Sunday, April 30, 2017

2nd Advanced Voting Day - 2017 BC Election

Today is your 2nd day to cast your advanced vote for the 2017 BC Election.  The Elections BC website has information on what you need to know (Voter ID, etc) here

For those in Cariboo-North, you can vote at the following locations today (Sunday, April 30th) from 8am - 8pm:

* Wildwood Fire Hall (4253 Wildwood Road, Wildwood)
Quesnel and District Seniors' Centre (461 Carson Drive, Quesnel)
* Miocene Community Hall (3615 Horsefly Road)
* Big Lake Community Hall (4056 Lakeview Road, Big Lake)

For those in Cariboo-Chilcotin, you can vote at the following locations today (Sunday, April 30th) from 8am - 8pm:

* 100 Mile Curling Club (#1-175B Wrangler Way, 100 Mile House )
* Alexis Creek Elementary/Secondary School (7651 Yells St, Alexis Creek)
* Elks Hall (#98 1st Avenue, Williams Lake)

After today, the next set of Advanced Voting Days is from Wednesday, May 3rd to Saturday, May 6th

~SF

Saturday, April 29, 2017

1st Advanced Voting Day - 2017 BC Election

Today is your 1st day to cast your advanced vote for the 2017 BC Election.  The Elections BC website has information on what you need to know (Voter ID, etc) here

For those in Cariboo-North, you can vote at the following locations today (Sat April 29th) from 8am - 8pm:

* Wildwood Fire Hall (4253 Wildwood Road, Wildwood)
* Quesnel and District Seniors' Centre (461 Carson Drive, Quesnel)
* Miocene Community Hall (3615 Horsefly Road)
* Big Lake Community Hall (4056 Lakeview Road, Big Lake)

For those in Cariboo-Chilcotin, you can vote at the following locations today (Sat April 29th) from 8am - 8pm:

* 100 Mile Curling Club (#1-175B Wrangler Way, 100 Mile House )
* Anahim Lake Elementary/Jr Secondary School (#2484 Highway 20, Anahim Lake)
* Elks Hall (#98 1st Avenue, Williams Lake)

~SF

Friday, April 28, 2017

Quesnel Council meets Tuesday!

Only Quesnel City Council is meeting next week as the other local governments in the Cariboo-Chilcotin (with the exception of School Districts #27/28) are in Terrace to attend the 2017 North Central Local Gov't Association Convention from May 2nd - 5th

Quesnel Council meets on Tuesday, May 2nd at 7pm in Quesnel Council Chambers (4th Floor, 410 Kinchant St).  On the Agenda:

* Delegation: College of New Caledonia Student Union - "Don't Close the Doors" Campaign - Harman Dandiwal, Organizer

* Committee Reports
* Community Wildfire Protection Planning
* BC Transit Annual Operating Agreement
* Rezone Application - 605 Doherty Drive
* Reid Street Public/Stakeholder Consultations Summary
* North Cariboo Community Futures - Request for Letter of Support for BC Rural Dividend Grant Application - "Planning a Successful Succession" Project

View the full Agenda here

I will be posting daily reports here from the 2017 NCLGA Convention in Terrace so stay tuned for those!

~SF

NCLGA 2017 Resolutions Available

Next week - the North Central Local Government Association, or NCLGA, will be holding its' Annual General Meeting/Convention in the City of Terrace, starting on Tuesday, May 2nd and concluding on May 5th.  View the official NCLGA Convention Agenda here

During the Convention - there will be a number of learning sessions, meetings, off-site tours and Resolution Debate.  NCLGA Delegates will consider 25 Resolutions covering the following topics:

* Community/Resources
* Environment
* Finance
* Health
* Legislative
* Social Issues
* Transportation/Communications

And a late resolution from the City of Williams Lake on Forest Health

The full Resolutions book can be viewed here (start on page 46).  I was disappointed that NCLGA did not, this year, stick to its' usual practice of releasing the Resolutions book a month before Convention.  NCLGA did this previously for its' 2015/2016 Conventions.  Releasing NCLGA Resolutions 5 days before we are to debate them does not give me sufficient time to research them and formulate my thoughts on them before Convention.  This is the equivalent of presenting reports to local elected officials the day of a local government meeting.  This is not, in my view, best practice and I sincerely hope that this is an "one-off" event and NCLGA will return to its usual practice of releasing resolutions to NCLGA Delegates 30 days before Convention for the 2018 NCLGA Convention

~SF

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Cariboo-Chilcotin All Candidates Forum

From L-R: Donna Barnett (BC Liberals),
Sally Watson (BC NDP) and Rita Giesbrecht (BC Greens)
This afternoon, the candidates for MLA - Cariboo-Chilcotin addressed a packed room at Signal Point Gaming Centre

Donna Barnett who is seeking a 3rd Term as the BC Liberal candidate for Cariboo-Chilcotin, Sally Watson running for the BC NDP and Rita Giesbrecht for the BC Green Party all gave a 3 minute opening and 3 minute closing statements

During the 1.5 hour question period -- 22 questions were put to the candidates.  A sample of questions put to candidates included:

* Burning of Rail Ties in Williams Lake
* Funding of Independent Schools
* Seniors Care
* Veto by First Nations on Resource Development Projects
* Support for Small Business
* Support for Tourism

Cariboo Regional District Electoral Area 'F' Director Joan Sorley asked the candidates if they supported a Task Force to look into Rape Culture and find solutions, in addition to additional supports for survivors of sexual assault and all candidates indicated their full support

Other than the odd jab between BC Liberal Candidate Donna Barnett/BC NDP Candidate Sally Watson, the session was a polite/respectful all candidates forum versus this past Tuesday's Kamloops North/South Thompson All Candidates Forum at TRU's Grand Hall in Kamloops which was very heated, after the opening statements.

Advanced Voting starts this weekend (April 29th/30th) and from May 3-6 with General Voting Day on May 9th.  Details on advanced voting locations can be viewed here

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

CC Joint Committee Highlights - April 26th mtg

Present from CRD: Co-Chair J. Sorley; Directors S. Forseth/B. Kemp

Present from City of WL: Councillors I. Bonnell, S. Nelson, L. Walters and S. Zacharias

Meeting chaired by Director J. Sorley

Meeting called to order at 5:40pm

Meeting Agenda was approved

Minutes of the March 22nd meeting of the Central Cariboo/City of Williams Lake Joint Committee was adopted

Business:

1) Sam Ketcham Pool Upgrade Project - Monthly Status Report for March 2017

The Committee had before it a report of the CRD Manager of Community Services (D. Campbell).  John Bowser/Lewis Reilly from Tango Management were in attendance
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - That the Committee recommend to the CRD Board:

a) That the report be received and;

b) That the Central Cariboo Recreation and Leisure Services 2017 financial plan be amended to accommodate an increase of up to $978,836 to enable the completion of the Sam Ketcham Pool Upgrade Project.

2) Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society - Report on the First Quarter of 2017

The Committee had before it a report of the Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society in regards to the Society's 1st Quarter of 2017 activities
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved -- Report received

3) Central Cariboo Recreation - Fees and Charges Amendment

The Committee had before it a report from the City of Williams Lake's Director of Community Services (G. Paynton)
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - That the Committee recommend to the CRD Board:

a) That the report be received and;

b) That the Central Cariboo Recreation Fees and Charges Bylaw be amended to:

* Approve the recommended amendments to the Fees and Charges By-Law for Active Living Guide Advertising rates to increase by 2% each year for 2017, 2018 and 2019

* Approve the recommendation that booking cancellations notice for CMRC bookings be changed from 10 business days to 30 business days in the current Fees and Charges By-Law, 

* Approve the recommendation that the "Block Ice Booking on Weekends" policy
which requires user groups booking large blocks of ice on weekend days to commence bookings by 6am at the latest, as presented in the report from the City of Williams Lake Director of Community Services, be added to the current Fees and Charges By-Law.

The Committee adjourned at 6:17pm

City of Quesnel does not build housing!

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

There has been much confusion of late about the City’s role in housing developments. In part, this is a good thing, as it is a result of a mini-housing boom in the City, the likes of which we have not seen in a very long time. But, it also adds unnecessary angst and frustration to what should otherwise be great news for Quesnel.

The great news is that we’re hoping to see at least three multi-unit housing developments break ground this year, adding almost 100 new and diverse housing units to the City’s very limited variety of housing options. According to a recent report from UNBC, Quesnel’s housing stock is rapidly ageing and is mismatched to the current needs and desires of residents and people wanting to relocate to Quesnel, so these new units are a welcome and timely addition to our City’s housing options.

Part of the reason these new units are being built at this time is a housing incentive bylaw Council put in place to attract provincial funding to the City and to attract private sector investment. The bylaw provides property tax and development cost charge relief to new housing complexes that meet our City’s need for more accessible, adaptable, and affordable housing. BC Housing essentially requires this kind of partnership from municipalities before this Crown Corporation will commit provincial funding and partner with not-for-profits to build new housing units.

But, other than providing this kind of financial incentive and working with proponents to ensure that any proposed housing development meets the City’s needs for more accessible, affordable, and low environmental footprint housing, Council does not dictate the exact kind of housing that will be built or comment on the targeted clientele – that is the sole purview of the proponent.

The main role that Council (and therefore the City’s planning department) has in housing development is as a land use planner: establishing land use designations in the City’s official community plan (OCP) and then establishing specific zones for each part of the community and parcel of land in the City that reflects the desired land use Council has articulated in the City’s OCP.Once the OCP and land use zones are set (with public consultation) any development proposal that meets the established OCP and specific zone for a particular piece of land would not trigger any further public consultation. This sometimes confuses people who want to weigh in on a specific development project but aren’t given the opportunity because the proposal does not require any public consultation beyond what occurred when the OCP was approved and the zoning established.That is why Council cannot comment on any development proposal (like the potential replacement for Seasons House) until a development permit is applied for and our planning staff formally reports to Council that the proposal requires an OCP and/or zoning change. If a change is not required any development can proceed without further public comment, if a change is required then the public can provide comment, but only on the specific change that is required to enable the project to proceed.

The bottom line: the City does not build housing; it merely enables development projects through land use planning and incentives. The second bottom line: get involved in our current OCP review, as that sets the baseline for future zoning and development projects in the City and in your neighborhood (as well as general policies Council will establish for the development of the City through to 2030).We will be asking for more input on the current OCP development process in the very near future, so please check the City website and Facebook page regularly for more details on this important opportunity for you to engage in the future development of our City

Bob Simpson is the Mayor of Quesnel.  He can be reached, via email, at bsimpson@quesnel.ca

Quesnel Council Highlights - Apr 25th mtg

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

2016 Financial Audit Report

Corey Naphtali, Partner of the KPMG accounting firm, presented an independent Audit Report of the City’s Consolidated Financial Statements.  The City’s 2016 Consolidated Financial Statements have received a clean audit in accordance with the Canadian Public Sector Accounting Standards.  The full report is available on the City’s website.

Off-Leash Dog Park – Proposed Location
After reviewing a number of potential sites and reviewing best practices regarding dog-parks, the preferred location to develop a proposed off-leash dog park in Quesnel is Carson Field located between Nadeau Street and the Quesnel River.  The proposed site will require a re-zoning application from Multi-Family Residential to Park.  The Carson Field location has the following benefits, from the three other sites that were being considered, such as:

• Further away from residential and commercial properties
• Highly visible and central location in the community
• Accessible for tourists traveling through the community.  RV friendly parking is available on Nelson Street using City-owned Right-of-Way space with north and south bound turn lanes on Highway 97.
• Due to the ample City-Owned parking that this site has off Nelson Street, City Staff have proposed to limit the parking on the residential side of Nadeau Street adjacent to this lot to resident parking only, and will create a no-parking area on portions of the park side of Nadeau Street.
• Existing chain link fencing will be utilized at the west boundary of the park
• Carson Field area has natural boundaries with access to the Quesnel River.  The area is currently used for dog walking.
• Carson Field currently has three access points and the potential for a fourth access point by construction of a ramp to the field from the south end of the Quesnel River Bridge.
This proposal will require a Rezoning Application that will provide the public with an opportunity to voice any concerns regarding this proposed land use change at a future Public Hearing.  The approved budget for constructing this proposed off-leash dog park in 2017 is approximately $66,000.

Bylaw-of-the-Month
The May 2017 Bylaw-of-the-Month is the City of Quesnel Fire Protection, Prevention and Emergency Response Bylaw 1685 featuring strategic education and/or enforcement, within City limits, of an open fire burning ban and campfire regulations.  With outside spring cleaning and yard work underway, the Bylaw Enforcement Staff wanted to remind residents of the following rules and regulations around campfires:

• Campfires may not be larger than 0.5 meters by 0.5 meters
• Only charcoal briquettes or dry seasoned firewood permitted as fuel
• A 1 meter firebreak around the entire fire must be created and maintained throughout the time the fire is burning
• Must have at least 8 litres of water within 2 meters of the fire
• Campfire must be attended at all times
• Campfire must be extinguished before you leave
• Campfire bans apply when the BC Forest Hazard Rating reaches high or extreme, or when the Fire Chief deems appropriate.

