Friday, July 31, 2009

CRD Arts and Culture Function Press Release

Today, the Cariboo Regional District issued a press release regarding the meeting dates for the community and stakeholders' meetings to develop a Service Delivery Plan for the newly established Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function.

However, there are some statements that have to be challenged:

For example,

One statement reads:

"Arts and culture is very important to the central Cariboo" - while the people of Area 'F' stated their desire for a partnership between the Regional District and the Community Arts Council, people in Areas 'D' and 'E' did not express a desire to be taxed to support Arts and Culture in the Central Cariboo, neither did the people of Williams Lake. If that was truly a priority for people, then they would say so. What I heard in the last 2 Joint Town Hall Meetings in Williams Lake in 2007/2008 was a priority to deal with Recycling and Water and Sewer on Dog Creek. And where was Duncan Barnett promoting this idea around a support tax for Arts and Culture?? I'm not sure, but I can tell you that he has not been at the Joint Town Hall Meeting in Williams Lake in 2007, 2008 and 2009.

Another statement reads:

this new service will help provide similar opportunities for residents in arts and culture. - Again, where was Duncan Barnett explaining to the people of Areas D, E and the City of Williams Lake on the necessaity for a support service for the local Arts and Culture?? I can tell you that he was not at the Area D and E Town Hall Meetings' in 2008 and 2009 and also the Joint Town Hall Meeting for Williams Lake during 2008 and 2009

Bottom Line - a little bit of hypocrisy going on here. Director Barnett loves to express concerns about downloading from the Province to local governments, but is prepared to take on a role that is clearly provincial/federal in nature.

Please remember to get to your local community meetings' on the Service Delivery Plan for the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function, if you are as concerned about this process as I am.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Head-on Collision in Lac La Hache

From the WL Tribune website:

A two-vehicle head-on collision has occurred in the north end of Lac la Hache on Highway 97.

Early reports say the highway could be closed for two hours as of 2:20 p.m.

Check back for updates

Hopefully, there are no fatalities involved and everyone walks away from the collision

Friday, July 24, 2009

Concern with Public Consultation Process and the local Arts and Culture Function

Hello all:

In my previous blog entry, I'd released the dates/times/locations for the stakeholder/general public and First Nations meetings', with regards to the creation of the Service Delivery Plan for the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function

While I take no issue with the meetings taking place with stakeholders' and the general public, I do have a concern with the consultant meeting with First Nations Bands, in the process to creating the Service Delivery Plan (Business Plan) for the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function

If the intent to meet with First Nation Bands was to introduce them to the Function and see if they desired to participate, by way of contract to contribute funds equivalent to what their reserve lands would have been taxed for this Function, then that is a good thing and the meeting should proceed

However, if the intent of the above meeting is to introduce them to a potential source of funds for First Nations Cultural Projects to which they could apply for funding, then I would have to object on the grounds that they are receiving a benefit to which they were neither taxed for or contributed money towards to ensure those who are taxed are receiving equal consideration for funding of arts and culture events or arts/culture building financial support

Also, the stakeholder survey requests whether or not the person filling it out wishes to join an advisory board to give advice to the Central Cariboo Joint Committee on this Function - I believe once the Business Plan (Service Delivery Plan) is in place, then there is no further need for the Community Arts Council to give advice to the local Joint Committee on this Function, although a semi-formal meeting between the local Arts Council and the Joint Committee each year to develop yearly Business Plan Goals is probably a good thing to do.

