Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Letter to Minister Lekstrom

This morning, I dispatched a letter to Blair Lekstrom (Minister of Community Development - Local Government Ministry) requesting that he consider amending the Local Government Act to prohibit candidates from running in either an Electoral Area (Regional District) or Municipality unless they reside in the said Electoral Area/Municipality. I will advise you of Minister Lekstrom's response when I receive it.

I can tell you that I heard, through the "grapevine", rural residents' didn't appreciate the fact that candidates, who resided in the City of Williams Lake, were running in Electoral Area 'F'. Perhaps making the above amendment will ensure that there is a direct link between the elected representative and the electors.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Referendum Questions (2) - Quesnel + CRD

Referendum Question #1:

Are you in favour of the adoption of the Quesnel Cemetery Contribution Service Establishment Amendment Bylaw No. 4422, 2008, which would allow a requisition increase for the Quesnel Cemetery Contribution function taxation limit to a maximum of the greater of $76,000 or an amount generated by applying an overall rate of $0.0731/$1,000 to the net taxable value of land and improvements?

YES - 1,052
NO - 830

Question #1 PASSED

Referendum Question #2:

Are you in favour of the Cariboo Regional District adopting i) Loan Authorization Bylaw 4396 to borrow up to $15,000,000 and ii) Service Establishment Amendment Bylaw 4395 to increase the North Cariboo Recreation and Parks function taxation limit to a maximum of the greater of $3.2095/$1,000 of assessed value of land and improvements or $4,900,000 to provide for the construction of a new arena, theatre and multipurpose event space?

YES - 2,765
NO - 2,525

Question #2 PASSED

The above Voting on the 2 Referendum Questions in Quesnel + CRD Areas A, B, C and I are preliminary, at this point

Mayor and Councils plus Cariboo Regional District Board of Directors' for 2008-2011 Term

Here's your elected officials for Districts of 100 Mile/Wells + Cities of WL/Quesnel and CRD Board of Directors' for the 2008-2011 Term:

District of Wells:

Mayor - Jay Vermette


1) Virginia Wilkins
2) Judy Campbell
3) Richard Wright
4) Aleta Wallace

City of Quesnel:

Mayor - Mary Sjostrom


1) Coralee Oakes
2) Sushil Thapar
3) Ron Paull
4) Peter Couldwell
5) Micheal Cave
6) Laurey-Anne Roodenburg

City of Williams Lake:

Mayor - Kerry Cook


1) Natalie Lynn Montoya
2) Geoff Bourdon
3) Tom Barr
4) Surinderpal Rathor
5) Sue Zacharias
6) Laurie Walters

District of 100 Mile House:

Mayor - Mitch Campsall


1) Dave Mingo
2) Bill Hadden
3) Jeanne Best
4) Mel Torgerson

Cariboo Regional District - Board of Directors' (Electoral Area Directors'):

Area A - Ted Armstrong
Area B - Roberta Faust
Area C - John Massier
Area D - Deb Bischoff
Area E - Steve Mazur
Area F - Duncan Barnett
Area G - Al Richmond
Area H - Art Dumaresq
Area I - Jim Glassford
Area J - Alex Bracewell
Area K - Rick Mumford
Area L - Bruce Rattray

Friday, November 14, 2008

No Blog Posts on Saturday, November 15th (General Voting Day)

As you know, General Voting Day for all Local Government Elections in BC occurs on Saturday, November 15th. I would obviously strongly encourage you to vote for your candidate, whether that is for Mayor and Councillors, Regional District Directors or School Board Trustees

I've received advice that because advertising on General Voting Day for Local Government Elections is strictly prohibited and my blog could be seen as a form of adveritising, I've been asked not to do any "blogging" on Saturday. On Sunday, November 16th, I will report on all Local Government races in Quesnel, Williams Lake, 100 Mile House and Cariboo Regional District races in Areas B, D, E, F, G, H and L, as well as the voting on the 2 Referendum Questions in Quesnel

Again, regardless of whom you are voting for, please get and vote. Your local democracy depends upon it