Bylaws
•             Bylaw 1823 – 2017 Tax Rates – Final Adoption

Next Meetings
•             7 pm, May 2nd - Regular Council Meeting
•             5:30 pm, May 9th – North Cariboo Joint Planning Committee – Rescheduled to 5:30 pm on May 16th

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Kamloops North/South Thompson All Candidates Forum

Photo Credit: James Peters, Twitter
Earlier this evening - a jointly sponsored All Candidates Forum was held at TRU's Grand Hall for those running for MLA in the Kamloops North/South Thompson ridings.  The forum was a tripartite effort by CFJC-TV, CBC Kamloops and Kamloops This Week

All candidates from both of the Kamloops provincial ridings (4 from Kamloops-North Thompson and 5 from Kamloops-South Thompson) were in attendance.  You can view the entire session here





As soon as the 90 second opening speeches were given by the 9 candidates, the gloves literally came off, either between the candidates or heckling from the public in attendance.  Chief hecklers included former MLA's Kevin Krueger and Terry Lake.  One fierce debate moment was when BC Greens candidate for Kamloops South Thompson Donovan Cavers said that NDP candidate for Kamloops-South Thompson Nancy Beppel was not credible on the Ajax Mine file as she used to own shares in Abacus Mining who, at one point, was involved in the Ajax Mine development

Topics covered included:

* Ajax Mine
* Health Care
* Social issues
* Education
* Electoral Reform
* Campaign Financing

Interestingly enough, only half of the room was filled.  I was expected a very packed room.  Also interesting that you expect the odd heckle from members of the public who profoundly disagree with a candidate's point of view on a question put to them, but on many occasions, you saw either Todd Stone (BC Liberal - Kamloops South Thompson) or his counterpart, Peter Milobar (BC Liberal - Kamloops North Thompson) being heckled while attempting to answer questions put to them

From what I observed in the public gallery this evening - I'm not sure the candidates really changed anyone's mind except to play to their supporters, as All Candidate Forums typically are.  Advanced Voting begins this weekend, check out the Elections BC website for your advanced voting location for either Kamloops North or South Thompson or the other 85 provincial ridings

~SF

City of Quesnel marking new bike/pedestrian routes

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:


The City of Quesnel is catching up with the rest of Canada and the world by helping motorists, cyclists and pedestrians safely travel to their destinations together. As an outcome of the City’s Active Transportation Plan, and working with a stakeholder group, the City is marking new bike and pedestrian routes.

City crews are currently painting share the road signs called “sharrows” on the roadway in areas of the City. Sharrows mean the whole lane is shared between vehicles and bicycles. These are used to help cyclists reduce the risk of hitting road edge hazards, such as the open door of a parked vehicle.

Sharrows create routes for cyclists to travel safely while also creating a well-connected and accessible community. A map showing the key cycling routes will be available on May 1 at quesnel.ca.

The City is currently putting together a share the road web page that will be launched in the next couple of weeks. The webpage will include information for both cyclists and motorists and will have tips and maps to keep everyone safe while traveling.

Quesnel Mayor Bob Simpson stated:

I appreciate the insights provided by our stakeholder group and hope everyone will learn to share the road safely

SILGA 2017 Convention begins today!

The Southern Interior Local Government Association, or SILGA, begins its' 2017 Annual Convention/AGM later this afternoon at Sun Peaks with pre-meetings with the bulk of the Convention taking place from Wednesday, April 26th to Friday, April 28th.  Read the full Convention program here

The Association of Vancouver Island/Coastal Communities or AVICC held its' Annual Convention/AGM earlier in April with the remaining 3 Area Association within the Union of BC Municipalities' structure holding their Annual Conventions/AGM's to be held later this year as follows:

Association of Kootenay Boundary Local Gov'ts/AKBLG - April 26th - April 28th in Rossland
North Central Local Gov't Association/NCLGA - May 2nd - 5th in Terrace
Lower Mainland Local Gov't Association/LMLGA - May 10th - 12th in Harrison Hot Springs

~SF

Friday, April 21, 2017

Local Gov't Mtgs - Wk of Apr 24-28

Next week, the following local governments of the Cariboo-Chilcotin will be meeting:

Wells - Regular Council Meeting on Tuesday, April 25th, 2017 at 7pm in Wells Council Chambers (4243 Sanders Avenue).  On the Agenda:

* Cheque Register
* Consent Calendar
* 2017 Tax Rates/Financial Plan Bylaws

View the full Agenda here

Quesnel - Meetings noted below - all on Tuesday, April 25th in Quesnel Council Chambers (4th Floor - 410 Kinchant St):

1) Policy/Bylaw Review Committee at 2pm

On the Agenda:

* Council Remuneration Policy
* Purchasing Policy
* City's Website - Council Biographies Questionnaire

View the full Agenda here

2) Financial Sustainability/Audit Committee at 5:30pm

* Presentation of 2016 Audited Financial Statements

View the full Agenda here

3) Regular Council Meeting at 7pm.  On the Agenda:

* City of Quesnel Retirement Presentation
* Delegation: KPMG Enterprise - City of Quesnel 2016 Financial Audit Report
* Committee Reports
* Selection of Off-Leash Dog Park Location
* Trademark of City Logo and Monogram
* Airports Capital Assistance Program for Airport Snow Plow
* Bylaw of the Month - Open Fire Ban and Campfires
* 2017 Tax Rates Bylaw - Final Adoption

View the full Agenda here

School District #27 (Cariboo-Chilcotin) - Regular Board of Education Meeting at Peter Skene Ogden Secondary in 100 Mile House.  Firstly - new SD27 Zone 3 Trustee Willow Macdonald will be sworn into office for the remainder of the 2014-18 Term, then the Board will recess to an In-Camera Meeting and then resume at 7pm

On the Agenda:

* Consent Calendar
* Policy Review -- School Planning Councils, Violence in the Workplace, Physical Restraint
* Approve both Retirement Dinner on June 22nd and Gavin Lake Bus Credit in the amount of $3,500
*  Reports from Sec-Treasurer/Acting Superintendent, Trustee Dyment (Apr 2017 meetings)
* Cataline Elementary School - Road Safety Review
* 2017-2018 Five Year Capital Plan Bylaw
* Board Self Review
* Committee Appointments - Review with now a full SD27 Board
* Consider reimbursement to Trustee W. Macdonald for her attendance at the BC School Trustee Association AGM, April 19-23, 2017 in Vancouver BC

View the full Agenda here

Williams Lake - Regular Council Meeting on Tuesday, April 25th at 6pm in WL Council Chambers (450 Mart St).  On the Agenda:

* 2017-2021 Financial Plan Bylaw No. 2263 (Financial Plan calls for no tax increase for Residential property owners while Business and Rec/Non Profit property owners will pay 2% more than last year)

* Remedial Action Order - 27 Seventh Avenue South (old Slumber Lodge)
* Development Permit Application - DP #02-2017 (For approval at 1125 Murray Drive - Glendale)
* DVP #01-2017 - Wave Properties Ltd. - Off-Street & Disabled Parking Reductions for New Restaurant - 281 & 299 Oliver Street
* Installation of No Parking Signage on Mart Street at Oliver Street
* BC Transit 2017/2018 Annual Agreements
* Zoning Amendment Application - Bylaw No. 2265; New Residential Care Facility - 185 Fourth Avenue North (old Cariboo Lodge site)

View the full Agenda here

Also - Public Hearings on Zoning Amendment Bylaws #2257, 2260 and 2262 will take place, starting at 7pm on Tuesday, April 25th, also in WL Council Chambers.  View more here

100 Mile House - Regular Council Meeting on Tuesday, Apri 25th at 7pm in 100 Mile House Council Chambers (385 Birch Avenue).  On the Agenda:

