cont…
Responsibilities of the City of London
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Authorize the Gardener to use the City’s property and the specific Garden plot once the
Gardener signs the Garden Plot License (Rental) Agreement and pays the annual rental
fee.
Provide oversight to the Coordinating Agency to ensure the Agency is fulfilling all assigned
responsibilities.
Dispose of litter from the Community Garden site from designated City of London garbage
containers located within Community Gardens.
Pick-up yard waste left for roadside pickup at each Community Garden based on the Yard
Materials Collection schedule as identified in the City of London’s Waste Reduction and
Conservation Calendar.
Provide grass maintenance around the perimeter of the community gardens located on
City of London property.
Provide a water supply in Community Gardens where there is no access to municipal
water.
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Existing Community Gardens cont…
Responsibilities of the Coordinating Agency
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Collect the annual Garden Rental fees from all Gardeners and submit payment to the City of London.
Ensure each garden is officially open from May 1st to November 30th of each calendar year, weather
permitting.
Determine all plot assignments.
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Only one plot is permitted per applicant, except in special circumstances, as approved by the City of London.
Conduct regular supervision of all Community Gardens.
Coordinate overall site upkeep, fall cleanup and compost maintenance.
If a plot is not used or if it is unattended for more than 15 consecutive days, reassign the plot to the next
Gardener on the waiting list. Until the plot is reassigned, the Coordinating Agency is responsible for
maintaining the plot.
Provide information on how to develop, maintain and manage Community Garden plots and the
associated responsibilities of having a garden plot.
Encourage and support the development of a community garden network with the common goals of
sharing knowledge and skills, enhancing interaction between garden members and increasing
awareness of and access to the City’s Community Gardens.
Provide support to London Community Garden members regarding advertising and promotion
opportunities for Community Garden events and projects.
Approve all permanent structure installation requests from Gardeners, in coordination with the City of
London.
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Existing Community Gardens cont…
Submitting An Application For A Plot
For Returning Gardeners:
o The Coordinating Agency will email or send a letter in February offering
the Gardener the same plot as the previous year.
o The returning Gardener will have until March 31st to sign the Garden
Plot License (Rental) Agreement and pay the associated rental fees in
order to reserve the plot.
o The Coordinating Agency will assign the same plot as last year to
returning Gardeners unless otherwise requested. Special requests will
be accommodated whenever possible.
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Existing Community Gardens cont…
For New Applicants:
o Londoners who are interested in having a plot in an existing Community
Garden must register their interest with the Coordinating Agency at any
time during the year, but ideally before March 1st for the upcoming
gardening season.
o Once a registration of interest is received, the Coordinating Agency will
put applicants on a waiting list. New Gardeners will be assigned
available garden plots on a first-come, first-served basis.
o The Coordinating Agency will assign one plot per Gardener, except in
special circumstances as approved by the City of London.
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Policy #4 – New Community
Gardens
Purpose
o The purpose of this policy is to provide London residents with guidelines and
procedures for how to obtain support from the City of London for developing a
new Community Garden on municipally owned lands.
Policy
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London residents, neighbourhood associations and groups (referred to as ‘interested
parties’) must have the support of at least 10 (ten) Gardeners in order to submit a
Statement of Interest to the City of London and the Coordinating Agency for the
development of a new Community Garden in an identified location, located on City
property.
If the proposed garden site passes the due diligence process and has the support of the
local community (within a 250 metre radius of the proposed site), the Community Garden
will be considered for further development.
The City reserves the right to deny a site for any reason at its sole discretion.
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New Community Gardens cont…
Procedures for Submitting an Application for the Development of a New
Community Garden
o London residents, neighbourhood associations and groups (‘interested parties’)
contact the Coordinating Agency and complete a Statement of Interest form
(electronic or hard copy) to outline their interest in developing a new community
garden on municipally owned lands.
o At this initial stage of interest, the interested parties must demonstrate that they
have 10 (ten) Gardeners interested in undertaking the development of a new
Community Garden.
o Pursuant to receiving the Statement of Interest, the Coordinating Agency will
work with the City of London to conduct the necessary due diligence regarding
the potential site to ensure it is an appropriate site.
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New Community Gardens cont…
Priority will be given to those sites on municipally owned lands that meet the following criteria:
o The proposed site is available and properly zoned.
o There is ease of access to the site during the gardening season.
o The quality and drainage effectiveness of the soil is satisfactory.
o Suitable sun exposure.
o Good access to water sources.
o Close proximity to neighbourhoods and areas of population density.
o Demonstrated willingness of volunteers to work with the Coordinating Agency and City of
London to develop, operate and maintain the garden.
o Potential site complies with Ontario Regulation 153/04, whereby only municipal lands
where the current or last known use was residential, parkland, or agricultural will be
considered during site selection.
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New Community Gardens cont…
o If the proposed site passes the due diligence stage, the Coordinating
Agency will send an information letter to all homes in a 250 metre radius
of the proposed site, advising them of the proposal to develop a
community garden and asking them to provide written feedback to the
City.
o If feedback is primarily disapproving, the City may undertake a neighbourhood
consultation process to provide further information in order to gain support.
o If it is determined that there is demonstrated support for the proposed
Community Garden, a site plan will be prepared with support of the
Coordinating Agency. New Community Garden site plans will:
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Include plot layouts and dimensions.
Identify access points for water.
Identify locations of composting bins that are required for the site.
Comply with applicable provincial accessibility standards, City Facility Accessibility
Design Standards (FADS) and/or municipal by-laws.
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New Community Gardens cont…
Constructing a New Community Garden
o Gardeners must work with City of London to construct the garden beds.
o The City will provide clean fill.
o Features such as dirt or crushed gravel pathways to plots, raised beds and other
accessibility attributes are supported within the Community Garden.
o Gardeners must work with the City of London to install any approved structures
such as compost bins or storage containers.
o There must be minimum setbacks of 6 (six) meters from edges of Community
Gardens to surrounding amenities, property lines, hedgerows and trees to allow
for regular park maintenance equipment to move through the area.
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Policy #5 –Composting
Purpose
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To provide residents with guidelines for proper composting within London Community Gardens
Policy
Composting is allowed within London Community Gardens, however all composting practices must adhere to the following
standards.
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No open compost piles are allowed on the Community Garden as they can attract unwelcome rodents and pests.
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Compost must be stored in an enclosed compost bin that is responsibly constructed and located in an open area in the
garden, as approved by the Coordinating Agency.
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The lid and base of the bin must fit tightly and there can be no openings greater than .6 cm (¼ inch) anywhere in the
container.
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Gardeners are prohibited from putting anything in the bin that attracts pests, such as meat, dairy, breads or grains or that
is hazardous to one’s health, such as pet droppings.
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Gardeners are prohibited from bringing table scraps and other materials from home to put into Community Garden
compost bins.
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Gardeners must stir or turn over the compost at least once a week to create airflow and speed up the process of decay.
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It is prohibited to allow compost to overflow from the compost container.
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Compost debris that will not fit into the compost bin should be bagged and left for roadside pickup at the garden based on
the Yard Materials Collection schedule for as identified in the City of London’s Waste Reduction and Conservation
Calendar.
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All compost must be cleared from the Community Garden by November 30 th of each calendar year.
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People who do not have a plot in the Community Garden are prohibited from using the Community Garden composting
bins.
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Is anything missing?
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Next Steps
o Update and finalize the policies, as per tonight’s
consultation
o Launch the new policies to Community Gardeners
and London residents at an upcoming meeting
o Post the policies on the LCRC website
o Begin the London Community Garden strategic
planning process in the 2nd quarter of 2013
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THANK YOU!
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