My last pitch to Area 'F' Residents

As this is the last official day of campaigning permitted by provincial law, I'm going to lay out my case to those who read my blog and may reside in Area 'F' of the Cariboo Regional District:

Steve's Goals for 2008-2011, if elected

1) Get the Regional District Board to withdraw Bylaw #4420 (Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function) or at the minimum, remove Area 'F' as a service participant in Bylaw #4420

2) Establish a new Function called "Central Cariboo Transit" with Electoral Areas D, E, F as participants. Service to include conventional transit and Handi-DART to Function participants. Also, I would seek funding from Williams Lake/Soda Creek Indian Bands into this Function, with the Function being fully implemented by 2011, at the latest

3) Work at "Garbage" issues at Rural Transfer Stations in Central Cariboo, in concert with Solid Waste Plan Review in 2009

4) Establish Policy around Public Consultation and Amendments to Electoral Area OCP (Official Community Plan) Bylaw / Rural Land Use Bylaws

5) Clarify present CRD Board Policy as such that only CRD Directors to hold public consultation on new Function Bylaw(s) prior to introduction of said Function Establish Bylaw at Regional Board

6) Introduce, by 2011, NQI (National Quality Institute) program at Cariboo Regional District. This is a program that has to do with excellence in Customer Service in Local Government. The City of Kamloops uses this NQI Program and have received numerous awards for their NQI initiative. The City of Williams Lake has this as a Business Goal for 2008/2009.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Taseko lays off 75 workers at Gibraltar Mines

From WL Tribune:

Taseko Mines Limited has announced that 75 employees at its Gibraltar Mine will be laid off effective Jan. 13, 2009.

The company informed the employees at early Thursday afternoon.

“Concluding there was no other choice was agonizing,” Taseko vice-president of corporate affairs Brian Battison said. “But lower costs are essential to keeping the mine operating.”

The announcement comes after the mine, 65 kilometres north of Williams Lake, suspended non-essential spending, and stopped on-site contract work six weeks ago.

“We did a lot of things before we had to take this next step,” Battison said. The mine currently employs 469 people.

Russell Hallbauer, president and CEO of Taseko, said that in the last 24 months, the company has invested $250 million into Gibraltar Mine to reduce operating costs and to ensure it could operate at low copper price levels.

Manpower levels during the construction period increased as the company worked on the concentrator modernization and mine expansion programs. Now that the concentrator and mining fleet are upgraded and more efficient, the size of the work force is inconsistent with the company's new operating efficiencies, he said.

Hallbauer said the company has taken a conservative approach to its expansion plans by not incurring any long-term debt, and its aim is to keep Gibraltar Mine profitable and viable should the copper cycle go back to lower than US$1.50/lb.

Battison said the company expects Gibraltar to operate for the long term, due to the $250-million investment, lower costs for fuel and steel, and zero debt.

“We expect other copper mines in the world will close before we do, which will reduce supply and raise prices,” he said.

"The two top priorities at Taseko Mines are to keep the Gibraltar mine operating and competitive, and to get Prosperity permitted and ready to build.”

Alex Pannu, director of public affairs for the Christian Labour Association of Canada, says the union is disappointed with the layoffs, but says they are a better alternative to shutting the mine down.

"I think you have to look at the economy around the world to see the pressures that everyone is under," Pannu says. "The situation here is obviously not the best, but we think they are making the best of a bad situation."

The union plans to work with its members to provide referral services and to make sure the company ensures that seniority is recognized before laying workers off.

"We're hoping the economic situation will improve so that they can rehire most of these workers," he says, adding that the union represents nearly 300 employees at the mine.

