By Andrea Arnold
McBride Mayor, Gene Runtz called the Oct 10th council meeting to order at 7:00pm. Interim Chief Administrative Officer, Sandra Salt administered the Oath of Office to Councillor-Elect Tina Bennett.
Council passed a motion to support increasing the Optimize visitmcbride.ca website project contract with KIMBO Design Inc but $3,500 to a maximum of $40,000 (excluding taxes).
Council also approved an additional $1,750 from Municipal and Regional District Tax reserves and $1,750 from approved NDIT funding towards this project.
Council held a discussion regarding conversations they had with Cathy Peters regarding the Anti Human Trafficking Initiative booth at the UBCM Tradeshow. Councillor Joe Kolida made a motion to have administration gather more information for council from Peters. He asked them to also find ways that they can help get the information out to the public. Mayor Runtz agreed that it is a subject that needs to have a higher level of awareness brought to it, even though our community is small and rural. Interim CAO Salt said that although the community is small, it is not immune to instances of attempted child luring. Council passed the motion brought forward by Councillor Kolida.
Bung-Bung & Shine
Council approved a temporary street closure request for Holdway Street, 1st to 2nd Avenue starting Fri. Nov. 24th at 4pm and ending Sat. Nov. 25th at 10am. The request for Sunday morning is to allow time for the Elks/Royal Purple to clean up after Friday evening. Council approved a temporary street closure request for Lonsdale Street to King Street via 1st Avenue and Main Street, 1st Avenue to 2nd Avenue for Friday, November 24th from 4pm to 10pm for the Vintage Snowmobile Event, contingent on receipt of a Certificate of Insurance. Finally, Council approved the request to have a Porta-Potty placed in the Steve Kolida Park for the Bung Bung & Shine and Turcotte Compound Freestyle Show on Friday November 24th.
Grant in aid
Council approved a $250 grant in aid to McBride Secondary School to support the start-up costs associated with a hot lunch program. Jodie Lukow and Kim Hruby, employees of the school, want to run the lunch program for the month of October, serving two meals a week to gauge interest levels.
Council gave final reading and adoption to the Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 818, 2023- Institutional Housing zone for Seniors.
The amended bylaw will now IH-1 zone under section 5.1. The use of land buildings and structures is restricted to residential-institutional housing and includes the following accessory uses are permitted, assembly hall, commercial kitchen, home craft, home occupation, professional services, recreational facilities, retail, service commercial, and accessory dwellings for the short-term housing of medical residency staff and students.
Council gave Permissive Tax Exemption Bylaw No, 821,2023 first, second and third reading.
As per the Community Charter Chapter 26, Part 7, Division 6, Section 220 (1) (h), the following property is exempt from taxation; a building set apart for public worship, and the land on which the building stands, if title to the land is registered in the name of (i) the religious organization using the building, (ii) trustees for the use of that organization, or (iii) a religious organization granting a lease of the building and land to be used solely for public worship. The following organizations qualify. St. Paul’s United Church, Roman Catholic Episcopal and parish, Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada and the McBride Evangelical Free Church.
David Franzmann presented the new water bylaw recommendations to council on behalf of Radloff Engineering. He said that the new bylaw would allow the Village to implement four stages of restrictions over the course of time without having to issue a State of Emergency in order to get results. He said that in the past 10 days the water consumption in the community has dropped significantly. Councillor Kolida asked how the bylaw would fix the current problem.
Interim CAO Salt said that staff is working on other water source options, but that the bylaw is being created to allow the village to try to prevent a repeat of the current situation in future years. Councillor Kolida asked that council be more involved in the process along with administrative staff. He wants to figure out ways to get more people involved, and suggested the installation of a separate, untreated holding tank for water suppression purposes. Mayor Runtz asked if there is a way that the village can support those living in the surrounding area who are experiencing low or no water situations. CAO Salt that with the severe low level of the village water provider (Dominion Creek), water cannot be provided in bulk to those living in the Regional District. Council is hoping that residents will come to the open house to help with the education component of water conservation. Council approved giving Water Bylaw No. 822, 2023 first reading.
Acting Mayor appointment
Council appointed Councillor Bennett as the Deputy Mayor for the dates of November 7, 2025-November 8, 2026.
Beer garden endorsement
Council approved the McBride Elks & Royal Purple’s application for beer garden endorsement for the Bung Bung mixer on Friday, November 24th.
In a late item, Council discussed concerns about safety and damage to the new ball diamond with Fire Chief Dave Hruby regarding the annual Halloween fireworks display being held at the ball diamond as it has been in past years.
Chief Hruby told council that the location is their first choice as it is a central location, and in close proximity to the park where the Elks and Royal Purple serve hot chocolate and hot dogs. He assured them that there has been no history of any infrastructure damage within the park, they have members designated to watch for and extinguish any fallen embers. They use buckets of sand to hold the fireworks in place prior to initiation, and the fence around the park helps the department maintain a secure space. He also told council that during the fireworks display there will be, as there has been in the past, manned fire trucks parked across the roadways to prevent any traffic issues alongside the ball diamond area.
Kolida made a motion to allow the fire department to continue to use the ball diamond to set off the Halloween fireworks display.
Council passed the motion to proceed to an in-camera council meeting for consideration of matters of the Community charter related to section 90 (1) (c ) Labour Relations of other employee relations, and (k) negotiations and related discussions respecting the proposed precision of a municipal service that are at their preliminary stages and that in the view of the council could reasonably be expected to harm the interests of the municipality if the were held in public.
The regular council meeting was recessed at 8:03pm to conduct the in-camera council meeting.