COUNCIL MATTERS: Rossland City Council meetings, December 13, 2021

Sara Golling
By Sara Golling
December 14th, 2021

Moratorium on short-term rental zoning — for a while;  a new dumpster request; re-zoning at Redstone for a new development;  Community Grants and Covid Grants;  our aging pool;  the RDKB report … and more.

Present:  Mayor Kathy  Moore and Councillors Terry Miller, Stewart Spooner, Chris Bowman, Dirk Lewis, Janice Nightingale, and Andy Morel.  Staff: CAO Bryan Teasdale, CFO Mike Kennedy, Deputy CO Cynthia Añonuevo, City Planner Stacey Lightbourne, Manager of Operations and Infrastructure Scott Lamont, and Manager of Recreation and Events Kristi Calder.


1.       811 White Tail Drive – Short Term Rental zoning application:  the City had received six written objections from local residents, based on children’s safety, increased traffic, parking issues, and noise.

Residents at 813 White Tail Drive, next door to the applicant, spoke against the application – stating that there are only six residences between the applicant’s home and the next short-term rental, and that the streets are narrow.  She also spoke to the parking issue, and the number of young children in the neighbourhood who play on the street.

The applicant spoke, pointed out that the nearest short-term rental is a very long block away, and that their home would be the only short-term rental on the block; he also said that the traffic should not be any greater than for a long-term rental, which they can already do.  He said they would ensure that guests did not park on the street.  They have experience with managing rental properties. He emphasized that he and his wife would be on-site, to ensure that tenants are quiet.

Two other nearby residents spoke about their concerns about children, and the benefits of knowing one’s neighbours. Another Redstone resident spoke about the high speeds of drivers. Another new neighbour with experience with both long-term and short-term tenants, spoke of his unpleasant experiences with short-term rentals, compared with long-term rentals.

2.       2330 St. Paul Street – Short Term Rental zoning application; no one spoke, and no one had sent letters.

3.       2021 – 2025 Financial Plan Amendment Bylaw # 2777; the eight-page bylaw was included in the agenda.  No one spoke.


Mayor Moore presented the 2021 Community Contributor Award to Lillian Karenko, for her selfless service to the community, to enthusiastic applause and the tapping of fingers on the “camera” function of many cellphones.

Public Input Period: No one spoke.


Jim Firstbrook presented to Council on behalf of the Economic Development Task Force of the Sustainability Commission, and sought Council’s input on next steps and best projects to pursue; housing, tax rates, broadband, daycare, volunteer recruitment and coordination, B2C merchants —  were popular topics in the business community they’ve been consulting.  They’re looking for people to work on them.  Firstbrook noted that the major focus is no longer on achieving growth – “We’re growing fast enough.”  

Housing is a common theme; not wanting Rossland to be a community of financial “elites” – he noted that this will be a long-term project.

Co-ordinating merchants  (ensure not all restaurants closed at same times etc.) – this topic came from the Chamber of Commerce. Most Councillors felt that this task would be appropriate for the Chamber itself to tackle.

Daycare:  too few spots available for the number of children in town; the major challenge is outside school hours.

Volunteer recruitment and coordination; they noted that Rossland’s demographic is shifting, that many of the volunteers who have kept community events like the Fall Fair going for so many decades are retiring from active volunteer work, and not being replaced.

Discussion led to a conclusion that the taxation issue should best be dealt with by a study of Rossland’s taxes and amenities compared with those in as many other communities of comparable size as possible, so that residents have a better sense of what we get for what we pay in taxes.

Firstbrook noted that there are more topics than they have the people to work on them; their next steps are likely to be determined by the skills and energy of new volunteers.  Council members felt that housing and daycare top their list of concerns; Lightbourne said that the City could develop a formal housing strategy.

The trash question:

Scott Leyland and Samantha Murphy presented on behalf of the Natural Control Alternative Society (NCA), with a proposal for improving the accessibility of the dumpsters they administer.  They proposed returning the dumpsters to the Museum parking lot, as well as having the City contribute to the purchase of a third bin for a different location.