WL Tribune - Thurs Nov 13/08 Edition

In your WL Tribune, you will find the following stories:

a) Duncan Barnett announcing that he wants a 4th term as the Area 'F' Director - story is here

b) Heather McKenzie/Steve Relkov announcing that they both want to be the Board of Education - SD #27, Zone 4 Trustee - Relkov is here and McKenzie is here

c) WL Region Votes 2008 -

WL Mayor Candidates:

Paul French - here
Kerry Cook - here

WL Councillor Candidates:

Sue Zacharias - here
Judy O'Neill - here
Tom Barr - here
Surinderpal Rathor - here
Geoff Bourdon - here
Natalie Montoya - here
Laurie Walters - here
Don Fornwald - here
Sheila Mortensen - here
Chuck Pearson - here
Wayne Reeves - here

CRD - Area 'D' Candidates:

Deb Bischoff - here
Blair Engel - no profile available

CRD - Area 'E' Candidates:

Brandy Dickey - here
Steve Mazur - here

CRD - Area 'F' Candidates:

Duncan Barnett - here
Steve Forseth - here
Charlene Hays - here

d) Remembrance Day ceremony - story is here

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Homelessness Challenge

WL Tribune reports on a homelessness challenge taken up by several individuals including Geoff Bourdon (City Councillor Candidate). Story/Video is here.

Advance Vote #2 - City of Williams Lake

The City of Williams Lake is holding its' 2nd and last Advance Vote at City Hall (450 Mart Street - across from Royal Bank Parking Lot) for a new Mayor + Council. You will need 2 pieces of ID to prove identity and residency. Examples include:

Utility Bill
BC Drivers' License
BC ID Card
Social Insurance Card
Credit Card
Property Tax Bill

Polls are open from 8am - 8pm today

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

General Voting Day - City of WL + CRD Area 'F'

Saturday, November 15 - General Voting Day for Electors of the City of Williams Lake + CRD Area 'F'

City of Williams Lake:

Polling Station - Marie Sharpe Elementary (260 Cameron Street). Polls are open from 8am - 8pm and don't forget to bring 2 pieces of ID with you.

2 Pieces of ID Examples could include:

BC Drivers' License
BC ID Card (issued by Motor Vehicle Branch)
Social Insurance Card (issued by Human Resources Development Canada)
Vehicle Insurance Papers
Credit Card/Debit Card
Property Tax Bill
Utility Bill

Cariboo Regional District - Area 'F':

Polling Stations - Polls are open from 8am to 8pm on Saturday, November 15th:

150 Mile Elementary (3081 Highway 97 South)
Big Lake Elementary (4060 Lakeview Drive, Big Lake)
Horsefly Elementary (3045 Boswell Street, Horsefly, BC)
Likely Elementary (6163 Keithley Creek Road, Likely, BC)
CRD Office - Williams Lake (Suite D - 180 North 3rd Avenue)

Please bring 2 pieces of ID with you to the Polling Stations.

2 Pieces of ID Examples could include:

BC Drivers' License
BC ID Card (issued by Motor Vehicle Branch)
Social Insurance Card (issued by Human Resources Development Canada)
Vehicle Insurance Papers
Credit Card/Debit Card
Property Tax Bill
Utility Bill (Hydro, Telus or Terasen Gas)

*** No matter who you support or don't support, please get out and vote. Your democracy system depends upon it ***

Monday, November 10, 2008

Important Events this week

Good morning everyone:

WL Tribune reports on the public forum for Williams Lake Mayor Candidates held on Wednesday, November 5th at the old GM car site (510 North Broadway). The story is here

Important Dates this week:

Tuesday, November 11th (Remembrance Day) - This is a day where we remember those who went to Europe during World Wars I + II and other veterans from other world conflicts including Afghanistan to protect democracy and freedom. Events will be held in the Cariboo-Chilcotin at local Cenotaphs in Williams Lake, Quesnel and 100 Mile. I urge everyone to attend your local Remembrance Day ceremony. All ceremonies will start at 11:00am

Wednesday, November 12th - City of Williams Lake Advance Poll #2. If you can't vote on November 15th, then take the opportunity to vote on this day. You'll need 2 Pieces of ID to confirm residency + identity. Documentation can include utility bill, property tax bill, Drivers' License, car insurance, Social Insurance Card, BC Health Card. This Advance Vote takes place at WL City Hall (450 Mart Street - across from Royal Bank Parking Lot)

Thursday, November 13th - CRD Board meets in Finance/Budget Committee. CRD Staff to present budget numbers based on approved 2009 Business Plans. Meeting starts at 6:00pm. Meeting will probably adjourn at 9:00pm

Friday, November 14th - CRD Board of Directors' Meeting starting at 9:30am. Meeting to wrap up in the afternoon. This will be the final meeting of the CRD Board of Directors' for the 2005-2008 Term.

