Tuesday, September 29, 2009

In today's WL Tribune (Seniors' Town Hall + Debate over no-build convenant)

A couple of stories that caught my eye today that you should read:

1) City holds firm on the "no-build" restrictive convenant for Phase 2 at the Prosperity Ridge Development site - story is here

2) Diana French, in her weekly column, concurs with a suggestion that I'd previously blogged on, namely holding a Seniors' Town Hall meeting to discuss the future vision around the Cariboo Lodge/Heritage House Site, with seniors' in living in the City as well as in the fringe areas (CRD Areas D, E, and F) along with members of WL City Council and CRD Directors for Areas D, E, and F - her column is here

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Preliminary Results for Cariboo Regional District Referendum - Williams Lake Rural Fringe Fire Protection (Phase 2)

This evening, I received the preliminary results for the referendum being conducted by the Cariboo Regional District on the following question:

Are you in favour of the adoption of Cariboo Regional District Williams Lake Rural Fringe Fire Protection (Phase 2) Service Establishment Bylaw No. 4526, 2009, which would allow the following:

"the establishment of a service to provide fire protection to the service area, with a maximum requisition of $151,554 or an amount raised by applying a tax rate of $2.23229/$1,000 to the net taxable value of land and improvements in the service area (based on 2009 assessed values, the residential rate is $2.215/$1,000 on assessed value of residential land and improvements)?”

Yeas - 181
Nays - 28

Final results should be known next week

Update on Monday, September 28th - The above results have now been finalized and the preliminary numbers are now the final numbers

Friday, September 25, 2009

Infrastructure Funding Announcements in Cariboo-Chilcotin

Good morning:

The Province and the Government of Canada announced funding yesterday for 174 Infrastructure Projects throughout BC. Some of the projects being funded in the Cariboo-Chilcotin are listed below:

City of Williams Lake:

Mackenzie Avenue Rehab:

Total Price - $10,500,000

Funding from the Government of Canada - $3,500,000
Funding from the Province of BC - $3,500,000
Funding from the City of Williams Lake - $3,500,000

Cariboo Regional District:

108 Mile Reservoir Replacement - Electoral Area 'G'

Total Price - $1,101,000

Funding from the Government of Canada - $367,000
Funding from the Province of BC - $367,000
Funding from the CRD - $367,000

City of Quesnel:

West Quesnel Land Stability Project:

Total Price - $4,731,000

Funding from the Government of Canada - $1,577,000
Funding from the Province of BC - $1,577,000
Funding from the City of Quesnel - $1,577,000

A list of all projects being funded in BC can be found here

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Mayor Cook defends decision not to advertise CAO position

In response to my letter to the editor this past Tuesday questioning Council's decision not to advertise externally the CAO position at City Hall, Mayor Cook responds to my criticism of that decision

The story is here

WL Council Highlights - September 22/09

Meeting called to order at 7:30pm

Present - Mayor Cook with Councillors Rathor, Montoya, Walters, Bourdon and Zacharias

Absent - Councillor T. C. Barr


1) RCMP Sgt Warren Brown made a number of presentations to newly-minted Aux. RCMP in the Cariboo-Chilcotin

2) Jarrett Akeson publicly apologized to Council for his actions from earlier this year - Mayor Cook accepted Mr. Akeson's apology to Council, on behalf of Council


1) Council adopted a number of Central Cariboo Joint Committee Reports involving:

i) First Nation Liaison Position - lobby Province for continued funding for this position. If no money from the Province is forthcoming, then Council/CRD to attempt to fund this position in 2010

ii) CRD Procedure Bylaw Review Committee - Councillor Zacharias was appointed to this Committee

iii) Regional Sustainability Coordinator Position - request from the Central Cariboo Sustainability Committee for funding to support the Regional Sustainability Coordinator position be denied and the community committees be encouraged to network.

iv) New Food and Beverage Policy -
Policy of the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex to meet or exceed the 2007 Guidelines for Food and Beverage Sales in BC Schools and the 2007 Nutritional Guidelines for Vending Machines in BC Public Buildings be endorsed.

