Year's final council meeting sets tone for 2016
The City of Trail has finalized the Funding Contribution Agreement for the Pedestrian Pipeline Bridge, with the RDKB contributing $7.2 million toward the total project cost of $15.076 million. According to Councillor Robert Cacchioni, Chair of the RDKB Sewerage Committee, Trail residents will not be looked at to pick up any additional costs for the new bridge.
“There are no increases in taxes expected even though the bridge budget was higher than originally projected,” Cacchioni said.
Councillor Kevin Jolly, chair of the Bridge Committee, toured the bridge site on Dec. 7, along with Rossland Mayor Kathy Moore, to see firsthand the progress. Jolly reports that, thus far, the noise has not been too distracting for area residents and notes that there has only been one incident of working past schedule where a resident did call to complain. The city and its partners plan to visit the site regularly to stay updated on the project.
The Trail Memorial Centre is expected to receive upgrades to its heating plant in the upcoming year. West Kootenay Mechanical has been awarded the contract for the upgrades, which are expected to also include heat recovery Improvements. Funding will be provided from the city’s 2016 capital budget, unspent 2015 capital revenues and a FortisBC rebate for a project total of $322,000. According to the Governance and Operations Committee (GOC) report for Dec. 14, the project is expected to be completed prior to next fall in order to qualify for the Fortis rebate.
Once again, the revitalization of downtown Trail was a topic of discussion at council’s regular meeting. During 2015, Lower Columbia Initiatives and the City of Trail conducted a business walk. Councillor Lisa Pasin reported that 95 businesses were visited during the walk and 89 per cent of those businesses reported increasing or steady business.
“The biggest challenge we heard was recruiting and retaining qualified personnel,” said Pasin. “We also heard businesses say they are in need of more affordable promotion for local businesses”.
Council members indicated they intend to pay close attention to this matter in coming months, with recommendations to better market the region and explore requests from the Trail Downtown Business Group for additional signage downtown, which is intended to help direct more foot traffic to businesses.
Mayor Mike Martin said he is pleased with the results of Monday’s meetings. When asked what he feels to be the most important topics discussed by council at the final meeting of the year, Martin put the new committee appointments at the top of the list.
“The committee appointments for 2016 are very important. This is assigning council members to either head up committees of council or liaise with various community groups,” he said, adding, “This really assists council in doing its job properly with regards to advancing different initiatives.”
All newly-appointed committee chairs can be found on the City of Trail website.
Martin said that getting through the first three readings on the Utility Bylaws is also extremely important.
“There was extensive review at today’s GOC Meeting and now we can formalize for [adoption at the first meeting in] 2016,” Martin said.
All GOC and General Council meetings are open to the public and are held monthly at the Trail City Hall. The City Council Meeting schedule can be found on the City of Trail website along with meeting minutes and agendas.