* Bylaw Officer's Report – March 2017
* 2016 Audited Financial Statements
* LCLB Brewery Lounge Endorsement - Jacksons Social Club and Brew House
* Operating Agreement Renewals – CRD/District of 100 Mile House
* By-laws for Adoption: Fees and Charges Amendment By-Law 1309 and 2017 Financial Plan By-Law 1307
* By-laws for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Readings: 2017 Tax Rates By-Law 1308

View the full Agenda here

Cariboo Regional District:

Central Cariboo Joint Committee - Regular Meeting on Wednesday, April 26th at 5:30pm in the CRD Boardroom (180D North 3rd Avenue, Williams Lake).  On the Agenda:

* Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society - Report on the First Quarter of 2017
* Central Cariboo Recreation - Amendment to Fees and Charges Bylaw
* Sam Ketcham Pool Upgrade Project - Monthly Status Report for March 2017

View the full Agenda here

DON'T FORGET -- All Candidates Forum for Cariboo-Chilcotin Provincial MLA candidates on Thursday, April 27th from 11:30am - 1:30pm.  Tickets available from the Williams Lake and District Chamber of Commerce.  Ph: 250-392-5025.  Limited seating available

Also - the WL Indoor Rodeo starting tonight through Sunday.  More details here

Thursday, April 20, 2017

2017 McLeese Lake VFD Society AGM

Earlier tonight - 22 members of the McLeese Lake community attended the AGM for the McLeese Lake Volunteer Fire Department Society (MLVFD).  Special guests included provincial MLA candidates Coralee Oakes (incumbent BC Liberal) & Scott Elliott (BC NDP), former Quesnel Mayor Mary Sjostrom and Cariboo RD Area 'D' Director Steve Forseth

During the meeting, Ian Hicks (MLVFD President)gave an recap on the previous year activities including ongoing training, multiple grants,and consistent fundraising efforts have topped the coffers to more than double of what the MLVFD had at last year's AGM.

Special recognition was given to all of the donors in the last year. The MLVFD now has 12 directors plus 4 board members. Ian Hicks remains as President, Gordon McArthur remains as Vice President, Cori Gosselin remains as Treasurer, and Vicky Ortiz remains as Secretary.

Finally - a very touching scene where McLeese Lake resident Rhonda Kolcun presented the MLVFD with 5 cooking aprons. I am sure that the gents of the MLVFD will put them to good use during 2017

As I said on Facebook this evening -- As the CRD Area D Director - I'd like to thank the MLVFD Society Board for their extraordinary efforts this past year and since this journey from 2012, it is been fantastic to watch the progression of the local fire department in McLeese Lake and I look forward to their efforts being rewarded in future years.

~SF

North Cariboo Arena One Project - April 11th/17 Update

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

Construction Update:
The wood ceiling is now complete.  This wood feature consists of 1” x 6” SPF (spruce, pine, fir) boards covering the open web steel joists.   
Interior work is proceeding with painting and drywalling.  Glass installation is expected to start soon.  Electrical, plumbing, HVAC and refrigeration equipment installation continues.  Major air handling and refrigeration equipment is on site and being installed.
Arena 1 Demolition:
Arena 1 is now closed to the public.  The contractor is expected on site this week to begin the process of demolishing Arena 1 and the lobby.  The contractor will begin by undertaking hazardous material abatement, which is expected to take a number of weeks before they begin demolition.  
In addition to the demolition, a number of mechanical, electrical, IT, and refrigeration systems are in the process of being relocated or installed to ensure that Arena 2 continues to operate without service interruption.    
Schedule and Budget:
The project continues to be on schedule for completion by September 2017 and on budget for $20.6 million.  Close to $4.2 million has been spent to date on local contractors and suppliers on the project. This project is a joint initiative of the Cariboo Regional District (CRD) and City of Quesnel under the CRD’s North Cariboo Recreation and Parks function.
Fundraising:
Time is running out if you want to sponsor a seat or be a part of the mural project before the facility opens.  In order to ensure your donation is recognized when the facility opens in September, donations must be made before June 30.   If you haven’t sponsored a seat or made a donation to the project, contact the fundraising coordinator by email at: arenaproject@quesnel.ca
Grand Opening:
The Official Opening of the West Fraser Centre is planned for the weekend of September 16 & 17.  Planning for the event is underway. 
More information on the project can be viewed here

New Trailhead at Tourism Discovery Centre

Courtesy of the City of Williams Lake:

Chris Purdy, Aaron Quan and Sky Camille of First Journey Trail Building have commenced construction on the trail leading to the new trailhead at the Tourism Discovery Centre. This trail will provide access to Fox Mountain Trails and act as a gathering point for out of town riders.

The City of Williams Lake, the Williams Lake Cycling Club and Signal Point Gaming have been working together to make this project a reality.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

WL Council 2017 Budget Meeting #3

Present: Councillor Nelson (Meeting Chair); Councillors I. Bonnell, J. Ryll, L. Walters, S. Zacharias and Mayor W. Cobb

Public: 3

Meeting called to order at 5pm

Meeting Agenda adopted

Business:

The Committee continued its' review of the 2017 Tax Rate Scenarios/Budget and provided direction to Staff

Public Input Session:

1 member of the public addressed the Committee regarding the City's 2017 Budget

The Committee adjourned at 6:30pm

Official Candidate List for 41st Provincial Election released

Courtesy of Elections BC:

The candidate nomination period for British Columbia’s 41st Provincial General Election closed at 1 p.m. (Pacific time) on Tuesday, April 18, 2017.

There are 371 candidates representing 18 registered political parties.

33 candidates are running as independents, and two candidates are running as neither independent nor as representatives of a registered political party.


PARTY BALLOT NAMECANDIDATES
4BC1
BC Action Party2
BC Cascadia Party2
BC Citizens First Party1
BC Conservative Party10
BC First1
BC Green Party83
BC Liberal Party87
BC NDP87
BC Refed3
BC Social Credit Party2
Christian Heritage Party of B.C.5
Communist Party of BC6
Land Air Water-The L.A.W.1
Libertarian30
Republican Party1
The Vancouver Island Party4
Your Political Party of BC (YPP)10

UNAFFILIATEDCANDIDATES
Independent33
Other2

In the 2013 Provincial General Election, 376 candidates were nominated, representing 19 registered political parties.

Eligible voters can vote at any district electoral office, by mail, at advance voting on April 29 – 30 and May 3 – 6, and on General Voting Day, May 9. All eligible voters can vote at any voting place in B.C.

The full list of candidates for the 87 Provincial Electoral Districts can be viewed here

For Cariboo-North:

Coralee Oakes - BC Liberal Party (incumbent)
Scott Elliott - BC NDP
Tony Goulet - BC Conservative Party
Richard Jacques - BC Green Party

For Cariboo-Chilcotin:

Donna Barnett - BC Liberal Party (incumbent)
Sally Watson - BC NDP
Rita Giesbrecht - BC Green Party

Sam Ketcham Pool Opening Delayed

Courtesy of the Cariboo Regional District:

The Cariboo Regional District (CRD) and the City of Williams Lake advise the opening schedule for Phase One of the Sam Ketcham Pool will be delayed by about a month. Phase One is now expected to open in early June 2017.