2) Permissive Property Tax Exemption Bylaw for 2010 adopted

3) 2 UBCM Resolutions (Non-Payment of Industrial Property Taxes, Restorative Justice) referred to Mayor and 5 Councillors (Rathor, Montoya, Zacharias, Bourdon and Walters) attending UBCM Convention

4) Letter from CRD re: 2010 Forest Capital of BC - Letter received, Letter of Support to be forwarded to the CRD and referred to City of WL Staff to identify a Staff Liaison

5) 3 Proclamations - Small Business Week, Fire Prevention Week and Waste Reduction Week - all during the month of October

6) In-Camera #4 - 2009 (Appt to City APC for balance for 2009) - Report received confirming Steve Forseth, Charlene Hays, Dan Hay and Ian Klepsch as members of the City's APC for the balance of 2009

7) Late Item #1 - Council
awarded the Contract for the Mackenzie Avenue Pavement Assessment and Overall Pavement Management Plan to EBA Engineering Consultants Ltd. for the amount of $160,228.00, excluding GST; and further, $6,000.00 be allocated from the 2010 budget to complete the Overall Pavement Management Plan

8) Late Item #2 -
That pursuant to In-Camera Report #5-2009, the letters from Prosperity Ridge Developments Ltd. dated September 11, 2009 and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure dated September 14, 2009, and the directive of Council to reaffirm support for the Prosperity Ridge development and to work with the developer and Ministry of Transportation to identify a solution for traffic issues on South Lakeside and Highway 20 that satisfies the interest of all parties, be brought forward to a Regular Meeting of Council for the public record

Council meeting adjourned at 8:30pm to resume In-Camera

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

CRD Rural Fire Protection (Phase 2) Public Consultation Meeting

Meeting started at 7:01pm

Meeting held in the CRD Boardroom


Deb Bischoff - Director, Electoral Area 'D'
Steve Mazur - Director, Electoral Area 'E'
Rowena Bastien - CRD Manager of Protective Services
Randy Isfeld - City of WL Fire Chief (entered meeting at 7:15pm)
6 Members of the Public

Ms. Bastien welcomed everyone to the meeting and then gave an overview of this intiative and the history behind it. It was noted that there are 14 Certified Rural Volunteer Fire Departments in the Cariboo Regional District. As well, the max requistion is $151,000 with an applied residential tax rate of $221.50/$100,000 of assessed value on land and improvements. 2 Advance Voting Opportunities have taken place on September 16th and 18th with the General Voting Day being designated on Saturday, September 26th, 2009 from 8am - 8pm at the CRD Boardroom (Suite D - 180 North 3rd Avenue - across the street from 7-11)

A General Question and Answer Period took place with Ms. Bastien and Mr. Isfeld

Meeting adjourned at 7:35pm

*** A reminder that you can get all the information on who can vote and what ID you need to bring with you to the poll on Saturday, September 26th at http://www.cariboord.bc.ca

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

CRD Board Highlights - Sept 18/09

Northern Medical Trust

The Cariboo Chilcotin Regional Hospital District (CCRHD) agreed to allocate $30,000 from the $100,000 Recruitment and Retention policy to the Northern Medical Trust. The Board committed to a three year test period, seeing $30,000 provided annually and will be reviewed at the end of the term to evaluate the program’s success. Revenues from the Trust assist students participating in the Northern Medical Program who are far more likely to remain in north central British Columbia following completion of their training. Currently both Quesnel and Wells are members of the Trust. The Trust was incorporated in 2002 and soon after began approaching local governments throughout northern British Columbia for contributions towards the program.

Community Tourism Funding

The Cariboo Regional District will be applying for $2,149, of unused Community Tourism funding for further development of the wheelchair accessible trails in the region. This Wheelchair Accessible Trails Project is an excellent fit for the community tourism program funding as one of the project’s key purposes is to create a niche tourism market in the Cariboo Chilcotin. Last year, Towns for Tomorrow had provided funding for the development of wheelchair accessible trails in the region at 5 locations: the Cottonwood Historic Site, the Sisters Creek Recreation Site in Kersley, Parkland Community Property, 108 Mile and Sepa Lake Trails, and the Horsefly Salmon Viewing Trails.

