By Andrea Arnold

The Village of McBride held its regular Council meeting Oct. 27th, 2020.

Namesake concern
Pierce Longuskie addressed Council to present the information regarding McBride’s name and the relationship with former Premier Richard McBride. Some of his concerns lay in the former premier’s outlook on things like the “asian problem” and the “white man’s province.” Longuskie understands that a name change would be costly, but is asking that, as McBride has no direct connection to the area, along with the concerns previously stated, that Council considers distancing ourselves, acknowledging both the negative and positive historic accuracy and to start a conversation. Council requested that Longuskie create a script that could be framed. A way to show a balanced view, illustrating the positive and negative aspects of our namesake. Possibly to be used in the museum at a future date.

Snowmobiler protocol
Barry Walline with the Big Country Snowmobile Association presented Council with MBCSA’s Covid-19 protocols. They have implemented sanitization procedures and plexiglass. He also asked to hear Council’s thoughts regarding trail grooming for the 20-21 snowmobiling season. Everyone agreed that the message to sledders coming from outside the Valley needs to be a request for respect; mask wearing when close quarters are necessary, and good sanitization practices. Walline also told Council that he hopes to show a united front along with the other communities in BC, and express to visitors that if protocols are not followed, there is a chance that the province will shut down again, removing the choice to travel altogether.

Grant list
Council passed the motion to receive a report regarding Grant Funded Projects. The report listed the 11 ongoing grant funded projects, five potential projects awaiting approval, eight grant submissions being prepared, and nine more projects awaiting grant submission.

Train station wall
Council passed the motion approving the construction of a permanent barrier between the Beanery and Visitor Information Centre at the CN Station upon receipt and approval of design specification and plans.

Development Variance Permit
Council passed the motion approving Development Variance Permit Application 2020-01 and authorizes Administration to execute the application. The only concern that was presented by the neighbours was if the final structure would be too close to their properties. Council was disappointed to learn that the individual applying had not in fact ceased after the order to do so had been issued. Administration was directed to include strongly worded disappointment over the lack of direction following. Also to be included that in the future, Council may not be so accommodating.

5-Year Financials
Council declined the motion to give Bylaw 796.2020 Amendment to Bylaw 793.2020 Five Year Financial Plan. It was decided that Council would meet on November 5, 2020 to solidify the plan. This will also allow them to release the final documents for public viewing before the amendment is passed.

Roles & Responsabilities
The recommendation to approve the Village of McBride Policy AD-19 Roles and Responsibilities as presented was not given a motion. It was tabled with no discussion.

Facade program
Council approved the recommendation to approve the 2021 DRAFT Village of McBride Business Facade Improvement Guide. They also voted to support the application to Northern Development Initiative Trust from the Village of McBride for a grant of up to $20,000 for the Business Facade Improvement Program and agrees to support the overall grant management.

Facility Rules
Council passed a late item to request a list from the Regional District of Fraser Fort George stating the rules that users are required to follow in order to use their facilities. Council would like to see consistency between the community arenas, and would like to have the opportunity to ask clarification questions where needed.

Council passed the recommendation that they proceed to an In-Camera meeting for consideration of matters per Section 90 (1) of the community Charter related to: (a) personal information about an identifiable individual who holds or is being considered for a position as an officer, employee or agent of the municipality or another position appointed by the municipality.
Council adjourned at 8:12pm.