Also, when these meetings occur, I believe the General Public has an absolute right to hear what the stakeholders' for this Function are telling the consultant, in terms of what they (Stakeholders') want the Function to do, year over year

Also, there is no process to get public input on the Draft Service Delivery Plan prior to it being submitted to the CRD Board of Directors' for adoption at the Finance/Budget Committee Meeting on October 8th, 2009. The plan should be subject to public scrutiny and the CRD Board should take the public comments on the Draft Service Delivery Plan into consideration, when deciding whether or not to adopt the 2010 Business Plan for the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function

I have a meeting with the City of Williams Lake Mayor Kerry Cook on Friday, August 7th, 2009 at 2:30pm and I intend to raise this subject with her and a few others and I'll report out on the outcome of that meeting here. The blog entry should be available, sometime late Friday evening

Meeting Dates on Creating the Service Delivery Plan (Business Plan) for the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function

The meeting dates to consult with the stakeholders/general public on the creation of a Service Delivery Plan for the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function has been released and they are, as follows:

Electoral Area 'F':

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

Stakeholder Meeting from 2:30pm - 4:30pm at the Horsefly Library, located at 5779 Walters Drive, Horsefly, BC

General Public Meeting from 6:30pm - 8:30pm at the Horsefly Community Hall, located at 5772 Horsefly Rd

Monday, August 10th, 2009

Stakeholder/General Public Meeting from 6:30pm - 8:30pm at the Likely Community Hall

Electoral Area 'D':

Thursday, August 6th, 2009:

Stakeholder/General Public Meeting from 1:00pm - 4:00pm at the MacAlister Station at McLeese Lake

Electoral Area 'E':

No meetings planned in this Electoral Area

City of Williams Lake:

Monday, August 17th, 2009:

First Nations Meeting from 1:00pm - 4:00pm at the Northern Shuswap Tribal Council office, located at 17, 1st Avenue South

Thursday, August 20th, 2009:

Stakeholder Meeting from 2:30pm - 5:30pm at the Pioneer Complex, located at 351 Hodgson Road

General Public Meeting from 6:00pm - 8:00pm at the Pioneer Complex, located at 351 Hodgson Road

If you can make any of these meetings in your home communities, I'd encourage you to do so

Campfire Ban This Weekend

A friendly reminder that if you are out camping this weekend anywhere in the Cariboo Fire Center Region which encompeses the Cariboo-Chilcotin, there is a prohibition on campfires. So, please don't be tempted to start one as the forests are just as dry as they were in 2003 or worse. You are still permitted to use your portable cookstoves to cook your food while camping. Otherwise, it looks like excellent weather to go to the lake or even take in camping activites anywhere in the Province

Have a great and safe weekend - wherever you may be

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Province of BC to harmonize the PST and GST on July 1, 2010

The Premier and Deputy Premier/Minister of Finance announced today that on July 1, 2010, there will be a harmonized tax of 12% in the Province of BC

The details:

It’s estimated the HST will remove over $2 billion in costs for B.C. businesses. That includes an estimated $1.9 billion of sales tax removed from business inputs, which enhances competitiveness, increases investment and productivity and, ultimately, increases prosperity. For example, some savings would include about $880 million for the construction industry, $140 million for manufacturing, $210 million for the transportation industry, $140 million for the forestry sector, and $80 million for mining and oil and gas. In addition, B.C. businesses will also save an estimated $150 million annually in compliance costs

Similar to PST exemptions, the B.C. HST will provide consumers with point-of-sale rebates on a number of products including gasoline and diesel fuel for motor vehicles, books, children’s-sized clothing and footwear, children’s car seats and car booster seats, diapers and feminine hygiene products

The proposed HST will include:
· Unlike any other province, B.C. will provide an automatic point-of-sale rebate so consumers do not have to pay the provincial portion of the HST at the pump for purchases of gasoline and diesel fuel for motor vehicles, including any biofuel components.
· A partial rebate of the provincial portion of the single sales tax for new housing to ensure that new homes up to $400,000 will bear no more tax than under the current PST system, while homes above $400,000 will receive a flat rebate of about $20,000.
· A refundable B.C. HST Credit paid quarterly with the GST and carbon tax credit to offset the impact of the tax on those with low incomes.
· A temporary delay in the provision of input tax credits for certain purchases by businesses with taxable sales in excess of $10 million.

The federal government will provide British Columbia with $1.6 billion in transitional funding in recognition of the improvement this change will make to business competitiveness in Canada. The full cost of administration will be borne by the federal government, saving the Province an estimated $30 million annually in administration costs. With this decision, the Province can now move forward and work with industry to implement the new HST.