National Waste Reduction Week

The Cariboo Regional District declared October 19 to 25, 2009 as Waste Reduction Week throughout the Cariboo Chilcotin. Next week during the Union of British Columbia Municipalities Conference in Vancouver, Directors will discuss the changing of eco-fees to refundable deposits with the Minister of Environment, the Honourable Barry Penner. Additionally, the Regional District will be undertaking a campaign to promote this year’s Waste Reduction Week theme of Too Good to Waste to draw attention to ecological sustainability and resource conservation. The main goal is to raise awareness about waste and its social and environmental impacts. Further information is available online at http://www.wrwcanada.com/

Forest Capital Applications

The Cariboo Regional District will be submitting applications to the Association of British Columbia Forest Professionals (ABCFP) and the Canadian Forestry Association (CFA) as the Forestry Capital of Canada and BC respectively. Both programs are designed to build community spirit and recognize the environmental, historical and economical significances of the Cariboo-Chilcotin’s surrounding forests; a true celebration of our forest resources. The goal of the Forest Capital programs is to foster regional partnership through celebration, and to support the Cariboo-Chilcotin forest industry, local forestry professionals, and their families. A successful Forest Capital program can have tremendous regional benefits in addition to recognizing our member municipalities.

Barking Dogs

The Cariboo Regional District gave first and second reading to a new Noise Control bylaw that defines and includes barking dog issues. This new bylaw is written to address ongoing issues of barking dogs in many communities throughout the region. This new bylaw will provide an effective tool for enforcement. The former noise bylaws did not specifically address the issues of barking dogs; instead these bylaws were focused on other types of noise such as construction noise, or loud parties. For further information, please visit the CRD website at www.cariboord.bc.ca and review the proposed regulations under bylaws.

NRCAN Funding

The CRD will be applying for funding support through the Natural Resources Canada Mountain Pine Beetle initiative to undertake wildfire hazard reduction projects at Esler Sports Complex and the 108 Greenbelt. The Regional District took advantage of this program in 2008 and received $73,000 to complete site plans and fire hazard reduction works at the Esler Sports Complex, and the 150 Mile House and Wildwood Volunteer Fire Departments. Work at the Esler Sports Complex was not completed with approximately $35,000 in labour, equipment and supervision cost necessary to treat the remaining areas.

On the Road Again

The second of two Board on the Road events took place September 17 and 18, 2009. Approximately 90 residents enjoyed burgers and hot dogs prepared by members of the Royal Canadian Legion who will also be receiving the proceeds of the event. On Friday September 18, the Board held its regularly scheduled Board meeting at the Chimney Felker Lake Fire Hall in Electoral Area E. In June of this year, the Board had travelled to Lone Butte in Area L for the first Board on the Road event for 2009

Vancouver Sun calls for regulatory "one-stop shop" for Mining Industry

The Vancouver Sun has an interesting editorial on how to make the BC Mining Industry flourish given a complicated set of regulations from the Federal/Provincial Governments

The editorial is here

Monday, September 21, 2009

City of Quesnel COW Meeting Highlights + Public Hearing (Permissive Property Tax Exemption Bylaws for years 2010-2012)

Meeting started at 7:00pm

Members Present: Mayor M. Sjostrom and Councillors' Roodenburg, Thapar, Paull, Couldwell and Oakes

Members Absent: Councillor M. Cave

Public Hearing (Permissive Property Tax Exemption for 2010-2012)

Mayor M. Sjostrom read aloud a Statement explaining the purpose and procedure of the Public Hearing on the Bylaws

The Director of Finance (K. Bolton) reviewed history on the Bylaws

The Deputy City Manager (L. Scott) reviewed 2 pieces of written correspondence received to date on the Bylaws with members of Quesnel Council

