Rossland Council's final set of Zoom meetings for 2020

Sara Golling
By Sara Golling
December 15th, 2020

Chicken coop question resolved! And, Council got through a lot of other business in its final meetings of 2020.

Present:  Mayor Kathy Moore, and Councillors Terry Miller, Dirk Lewis, Chris Bowman, Janice Nightingale, Stewart Spooner, and Andy Morel.  Staff:  CAO Bryan Teasdale, DCO Cynthia Año Nuevo, CFO Elma Hamming, Manager of Special Projects Darrin Albo, Manager of Operations & Infrastructure Scott Lamont, Manager of  Recreation & Events Kristi Calder, and probably others who were not visible on the Zoom meeting.

Committee-of-the-Whole, 4:00 pm – 5:47 pm

Council discussed the merits of the thirteen applications for Community Grant Funding. Decisions made at this meeting are only recommendations, and tentative ones at that; Teasdale pointed out to Council that some of the COVID Safe Restart funding might be applicable to some of the applications but City staff and Council will have to analyze the criteria and Rossland’s other needs before making any decisions on that.

Council had $287,253 to grant at this meeting, and the applications added up to $325,790 of requests for funding — $38,537 more than was available.

Council was not inclined to support Black Jack Cross-Country Ski Club Society this year, as they felt the club has other options for raising funds – though everyone expressed appreciation for the group and the activity, and the value Black Jack adds to the community. 

Another applicant excluded from funding was Golden Bear Children’s Centre – again, Councillors recognize and appreciate Golden Bear’s value to the community, but balked at funding an organization that competes directly with some private businesses.

Amounts were tentatively allocated to the other applicants, but are not reported here as they will not be finally decided until January.

Public Hearing, 6:00 pm; Council invited public input on four matters:

1.       Bylaw # 2734, to rezone the lands located at 2075 St. Paul Streetfrom R1-I Residential Infill to Residential Multi-Family. 

City had received several messages from residents, and staff has recommended sending the bylaw back to staff for further work. A nearby resident spoke to explain that he had no objection to increasing housing density, but he was concerned about parking; he suggested that allowing one parking spot per unit is not enough, and that there would be too many buildings on that lot. He suggested that if the new building were constructed, the old one should be knocked down and the space used for parking.  

Another resident spoke in opposition to the design for the proposal, agreeing with the previous comments, and citing snow and water drainage issues, as well the percentage of lot coverage.  He commented that the assumption that people own fewer vehicles because they live in the downtown core is erroneous.

A resident living across the street from the potential development agreed with the previous speakers, and described the proposal as “disruptive” and objected to the building height.

A resident of the home just below the proposed development said she thought her property would be the most impacted, and commented on the building height “looming over” her home.

2.       Light Industrial Service Commercial Use Bylaw # 2739bylaw amendment, to allow all the uses listed under Service Commercial use to be permitted in the M1 Light Industrial Zone: no one spoke.

3.       Financial Plan Amendment Bylaw No. 2742, to incorporate a housekeeping change, amending Schedule “A” approved at the previous Council meeting:  no one spoke.

4.       Business License amendment bylaw:  no one spoke, and Council adjourned the Public Hearing.

Regular Council Meeting, immediately following the Public Hearing:

Moore announced that this is Darrin Albo’s final meeting – he has been with the City for 33 years. Moore paid eloquent tribute to Albo’s vast knowledge of the City and the work he has done, and expressed gratitude for the overlap with Scott Lamont’s taking on the Public Works role.  “He has done an outstanding job. … It’s hard to express the depth of our gratitude and appreciation over a Zoom call. And thank you so much.”  Albo thanked Moore, and said he’s still available to provide information if needed.

Public Input:

 A resident of McLeod Avenue in the Iron Colt neighbourhood spoke to the land-swap topic; he pointed out that McLeod forms a very tight cul-de-sac, and that could pose a big problem if people parked there to use the proposed trail.

Moore moved certain discussions forward, but this document will report them in their order on the original agenda.


a)  Single-Use Checkout Bag Regulation Bag Bylaw No. 2723:  A motion amend the bylaw, to include charging modest amounts for check-out bags, and to give third reading to the amended Checkout Bag Regulation Bylaw No. 2723, CARRIED.  Stores will be required to charge for check-out bags, and will keep the proceeds to offset their expenses.

b)  Zoning Amendment Bylaw, No. 2733 – Urban Agriculture:

Miller moved to amend the proposed bylaw by specifying that If a complaint or incident is brought forward to the City because a chicken coop was not properly protected, the owner will be required to remove the coop entirely or to restructure the coop and properly electrify it. His amendment CARRIED unanimously, and a motion to give third reading to the bylaw CARRIED unanimously, and a final motion to adopt the amended bylaw also CARRIED unanimously – cheering was heard.

c)  Zoning Amendment Bylaw, No. 2734 – 2075 St Paul St.

