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BICA 2024 Bylaws

The ONCA (Ontario Not for Profit Corporation Act) was updated in 2010 and only recently came into force on October 19th 2021.  There are new requirements for operating a not-for-profit outlined in the Act and our Association has until October 18th, 2024 to update our Bylaws and Articles to follow the new requirements.  The BICA Board of Directors formed a Bylaws committee to review the new requirements, draft an updated set of Bylaws, have them approved by the BICA membership, and then file the appropriate documents with the Government to make it official.   Many thanks to Trevor Marshall for leading this project and also to Ron Kivikink and Scott Boatman for their contributions.

Below you will find a final copy of the proposed 2024 BICA Bylaws, which we will ask the BICA membership to approve by Special Resolution at our Annual Members Meeting on July 27th, 2024.

Please review these Bylaws ahead of our meeting on the 27th.  While reviewing the Bylaws, you will see clarifications and additional information in footnotes that will help explain where new content and requirements come from.  If you would like further information, the following website is also an excellent resource with a clear and well organized breakdown of the new ONCA requirements and a how-to guide for transitioning here -

Where new information has been included (information not contained in previous BICA bylaws) it has been highlighted in yellow.  Where wording has been updated by the Bylaws committee or Board of Directors, it has been shown with blue text.

For quick reference, the following is a summary of the updated Bylaws operational highlights:

The three classes of Membership remain the same as the previous Bylaws; Full Membership, Associate Membership, and Honorary Life Membership (HLM). Full Members and HLMs have voting rights. Associate Members do not have voting rights, but are entitled to enjoy all the privileges of membership, including receiving notice of and attending all Meeting of Members. The Members shall elect a Board of Directors having a minimum of 7 and a maximum of 13 Directors.  From these Directors the following Officers of the Board shall be appointed; a President or Co-President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The Board of Directors shall be elected by a majority vote of those Members present at the Annual Members Meeting. Quorum for the Annual Members Meeting or a Special Meeting of Members is 25% of Full Members in good standing. Quorum for a Board Meeting is a majority of acting Directors. The term of a Director is 3 years.  Directors shall be eligible for re-election for further 3-year terms. The Bylaws must be reviewed at a minimum every 5 years. Voting members are allowed to elect a proxy to vote in their place. Members meetings and Board meetings may take place by electronic means. Thank you on behalf of the BICA Board of Directors and the Bylaws Committee for taking the time to read these Bylaws.  We hope to see you at this year's Annual Meeting on July 27th.


American Pet Owners – Important Information

BICA  has received the following information from the Georgian Bay Association and we would like to make sure all of our American members are aware of the new US Government rules for dogs crossing the border.

There are new rules that you must follow to bring your pet back to the US. This new policy takes effect 8/1/24. Please check out their post:

2024 BICA Dues Invoice Reminder

It’s time to renew your 2024 BICA membership.

Your community association continues to make a difference by supporting fire prevention, water quality, reducing the threat of invasive species, warding against encroaching development, and holding events that bring us together. We are able to do this all of through the volunteerism of our community.

BICA’s budget predominantly goes toward the important work of the Georgian Bay Association (GBA) and FOCA. As we discussed at last year’s AGM, for the first time in seven years, GBA and FOCA have increased their dues and we have followed in step. As a result, BICA primary membership dues are now $105 and associate membership $50.

BICA is committed to the preservation and protection of the Bay of Islands for you and your family, and we need your support.

It takes under two minutes. Please click here to pay your dues now.

·  Dues should be paid through the Bay of Islands Community Association website

·  Questions about how to pay your dues? Contact Celesta Bjornson

Renewing your membership strengthens our community. We thank you for being a member of BICA!


Patrick Thoburn


Bay of Islands Community Association

New! Fire Safety Training to be held July 7th and August 11th

David Gallup has arranged for fire safety training to be conducted by NEMI Volunteer Fire Department. Training will be held at Bay Villa from 9 -11 am and is open to 20 participants for each session. Email David to reserve your spot: For full details, please visit our fire training calendar event page

In Memory of Lyn Baker

It is with a heavy heart that we share the sad news that our beloved friend and long-time BICA member, Lyn Baker, passed away on February 4, 2024. 

Lyn and her husband Jim first came to the Bay of Islands in 1972 as guests of Tom Patterson, who invited the Baker family to his camp called Scioto Lodge. Ten years later, Jim and Lyn were offered the opportunity to buy the camp along with their dear friends Don and Betty Kieft. They spent every chance they could to clean up, maintain, and build life-long friends ever since. Lyn absolutely loved the serenity and relationships that camp afforded. Together they spent their retired summers at their rustic camp in the Bay of Islands with a community of friends like no other. 