Mayor M. Sjostrom then called for oral submissions from the Public Gallery

Oral Submissions:

Denise Mufford (Quesnel Hotel) explained she had consulted with a number of local governments in BC on permissive property tax exemptions issued including PG, Kamloops and Williams Lake. She further explained that she is looking for equal fairness

Quesnel Curling Club reviewed the history on their permissive property tax file and asked Quesnel Council to reconsider the permissive property tax exemption based on a wide number of factors including loss of gaming grants and a growing need to deal with capital projects. They also reviewed the benefits of the Quesnel Curling Club to the community.

Questions from Council to the Quesnel Curling Club included: approaching the CRD (Cariboo Regional District) and amount of Gaming Grants they receive and use of the Curling Rink during the off-season

Ray Daggett from Quesnel Seniors' Society made a presentation requesting an increase of their property tax exemption from 90% to 100%. He explained the rationale for their request including a downturn in the local economy. He noted a number of groups in Quesnel get a discounted rate for rental fees including the City of Quesnel

The Local Royal Canadian Legion requested Council to grant a 100% exemption to their Property Tax Exemption. They further explained/clairified their tax status and all the good works they do in the City of Quesnel.

The Public Hearing was then adjourned at 7:35pm

Committee of the Whole Session - started at 7:41pm

1) Downtown Beautification projects - City Planner T. Turner reviewed her report with members of the Committee. All projects that will have the Development Permit requirements waived are within the Quesnel Downtown BIA except 1 business doing a mural in the South Quesnel area, due to a grant received by the Quesnel Downtown BIA.

Report received and Council gave its' approval to the City Planner to proceed, as per her oral/written report

2) UBCM Preparations - Mayor Sjostrom reviewed her memo with members of the Committee.

Council reviewed 3 UBCM Resolutions to go forward to the UBCM Convention. Mayor Sjostrom asked Council to review their Agendas when they arrive at the UBCM Convention. Discussion included different meetings' that were established at the UBCM Convention and where Mayor/Councillors' would be at the UBCM Convention. A special note was made that Mayor Sjostrom had an open invitation to any Councillor who wanted to sit in on a meeting could.

Meeting adjourned at 8:16pm to a Special Closed Meeting of Quesnel Council

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Process to Hire new CAO - City of Williams Lake

On Thursday, September 17th, 2009 - The City of Williams Lake issued a press release advising that Brian Carruthers had been appointed as the City's new CAO (Chief Administrative Officer) effective October 5th, 2009. Council's decision on the appointment of the new CAO was unanimous. It was noted as well that Brian Carruthers former position of General Manager of Community Services will not be filled at this time. I believe that Brian Carruthers will do a good job as the City's new CAO

I firmly believe, with the CAO being a senior executive position, and with the evidence available to date, Council's decision not to advertise this position externally is an insult to taxpayers. The salary for the CAO position in the City of Williams Lake, I'm told, is in excess of $100,000 plus benefits and expenses. Given the size of the CAO Salary, taxpayers' are entitled to be ensured that this particular salary is being paid to an individual who is fully qualified to be CAO of this City and also ensuring that the CAO position was filled using a competition-based process. I believe you will find that most senior executive positions are filled by way of a competition-based process in the private sector and with most local governments in BC

The appointment of the new CAO here in Williams Lake, I believe, demonstrates a lack of business experience by Mayor Kerry Cook as she leads Council and is supposed to provide leadership to Council directly on personnel matters and other matters as well

Upcoming WL Council Meeting this Tuesday

A reminder that your local City Council will be meeting on Tuesday to discuss a number of items

The Agenda/Reports can be found here

Outcome of BC Liberals - Cariboo-Chilcotin Riding Association AGM on Sept 19th

The AGM of the BC Liberals - Cariboo-Chilcotin Riding Association was held in 100 Mile on September 19th and 22 people came out to the AGM