While construction crews have made significant progress since the pool closed 11 weeks ago, it is taking longer than expected to complete the extensive scope of Phase One. The goal is to produce a high quality product, which means it is critical to maintain quality work and not rush to meet an opening date.

The CRD and the City recognize the inconvenience this causes for pool patrons and appreciate the public’s patience with the delay.

The Sam Ketcham Pool closed on Feb. 6, 2017, to facilitate the transition between Phase One and Phase Two of construction. When Phase One construction is finished, the new lap pool will open along with the improved change rooms, fitness centre, hot tub, sauna and steam room.

Phase Two construction continues concurrently with the finalization of Phase One. The demolition of the original lap pool is complete and construction of the new leisure pool is underway. The leisure pool, including a three-loop water slide and lazy river, remains on target for full completion along with a grand opening of the entire aquatic facility in the fall of 2017.

The Sam Ketcham Pool upgrade project is a joint initiative of the Cariboo Regional District and City of Williams Lake. For more information and regular updates, follow the project’s Facebook page at facebook.com/SamKetchamPool or Twitter feed at @SKPProject. Find further information on the Cariboo Regional District website at cariboord.ca and on the City of Williams Lake site at williamslake.ca.

Quesnel Council Highlights - April 18th mtg

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

2016 Volunteer Citizen of the Year
This year there are nine nominees for Quesnel’s 2016 Volunteer Citizen of the Year.  Council thanked all of the nominees for the hard work and efforts that makes a huge difference in our community.  Each nominee was presented with a certificate.  The Volunteer Citizen of the Year Awards and Dinner banquet will be held at 5 pm on Wednesday, April 26, 2017 at the Billy Barker Casino Showroom.  Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at City Hall.

Distracted Driving Program
Doug MacDonald who is the ICBC Road Safety and Community Coordinator for Northern BC presented Council with a plaque recognizing the City’s participation in the Distracted Driving Campaign that was held in March 2017 to raise awareness and education to prevent distracted driving.  Public Works vehicles display a window decal highlighting the importance not using a cell phone while driving.  On average 81 people die every year in crashes where distracted driving is a contributing factor and distracted driving is responsible for 27% of all car crash fatalities in British Columbia. Fines range from $398 up to $10,000 for repeat offenders.

Accessibility Audit
Karen Williams, Manager of Accessibility Initiative for Social Planning and Research Council of BC (SPARC BC) provided highlights of the accessibility audit that was carried out for Quesnel’s downtown core and City Hall.  Ms. Williams presented Council with an overview of what the City is currently doing well when it comes to accessibility and made recommendations for City improvements around: walkways; resting areas; curb ramps; intersections; pick up/drop off areas; parking spaces; pathways and entranceways.  Ms. Williams also recommended continued collaboration between the City and downtown commercial stakeholders to address non-accessible: storefront entrances, stairs, abrupt changes in elevation, door handles/lack of automatic door openers, and sandwich boards in the public right of way.

2017 Tax Rates
With all of the data now in from other taxation authorities and with Council having approved the City’s 2017 Operating and Capital budgets, City staff can now prepare the 2017 Property Tax Invoices.  The average increase for the 2017 Municipal Tax portion* is:
•             $53.99 - the average residence in Quesnel (valued at $177,314) will see an increase of $53.99, or $30.45 per $100,000 of assessment
•             $93.45 - Commercial properties in Quesnel will see an average increase of $93.45 per $100,000
•             Major and Light Industry properties total 2017 taxation will remain frozen at 2015 levels, as part of the City’s tax framework. 
*The above tax increases do not include the effect of authority tax rates (e.g.  School, Hospital, Regional, Province, etc.)

Quesnel Floodplain Management – Policy Changes
Council approved staff to move forward in developing policy amendments to the City’s Floodplain Management bylaw after provincial floodplain legislation changed in 2004.  These proposed policy amendments will not change the existing 200-year floodplain levels or setbacks for properties in the City that are affected by the floodplain.  The proposed amendments are:
•             Removing reference to the Ministry of Environment (legislated housekeeping amendment)
•             Delegate the Director of Development Services to consider general exemptions from the flood level that were previously established by the Ministry of Environment
•             Council may consider a site-specific exemption from the floodplain bylaw when a report has been submitted by a qualified person that the land may be used safely for the use intended.
•             Require the owner enter into a Covenant referencing the prepared report/geotechnical report.

City’s 2016 Statement of Financial Information
Council approved the City’s 2016 Statement of Financial Information (SOFI) that lists Council remuneration, benefits, expenses and contracts.  SOFI also outlines City Staff remuneration over $75,000, Schedule of Goods & Services over $25,000, and Severance Agreements paid.

Bylaws
•             Bylaws 1821/1822 – OCP/Zone Amendments (McLean Street Housing Complex) Third Reading
•             Bylaw 1823 – 2017 Tax Rates – First, Second and Third Readings

Next Meetings
•             7 pm, April 25 - Regular Council Meeting
•             7 pm, May 2 - Regular Council Meeting

Provincial Campaign Signs

Late yesterday - I was alerted to this campaign sign being down at the base of Fox Mountain.

Whatever political party you support - PLEASE don't engage in destruction of campaign signs in all forms.  It is AGAINST provincial law

However - always feel free to support your preferred political party by more lawful means including working on their campaign, attending all candidate forums and writing letters to the editor to your local newspaper

Hopefully - this will be the exception than the rule for campaigns in Cariboo-North/Cariboo-Chilcotin.  Within my Electoral Area -- I have not seen any other destruction of campaign signs and hopefully it remains that way for the reminder of the provincial election

~SF

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Advanced Voting - 2017 Provincial Election (Cariboo North/Cariboo Chilcotin)

As some of my readers are looking for information about next week's and early May advanced voting for the May 9th Provincial Election...

Advanced Voting - 41st Provincial Election for Cariboo-North/Cariboo-Chilcotin:

Cariboo-North -- April 29th/30th & May 3-6:

Miocene Community Hall - 3615 Horsefly Road, Miocene
Big Lake Community Hall - 4056 Lakeview Road, Big Lake
Quesnel/District Seniors Centre - 461 Carson Drive, Quesnel
Ramada Inn Convention Centre - 1118 Lakeview Crescent, Williams Lake
Wildwood Fire Hall - 4253 Wildwood Road (April 29th/30th only)

Cariboo-Chilcotin --  April 29th/30th & May 3-6:

100 Mile Curling Club - #1-175B Wrangler Way, 100 Mile House
Alexis Creek Elem/Sec School - 7651 Yells St, Alexis Creek  (April 30th only)
Anahim Lake Courthouse - 22541 Highway 20 (April 29th only)
Elks Hall - 98 1st Ave South. Williams Lake

If you need further clarification or have additional questions, you are encouraged to contact the local District Electoral Office as follows:

Cariboo-North: (250) - 985-0596
Cariboo-Chilcotin: (250) - 305-3812

Saturday, April 15, 2017

2017 Easter Message from Canada's Prime Minister

Courtesy of the Rt Hon. Justin Trudeau - Prime Minister of Canada:

“This weekend, millions of Canadians and people around the world will gather with friends and family to celebrate the Easter holiday. This year is special, as Christians in both the Eastern and Western churches are celebrating Easter on the same day.