Saturday, November 15th - General Voting Day for All Local Government Elections for CRD Areas B, D, E, F, G, H, L, Cities of Williams Lake/Quesnel and Districts of Wells/100 Mile House. Polls open from 8am - 8pm. Don't forget to bring 2 pieces of ID with you

Friday, November 7, 2008

1st Advance Vote Results - City of Quesnel + CRD (Areas D, E, F)

The City of Quesnel had its' 1st Advance Vote on Wednesday, November 5th and 263 voters took advantage of the opportunity.

The Cariboo Regional District also had its' 1st Advance Vote on Wednesday, November 5th and about 40 voters took advantage of the opportunity at the CRD's Williams Lake Office to vote for Directors in Areas D, E, F

All Candidates Forum - CRD Area 'G' and SD #27 - Zone 2

Last night, an All-Candidates Forum was held in Lac La Hache at the Pioneer Centre. Al Richmond (Area 'G' Director) and Herb Korenberg (Area 'G' Director-candidate) were in attendance along with Deb Ostrander (SD #27 - Zone 2 candidate) and Lac La Hache PAC Chair (sorry, can't remember the name) who was standing in for Pete Penner (SD #27 Board Chair and Current Zone #2 Trustee) were also in attendance. Mr. Penner was in Vancouver on School Board business.

All but 1 question was directed at Herb Korenberg over erroneous statements in his election campaign brochures. All night, it was commented that Mr. Korenberg had personal reasons against Al Richmond as to why he (Herb Korenberg) was running to become the Area 'G' Director.

About 35 people were in attendance. 99% of those in attendance were Al Richmond supporters. I have no doubt in my mind now that Al Richmond will be re-elected in a landslide on November 15th.

Advance Vote #2 - Cariboo Regional District (Electoral Areas D - E - F)

Good morning:

If you can not make to the General Voting Day on November 15th, 2008, then your 2nd and last opportunity to vote in the 2008 Local Government Election - CRD Areas D - E - F is today. The voting location is at Suite D - 180 North 3rd Avenue. Voting hours are from 8am - 8pm. The ballot box is located in the CRD Boardroom. As per usual, you will need 2 pieces of ID that shows identity and residency. Examples include:

BC ID Card
BC Drivers' License
Social Insurance Number
Credit Card
Vehicle Insurance
Credit Card

Thursday, November 6, 2008

City of WL 1st Advance Poll Results

The City of Williams Lake - 1st Advance Poll - results have been released and they are:

278 electors have voted. That is down 28% from 2005's 1st Advance Poll results of 384 electors having voted

The next Advance Vote Day for the City of Williams Lake 2008 Local Government Election is Wednesday, November 12th from 8am - 8pm at Williams Lake City Hall (450 Mart Street)

WL Tribune - Thursday Nov 6 Edition

In today's WL Tribune:

Results from Monday's All Candidates Forum for Williams Lake City Councillor Candidates - story is here

Story about Blair Engel (CRD Area D Candidate) and possible by-election in Area D - story is here

Tolko to re-start its' Soda Creek Division on Monday, Nov 10 - story is here

Williams Lake Mayor Candidate Kerry Cook and Paul French were at a Williams Lake Chamber of Commerce luncheon fielding questions from Chamber members - story is here

Zone 5 Trustee Candidates Wayne Rodier and Peter R. Smith introduce each other to Zone 5 Electors. Story is here (Wayne Rodier) and here (Peter R. Smith)

Prosperity Mine Project - Request from MLA Charlie Wyse to Mayor Scott Nelson and CRD Chair Jon Wolbers

At Tuesday night's Council meeting - Mayor Nelson, in a radio interview, indicated that both he and CRD Chair Jon Wolbers were approached by Charlie Wyse (MLA - Cariboo-South) and were asked to "back off" on their ecstatic support of the Prosperity Mine Project. This is regrettable because usually MLA's don't get directly involved in City Council / Regional Board matters.