Meeting commenced at 1:18pm

Ken Wilson, in his final report as President, thanked everyone for their support over the last 9 years including Tory Kier who served as Treasurer over the same time period. Tory Kier was also stepping down as Treasurer

A lot of discussion took place around how to keep the membership engaged, in the period between elections. It was noted that a "mini-conference" involving all 5 Ridings in Zone 4 (Cariboo-Chilcotin, Fraser-Nicola, Kamloops-North & South Thompson and Shuswap) should take place in the near future

Donna Barnett also gave a report to all present and noted the following:

* Thanks to all who helped her get elected
* Thanks to Ken Wilson for serving as President of the Riding Association for the last 9 years
* Information campaign re: HST, Provincial Budget, etc to commence ASAP in local media
* Will be spending 2 Days in Chilcotin Region in October
* Ministers Pat Bell and Colin Hansen to be in the riding in the month of October
* Please keep me informed on local issues when I'm not in the riding and forward to me, via email or directly to my staff for follow-up

The following individuals were elected to the Executive for a 1 year term:

Bill Carruthers - President
Ken Greenall - Vice-President
Steve Forseth - Secretary
Walt Cobb - Treasurer
Gillian Pledge - Membership Chair
John McCarvill - Policy Chair

Directors-at-Large will be:

*Sheila Mortensen
* Tom Hoffman
* Walter Bramsleven
* Keith Dufresne
* Guenter Weckerle
* Ron Harrod
* Arnold Abram
* Karen Roberts

New Riding Association President Bill Carruthers commented on the following, while giving his inaugural address:

* Work on Youth Vote
* Review on Election Results from 2009 Provincial Election
* Re-establish Major Fundraising Event in Riding, to occur in spring or fall - Director-at-Large W. Bramsleven and the Riding Association President to take place and then take ideas to full Executive for discussion and decision

Meeting adjourned at 3:12pm

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Breaking News - new CAO for the City of Williams Lake

Mayor Kerry Cook announced at the beginning of the Central Cariboo/City of Williams Lake Joint Committee Meeting tonight (Wednesday, September 16th) that Brian Carruthers who was the City's General Manager of Community Services would now become the City's next CAO (Chief Administrative Officer) and that Council's decision on the new CAO was unanimous

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Mayor Cook meets with local Seniors'

On September 10th, Mayor Cook with City Staff met with the WL & District Seniors' Advisory Council, with regard to the Cariboo Lodge/Heritage House site issue

A local website has the story on the meeting here

But there were a couple of quotes that I'd like to address:

1) We need choices in Williams Lake,” she (Audrey MacLise) continued. “That property (Cariboo Lodge) was given to seniors years ago and it shouldn’t be chipped away at and given to other groups: it’s ours.”

While I agree that seniors' should have a strong say around the future of Cariboo Lodge/Heritage House, I'd caution Ms. MacLise around the fact that seniors' "own" Cariboo Lodge, this property belongs to all taxpayers' of Williams Lake and everyone, including seniors', should get a say into the future of this site. As Mayor Cook has already stated, the City on its' own cannot afford to turn the site into affordable housing or even housing options for seniors', it will require a partnership, either with BC Housing or some other non-profit senior housing group, perhaps even with the group that built Glen Arbour. But sounding childish doesn't help her cause any, so staying away from childish comments would advance her cause much more greatly

2) “I’d like to see the City and the CRD take some leadership and see that seniors are a part of the decision process, stated George Atamenenko"

I wholeheartledly agree with Mr. Atamenenko and the sooner this is done, the better. I believe a "Seniors' Town Hall" meeting with WL City Council, the Area 'D', Area 'E' and Area 'F' Directors and CRD/City of WL Staff along with interested seniors' should be held on the future of Cariboo Lodge/Heritage House ASAP

Provincial Gov't invests more than $500,000 in Cariboo-Chilcotin Communities

The provincial government is providing a total of $505,499
to Williams Lake, 100 Mile House and the Cariboo Regional District in
support of public safety initiatives and local government operations.