Water Rates, 2021 – 2023:

A motion to leave water rates unchanged until the City has completed a Utility Master Plan, which is in the works, or has further reviewed any other suggested actions, CARRIED unanimously. 


Subdivision and Development Servicing (SDS) Bylaw # 2748: A motion to give the bylaw second reading as amended CARRIED; a further motion to give it third reading also CARRIED unanimously.

Zoning Amendment Bylaw # 2772 – 1992 LeRoiAvenue: A motion to give third reading to the bylaw, which rezones the property from R-1I (Residential Infill) to C-1 (Downtown Commercial), CARRIED unanimously, and a further motion to adopt the bylaw also CARRIED unanimously.

2021-2025 Financial Plan Amendment Bylaw # 2777:  A motion to adopt the bylaw CARRIED unanimously.

Fees and Charges Amendment Bylaw # 2781:  A motion to give the bylaw first, second and third readings CARRIED.

South Redstone Drive: Zoning Amendment Bylaw # 2757 and Official Community Plan AmendmentBylaw # 2758: The applicant seeks to extend Redstone Drive and to re-zone undeveloped, wooded property from the current R1R Rural Residential and P3 Resort Recreationzones to R4 Residential Mixed Density and P2 Parks and Open Space, adjusting the zoning areas, to accommodate a 20-lot development.

Council discussed a  motion to give first and second readings to this bylaw, with the following conditions:

1. THAT the secondary route into Redstone on Queen Street is constructed to a City
approved standard.
2. THAT a sign be posted by the applicant on the site stating the intent and
purpose of the proposed re-designation of the OCP and rezoning application,
within 7 days of the first reading of Bylaws # 2757 and # 2758 and in
accordance with the City of Rossland Development Procedures Guidelines.
3. THAT the applicant dedicate and build a trail connection from Queen Street to
the Rubberhead Trail.

A motion to give the two bylaws first and second readings, and to schedule a Public Hearing for January 10, 2022, CARRIED unanimously.

Councillors discussed the lack of playground facilities in Redstone, and the number of young children in Redstone generally.

Zoning Amendment Bylaw # 2772:  3113 HappyValley Road,  Short-term Rental application– Staff sought direction from Council. Background: owners of the neighbouring property directly across from 3113 Happy Valley Road had previously inquired about being rezoned to permit short-term rentals. The Planning Department recommended against applying as, according to the policy, the property is on the same block – albeit a very long block — as another property with short-term rental zoning. This same recommendation was made to the resident at 3113 Happy Valley Road but this applicant chose to pursue the application with Council, citing the actual distances between properties rather than the ‘block’ designation.  The owners of the neighbouring property protested that it would be unfair to allow the application when they had been discouraged from applying.

Nightingale moved that Council not proceed with the bylaw; she noted that Council is hearing more push-back from residents on short-term rentals.  Lewis noted that walkability is not great in Happy Valley.  The motion to not proceed with the bylaw CARRIED unanimously.

Moore moved that the City impose a moratorium on short-term rental applications after the ones that are currently under consideration have been decided.  The motion CARRIED unanimously.

Community Grant Funding Applications for 2022:  Staff sought Council’s direction on the level and allocation of funding for the coming year.  After discussion, a motion to allocate the following amounts CARRIED.

Arena Society                $2396  per year for four years                            

CBEEN                           $1714  per year for four years

Tennis Society               $3965  per year for three years 

St. Andrews United Church:   Zero       

Severn Summits Centre for Learning:   Zero

Trail Stingrays                             $1179  per year for two years

Rossland Arts Centre Society:    $6111   for one year

Rossland Society for  Environmental Action:         $1812   for one year

Seven Summits Centre for learning – IT:     zero    

Black Jack, for a capital grant project:       $1681           

COVID-19 Community Support and applications: Staff asked Council for direction on disbursing the funds. After more discussion, a motion to allocate the following amounts CARRIED.