However, with discontent of the project with local First Nations out west on Prosperity, this action by MLA Wyse may have more to do with next May's Provincial Election then genuine concern from local First Nations that have direct interests pertaining to the Prosperity Project

I would encourage everyone to please get out to the Public Open Houses on the Prosperity Project tomorrow (Friday) from 6pm to 8pm at the Gibraltar Room (located at Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex), and on Saturday from 10am until noon at the Gibraltar Room and then from 4pm until 6pm at the Alexis Creek Community Hall

I can not emphasize enough that this project must have broad public support, otherwise the Provincial/Federal Governments likely will not give their thumbs up to this project. And that would be a shame as Taseko Mines (Prosperity Mine proponent) has put considerable time/money into this mine project

All Candidates Forum - CRD Area 'F' + SD #27 - Zone 4

The meeting started at 7:00pm

Last night, candidates for Cariboo Regional District (CRD) - Area 'F' + School District #27 - Zone 4 faced the public at an All Candidates Forum at Miocene Community Hall from 7-9pm. Incumbent CRD Area 'F' Director Duncan Barnett along with challengers Steve Forseth and Charlene Hays were in attendance. SD #27 - Zone 4 Incumbent Trustee Steve Relkov with challenger Heather McKenzie was also in attendance. 18 members of the public attended this forum to ask their questions of both CRD Area 'F' Candidates and School District #27 - Zone 4 Trustee Candidates

Questions asked of the CRD Area 'F' Candidates included:

* Integrity - what does it mean to you?
* Property Rights and "Down-Zoning" - will you defend landowners?
* Town Hall meetings - will you respect the will of those in attendance?
* What is the purpose of Bylaw #4420 (Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function)?
* Relationship between First Nations and CRD Area 'F' Director - please define?
* What are the 3 most important issues for you?

Candidates for CRD - Area 'F' were also given a chance to give an opening/closing statement

Questions asked of the School District #27 - Zone 4 Trustee Candidates included:

* Do you feel you had input into Highway 97 Upgrade and allowance for School Buses to turn into 150 Mile Elementary?

* ESL Students - Why push those students to next Grade Level if Reading Comprehension is not of the next Grade Level?

* What' s your position on Junior Kindergarten in School District #27?

* Define the role of a Trustee and your ability to affect change in the local school system?

* What's your position on Re-Alignment of Schools - establish middle schools (ie: K-6, Grades 7-9 and Grades 10-12) and on closure of School Dorm at Columneetza?

Candidates for SD#27 - Zone 4 were also given a chance to give an opening/closing statement

The meeting adjourned at 9:10pm

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Advance Vote #1 - City of Williams Lake + CRD (Areas D, E, F)

Good morning...

If you can't make it to the polls on November 15, you have your first opportunity today to vote in the 2008 Local Government Elections for the City of Williams Lake or Cariboo Regional District - Electoral Areas D, E, F.

City of Williams Lake

You may vote from 8am - 8pm at 450 Mart Street. You will need 2 pieces of ID that shows your identity and residency. Such documentation can include:

BC ID Card
BC Drivers' License
BC Care Card
ICBC Insurance papers
Credit Card
Social Insurance Number

Cariboo Regional District

You may vote from 8am - 8pm at Suite D - 180 North 3rd Avenue. The voting station is set up in the Cariboo Regional District Boardroom. You will need 2 pieces of ID that shows your identity and residency. Such documentation can include:

BC ID Card
BC Drivers' License
BC Care Card
ICBC Insurance papers
Credit Card
Social Insurance Number

