Castlegar mayor receives Queen’s Jubilee Medal

Council briefs include mayor receiving medal, LED lights, roof rejection and Wests' windows.

Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko (right) presents Castlegar mayor Lawrence Chernoff with the Queen's Diamond Jubilee medal on Monday at council.

Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko (right) presents Castlegar mayor Lawrence Chernoff with the Queen's Diamond Jubilee medal on Monday at council.

Mayor receives medal

Castlegar mayor Lawrence Chernoff received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal at council Monday. The award was presented by Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko.

Chernoff was thrilled to get the award for his many years of service to the area.

“It feels great,” he said. “It’s something I never expected to happen or even an inkling it would happen. I’ve enjoyed public life in many different facets in this community. Even though the medal comes to me, I think it really recognizes the community and I think that’s the key. It warms the heart to get this. Only 60,000 Canadians get the medal and it’s a once in a life-time event. It’s a good feeling and like I said I’ve really enjoyed working with the public.”

LED lights

Castlegar city council voted unanimously in favour at Monday night’s meeting to acquire and install new LED street lights as provided for in the 2013 budget.

The motion was brought forward by councillor Kevin Chernoff, chair of the Transportation and Civic Works committee. Chernoff said that this initiative was part of a very long three to four year process. “Without the efforts of people like Chris Barlow Director of Transportation and Public Works and our partners FortisBC, S.T.I., funding received thru the Innovative Clean Energy Fund (ICE) and Councils perseverance this project would never have proceeded,” said Chernoff. “When you can do a project like this that will save the Community approximately 50 per cent of the power costs that you presently pay for, can demonstrate a 6 year return on your investment and make such a positive impact on your environment it’s really a no brainer,” he said.

The report to Council highlighted the benefits that would also include more natural style coloured lighting, reduced maintenance costs because of the 10 year warranty and an anticipated life span of 20 years or more. “The 50 per cent power reduction alone equates to estimated energy savings of approximately 402,000 KWH a year,” said Chernoff. “That is enough energy to power 40 homes for a year and reduces our carbon footprint by six tonnes”.

Chernoff said the adaptive street light program quite possibly makes Castlegar the only community in North America to change out every streetlight with this type of lighting and shows how importantly council is exploring options in reducing our municipalities costs and making a positive impact on our environment.

Kootenay Family Place

Castlegar city council turned down an emergency grant release from Kootenay Family Place to fix the roof at Hobbit House.

“Unfortunately, we don’t have the money around to help with that,” said councillor Deb McIntosh. “If we did that it would hinder the grants program for the year. So we’re asking them to apply for funding through the initiatives grant and other grants. Although we would like to help everyone, it’s just not in our realm to help each and everyone.”

West Department

In the story that won’t die department, councillor Gord Turner told council Phil Markin, director of development services, had met with Basil McLaren, owner of West Department Store, and been told McLaren will start work on replacing windows at the store in downtown Castlegar.

Councillor Dan Rye commented that council should set firm time frames to see the work completed.

“We’re trying to go through him rather than hammering him with the process,” said mayor Lawrence Chernoff. “I think he’s relented somewhat to get some of this done. Councillor Rye raised the issue that we may need to put some deadlines on it. We’re hoping we don’t have to go through the process because if we do it takes a little longer. If there’s an easier way to do it, I say do it the easier way but let’s get it done. That’s the aim of council is to get the job done. The goal here for council is not to pound a business or resident and say, ‘hey, you have to get it done.’ If he does it willingly, it’s much better for everyone.”