Golden Bear Children’s Centre            $3571

Gold Fever Follies                                $5000

Library                                                  $4500     

Seven Summits Centre for Learning    $4286

Rossland Arena Society                       $ 5000

Museum                                                $5000    (Nightingale recused herself.)


Development Variance Permit Application – 1991McLeod Avenue:  The owner wants a variance allowing the exterior setback to be reduced from 3 metres to zero metres, to allow the home to be expanded to accommodate a growing family and working from home.   A motion to allow the variance CARRIED unanimously.

RDKB Planning Cost Sharing Agreement (2021-2026):  A motion to renew the agreement for the next five years, at a cost to Rossland of $2,025 per year,  CARRIED unanimously.  The agreement allows each participant the right to vote on proposals for adjacent developments when the proposal are first made.  The Council materials include the following information:

The agreement includes the right to vote on all matters applying directly to lands located within the
“Planning Agreement Boundary”; the right to participate on committees on all matters applying directly
to lands located within the “Planning Agreement Boundary”; and the right to receive meeting agendas
and other background material in support of all matters applying directly to lands located within the
“Planning Agreement Boundary.”  

The “planning agreement” area includes a swath of land to the east and south of Rossland’s boundaries, including a swath surrounding Highway 22 down to the US border at Paterson.

Bye-bye, Rossland Pool, sometime … ?

Rossland Pool Facility Condition Assessment Report –Council perused and discussed the implications of the report, which will probably spell the demise of the Rossland Pool at some point, as the cost of upgrading it could be prohibitive.  The pool was built by volunteers in 1932 on land owned by the City and with donations of materials from Teck, on the site of a “swimming hole.” The pool no longer meets some standards, though IHA has been passing it for each year so far. Teasdale commented that the report is timely, as the Recreation Master Plan process is underway.

Age-Friendly Program Update:  Staff provided a detailed update on the age-friendly program, the effects of COVID, managing the funding, and participation by other local communities.

Council looked at the regular staff reports:

1. Building Permit Report November 2021 – largest number of new dwellings this year
2. Building Permit Inspection by Type Report November 2021
3. Step Code Energy Rebates November 2021
4. Public Works Report November 2021
5. Water Production Report November 2021 (Rossland now has 1855 water connections; 15 of them are still unmetered)
6. Bylaw Enforcement Report November 2021
7. Rossland Midtown Construction Report November 2021
8. Updated Task List


Alynn Smith, of the Rossland Society for Environmental Action (RSEA), requested  a letter of support for a proposal to change the name of King George VI Park to “p̓aʔáxmeaning  “healing.”  A guide to the pronunciation is promised if the name is approved.  A motion to support the name change  CARRIED with only Spooner opposed – he noted that the park is not in Rossland.

The Lower Columbia Initiatives Corporation (LCIC) requests a letter of support for their Waneta Border Crossing Assessment Project, to fully evaluate the costs and benefits of making the bridge to the Waneta Border Crossing capable of handling commercial traffic, including large trucks, and of keeping the border crossing at Waneta open 24 hours.  A motion to send the requested letter CARRIED unanimously.

Rossland Council for Arts and Culture (RCAC) is requesting a letter of support for three planned additions to Rossland`s public sculptures:  one at the south entrance to the new City hall, one at the junction of Plewman Way and Kirkup Avenue, and one at the roundabout on Red Mountain Road. A motion to forward the request to staff for assessment and more information CARRIED.  Spooner said, “I think we have too many sculptures!”

Member Reports — Audible highlights only:

Nightingale recognized Rossland Rotary for their outstanding and successful efforts at Rekindle, collecting for the Rossland Food Bank. She reported that Rotary collected at least $820 in Cash, $150 in Gift Cards + 7 of unknown value, $1400 in cheques and all of the Ferraros coupons that were donated; and that Rotary also collected a pick-up truck full of food to donate. 

Nightingale reported that the Rossland Arena Society has elected a new board and reported on their lounge washroom project.  The project costed out at $93,600, and Rossland Rotary provided a grant for $14,901, for a total contribution of $78,797 from the RAS.  She expressed congratulations “to these hard-working volunteers in our community for completing a project of this magnitude in 3 short years of existence.”