"I'm please to see these funds go towards the safety and well-being of our
residents," says Cariboo-Chilcotin MLA Donna Barnett. "This investment makes
a real difference in our communities by supporting essential infrastructure
and services."

Recipients of the Strategic Community Investment Funds are as follows:

Small Community Grant:
* $176,842 to the City of Williams Lake.
* $162,800 to the District of 100 Mile House.

Traffic Fine Revenue Sharing:
* $100,510 to the City of Williams Lake.

Regional District Grant:
* $65,347 to the Cariboo Regional District.

This is the second of three payments from the Strategic Community Investment
Fund, a two-year, $232-million initiative consisting of the Traffic Fine
Revenue Sharing Program and Small Community and Regional District Grants.
Communities received a first payment in Spring 2009 and will receive a third
payment in early 2010.

Through the Traffic Fine Revenue Sharing Program, the province has provided
100 per cent of net traffic fine revenues to local government since 2004.
Traffic fine revenue comes from fines on violation tickets, with a
municipality receiving an amount based on its contribution to the total cost
of municipal policing. The Small Community and Regional District Grant
allocation is calculated based on population and assessment.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Thompson River University President/Vice-Chancellor Turfed

In a shocker of an announcement this afternoon - Kamloops Daily News has information on the firing of the former TRU (Thompson River University) President/Vice-Chancellor

The story is here

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bob Simpson's Town Hall Meeting in Williams Lake (NDP MLA - Cariboo-North)

A local website that I subscribe to has an article on the Town Hall meeting hosted by Bob Simpson (NDP MLA - Cariboo-North):

The link is here

Steve Rant - Budgets

1) City Budgeting Process - Spirit Square Project

Earlier this year, the City decided to spend $100,000 on re-doing the retaining wall at the Spirit Square along 1st Avenue with the matching $100,000 coming from the Province for this project. On Sept 8th, WL Council agreed to appropriate (take) $40,000 from the Surplus Account to complete additional works for the Spirit Square project which includes the replacement of the stairs from Haines Office World to the old Courthouse square (Spirit Square Site).

In my humble judgment, this additional money could have / should have come from General Revenues (2009 Master Budget - Capital Plan) because Council should have looked at this project holistically at the beginning of 2009 by deciding what works to complete, what matching funds from the Province were available plus build in a contigency fund for this project and budget accordingly.

Using funds from the Surplus Account (Rainy Day Account) demostrate a lack of planning on the part of Council for the Spirit Square Project and also shows a lack of fiscal restraint at City Hall. This is especially true given most people in the City are either living paycheque to paycheque or on EI Cheques which for a huge number of people, their EI Benefits will soon expire in October or November of this year

The Spirit Square project is an honourable project for the downtown core of Williams Lake, but Council could have easily committed to this project in January of 2009 while adhering to reasonable budgetary principles which includes deciding the scope of a project, determine what money is available from the City, Province and Federal Government and budget accordingly with a contigency fund being available for this project to deal with "unknowns" as the project proceeded.

As the WL Tribune stated today in their editorial - hopefully this is the last time that Council deals with financial matters relating to the Spirit Square project

2) SD#27 Budgeting Process + Annual Facilities Grant

The Board of Education for SD#27 budgeted for maintenance at our local schools and traditionally, the School District would use their Annual Facility Grant to pay for these maintenance projects. In August, the Ministry of Education stated that School Boards around the Province were told earlier in the year that their Annual Facility Grant was not going to be available and that they should budget accordingly. Schools Boards' have suggested that they were told no such thing. I can tell you that School District #27 budgeted for maintenance at local schools on the basis that the Annual Facility Grant would be forthcoming to pay for those bills

If the Minister of Education is telling the truth, then School Boards have only themselves to blame but if the reverse is true, that what occured is "immoral" in my eyes and the Ministry of Education should have given more notice to School Boards' of Victoria's intention to withdraw the Annual Facility Grant.

