By Andrea Arnold
The February 22, 2022 McBride Council meeting was called to order at 7:03 by Mayor Gene Runtz.
Water and Sewage user fee increase
Minutes of the February 3, 2022 Special Council Meeting were adopted as presented.
During the meeting, the 2022 Utility Fee Rate Review was addressed.
Council directed the Administration to increase both sewer and water user fees by $25 per year for the next 3 years. The increases will help the village move towards sustainable funding for sanitary sewer and water utility operations and capital replacement.
Meeting request with Minister of Forests
Council directed administration to arrange a meeting with the Minister of Forests Katrine Conroy to discuss the Old Growth deferral situation and harmonized stumpage.
Continued conversations with BCEHS
Councillor Hruby made a motion to send a letter following the meeting they had with members of BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS) on February 10, 2022. Council directed administration to send a letter of thanks for the information and meeting to Deb Trumbley, BCEHS Director of Patient Care Delivery, Jana Hargreaves, new Area Manager North Central District as well as outgoing manager, Michael B. Lee. The letter is to voice appreciation for their time, information and continued support of ambulance staffing in
McBride. It also included some requests:
1.) We are supportive of the three net new positions proposed for McBride, but would appreciate a date that the vacant positions are to be posted. As well as an educated estimate of when they will be filled.
2.) Please provide an estimate of when the Community Paramedic position will have a person actively filling the role. It is our understanding that the position is filled, but the staff member has not worked a shift since last November.
3.) We would appreciate receipt of the actual coverage statistics for McBride since the establishment of the Scheduled On Call program.
4.) Could we be provided with a list of communities that have had the Scheduled On Call model has been fully implemented?
Regional Community Economic Coordinator position support
Council directed the Administration to write a letter of support to Community Futures Fraser Fort George (CFCD) for their application to Pacific Economic Development Canada for funding. The goal is the development of a regional Community Economic Coordinator position that will focus on region-wide initiatives across the area that CFDC serves. The position would complement the work of existing Economic Development offices in communities throughout the Fraser Fort George region. Council discussed their hope that the position will directly benefit the Robson Valley. Furthermore, the Council moved that the administration send the letter no later than March 4, 2022.
Computer program purchase
Council approved the purchase of Muniware Physical Assets & Equipment Costing and Project Costing modules incorporating the costs into the 2022 budget, as appropriate, and authorizes Administration to execute the agreement. The licensing and start up fees will cost $10,900.
Temporary Use Permit
With a vote of 4-1 (Councillor Smith opposed), Council approved receiving the Temporary Use Permit for 210 Main Street – Micro-Hotel/AirBnB report for information. The report outlines the proposed use of the space as an AirBnB. Through discussion, Council expressed concern about losing possible long-term rental space, and retail space, but passed the motion as the proposal uses otherwise empty spaces within the downtown area. Council directed staff to continue the TUP process. If successful, the TUP will be up for renewal in two years.
Emergency preparedness training
Council moved to support a Village of McBride application to the Community Emergency Preparedness Fund 2022 Emergency Operations Centres and Training intake stream in the amount of $12,263.00 and agreed to support the overall grant management. The training would prepare Village staff in case of local emergency.
Land use agreement for fire hall
Council agreed to enter the Village into the McBride District Volunteer Fire Hall Property Use Agreement with the Regional District of Fraser-Fort George for the land that the hall is located on, 875 Southwest Frontage Road in McBride. Council authorized Mayor Runtz and CAO Tupy to execute the agreement.
Council moved to proceed to an in-camera meeting for consideration of matters of the Community Charter related to Section 90 (1) (c) labour relations of other employee relations, (e) the acquisition, disposition or expropriation of land or improvements, if the council considers that disclosure could reasonably be expected to harm the interests of the municipality and Section 90 (2) (b) the consideration of information received and held in confidence relating to negotiations between the municipality and a provincial government of the federal government or both, or between a provincial government or the federal government or both, and a third party.
The public portion of the meeting was recessed at 8:06pm to allow Council to move to the in-camera portion.