We know you join us in sending your condolences to Lyn's three sons, Jeff, Scott and Danny, who are carrying on their traditions at Scioto Lodge, along with Lyn and Jim's four granddaughters. 

A memorial service celebrating the life of Lyn Wallace Baker was held at Grace Episcopal Church in Willoughby, OH on Saturday, March 2, 2024. Her son, The Reverend Jeff Baker, delivered her homily, which we have posted to the BICA website. Here is the link to the Obituary information for Lyn W. Baker.

In Memory of Rick Sterne

Dear Friends,

We lost a good friend to the Bay of Islands this past December.  Rick Sterne, a long time islander, past BICA president, past BICA treasurer, and lover of The Bay of Islands passed away on Tuesday, December 5th. He will be missed.  Rick’s family first came to the Bay of Islands in the mid 1920’s and fell in love with the area. The Sterne family bought the west end of Island 2502 in 1939 and called it West Point, which they still call it today.  Rick first came to the Bay of Islands as an infant.  As a boy, he enjoyed spending  his days, fishing, swimming, and building forts.  Rick served as BICA treasurer for seven years and then served as our president from 2013 to 2017.  He was a strong supporter of our mission and was a wonderful mentor to all who served on the board with him.  

Below is the link to Rick’s obituary.

Deadline for Underused Housing Tax Filing Extended Again

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has pushed back the deadline for compliance with the Underused Housing Tax (UHT), a new federal tax on vacant or underutilized housing. Taxpayers will now have until April 30, 2024 to file tax forms and pay any amounts owing for the 2022 calendar year. The deadline to file and pay the tax for 2023 remains April 30, 2024.

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In Memory of Bobette Jones

Dear BICA and Bay of Islands Community and Friends,

It is with deep and heavy hearts that we share the loss of our dear and loyal bay friend, Bobette Jones.

Born in 1944, Bobette Jane Stern Jones died Sunday October 22, 2023 in Cuenca, Ecuador.  Ill from this past spring, Bobette’s decline progressed then ended with heart failure. Throughout, Bobette was lovingly cared for by her friend Richard Morris.  Richard visited in the Bay of Islands in 2022 and often pre-COVID. 

There were constants in Bobette’s life.  Bobette decided that if she saved a bit she could do as she wished.  And what she wished was to spend summers in the Bay of Islands and winters first in Panama and later, Cuenca.  She did not require comfort or convenience.  Bobette needed the rest and stimulation she found in the hills and waters of the north, the old cities of the south; provided there was also art, music, and friends.

North or South, Bobette gave energy and friendship to her community, which flowed back and forth.  In Ecuador Bobette was a regular contributor to the ex-pat newsletter with reviews of concerts and gallery shows, tips on things to do and finding apartments, and how to get good legal advice.  Of course Bobette favored and organized parties, dinners, dancing, trips to the beach, and hikes in the mountains. 

In the Bay of Islands Bobette fostered friends by looking out for her neighbours out on the extreme west where the waters open to the Sault.  She would turn off her oven to keep an eye on Tom Monger as he worked his way against three-foot waves in a 14 ft. boat to be certain he got home safe, always at the ready to head out to help.  Bobette gave back to the Bay and our community over the years by tending to things for BICA, organizing hikes, trips to Manitoulin sites, jaunts into Grace Lake, and taking friends to Stratford.  She was an integral part of BICA’s auction each year as well.

Bobette’s was a life of simple courage, physical strength and morale.  She stood ready to help friends and others whether on the water, in practising law and in carrying part of the load that keeps communities alive.  She chose to live as she wished, where she wished.  Her views were rooted in Thomas Paine’s dictum, "The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion."  She practised this in a manner that outlives her... while memory of her smile and laugh remain, Bobette’s energy will be at work inspiring us all to making life better, more enjoyable for friends and neighbours. 

This coming summer there will be a get together of friends and neighbours to remember and celebrate Bobette.  We will let you know. 

-- Beautifully written by Ted Cowan 

BICA Annual Members Meeting 2023 Summary

4:00 - 5:30 PM EST Saturday August 5, 2023

Ruby Island (TP2567)


1. Call to Order – Patrick Thoburn

2. Approval of Minutes 2022 – Patrick Thoburn

Moved - That the general membership approves the minutes of the 2022 BICA AMM Mover – Zachary Shewchuk Second – Scott Boatman Passed: Unanimously 3. President’s Report – Patrick Thoburn