At this point, it appears that a communication issue between Victoria and School Boards' is involved here and I hope that this is clarifed very soon so School Boards' can complete their budgets for the 2009-2010 School Year. As in previous years, budgets for School District #27 + #28 will be tight once again, given the impacts of increases to MSP, Carbon Tax, etc. and so the push will be on to ensure budget impacts stay away from the classrooms, but I don't think Boards' will be able to do that this time around, given money is extremely tight and that student numbers are falling throughout the Province and are expected to do so for the next period of time.

Town Hall Meeting with Bob Simpson (NDP MLA - Cariboo-North)

Meeting started at 7:00pm

Bob Simpson started the session by reminding everyone of his belief that no matter what your political stripe, you should be available to your constituents' at all times/places

It was noted that Donna Barnett (BC Liberal MLA - Cariboo-Chilcotin + Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Community and Rural Development) was invited to the Town Hall Meeting but declined to attend

Numerous topics of discussion included:

* Mines
* Forestry
* Size of Provincial Deficit and Debt

Meeting adjourned at 8:45pm

WL Council Meeting - September 8th

Present: Mayor Cook with Councillors Rathor, Montoya, Zacharias and Bourdon

Absent: Councillors Walters and Barr

Staff Present: CAO A. DeFeo, S. Moxey (Director of Corporate Services), G. Goodall (GM of Planning and Operations)


1) Council gave permission for the "Take Back the Night" walk on Friday, September 25th, 2009 at 5pm starting at Boitanio Park

2) 3 "Community Spirit" Awards were presented to:

i) WL Stampede Parade Committee
ii) WL Stampede Queens Committee
iii) WL Central Business Improvement Area Association


1) Council agreed to award a contract to McTar Division of Lafarge Canada for the provision of Road Salt to the City for the winter months

2) Council will be sending a letter to UBCM (Union of BC Muncipalities) advising of Council's position from 2006 on Industrial Taxation which is that the Province should not restrict how a Council may tax Class 4 and 5 Property Owners (Light and Heavy Industry)

3) Council agreed to install 2 Pedestrian crosswalks - 1 at Barlow Avenue/Fairview Drive and 1 at Rife Road and Country Club Blvd. Also the speed limit at the City-owned park land will be decreasing from 50km/h to 30km/h. It is hoped that these measures will reduce the potential for an accident between vehicles and pedestrians (adults + kids)

4) Staff were directed to work with BC Housing to prepare an information flyer regarding the Rental Subsidy Program for distribution through the school system to ensure families are aware of this important resource.

5) Council authorized the Mayor & Corporate Officer to sign the Northern Development Initiative Accountability Agreement for the Trails Feasibility Study grant from NDI (North Development Initiative Trust)

6) Council gave 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Reading to Bylaw #2101, 2009 which deals with Permissive Property Tax Exemptions in the City for 2010. Also, Staff were asked to bring forward a policy that will set criteria on how/when permissive property tax exemptions are issued

7) Mayor Cook, Councillor Bourdon and a City Staff member will be travelling to Guangdong Province, China to complete a BC/Asia Twinning Mission in November of 2009. Council approved a budget of $15,000 for this Mission. Staff were requested to bring forward a recommendation to allocate the remaining $7,000 for local twinning initiatives that would comply with the provisions of the Memorandum of Understanding with the Province on Local Government Twinning Relationships

8) Council gave permission to the local MADD (Mothers' Against Drunk Driving) chapter to establish a memorial garden at Boitanio Park on the corner on 8th Ave + Borland Street

9) Council will proclaim the week of November 15 to 22, 2009 as "Restorative Justice Week" in the City of Williams Lake

10) Late Item - Council agreed to appropriate an additional $40,000 from the General Surplus Account to complete additional works for the Spirit Square project. These works including replacing the stairs from Haines Office World to the Spirit Square site itself (I'll be blogging on this item later)

11) It was announced that Alberto DeFeo will be leaving the City in October for a new job with the District of Lake Country as its' new CAO (Chief Administrative Officer) which Mr. DeFeo will start in November of 2009

Meeting adjourned at 8:30pm