COUNCIL MATTERS: Report for February 9, 2016 Meeting
Present: Present: Mayor Kathy Moore, and Councillors Marten Kruysse, John Greene, Andrew Zwicker, Andy Morel, and Lloyd McLellan. Staff: Consulting CAO Lynne Burch, Consulting CFO Steve Ash, Manager of Public Works Darrin Albo, and Alison Worsfold taking minutes.
Absent: Councillor Aaron Cosbey.
1. Brenda Hooper, Chair of the “Greater Trail Hospice Society,” spoke to Council about the Thursday, March 3, 2016, “Swimathon” from noon to eight, challenging people all over the region (including all the mayors) to get pledges and to raise funds for the hospice. Instead of “throwing down the gauntlet” to make the challenge, she threw down the goggles. Moore accepted the challenge, with a disclaimer about her swimming abilities. The hospice society formed about 5 years ago to provide end-of-life services. It now has about 35 volunteers in addition to the volunteer board, and one paid part-time staff member. For more information, readers can check the website at http://www.trailhospice.org/
2. Ellie Knox and Joel Moyer, from “Creating Supportive Rossland” a group that meets weekly or biweekly to discuss making a more welcoming community for LGBTQ+ youth and is associated with the Rossland Youth Action Network, presented to Council on issues around youth and gender identity and visibility, and made requests of Council; for details please see separate opinion article illustrated by the rainbow flag motif.
Council Business: Staff Recommendations for Decision
With some discussion, Council passed motions to:
· direct staff to apply for the $10,000 Water Smart Grant to replace old water meters with new ones at the trailer park, the Courthouse, and the Old Fire Hall. Rossland would contribute 1/3 of the cost. Kruysse queried, and Albo clarified, that originally the city provided the meters, and the owners paid for the installation; for replacement of malfunctioning meters, the City will pay for both the new meter and also the installation cost.
· direct staff to extend the existing contract for Janitorial Services with Peppe’s Janitor Services for a further two years, from January 1, 2016 until January 31, 2018, based on the existing terms and conditions at a cost of$1,116.32 plus taxes per month for the first year and an additional 2% increase in the second year.
· fund the shortfall required on the Miners Hall building envelope façade, including the replacement of the south facing windows, the roof, the siding and painting, and the scaffolding, totaling $100,000, from the Land Sales Reserve Fund.
· determine that the Rotary Building is surplus to the needs of the City of Rossland and offer the building for sale (as is).
· allocate $25,000 in the 2016 annual budget, to reimburse Rossland residents for the Trail Resident Program (TRP) fee based on the purchase of a 10 visit pass for use of the Trail Aquatic Centre and limited to two such passes per person, on a first-come first-serve basis.
This last motion fleshes out part of the City’s decision at the previous meeting to allocate a total of $50,000 for reimbursing Rosslanders for the additional amounts Rosslanders are charged to use Trail’s recreational facilities. Only Zwicker opposed the motion, as he feels that it wouldn’t serve the needs of those who really need the subsidy. Ash pointed out that the City’s service must be audited, and the ten-punch pass facilitates that because the passes include identification.
A motion that Council give first and second readings to read bylaw No. 2607, Business Licence Bylaw, 2016, FAILED.
Discussion: Greene questioned the purpose of business licences. Morel mentioned the issue of mobile vendors at markets and on occasions such as Winter Carnival, and suggested adding a mobile licence for special events; and Greene suggested that enforcement is very difficult with regard to home-based businesses operating by internet. Moore suggested further simplifying the definitions section regarding types of business; and just categorizing them by price-point. Council discussed “inter-municipal” business licences. An inter-municipal business licence entitles a contractor to work in several communities. Councillors agreed that there should be sharing of lists of inter-municipal licence holders among all the municipalities. McLellan said he wants to see more inter-municipal agreements, and this would be a good place to start. Kruysse mentioned that the Chamber of Commerce in Trail will now be including Rossland businesses, as there is now no Rossland Chamber of Commerce.
A motion to refer the bylaw back to staff CARRIED.
A motion to give third reading to bylaw No. 2605, Water Rate Bylaw, 2016, CARRIED unanimously, as did a motion to give third reading to bylaw No. 2606, Sewer Rate Bylaw, 2016, and a motion that Council adopt bylaw No. 2604, Temporary Borrowing Bylaw No. 2604.
A report on a meeting of Planner Stacey Lightbourne, Public Works Manager Darrin Albo, and Consulting CFR Steve Ash struck a positive note. The meeting was to address preliminary issues before tendering the Washington Street Project; participants felt that Rossland taxpayers will be well served, judging by the creative problem solving to mitigate the overall cost of the project.
A motion to advertise for volunteer members of a Rossland Fire Service Task Force CARRIED unanimously. The purpose of the Fire Service Task Force is to examine the current service levels and costs to Rossland, and to seek potential cost savings.
Zwicker reported that the application for the Food Security initiative grant was submitted on time, and “we should hear back in early March.”
Moore will send a letter to the Winter Carnival organizers to thank them for the outstanding event. She reported that the Washington Street Project task force met for the first time and they promise to be an excellent resource. She has been invited to the May 7 “Grape Stomp” in Trail but sought a helper, so Morel volunteered his size 10 and halfs to squish grapes.
The meeting was then closed to the public pursuant to the Community Charter, section 90(1)(c) — Labour Relations.
And your reporter walked home in the dark on quite a lot of ice, contemplating the vast gulfs between acts of friendship and generosity, and those cruelties that people inflict upon each other for reasons that have nothing to do with reason; then, once at home, resorted to escapist literature even though it, too, addressed those issues.