City Council Briefs
Brenda Hooper, TCare co-ordinator, gave a presentation to Castlegar City Council on Monday about the TCare Research project. Hooper was joined by Suzanne Lehbauer of the Castlegar Hospice Society.
“We will be developing a clinical resource team to augment the present resources for people living with life limiting chronic illness,” said Hooper. “As co-ordinator, I will be making contact with participants on a regular basis, helping them navigate the health care system as they face end of life issues.”
Hooper invited any interested councillors to join the TCare Advisory Committee.
Revitalization tax exemption bylaw
Castlegar council gave first and second reading to a proposed revitalization tax exemption bylaw. The bylaw would allow businesses in Castlegar to apply for a municipal tax exemption for alteration, renovation, or expansion projects.
The bylaw would provide a tax exemption, on municipal taxes only, for a period of six years.
The tax exemption would be provided on a sliding scale. The bylaw would come into force when adopted by city council and properties could apply for an exemption up until Dec. 31, 2014.
“The idea behind the bylaw is to encourage businesses that might want to do some expansion or new developments,” said councillor Russ Hearne. “The goal is to allow them to do that without their property values being raised and costing more taxes. We’re basically going to give them an exemption for a number of years. After that exemption period’s over they’ll pay taxes based on the value of their building. It’s a little bit of encouragement for anyone interested in investing to get on with it.”
After the second reading, it was recommended by council that city staff implement a public consultation on the bylaw before third and final reading.
“We want to make sure everyone’s included in the process,” said Hearne. “Who knows? There might be better ideas out there. We definitely want to hear from people.”
Councillor Deb McIntosh recommended that the city put out a public service announcement warning people of the dangers of going in the water at Millennium Park.
“I went down today (Monday) and their were kids over by the gazebo, which is the closest point to the Columbia River and they were on tubes and air mattresses and no parents were around,” she said. “If your kids are going out – ask them where they’re going. Check on them. If they get caught in the current – there will be no hope for them. They’ll drown. There’s nobody that’s going to jump in and save them. It’s too big and too fast. This isn’t a small tributary. This is the Columbia River. It’s huge, it’s strong, and it will take your children’s lives.”
Fire Chief Gerry Rempel submitted the Emergency Services monthly report for June. There were nine fires reported in the month for a year-to-date of 34 in 2012. That number is up by nine from 2011. The total number of emergency calls in June was 74 for a year-to-date total of 334, up from 281 during the same time in 2011.
The report said all areas adjacent to the Columbia River are being monitored on a daily basis.
To date the only areas which are flooded within the city are the Millennium Walkway and Zuckerberg Island. The fire department has planned for dealing with emergencies on Zuckerberg Island until the waters recede and the causeway is again accessible for our apparatus.
The rivers are presently very unpredictable as are the riverbanks, and we request the public do not enter these areas.
Council recommended the purchase of a 1-ton Dump Truck from Mertin GM at a total cost of $54,980 plus HST.The truck will replace the 1995 model.