Rebates and Tax Credits
To meet our unique requirements here in the province of British Columbia, the Harmonized Sales Tax would include the following point-of-sale rebates and tax credits for the provincial portion of HST:

· Fuel
o Gasoline and diesel motor fuels, including any biofuel components.
· Other items
o Books, children’s sized clothing and footwear, children’s car seats and car booster seats, diapers and feminine hygiene products.
· Housing
o A partial rebate of the provincial portion of the HST of up to $20,000 on all new housing.
· Low income tax credit
o A refundable B.C. HST Credit to help protect low-income individuals.

There will be rebates for municipalities, charities and eligible non-profit organizations to avoid tax increases for these sectors. And there will also be temporary restrictions of input tax credits for certain purchases by businesses with taxable sales over $10 million and financial institutions.

Agreements and Legislation
The Province of B.C. and the Government of Canada have signed a Memorandum of Agreement setting out their intention to establish an HST in British Columbia effective July 1, 2010. The agreement establishes a framework for the proposal, setting out key features such as the timing, the tax base, the rate and the flexibility available to the province.

The HST would be administered by the federal government in the same way that they now administer the GST and the HST in other HST provinces. The federal government would provide revenue to the province based on an allocation formula.

Some Organisations that Have Called for Harmonization

· B.C. Business Council
· B.C. Progress Board
· B.C. Chamber of Commerce
· Canada West Foundation
· Conference Board of Canada
· Chartered Accountants of British Columbia
· Retail Council of Canada
· Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters
· Certified General Accountants – British Columbia
· Certified General Accountants – Canada

As a resident of this Province, I believe the government has some communication work to do on this file as I'm not convinced, yet, how this is a "win-win" for the Province. But I look forward to the government explaining how this benefits us in the Cariboo-Chilcotin

The City of Williams Lake and a Regional Economic Development Function

A few years ago, the City of Williams Lake elected to use the same Economic Development Corporation model that the City of Quesnel uses to assist with Economic Development activities in Williams Lake. Last week, the Cariboo Regional District received $60,000 from CEDI (Community Economic Development Intiative) to begin research work into developing a Region-Wide Economic Development Function for the Cariboo Regional District

Now, I believe if the City were to keep its' Economic Development Corporation and yet participate in some way in a Cariboo Region District Regional Economic Development Function would be, I believe, at the height of hypocrisy

After all, this is the same City who complains about the costs the City incurs in being a member of the Administration Function of the Cariboo Regional District (note - the City is required, by provincial law, to be a member of this Function) and yet has its' own Admin Budget

I believe the City would be much further ahead by dissolving the local Economic Development Corporation and immediately transfer all EcDev activities to a Regional Economic Development Function. Benefits would include:

i) economy of scale of purchasing of marketing materials and other EcDev material
ii) Similiar EcDev Goals, by sub-region (North, Central Cariboo-Chilcotin and South Cariboo)would require fewer dollars from each participant as now you would have a bigger pool of dollars to draw from

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

CRD WL Fringe Rural Fire Protection (Phase 2) Meeting Notes - Thursday, July 16th

In attendance:

Deb Bischoff - CRD Electoral Area Director (Area 'D')
Steve Mazur - CRD Electoral Area Director (Area 'E')
Rowena Bastien - CRD Manager of Protective Services
Randy Isfeld - City of WL Director of Protective Services (Fire Chief)
9 Members of the Public

Meeting called to order at 7:01pm

Ms. Bastien made general introductions and then proceeded to a Powerpoint Presentation:

Points discussed include:

· 12 Electoral Area Directors and 4 Municipal Directors comprise the Cariboo Regional District Board
· 14 Volunteer Fire Departments throughout the CRD
· CRD also contracts with WL, Quesnel, 100 Mile and Wells to provide fire protection for fringe areas outside the 4 Municipalities
· Areas of Fire Protection Expansion Area – “Front” area of Fox Mountain, Esler Subdivision and Portions of Dog Creek Road
· This proposal has been discussed since with Area D + E residents’ since 2005
· Proposed Requisition of $151, 554 with a residential tax rate of $221.53 per $100,000 on assessed value of land and improvements