“Easter, also known as Pascha, is a sacred time of year in the Christian tradition, and celebrates Jesus Christ’s resurrection and triumph over death.

“The Easter story reminds us of the sacrifices made for us, and of the forgiving power of compassion. It is also a call to hope, especially when hope feels most impossible.

“This year, as we celebrate the 150th anniversary of Confederation, let us take the opportunity to honour the many cultures, traditions, and beliefs that make Canada such a wonderful place to live. Christian Canadians of all backgrounds help make Canada the strong, diverse, and inclusive country it is today.

“As we gather with those most important to us, let us put into practice what it truly means to love our neighbours as ourselves, and do what we can to make the world a more just, compassionate, and peaceful place for all.

“On behalf of our family, Sophie and I wish all those celebrating a blessed and joyful Easter. We hope all Canadians, no matter their faith, find this a time of renewal and promise.”

Friday, April 14, 2017

Local Gov't Mtgs - Wk of April 18-21

The following local governments of the Cariboo-Chilcotin are meeting next week, as follows:

Quesnel - Regular Board Meeting on Tuesday, April 18th at 7pm in Quesnel Council Chambers (4th Floor - 410 Kinchant St).  On the Agenda:

* Delegations (2) - Distracted Driving Program - Doug MacDonald, ICBC Road Safety and Community Coordinator, Northern BC & City of Quesnel Accessibility Audit - Karen Williams, Manager of Accessibility Initiatives, Social Planning and Research Council of BC

* Committee Reports
* 2017 Tax Rates Bylaw
* Quesnel Floodplain Management - Process for Site-Specific Waivers
* SOFI Report for Year 2016 - includes Remuneration/Expenses for Mayor/Council in 2016

View the full Agenda here

Then, on Wednesday, April 19th at 1:30pm in Quesnel Council Chambers, the Financial Sustainability/Audit Committee will meet.  On the Agenda:

* Letters from 768 RCACS Air Cadets, Skyfest and FCM for Funding

View the full Agenda here

Williams Lake - Public Input Session for 2017 City of Williams Lake Budget/Budget Meeting #3 of Council.  All starts at 5pm in WL Council Chambers (450 Mart St)


BC NDP release 2017 Campaign Platform

Yesterday - the BC NDP released their 2017 Campaign Platform and it included things like:

* Renter Rebate, simliar to Home Owners' Grant
* Eliminate Interest from Student Loans for Post Secondary Education
* $10/day Daycare

Read the full platform here

This past Monday - the governing BC Liberals also released their platform which you can read here.

The BC Liberals immediately criticized the BC NDP Platform as "A Multi-Billion Crater for the BC Economy" - read more here

The BC Greens do have a 'working' platform on their website - click here with the remaining 6 candidates running for the BC Conservatives running on a platform from the 2013 Election - click here

Elections BC deadline to run as a candidate in the May 9th Provincial Election is 1pm on Tuesday

~SF

Thursday, April 13, 2017

CCRHD Board Highlights - April 13th mtg

Present: Chair M. Wagner; Directors T. Armstrong, J. Bruce, J. Massier, S. Forseth, B. Kemp, J. Sorley, A. Richmond, D. Cash, B. Anderson, B. Coakley, B. Simpson (Vice-Chair), W. Cobb and M. Campsall

Meeting called to order at 9:30am

Meeting Agenda/March 24th CCRHD Board Minutes, both adopted

Business:

1) The Board received the Hospital Consent Calendar, as of April 13th

2) The Board received a press release from the NStQ (Northern Shuswap First Nations) concerning support for Cariboo Memorial Hospital Expansion Plans

3) At the request of Director Forseth - the Board agreed to refer discussion on the CCRHD Capital Reserve level to the June 8th, 2017 CRD Committee of the Whole meeting

4) The Board received the IHA Capital Projects and Planning Status Report for March 2017

5) The Board received a press release from Interior Health regarding Ashcroft Emergency Department Temporary Service Change

6) Late Item - The Board received a news release from Northern Health announcing the implementation of a new method for after-hours patient registration

The Chair provided an oral report, as to a meeting with Interior Health senior officials

Resolved - That a letter be forwarded to Northern Health, with a copy to BC's Minister of Health, in regards to a request from the North West Regional Hospital District to provide a capital contribution for the new Terrace Hospital less than the usual 60/40 (Province/RHD) funding ratio and requesting clarification

The Board recessed at 9:50am
The Board resumed at 11:29am

Delegation:

At 11:30am, Jo-Ann Francis from PMT Chartered Accountants/Business Advisors LLP appeared before the Board to present the Audited 2016 Consolidated Financial Statements for the Cariboo Chilcotin Regional Hospital District

A Question/Answer period ensued thereon

Chair Wagner, on behalf of the Board, thanked the delegation for their time/information

Resolved - That the 2016 Audit Findings Letter and Audited 2016 Consolidated Financial Statements for the Cariboo Chilcotin Regional Hospital District, prepared by PMT Chartered Accountants / Business Advisors LLP, be received and approved as presented.

The Board adjourned at 11:38am

CRD Board Highlights - April 13th mtg

Present: Chair A. Richmond; Directors T. Armstrong, J. Bruce, J. Massier (Vice-Chair), S. Forseth, B. Kemp, J. Sorley, M. Wagner, D. Cash, B. Anderson, B. Coakley, R. Sharpe, B. Simpson, W. Cobb, and M. Campsall

Meeting called to order at 9:50am

Meeting Agenda/March 24th CRD Board Minutes, both adopted

Delegation MOB as of April 13th, 2017 received

Business: 

1) Development Services

a) The following Planning Bylaws were given 1st/2nd Readings:

i) Bylaws 5035/5036 - Area B (Quesnel Fringe Area Official Community Plan/Zoning Amendment)
ii) Bylaws 5079/5080 - Area H (South Cariboo Area Official Community Plan/ Zoning Amendment)
iii) Bylaws 5081/5082 - Area F (150 Mile House Area Official Community Plan Amendment/WL Fringe and 150 Mile House Area Zoning Amendment)

b) Bylaw #5072 - Area A (North Cariboo Area Rural Land Use Amendment) was given 3rd Reading

c) Bylaw #5047 - Area G (South Cariboo Area Zoning Amendment) was adopted by the Board

d) The Board agreed to submit ALR Application #ALR1703 to the Provincial Agricultural Land Commission with a recommendation for approval

e) The Board approved Temporary Permit/Industrial Application #TP69-2016 (Area F)

f) The Board received the Municipalities’ Building Inspection Statistic Report, Cariboo Regional District Statistic Report, and the Inspection Activity Report for February 2017

2) Community Services

a) The Board approved up to $9,000 from the 2017 Community Halls Improvements envelope of the Community Works Fund to perform energy efficiency upgrades at the McLeese Lake Community Hall