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

CRD Board Highlights - Oct 31/08

Delegations - None


1) Alexis Creek Water

The Board of Directors awarded contracts to two local companies who will be completing Phase one and two of the Alexis Creek Water System. The first phase which was awarded to Dawson Construction, will see development of a Distribution and Treatment System. Phase Two construction, is development of a reservoir and was awarded to Western Tank and Lining. The original design concept for a water system at Alexis Creek was for a simple pressure tank system, as its lower cost would be more affordable for the low number of properties. Due to good engineering and competitive prices, the CRD is able to provide a superior water system for Alexis Creek residents

UBCM Tourism Funding Awarded to Communities

UBCM Tourism funding was awarded to three different projects across the Cariboo. In Electoral Area C, Director, Ronda Wilkins granted the Barkerville Heritage Trust with $1,000 to support the purchase and installation of an above ground vehicle fuel dispensing system. This system will provide fuel to all visitors to Barkerville, Wells, and the Bowron Lakes as well as residents of the immediate area.

The Kersley Community Association was given $18,326 by Electoral Area A Director, Ted Armstrong to support the creation of a wheelchair accessible trail, a picnic area, and washroom facilities on the Kersley Lease Land. The goal of this project intent is to create a wheelchair accessible trail, a picnic area, and washroom facilities which will help draw increased numbers of visitors by improving accessibility for all people regardless of their abilities.

In the Central Cariboo, Director Sue Zacharias authorized $8,649 of Area D UBCM Tourism funding to be used by the Williams Lake Cross Country Ski Club for the installation of signage at Bull Mountain. By improving its signage, visitors will be able to locate the ski area with ease and be informed about the various ski trails. The signage will help increase visitor numbers and improve visitor experience.

3) Towns For Tomorrow

After some serious lobbying for CRD communities by the Board of Directors, the Minister of Community Development, the Honourable Blair Lekstrom officially announced that the Towns for Tomorrow Funding program is now available to regional districts and unincorporated communities. The expansion of this infrastructure program will now provide between 75 to 80 percent of the total funding for project costs (to a maximum of $400,000) for communities with a population fewer than 5,000. Communities with populations between 5,000 and 15,000 will now be eligible for the same percentage of projects costs, but to a maximum of $375,000. The Towns for Tomorrow Funding Program is intended to support or help in the development of community infrastructure projects. Further information on this program is available online at www.cariboord.bc.ca or by calling the Regional District at 250-392-3351 or toll free 1-800-665-1636.

4) Take Your Shot – Get Immunized

The annual Ministry of Health influenza (flu) immunization campaign gets underway the first week in November. Influenza is highly contagious and is the leading cause of preventable death due to infectious disease in Canada, killing thousands of Canadians every year and hospitalizing thousands more. See http://www.immunizebc.ca for more information

5) Olympic Mascots

The CRD will be seeking opportunities to invite the 2010 Olympic mascots to events happening throughout the Cariboo Chilcotin. Communities from across the region are urged to send a list of events to the CRD by emailing mailbox@cariboord.bc.ca or faxing 250-392-2812.

6) Wildwood Transfer Station

The Cariboo Regional District will be holding a public meeting to discuss implications and rationale for the closure of the Wildwood Transfer Station. During the meeting, the residents will have an opportunity to learn of alternatives and the costs associated to maintain the site. The Board also discussed proposed options for improved wood waste segregation, recycling options and possible cost sharing agreements with the City of Williams Lake. Watch the CRD website and the local media for dates, times and locations of the public meetings.