· General Voting Day is Saturday, September 26th with Advance Voting Days on Wednesday, September 16th, 2009 and Friday, September 18th, 2009. All polls (General/Advance) will open from 8am – 8pm. Mail-in Ballots are available for those who want to vote by mail. To obtain an mail-in ballot or to determine who can vote, contact Alice Walters (Corporate Officer) or Rick Hodgson (Deputy CAO) at the CRD WL Office (Ph: (250) – 392-3351))

A Question Period ensued with residents, Fire Chief R. Isfeld and R. Bastien

Questions discussed included:

i) Response time from new City of WL Fire Hall

Answer - Response time to new areas is to be a maximum of 13 minutes (Esler/Dog Creek Rd/Fox Mountain)

ii) What will the $150,000 budget for this Function (if it proceeds) be used for?

iii) Who can vote in the referendum and can each area (Esler, Dog Creek, Fox Mountain) vote in a separate vote?

Answer - Contact Alice Walters or Rick Hodgson at the CRD Office (250-392-3351) to see if your property is in the new Fire Protection Service Area and if it is, you can vote in the general voting day, advance voting day or mail in your vote. Contact the CRD Office for further details. All areas (Esler, Dog Creek Rd and Fox Mountain) will vote as 1 Block. The question will pass or fail on a majority of the votes cast

The question that will be put to the voters will be:

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)?”

Ms. Bastien advised 2 more meetings in July (Monday, July 20th and Wednesday, July 29/09) and 2 more in September (dates to be announced) – all meetings at WL City Hall (Council Chambers) starting at 7pm

General Voting Day on adoption of Bylaw #4526, 2009 is Saturday, September 26th, 2009 from 8am - 8pm

2 Advance Voting Opportunities will be held on Wednesday, September 16th and Friday, September 18th at the WL CRD Office from 8am - 8pm

Meeting adjourned at 7:52pm

Update - The meeting on Monday, July 20th, 2009 garnered no public interest.

The next public information meeting on this proposed Function is Wednesday, July 29, 2009 at 7pm in Council Chambers (WL City Hall - 450 Mart Street)

Quesnel Council Meeting - Monday, July 20th

Present: All members of Quesnel Council

Staff Present:

Byron Johnson - City Manager
Sandy Brunt - Executive Assistant
Matt Wood - Communications Supervisor
Tanya Turner - City Planner
Jack Marsh - Director of Public Works
Harlene Hunt - Transportation Manager

Meeting called to order at 7:03pm


1) Council received a report detailing the progress on the new pedestrian underpass on Hwy. 97 South at the top of Dragon Lake Hill. The underpass will create a new, safe link between South Quesnel and the City's Riverfront Trail System.
The original completion date was June 30, but a number of unforeseen problems arose during construction. Crews had to replace unsuitable soil under the highway to lay the new underpass concrete sections on. They also had to construct a retaining pond to hold excess ground water. The additional work has moved the completion date to July 31.The additional work has increased costs for the project from an initial budget of $988,863 (which was funded entirely by grants from the federal and provincial governments) to $1,085,860. Once the contingency sum of $25,000 is subtracted, the City needs an additional $72,000 to complete the project. Fortunately, the City can take this amount from its Community Works Fund (which is also made up of grant funding). While the project is behind schedule, there should be no additional costs to City of Quesnel taxpayers

2) Council approved the location and budget for a new bulk water filling plant. The plant is designed to provide large-scale users of water with easier access to water while allowing the City to recover the ongoing costs associated with operating a water service.The plant will be set up on the north side of the Hwy. 97 interchange with North Star Road, in one of the sections of the cloverleaf owned by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. The budget is $583,000, with the City contributing $313,000. The City received $200,000 from Western Economic Diversification and $70,000 from the Northern Development Initiative Trust to support the project - Councillor Oakes opposed

3) The camera on the Fraser River Footbridge will be replaced this year.
The camera can no longer record images useful for police investigations. As a result, the City will invest $25,000 towards the purchase of three new cameras that will be used to monitor the footbridge, the Spirit Square and the skateboard park in West Quesnel.