3) Finance

a) The Board received/ratified the Monthly Cheque Register for March 2017 in the amount of $4,657,655.05

b) The Board approved the 2016 Statement of Financial Information report for release to the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development

Resolved - That the EA Administration budget line for Canada 150 events be increased from $5,000 - $25,000 with an application cap of any one event at $1,500.  Board divided.  Motion agreed to by the following Stakeholder - Electoral Areas vote:

Affirmative - Directors Armstrong, Bruce, Massier, Sorley, Richmond, Wagner, Cash, Anderson and Coakley (Areas A, B, C, F, G, H, I, K and L)

Negative - Directors S. Forseth/B. Kemp (Areas D, E)

c) The Board approved two Canada 150 Grant applications for funding from the Electoral Area Administration budget:

i) Horsefly Board of Trade, Canada Day - $1,500
ii) SkyFest 2017 (Quesnel) - $1,500.  Board divided.  Motion agreed to by the following Stakeholder - Electoral Areas vote:

Affirmative - Directors Armstrong, Bruce, Massier, Sorley, Richmond, Wagner, Cash, Anderson and Coakley

Negative - Directors S. Forseth/B. Kemp

d) The Board approved 4 Grant for Assistance applications for funding, as follows:

i) Back Country Horsemen of BC North Cariboo Chapter - Refer to NC Rural Caucus
ii) Caribruisers Junior Roller Derby - Receive only
iii) Mahood Falls Community Society - Waive policy/$2,000
iv) Big Lake Elementary - $250 (Area F)

Meeting recessed at 10:58am
Meeting resumed at 11:08am

Delegation:

Jo-Ann Francis from PMT Chartered Accountants/Business Advisors LLP appeared before the Board to present the Audited 2016 Consolidated Financial Statements for the Cariboo Regional District

A Question/Answer period ensued

Chair Richmond, on behalf of the Board, thanked Ms. Francis for her time/information

Resolved -- That the Audited 2016 Consolidated Financial Statements for the Cariboo Regional District, prepared by PMT Chartered Accountants LLP, be received and approved as presented.

Meeting recessed to CCRHD Board at 11:29am
Meeting resumed at 11:38am

Business, cont:

4) Communications

a) The Board received a report from the Manager of Communications in regards to an update on the Cariboo Strong Regional Ec Dev program

5) Administration

a) The Board agreed to release two previous In-Camera Resolutions as follows:

i) ‘That all Regional District staff, union and excluded, be compensated in accordance with the provisions for overtime hours as established in the Collective Agreement between the Cariboo Regional District and the BC Government Employees and Services Union, for authorized emergency operations overtime work under an Emergency Management of BC task number.’

ii) That the Cariboo Regional District proceed with a petition process to establish a function for the ongoing operating and maintenance costs of flood mitigative works on the Cottonwood River. Further, that if the petition receives elector approval, that staff be directed to enter into an agreement with Emergency Management BC and the affected Cottonwood River residents, which clarifies responsibilities for ongoing operations and maintenance of the works. And further, that staff be directed to undertake, as a priority, the necessary contracts to construct the works.’

b) The Board adopted the Draft Video Surveillance Policy, as prepared by the Corporate Officer

Meeting recessed at 12:08pm
Meeting resumed at 12:48pm

c) The Board received a report from the Corporate Officer in regards to a UBCM Marijuana Legalization and Regulation Survey

d) The Board received the 'Consent Calendar' as of April 13th

e) The Board received NCLGA/UBCM/FCM Items as follows:

i) Response from Ministry to District of Coldstream - Provincial Private Moorage Program
ii) Federation of Canadian Municipalities - Legal Defense Fund
iii) District of Coldstream - Request to Farm Industry Review Board to Conduct Study

f) The Board received a copy of a letter from Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations in respect of a Moratorium on Road Deactivations in Horsefly

g) The Board received/endorsed the Prioritization of Board Resolutions, as of March 24, 2017

6) Committee/Commission Minutes/Recommendations

a) The Board received the following Committee/Commission Minutes

i) North Cariboo Rural Directors Caucus Minutes - March 14, 2017
ii) Central Cariboo Rural Directors Caucus Minutes - March 22, 2017
iii) North Cariboo Joint Planning Committee Minutes - March 14, 2017
iv) South Cariboo Joint Committee - April 10th, 2017

b) The Board endorsed recommendations from the following Committees/Commissions:

i) 2017 North Cariboo Recreation and Parks Budget Amendment - NC Joint Committee on March 14th
ii) North Cariboo Joint Planning Commission Terms of Reference - Committee Review and Discussion - NC Joint Committee on March 14th
iii) Bill C-337 - An Act to Amend the Judges Act and the Criminal Code (Sexual Assault) - CC Rural Caucus Recommendation from March 8th - write letter of support for Bill C-337

Board divided.  Motion approved by the following vote:

Affirmative - Chair Richmond; Directors Armstrong, Massier, Forseth, Kemp, Sorley, Wagner, Cash, Anderson, Coakley, Simpson and Campsall

Negative - Director J. Bruce (Area B) and W. Cobb (Williams Lake)

iv) 100 Mile RCMP Delegation - SC Joint Committee on April 10th

c) The Board received an Invitation from Southern Interior Beetle Action Coalition - 2017 Keeping it Rural Conference

6) Corporate Bylaws

a) The Board gave 1st, 2nd and 3rd Readings to 103 Mile Water System Service Boundary Amendment Bylaw No. 5093, 2017
b) The Board gave 1st, 2nd and 3rd Readings to and adopted Cariboo Regional District Water Rates Bylaw No. 5094, 2017
c) The Board gave 1st, 2nd and 3rd Readings to and adopted Wildwood Sewer Management Amendment Bylaw No. 5095, 2017

7) Directors' Requests

a) At the request of Director Forseth (Area D) - the Board agreed to write the Ministry of Transportation/Infrastructure urging that consideration be given to rest areas within the CRD for its Free Wi-Fi at provincial rest areas initiative.  Board divided.  Approved by the following vote:

Affirmative - Directors Armstrong, Massier, Forseth, Kemp, Sorley, Richmond, Wagner, Cash, Anderson, Coakley, Simpson, Cobb and Campsall

Negative - Director J. Bruce (Area 'B')

At 1:26pm -- The Board convened an In-Camera Meeting as per Sections 90(1a/k - appointments and negotiations) of the Community Charter

At 1:42pm -- the Board resumed its' public meeting

Directors' reported out on their recent activities

Resolved -  That policy be waived and $1,000 be allocated from the Electoral Area B Discretionary Fund for the purpose of holding various public meetings in the area

Resolved - That a letter of support be authorized for the 2017 SkyFest event in Quesnel

Resolved - That communications in regards to planning issues be discussed at a future Committee of the Whole meeting

The Board adjourned at 2:40pm

Canada 150 in Quesnel

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

As Chair of Canada Day/Canada 150 celebrations this year, just thought a quick update would be in order.

A group of community members have met several times to start formulating plans to help with our community celebrations of both Canada Day and Canada 150.