Full Report appended to these minutes below. Patrick reviewed the priorities (voted on by members at the 2022 AMM) and the progress that the BICA Board has been working on over the past 12 months:Fire safety – NEMI grant to subsidize the purchase of 10 additional pumps.Emergency preparedness – Training workshop and new emergency form.Environment – Love Your Bay Week communication.Family Fun Day – Family Hot Dog Day insteadStrengthen relationship with Whitefish River First Nation – There is interest in working together especially with regards to environmental issues. 2024 dues increase –Patrick reviewed the rational (inflation and primarily due to GBA dues increase). 4. Treasurer’s Report – David Farner

David gave a high-level review of the financial situation. Revenue from dues approx. $7400 Operating expenses used approx. 95% of revenue. This doesn’t leave a large buffer for financing all the fun BICA events and activities and highlights the importance of the revenue generated by the annual raffle and auction. Moved - That the general membership approves the Treasurer’s Report for 2023 Mover – Jim Montgomery Second – Ted Cowan Passed: Unanimously 5. GBA Report - Liz Phillips

Liz is now President of the GBA. Congratulations! Liz is in the process of visiting other member associations and is struck by how they are very different, but also very similar in many ways. Liz gave an overview of the current GBA issues and initiatives. Coastal protection Boating Safety Water quality 6. NEMI Update

Mayor Al MacNevin gave an overview of some of the challenges faced by NEMI Opioid and mental health problems in the region Burnout of staff and difficulty of recruiting and retaining new staff at the hospital COVID made the situation even worse, although working together did help strengthen the relationship with First Nation communities on Manitoulin Island The focus now is to work together across all disciplines to remove silos. Councilor Laurie Cook Reiterated that the fire ban is still on Reviewed some of the benefits we receive for our tax dollars, and encouraged the BICA community to take advantage of: $5000 pump subsidy Little Current Library Rec Centre 7. Q&A

David Alison congratulated and thanked Liz for stepping up to the role of GBA President. This was reiterated by Lindsay Richards. Neil Stanton asked Mayor Al about the criteria for removing the fire ban. Mayor Al responded that it is not the Mayor’s decision - it is up to the Fire Chief. Mayor Al agreed that the current situation is confusing because the fire ban has been lifted in some neighboring municipalities and on Crown Land. Zachary Shewchuk asked Mayor Al about specific guidelines for what types of fires are allowed under the fire ban – BBQ’s, indoor fireplaces, etc.? 8. Emergency Preparedness and Fire Safety

Emergency Preparedness – Sheila Williams Reviewed the success of the training by NSSR and the OPP that BiCA arranged for members in July. Reviewed the safety information sheet posted on the BICA website.Overviewed the Emergency Form that was laminated and made available to members at the meeting. Acknowledged and thanked Kim Redston and Lisa Alison for the work on preparing this form.Stressed the importance of knowing your exact location when calling 911 for assistance. Your Island Number may not be enough. Know your GPS coordinates and/or What3Words location. Get first aid training – you need to be able to take care of yourself. Fire Safety – David Gallup Thanks to the NEMI subsidy and 10 additional pumps, we now have 45 fire pumps in the Bay. 72 members in the WhatsApp Fire Pump Group. Stressed the importance that it is for fire emergency use only – no general chit chat. Contact David Gallup to be added to the Group. Tremendous response to the recent fire at the Vance camp. The fire was under control withing 30 minutes of notification.Lessons learn: Personal safety and being properly dressed and equipped is important – responders need to be prepared. No shorts, or bare feet. Long pants, boots and work gloves recommended. Bring tools – rakes, shovels, etc. BICA is trying to arrange Fire Pump Training and Fire Fighting Training in 2024. Contact Patrick Thoburn if you know someone that could possibly do this training. 9. Members Brainstorm in Small Groups - All

Attending members were divided into 4 groups each having a BICA Board member acting as facilitator and Spokesperson.  Each group was asked to discuss the following question for approximately 10 minutes and brainstorm ideas: “What more can our community do to improve fire safety and emergency preparedness?” 10. Presentation of Member Ideas – Group Spokespeople

Each group’s ideas were written on a large notepad and then presented by the Spokesperson. Following the presentation, each member was asked to put up two colored stickers for voting on ideas that should be pursued by BICA. 11. Board Nominations & Election – Trevor Marshall

Nominations for the Board of Directors for 2023-2024 Patrick Thoburn Sheila Williams Celesta Bjornson Liz Phillips David Farner Trevor Marshall Bobette Jones Scott Boatman Jeff Baker Chris Redston Lisa Allison David Gallup Motion - That the general membership approves the Board of Directors for 2023-2024. Mover – Zachary Shewchuk Second – Jean Paul Whyatt Passed: Unanimously 12. Adjournment – Patrick

Meeting Adjourned at 5:45 EST

Minutes drafted by Chris Redston, Secretary

Presidents Report 2023 by Patrick Thoburn - appended to these minutes.

Environmental Report 2023 by Chris Redston - appended to these minutes.

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