4) Council endorsed a report from the RCMP regarding the detachment's strategic priorities for 2009-2010. The detachment will focus on several issues, including:

Targeting a small percentage of individuals who drive much of the criminal activity.
Implementing foot patrols in business communities.
Continued impaired driving enforcement.
Continued education programs for youth and First Nations.
Targeting cocaine dealers and grow operations
Bringing the Bait Car program to Quesnel

The initiatives will be tracked by the detachment, with quarterly reports to the City

5) Council will send a letter to the United Steelworkers Local 1-425 supporting the organization's goals of assessing their workforce, developing training plans that meet individual and company needs, and providing ongoing support for training and upgrading.


The City received a national award from the Welcome Wagon for being that organization's Community of the Year (populations from 8,000 to 15,000).

Also - Quesnel Council made use of its new paperless agenda for the first time. Council and staff now use computers to view the agenda. This will save significant paper and staff time that was previously used to create paper-based agendas


Road racing Days - August 1 and 2.

Important Dates:

Kidney Foundation Give the Gift of Life Walk -> August 9, 1 p.m. at LeBourdais Park

Future Meeting Dates:

August 10th - Delegation Session

August 17th - Regular Council Meeting

August 24th - Committee of the Whole

Monday, July 20, 2009

Campfire Ban in Cariboo Fire Center Region

I have received a notice from the local Cariboo Fire Center advising that in addition to the Level 2 and 3 Open Fire Bans issued earlier this year on June 4th until further notice, a Level 1 Open Fire Ban is now in effect effective July 24th, 2009 which includes the prohibition of campfires on all land (Crown and Private) outside of municipalities in the Cariboo Fire Center Region (North to Hixon, West to Anahim Lake, South to Clinton and East to Horsefly/Likely) until further notice. You are still able to use your portable cookstoves at your local campsite.

Given the extremely hot weather over the next few days, please ensure that you don't resort to start a campfire while camping this weekend. The conditions in the forests is just too dry to risk any sort of campfire

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Central Cariboo Local Governments and the Principles of Public Consultation

Those of you who know me well, know that I firmly believe in the idea that the public (taxpayers') must be consulted on any new service(s) that either the City of WL or the Cariboo Regional District has been requested to establish and you will recall my previous posts on my opposition to the newly established Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function

In the business plan for 2009 for the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function, a Service Delivery Plan is to be created to provide for the operation of this Function over the next few years. The contractor has now been selected to write the Service Delivery Plan and it is Brownfield Consulting, which is partially owned by David/Sam Zirnhelt. They have already begun initial consultation with local communities in Areas D to F of the CRD and the City to get input. No word on when the general public will get to provide input and where these sessions will take place, although I have mentioned to Director Deb Bischoff (Area 'D' CRD Director) the need to ensure that Public Consultation takes place in each of Electoral Areas D, E, F and the City of WL and with only 5 weeks to go until the Service Delivery Plan must be done for September, when this plan goes before the CRD Board of Directors' for Budget Discussions for 2010, I fear that the Public Consultation that is done will be rushed, as was the case last fall to get public approval for the establishment of the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function

Meanwhile, at City Hall, Council gave 3 readings to Bylaw #2092 of 2009 which, if adopted, would dissolve the Downtown Parking Commission, which in previous years, has managed funds for the operation/purchasing of lots in the downtown core for businesses that have challenges in providing parking for their staff/customers. Council also received a letter from the local BIA expressing a concern around the dissolution of the Downtown Parking Commission. Councillor Rathor (City of WL Deputy Mayor), as Chair of the Public Works Portfolio, will now meet with the local BIA to discuss their concerns, prior to Council adopting Bylaw #2092

Now, had Council did a little homework and wished to be proactive, it should have asked for a meeting with the local BIA on this subject, prior to introducing 3 readings to Bylaw #2092. Doing so would have ensured that the local BIA's concerns would be taken into consideration prior to Council deciding whether or not Bylaw #2092 be read a 1st, 2nd, 3rd time.