7) CRD Bursary Winner Recognized

The CRD Board of Directors will be sending Ms. Shelby Nickless a letter congratulating her on her recent graduation in Criminal Justice from the University College of the Fraser Valley. Ms. Nickless was one of the inaugural winners of a CRD Bursary in 2006

Future Board Meetings:

Thursday, Nov 13/08 at 6:00pm - CRD Finance/Budget Committee meets to finalize numbers for 2009 Budget

Friday, Nov 14/08 at 9:30am - CRD Board of Directors' meeting (Note - this is the final meeting of the CRD Board of Directors for the term of 2005-2008)

Future All Candidates Forum - SD #27, CRD + City of WL

A reminder of the following forums for School Board, Cariboo Regional District and City of WL (Councilors + Mayor):

Mayoralty Candidates Forum on Tuesday, Nov 4/08 - hosted by WL Chamber of Commerce:

Held at Pioneer Complex (not certain of which room though - you can ask the front desk which room exactly they are holding it) from 11:30am - 2:00pm. Chamber members only + guests can attend this event

School District #27 - Tuesday, Nov 4/08 - hosted by C-C Teachers' Association:

Held in WL Junior School Commons Area - for Zones #4, 5, 6 Trustee Candidate's

Mayoralty Candidates Forum on Wednesday, Nov 5/08 - hosted by Cariboo GM:

Held at 510 North Broadway (former College + GM Site) from 7:00pm - 9:00pm. This will be an "Open Mike" Forum, you can go up to the Mike, ask your question and they will allow a rebuttal, as required. This forum is being moderated by John Dressler

CRD - Area 'F' Director Candidate's + SD # 27 (Zone 4 Candidates), hosted by Miocene Community Association:

Held at Miocene Community Hall from 7-9pm on Wednesday, Nov 5/08. This forum is being moderated by Ross McCoubrey (former teacher at 150 Mile Elementary + President - Miocene Community Association)

Mayor + Councillor Candidates - City of WL:

This forum is being held at WL Seniors' Village on Thursday, Nov 6/08 from 3-5pm. I encourage all to attend

Mayor + Councillor Candidates - City of WL Forum - hosted by Social Planning Council:

This forum is being held at the Gibraltar Room on Wednesday, November 12th from 7-9pm. The format used is called "World Cafe". Candidates will be at tables and the public can approach the table where the candidate you want to discuss issues with is - have a discussion and move on to the next table

All Candidates Forum - WL City Councillors at Gibraltar Room on Monday, Nov 3/08

All 11 Candidates for City Council (see previous post on Candidates for WL City Councillor for actual names)

About 60 people in attendance, including myself, WL Chamber of Commerce Directors and Brian Goodrich, who moderated the forum

Topics of Discussion included:

a) Arts and Culture
b) New Fire Hall
c) P3's (Public-Private Partnerships)
d) Identifying 1 Major Issue for next term to focus on and also issue(s) that you couldn't address
e) Thompson Rivers' University in WL and how to improve its' stature in Williams Lake
f) Level of current City of WL Debt

All in all, a good forum, good turnout and as it was said by one individual, some tough choices lay ahead for voters' on Nov 15

CRD Bylaw #4420 - Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function (Proposed)

Recently, I have been going door-to-door providing information on CRD (Cariboo Regional District) Bylaw #4420 (Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function - Proposed). I've been critical on this CRD initiative in the past and now, I'm going to take a step further

If elected, I will work with my fellow CRD Directors to do the following:

1) Refer Bylaw #4420 back to Central Cariboo Joint Committee for further discussion and request them to either abandon the Bylaw in favour of creating a "Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Strategic Plan" and if a Function is necessary then, go for it with full public consultation, led by WL Council + CRD Directors, in all participating areas (ie: Electoral Areas D, E, F, J, K + City of WL - if appropriate in Electoral Areas J + K) or if even borrowing, again as necessary/appropriate, for perhaps a full Arts and Culture Centre - more discussion there, I believe, is necessary

If the Joint Committee wishes to proceed with Bylaw #4420, then I would ask them to have Staff remove Electoral Area 'F' as a Participant in Bylaw #4420 and bring the draft amended Bylaw #4420 back to Joint Committee for discussion before referring it back to the Board for approval

The current Bylaw #4420, is not in the best interest of local government and Area 'F' residents, in my humble judgment and that of all Area 'F' residents that I've talked to so far.

If that means certain people want to accuse me of being "Anti-Arts and Culture" in Williams Lake, then so be it. I'd rather be accused of being "Anti-Arts and Culture" then abdicate my responsibility to all Area 'F' residents.