A motion that Council refer Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 2734 back to staff to address concerns raised at the public hearing and to allow further time for Council consideration CARRIED unanimously.

d)  Animal Control Regulation Bylaw No. 2738:

A motion that the slightly-revised Animal Control Bylaw No. 2738, 2020 be adopted CARRIED without further discussion. It removed the gender bias from dog fees, and incorporated previous amendments.

e)  Zoning Amendment Bylaw, No. 2739, 2020 – Light Industrial Service Commercial Use:

A motion to give third reading to Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 2739, to permit Service Commercial uses in the M1-Light Industrial zone,  CARRIED unanimously, as did a further motion to adopt the bylaw.

f)  Revenue Anticipation Bylaw No.2741 2020:

A motion to adopt Revenue Anticipation Bylaw No. 2741, 2021  CARRIED unanimously.

g)  Financial Plan Amendment Bylaw No. 2742 2020-2024:

A motion that the Financial Plan Amendment Bylaw be adopted  CARRIED unanimously.

h)  Busines Licence Amendment Bylaw No. 2744, 2020:

A  motion that the Business Licence Amendment Bylaw No. 2744, 2020 be read for a third time CARRIED unanimously, after clarification of the difference between operating one business with storage (etc.) facilities at different locations, and operating a business with two different business locations, such as a business operating two different stores or restaurants; the former would need only one business licence, but the latter would need two.

i)  Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 2745, 2020 – 1715 Third Avenue:

A motion to give first and second reading to a zoning amendment for 1715 Third Ave, to allow a guest suite, CARRIED ; and a further motion to schedule a Public Hearing for January 18, 2021 also CARRIED.

j)  Water Rate Bylaw No. 2746 – 2020-2023:

Water Rate (2021-2023) Bylaw No. 2746, institutes an agricultural water rate. Lewis suggested that there be a cap on the quantity of water supplied at the agricultural rate. Spooner said the agricultural rate is “a pretty insignificant part of the picture.” Hamming pointed out that restrictions would be administratively cumbersome, but that if Council wished it could specify that only Class 9 farm properties be eligible for the agricultural rate and must purchase their own meter for agricultural water, and that if things get out of hand, the bylaw can be amended later.  A motion to amend the bylaw to that effect CARRIED, and Council voted to give third reading to the bylaw  as amended.

k)  Sewer Rate Bylaw No. 2747 – 2021-2023:

A motion to give the Sewer Rate Bylaw first, second and third readings  CARRIED.


a)  Development Variance Permit Application – 107 Valhalla Terrace:

A motion that Council approve the Development Variance Permit application for a reduced interior setback for a single-family home located at 107 Valhalla Terrace, with an interior side setback variance from 1.8 metres to 0.75 metres – a 1.05 metre variance; CARRIED unanimously.

b)  2641 McLeod Land Swap:

Council discussed a motion to approve a land swap of the City laneway adjacent 2641 McLeod Avenue for a 6 meter Statutory Right of Way for a trail on the parcel legally described as PARCEL A (SEE 22277I) SECTION 35 TOWNSHIP 9A KOOTENAY DISTRICT PLAN 1752, to allow for the development of a public trail to go around Kootenay Columbia Mountain with the following conditions:  1. That a covenant is registered on title at the City’s expense for that portion of land preventing the construction of a structure, driveway, or road;  2. That if both parties are agreeable, then the portion of land may be divided between the neighbours with the owner of 2642 McLeod Avenue assuming responsibility for additional surveying/registration costs; the motion CARRIED.   

c)  Reallocation of Christmas Party Funds:

At its previous meeting, Council had expressed interest in donating funds that would otherwise have been spent on a Christmas party to a community organization. Rossland’s CAO had crunched the numbers and concluded that the budget does not contain any excess funding.