Over at the CRD, I believe the CRD is making a mockery of the ideals behind Public Consultation and its' own policies on this subject. Had the Board set a timeline for when/how public consultation be completed on the Service Delivery Plan for the Arts and Culture Function, the public would have taken ownership in how this Function should proceed. But because no dates have been set for meetings on a vision/future direction for this Function, it would not surprise me if the public said - why bother, the politicians won't listen anyways.

If there is no public consultation prior to September 1st or the Public Consultation Meetings' are not done in a way that is reflective of the principles of how the Public should be consulted on any matter (evening meetings after 7pm and ensure that the meeting format allows for the public to provide genuine input and not City/CRD + Community Arts Council Staff to promote the idea that it knows what the vision is for this Function and the public's role is to comment on that vision, then I'll be writing Director Bischoff formally and requesting that she consider withdrawing Area 'D' out of the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Function.

I believe that rural residents should be taxed for services that they have specifically asked for, at Town Hall meetings, and if politicians have an idea for a new service, they should bring it up during the Annual CRD Town Hall Meetings and if the local residents' don't object, then engage in the usual practices for establishing a Regional District Function, including adhering to the principles of Public Consultation (reasonable opportunities for public input - time a meeting is to start and locations close to rural/City residents')

By doing this, those of us who are politicians or want to be one, will ensure that we are truly serving the public by responding to expressly desired needs/wants by local taxpayers

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

City of WL Council Meeting Highlights - Tuesday, July 14th

Present: Councillor G. Bourdon (Acting Mayor + Chair), Councillors SPS Rathor, N. Montoya (for portions of the meeting), T. Barr, L. Walters

Absent: Mayor K. Cook

Meeting called to order at 7:30pm


1) Acting Mayor G. Bourdon presented a "Community Spirit Award" to the WL and District Credit Union for all of their community work

2) Brenda Beatson from the Winter Lights Committee presented Council with an update as to what the Committee has been up to and then presented Council with 4 awards from the National Winter Lights Committee

3) Anna Dell gave a brief presentation to Council on her bid to become the next BC Ambassador
Council agreed to provide her with City material (City Flag, pins, etc) to help her in her campaign


1) DP #3-2009 and DVP #3-2009 (Dr. Rudy Wasenaar) were approved

2) Bylaw #2099, 2009 was given 3rd Reading (this Bylaw was subject to a Public Hearing held earlier in the evening at 7:00pm). As the subject property is within 800 metres of a highway (Highway #97 South), approval of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrascture of this Bylaw is required. If Ministry consent to Bylaw #2099 of 2009 is received, Council may adopt the Bylaw at its' next meeting on July 28th

3) Council gave 1st, 2nd and 3rd Reading to Bylaw #2092, which if adopted, will dissolve the Downtown Parking Commission. A letter from the WL BIA was received on this subject and Councillor Rathor, as Chair of the Public Works Portfolio, will meet with the BIA to hear their concerns on dissolving the Downtown Parking Commission.

4) Council will write a letter of support for an application by the local Steelworkers' union to establish a local program, for union/non-union workers for training needs. The District of 100 Mile House has already provided a letter of support for this program and the City of Quesnel Council will be requested to provide a letter of support for the same program

Council adjourned at 8:15pm

The next Council meeting is Tuesday, July 28th, 2009 at 7:30pm

CRD Board Highlights - July 10th


Chair A. Richmond with Directors T. Armstrong, R. Faust, J. Massier, D. Bischoff, S. Mazur, D. Barnett, A. Dumaresq, J. Glassford, R. Mumford, B. Rattray, M. Sjostrom, M. Campsall and Alternate Director SPS Rathor (City of WL)


