Mayor Lawrence Chernoff opened council on Monday with a short farewell to retiring councillor Gordon Turner.
“Gord, it’s been a privilege to have you as a council representative for 14 years,” Chernoff said.
“You’re a valued colleague to all of us and it was great to work with you. Your kind of dedication to the community is really hard to come by today. It was very important to us to have you as part of the team, and the team got along well.”
“I know you want to retire for travelling plans and all those things you want to do with your family and your grandchildren fit into place now, and I think it’s a great time to do that.”
Chernoff finished, “So on behalf of city council and the citizens of Castlegar we’d like to thank you and very much appreciate your service over the last 14 years.”
Moving on, the larger focus for this meeting of council was a letter from Canadian Pacific (CP) Rail in response to their disruptive night train schedule.
“We’ve received a letter from CPR which is very nice of them to get back to us,” councillor Sue Heaton-Sherstobitoff said.
“But in the letter they talk about being accountable to their operations. We have to be responsible to our citizens. So I think the response here is not what I was expecting.”
Over 100 residents showed up to a council meeting last month to address CP’s Director of Government Affairs Mike LoVecchio, on the issue of trains running through residential areas at 3 a.m. and later.
Despite many feasible solutions offered at this meeting, it appears LoVecchio took none into consideration.
“I want to recommend we send a letter in saying his response is unsatisfactory,” Heaton-Sherstobitoff said.
Council’s agreement was unanimous.
Mayor Chernoff closed off the meeting with a few words on the recent election.
“It shows a confidence the community has in the council. It shows what we’re doing is the right thing and the correct thing,” said Mayor Chernoff.
“Council operates as a team and that is enhanced with a senior staff.”
With over 25 mayors replaced in B.C. and many councils altered considerably, council members are very grateful and proud of the continued support from the citizens of Castlegar.