Nightingale moved that the City be directed to donate from the City’s Safe Restart funding $1000 to the Food Bank and another $500 for the Firefighters’ Hampers which are delivered to the neediest families; CARRIED.

d)  Rossland Historical Museum Association Capital Update – Use and Disbursement of Insurance Proceeds:

A motion to approve the disbursement of $58,485, received for museum artifacts destroyed in the Tour Guide Building collapse, be paid to the Rossland Historical Museum Association – and that the $93,730 ACV be used for structural improvements required for the existing structures, CARRIED.

e)  Fifth Avenue Traffic Pattern Change Request:

A  motion to require “local traffic only” signage at either end of Fifth Avenue (Washington St Alley to Spokane St area)  FAILED unanimously, as residents are reported to have resolved the issue.

f)  Acting Mayor Schedule 2021:

A motion to approve the 2021 Acting Mayor schedule as presented CARRIED.

g)  Gift of Lily May Sculpture at Miners Hall:

RCAC requested that Council accept the Lily May sculpture,  to reduce the total book value  of RCAC’s assets, which could otherwise limit their ability to apply for funding; Nightingale moved that the City not accept the gift, because of the ongoing maintenance costs.  Spooner commented that the RCAC needs to think about the long-term consequences of the various installations.  Morel said he thinks this is a one-off, that it’s tied to the Miners Hall, and it sounds as if RCAC has “got itself in a pickle.”  Kristi Calder pointed out that other sculptures are being maintained by RCAC by agreement. Discussion agreed that RCAC contributes significantly to Rossland’s cultural scene, but that the City needs to be more rigorous in its criteria for accepting the costs of installing and maintaining new works of art. The motion to not accept the gift FAILED.

A motion to accept the gift, but with no donation receipt CARRIED, with Nightingale and Spooner opposed.

A motion to create a new draft policy about public art donations with criteria for accepting gifts of public art in the community CARRIED. 

h) Heritage Commission Statements of Significance:

A motion to approve the eight submitted Statements of Significance for addition to the Heritage Registry CARRIED unanimously.

i) Council approved the Invoices Paid for Municipal Services during November 2020.

j)  Council reviewed the following City Reports:

           i.     November 2020 City of Rossland By-Election Report

           ii.    Building Permit Inspection Activity for 2020

           iii.   November 2020 Building Permit Report

           iv.   Step Code Update 2020

           v.    Public Works Report November 2020

           vi.   Water Production 2012 – 2020

           vii.  WildSafeBC Rossland and Trail Annual Report 2020

           viii.  Updated Task List


a)  The City of Vernon asks other municipalities to support, by resolution, that universal no-cost access to all prescription contraception be made available in BC under the Medical Services plan.  A motion to pass the same motion as Vernon, and send a letter to the provincial government, CARRIED unanimously.

b)   RED Mountain Resort Fireworks Event request:

A motion to approve RED Mountain Resort’s request for $666 to purchase materials and supplies for their 2020 New Year’s Eve community fireworks event  CARRIED. (Moore quietly commented, “Ooo! Evil number!”)

2021 Committee Appointments:

     Sustainability Commission Council liaison – Dirk Lewis; and alternate Janice Nightingale.

     Heritage Commission Council liaison – Chris Bowman

     Administration and Personnel Committee — Council Representatives:  Kathy Moore and Janice Nightingale

     Design Review Panel Council liaison – Terry Miller

     Tourism Rossland Council Liaison – Chris Bowman, and Kathy Moore as alternate

     Rossland Historical Museum and Archives Association Council liaison – Chris Bowman

      Lower Columbia Community  Development Team Society (LCCDTS) Council Liaison – Stewart Spooner

      Rossland Public Library Council Liaison – Terry  Miller

      Lions Campground Committee Council Liaison – Stewart Spooner

      Age Friendly/Seniors Council Liaison – Kathy Moore

      Rossland Youth  Action Network Council Liaison – Stewart Spooner

      Regional Recreation Committee:  Kathy Moore, Janice Nightingale, and Andy Morel

      Midtown Transition Area Development Committee:  Kathy Moore, Chris Bowman, and Janice Nightingale

      Highway #3 Mayors and Chairs Coalition:  Kathy Moore

      Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) Appointments:

          RDKB Director – Andy Morel, and alternate  Janice Nightingale

          Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital District – Janice Nightingale, and alternate Andy Morel

Other Appointments:

          100% Renewable Committee:  Kathy Moore and Dirk Lewis

          Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (CBAL):Janice Nightingale

          Rossland Arena Society:  Dirk Lewis

          Art Matters Coalition:  Kathy Moore

          Official Community Plan (OCP) Advisory Committee:  Kathy Moore, Dirk Lewis, and Terry Miller

RDKB Director’s Report – Morel submitted a four-page report on recent RDKB board meetings, which interested readers can find in the Council package for this meeting – comprising the final four pages of the 255 pages of material.

Council recessed to an in camera session, and your reporter clicked the “leave meeting” button, turned off her computer and staggered into the living room – noting that Zoom meetings have great advantages, but also create a whole different order of fatigue, without the benefit of a walk home to unwind, and without adequate motivation to venture out in the cool, dark and slippery-here-and-there night to obtain that benefit.  First-world problems, right?  Note to self:  get over it.  Go for a walk.

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