Directors A. Bracewell (Area 'J') and J. Vermette (District of Wells)

Meeting called to order at 9:45am

Major Highlights

1) Board to receive the Waste to Energy Report at its' August meeting. The Chair noted that the contractor might not receive future CRD Business given the amount of time taken to put together this report

2) The Board received a late report from Mitch Minchau (CRD Enviromental Services Manager) regarding the need to expand the garbage liner at the Gibraltar landfill site at a cost of $214, 164. After a considerable amount of debate among Directors' including why the Board wasn't told sooner of this problem, the Board authorized $100,000 for this project. Several Directors including Directors Deb Bischoff, Bruce Rattray, Art Dumaresq and Duncan Barnett voted against the motion

3) A Solid Waste Review Committee was formed. The Committee members will be:

CRD Directors: A. Bracewell (Area 'J'), D. Barnett (Area 'F'), B. Rattray (Area 'L')
City of WL Councillor SPS Rathor, District of 100 Mile Councillor D. Mingo

Alternate Members: Directors D. Bischoff (Area 'D'), R. Mumford (Area 'K')

4) Volunteer Firefighters to receive a pay increase of up to $120/day for training purposes

5) The CRD Board will be meeting with a number of Cabinet Ministers at UBCM this fall including Minister Bennett (Community Development), Minister Bond (Transportation and Infrastructure), Minister Bell (Forests and Range) among others

6) The Cheque Register for May 2009 was received/ratified with Director D. Barnett voting against ratifying the May 2009 Cheque Register

7) The Board established September 26th as the referendum date to establish a new fire protection service for the Williams Lake Fringe Area (Phase 2) Fire Protection Area. Public Meetings to occur in July/September. Watch for ads in your local papers. The 1st Meeting is on Thursday, July 16th at 7:00pm in Williams Lake City Hall - Council Chambers. I encourage all members in Areas D+E to attend these meetings and then vote in favour to establish this service

8) The Board adopted a new Policy around Bonding for Capital Construction Projects

9) The Board adopted 4 Recommendations from its' June 18th Strategic Planning Session.

10) A Number of Recommendations were endorsed by the Board from sub-regional caucuses or Joint Committees

11) The Board also received a delegation of 100 Mile Director + Mayor Mitch Campsall and David Zirnhelt regarding an Agriculture Enterprise Development Center Fesability Study. The Board authorized a letter of support endorsing this project.

The Board then adjourned at 2:55pm

Cariboo-Chilcotin Hospital District Board Highlights - July 10th

Hospital District Board:

Meeting started at 9:30am

Present: All Members except Directors D. Barnett (Area 'F'), A. Bracewell ( Area 'J'), S. Watson (TNRD Director - Area 'E') and Wells Director J. Vermette

1) The Board adopted the Recruitment and Retention Policy

2) The Board adopted a Finance Bylaw authorizing 40% of the purchase cost of a telecardiology at Cariboo Memorial Hospital. Total Project Cost of $47, 000 with Interior Health to pick up 60% of the cost for this project

3) The Board adopted a Finance Bylaw authorizing 40% of the purchase cost of a Cardiac Ultrasound Machine. Total Project Cost of $303,000 with Interior Health to pick up 60% of the cost for this project

Meeting adjourned at 9:43am

Central Cariboo Joint Committee Meeting - July 9th


(City of WL) - Mayor Cook (Committee Co-Chair) with Councillors SPS Rathor, L. Walters, S. Zacharias, G. Bourdon, N. Montoya

(CRD - Central Cariboo) - Director D. Bischoff (Committee Co-Chair), Alternate Director J. Andrews (Area 'D'), Directors S. Mazur and R. Mumford

Absent: Directors D. Barnett, A. Bracewell and City of WL Councillor T. Barr

Meeting called to order at 5:00pm

1) Action Page accepted with a number of items to be deleted

2) The Committee recommended to the CRD Board that the Recruitment and Retention Policy for the local Hospital District Board's $100,000 Recruitment and Retention Fund be endorsed

