Broad background given to council

City council briefs following the meeting of Monday, January 20

City of Castlegar

City of Castlegar

The City of Castlegar council meeting this past Monday night was kicked off by an overview of an exciting technical upgrade for the Columbia Basin’s communications capabilities.

Ev Surgenor, Chair of the Columbia Basin Broadband Committee brought council up to speed on it’s developments and history.

Mr. Surgenor and his group have recently compiled a comprehensive four-part submission which is appearing in this publication, part one appeared last week.

Under the heading of Finance and Corporate Affairs, council voted in support of a recommendation contained in a report from Director of Corporate Services Carolyn Rempel.

The report concerns a detailed program involving the RDCK and Columbia Basin Trust, dealing with “… Community Initiatives Funding in a manner that is consistent with the CBT Management Plan, and to foster activities that each community deems important and may not otherwise be taken.”

Rempel’s three-pronged recommendation suggested:

• public input in the process be facilitated via an April 16 (6 p.m.) meeting in the Community Forum;

• scheduling a special council meeting for April 28 at 7 p.m. in order to recommend disbursement of the CBT Community Initiative Funding for the City of Castlegar for 2014/2015, and that a copy of council’s resolution be forwarded to the RDCK.

Council agreed to authorize funding for its members to attend the Federation of Canadian Municipalities conference coming up May 29 to June 3 in Niagara Falls, ON. It was not stated at the meeting how many members would attend the conference, but the total cost per delegate taking in the event was estimated at $3,256. Councillor Sue Heaton-Sherstobitoff informed later that one to three councillors typically attend this type of function, and sometimes, none at all.

In terms of Planning and Development, an agenda item divulged that business license revenue was down slightly for 2013 ($78,613.50) as opposed to the 2012 amount of $81,937.50.

A downward trend was noted in the way of building permit activity as well. Permits for work valued at slightly over $5 million were issued in 2013 compared with a total of just under $9 million in the year previous.

With coun. Florio Vassilakakis (Element Club proprietor) excusing himself in order to prevent a potential conflict of interest, Council voted (councillors Heaton-Sherstobitoff and McIntosh voting against) to support the club in it’s application for temporary extension of its hours of sale on two upcoming dates. The Liquor Control and Licensing Branch has received a request for the changes for a special event on Feb. 22 and an Official Sunfest Party on June. The club wishes to extend its closing time on those nights to 3:30 a.m.