Throughout the year various organizations will be hosting events to recognize Canada’s 150th birthday. Our newly created Facebook page “Canada 150 Quesnel” will be one source of information for when these events take place.

The City of Quesnel will be launching its very own 150 Let’s get Active program. Through our Healthier Community Committee and a grant from Northern Health, we will be promoting an active lifestyles campaign. Passports will be provided to each participant and after logging 150 hours of activities, you turn the passports in for a specially designed Quesnel 150 pin. Passports will be available to participants starting at our launch May 5th which will be happening down at LeBourdais Park with an afternoon/evening event sponsored by ParticipACTION 150 playlist group. Stay tuned for more information on this event and other opportunities to try out new activities that will give you “bonus” credits on your passports.

If your organization has an event taking place this year to help celebrate Canada’s 150, please let me know so we can get the word out.

I encourage you to think about how YOU are going to get your 150 on!

Laurey-Anne Roodenburg, Canada Day/150 Chair

Email: lroodenburg@quesnel.ca

Facebook: Laurey-Anne Roodenburg OR Canada 150 Quesnel

Editor's Note -- Laurey-Anne Roodenburg is also a Quesnel City Councillor and the current North Central Local Government Association President

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

2017 Budget Mtg #2 - WL Council

Present: Mayor W. Cobb; Councillors I. Bonnell, S. Nelson (Meeting Chair), C. Smith and S. Zacharias

Meeting called to order at 5pm

Meeting Agenda adopted

Business:

1) Report of the CFO re: 2017 Budget/2017-21 Financial Plan Update

The CFO reviewed his report with the Committee
The Chair provided comments

Discussion ensued thereon including continuing a budget review from the previous meeting

Resolved - Report received/Staff report back, based on Committee discussions, at the next meeting

2) 2017 Tax Rates Discussion

The CFO provided an oral report to the Committee
Discussion ensued thereon..

No resolution resulted

Meeting adjourned at 6:05pm

First Seeding Start-Up Participants to Receive Funds

Courtesy of the City of Williams Lake:

The first Seeding Start-Up Participants pitched their Business Concepts to the Review Panel on Thursday, April 6.

The Review Panel, made up of the jointly funded Project Partners, included representatives from Community Futures of Cariboo Chilcotin, Williams Lake Business Improvement Association, Thompson Rivers University, Williams Lake and Area Chamber of Commerce and City of Williams Lake. The Seeding Start-Ups Program is designed to encourage new business development in the City of Williams Lake and has been partially funded by the Province’s BC Rural Dividend Fund.

The first participants to go before the panel were representative of the two eligibility groups of the program, the Youth category, (19-29) and 50+ group.

Jessica Pickering is the owner of Circuit Cell Shop. As a new Start-Up, Jessica is eligible for a contribution of up to $1500 from the Youth category of the Seeding Program. Like many entrepreneurs, Pickering started her business out of her home, and her success led her to take the next step into a store front location. Jessica has a "niche" business, as there is virtually no local competition for the service and products that she is offering. "I offer on-site Cell Phone repair services. Customers love that I can fix a cracked screen right on site which saves them having to send their device out of town and the downtime that comes with that".

"I attended the Community Futures Business Plan Workshop and found that I got a lot of good information that I was able to apply to my business operations. It got me to think about things I hadn’t considered, and helped me to work out how I was going to run the financial end of things" said Pickering. "So far, I have been able to start up my business with my own savings and a small personal loan. The potential of a contribution from Seeding Start-Ups is really exciting for me because it is going to enable me to make the investments in tools and a work bench that I need to be even more productive. It is great that I will be able to do that right away, leaving my business income available to cover my operating expenses." Pickering hopes to one day be able to hire and train a new staff person. The business is open Tuesday to Saturday and is located in the Delainey’s Mall at 271 Oliver Street.

The second Pitch that the Review Panel will be hearing is from Eric Sannes who is about to launch his company "On Air Training and Consulting". This business will provide professional broadcast services and training to a variety of associations, societies and groups who are looking to increase their communication skills.

Falling into the 50+ category, Sannes will be eligible for a contribution of $1000 which he plans to use to purchase a portable recording device and software which will enable him to record outside of his home studio. "The Start-Up contribution provides the little extra my business needs to succeed" say Sannes. "Frightening as it is, a low percentage of Start-Ups are successful. This extra money provides the fiscal encouragement that makes success a little more likely." Sannes too attended the Community Futures workshop and found that the information and support that he received was valuable in solidifying his business and marketing plans. Both participants have also been working with the Seeding Start-Up Coordinator Beth Veenkamp to get ready for the Pitch Presentations.

Says Veenkamp, "My role is to work with participants to provide whatever support they require to get ready to go in front of the panel to pitch their business. Community Futures is a great resource in our community, and because of the partnership that they have made with this project, there is an unprecedented opportunity for people to access the resources available there. With the training offered in their Business Plan Workshops, I feel that applicants will be very well positioned to present to the panel and be successful in the goal of viable sustainable business." Once approved for the seed contribution, Veenkamp will continue to work with participants to assist in the success of their venture.

If you have a business idea that you would like to grow, contact Seeding Start-Ups Coordinator Beth Veenkamp at 250-392-8480.

Seeding Start-Ups is a pilot program funded by the Provincial Rural Dividend Initiative and community partners including, Community Futures of the Cariboo Chilcoltin, Williams Lake Business Improvement Association, Thompson Rivers University, The Williams Lake and District Chamber of Commerce and the City of Williams Lake. Aimed at diversifying and strengthening the local economy, contributions of $1000-1500 are available to business startups who are in their first year of operations. The program runs until March 1 2018. Contact the Coordinator, Beth Veenkamp at 250-398-8480 for more information.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

BC 2017 Election Officially Underway!

At the request of the BC Premier -- Her Honour, the Hon. Judith Guichon, BC's Lieutenant-Governor has dissolved the 40th Parliament of British Columbia which officially starts the 41st BC General Election with General Voting Day on Tuesday, May 9th

The official writs of election can be viewed below:

Cariboo-Chilcotin - click here
Cariboo-North - click here

Writs of Election for the remaining 85 Electoral Districts of British Columbia can be viewed here

Elections BC has also set the campaign limits as follows:

Candidate - $77,674.62

Political Party - $4,882,404.95

3rd Party advertising sponsors is $3,328.91 in relation to a single electoral district and $166,445.62 overall

Finally - so far, only 2 All Candidates Forums have been scheduled.  One on April 13th (details here) and one on April 27th (click here)

~SF

UPDATE - Political parties/Independents have until 1pm next Tuesday to officially register with Elections BC to be an official candidate in the May 9th BC Election.  As of now - here are the known candidates for Cariboo-North/Cariboo-Chilcotin

Cariboo-North: 

Coralee Oakes - BC Liberal (Incumbent)
Scott Elliott - BC NDP
Tony Goulet - BC Conservative
Richard Jacques - BC Greens

Cariboo-Chilcotin:

Donna Barnett - BC Liberal (Incumbent)
Sally Watson - BC NDP
Rita Giesbrecht - BC Greens