3) The Committee recommended to the CRD Board that an application from the WL Indian Band to the Northern Trust Board be endorsed

4) The Committee recommended to the CRD Board that the proposed Management Agreement for the Cariboo Memorial Complex be endorsed

5) The Committee reviewed an late item regarding the Sustainability Coordinator position, with regards to bridge-gap funding. The Committee asked the Central Cariboo Sustainability Commitee to clarify what work will be done with the bridge funding until word about funding applications and the outcome of those is heard in the spring of 2010 and the Joint Committee will review the bridge funding request for the Coordinator position at that time

6) Committee members were reminded by Committee Co-Chair Cook around the vote for the $25,000 TSN/Kraft Celebration Tour

Meeting adjourned, by consensus, at 6:00pm

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Lower Mainland Transit Funding and Carole James

1) Transit Funding

I see over at Langley Politics.Com ( that several Lower Mainland Mayors still want to use the Carbon Tax revenue to fund transit in the Lower Mainland. I want to repeat what I said on that website and that is -- if the Carbon Tax is to be used to fund transit, it MUST be funded province wide and not restricted to a specific region of the Province. As for the transit funding issues in the Greater Vancouver area, residents' there and their elected officials must match wants/needs to revenue coming in. If tax hikes or increases to user fees aren't in the cards, then you must scale back the service to the money (revenue) coming in. It's just that simple. Also, aggressive lobbying efforts to get Victoria/Ottawa to fund Transit Operations should continue with under the guise of greening Lower Mainland communities and improving air quality in the Fraser Valley airshed, which can look horrible, from a tourist perspective, from time to time.

2) Carole James and the Provincial Issues

So, I got a copy of Carole James's speech to the Provincial NDP Council on June 27th and she says that she's angry that the government hid the truth from voters' in the 39th General Election, that cuts are coming. Of course, we BC Liberals' know that this is boohookey. The fact remains - yes, there is a deficit for this fiscal year (2009-2010) and next year (2010-2011) and a return to balanced budgets in the 2011-2012 fiscal year. And also, no question, budgets' will be tight this year and next, but I believe the provincial government can manage those budgets' through the times we've living in. But I believe Canadian society must get its' head wrapped around one thing: the health-care system of the past where government funded it to be all things to all people can no longer happen now, given the population numbers of today and the projected numbers down the road. Otherwise, as Gary Collins (former Minister of Finance) once said years' ago -- We'll be able to afford health-care, a little education and nothing else (Transportation, Social Services, etc) will all have to go. That's not the way I want my province and its' budget to be handled.

Committee of the Whole Meeting - Tuesday June 7th

Present: All Members of WL City Council

Staff Present: Sue Moxey (Corporate Officer), Brian Carruthers (Acting CAO), Darcy Lazzarin (General Manager of Corporate Services), Liliana Dragowska (City Planner), and Geoff Goodall (General Manager of Planning and Operations)

Meeting called to order at 6:30pm

Delegation - Mike Jacobsen/Andre Chevigny re: Item D1 - Renaming of Streets at Prosperity Ridge Site

Mr. Jacobsen/Mr. Chevigny requested the Committee to change the name of the streets on the site from Rick Hansen/Stevenson to Pioneer/Prosperity

Several Council members' noted that perhaps the Street Naming Policy, relative to the name of streets on private developments' was not necessarily followed and the precedent set by previous Councils' was not followed either

The Public Works Portfolio was tasked with addressing this issue with a request to report directly to Council at its' earliest opportunity. The delegation left the meeting at 6:53pm

The Committee also recommended to Council the following:

1) Williams Lake Downtown Parking Commission Repeal Bylaw #2092 be given 3 readings
2) Williams Lake Traffic Control Bylaw #2093 be given 3 readings

The Committee also reviewed the Cariboo Memorial Complex Management Agreement with the Cariboo Regional District. This matter will also be discussed at Thursday's Joint Committee meeting with the CRD Directors' for Electoral Areas D, E, F, J and K.

The Committee adjourned at 7:30pm