Bowman reported that Libby Martin has retired as president of the Rossland Museum board of Directors, “leaving a wake of greatness,” and that Mike Sloan will be the next President.  Libby will stay on as a trustee. Maureen Brown is also stepping away after over 20 years of volunteer service on the board.  The Heritage Commission will install a concrete bench at Columbia Cemetery, with a plaque recognizing Rossland’s early settlers.

Lewis moved that the Sustainability Commission include the Bear Safe group as one of its Task Forces; the motion  CARRIED.

Moore: Spoke about the successful Rossland-Trail bid for the 2026 Winter Games. Met with Annick de Goede, new Business recovery person with the Chamber; goal is to help local businesses navigate the supports in place and forge new avenues for success. Attended Age-Friendly session with seniors and Community Paramedic, Derek Wolfe — very informative session on strokes. More sessions upcoming. Need to spread the word about them. Derek is a valuable resource in our community. Rossland Seniors are looking for letters of support to get internet and telephone at the Seniors’ Centre; a motion to provide one CARRIED unanimously. 

Below, please find Andy Morel’s complete and unedited report on RDKB meetings; Morel is  Rossland’s representative on the RDKB Board of Directors.


Utilities Committee Meeting – Nov. 10, 2021 by Zoom

·       Staff Report – Workplans for numerous RDKB Utilities being presented for the first time with preliminary budget figures. Work plans will be reviewed by various committees and come back in the new year for closer evaluation by Directors.

RDKB Board Meeting – Nov. 10, 2021 by Zoom

·       Election of Board Chair and Vice-Chair for 2022 term. Director Linda Worley elected as Chair, Director Grace McGregor elected as Vice-Chair.

·       Under New Business, presentation of 2022 meeting calendar. A robust discussion on meeting scheduling and formats including in-person, virtual and hybrid virtual/ in-person options. Flexibility and safety of Directors and staff travelling for meetings was discussed. Upcoming special brainstorming session to discuss these items was suggested and agreed upon for near future.

·       Board approved the Recreation facilities and services agreement between Beaver Valley Recreation and City of Trail for a 5-year term at $125K for first 3 years, $127.5K for 4th and $130,050. for 5th year commencing Nov. 1, 2021 to Oct. 31, 2026.

Regional Connectivity Committee Meeting – Nov. 15, 2021 by Zoom

·       Delegation: Erica Shi, Municipal Insurance Corporation of BC (MIABC)

Re: Cybercrime against public institutions including Municipalities. Used Whistler, BC example as to the damage and costs to the Corporation. Scary and sobering example of the growing risks inherent in internet crime.

Questions for consideration:  Is there a Cyber Attack Policy for Rossland? Are we insured for such damage through MIA?

·       MLA meetings to lobby for Universal Broadband Application – 6 MLAs in total were presented to by Committee members with support from staff from CBT.

East End Services Meeting – Nov. 16, 2021 by Zoom

·       Delegation: Teck – “Engaging with our Community” Presentation by Teck staff: Thompson Hickey, Richard Deane, Carol Vanelli and Jayne Garry.

Presentation and discussion about long term viability of resource/ smelting industry in Trail, future market growth including battery technology metals requirements and environmental issues with the continued improvements made including the removal of more sulfur dioxide emissions during processing.

·       Delegation:   Stewart Spooner, Kootenay Columbia Trails Society  Re: 2020 Financial Statements presentation. Discussion ensued on the financial statement requirements.

·       Delegation: Presentation of Lower Columbia Community Health Centre Working Group – Frank Marino, Winn Mott, Linda Sawchenko. This group looking for letter of support from RDKB Board as well as East End Communities for concept of developing a better clinical model of supporting community health to better support medical professionals and meet community health needs. Group is researching many models from other jurisdictions.

·       Delegation: Community Futures – Presentation by Eric Kalacis re: Economic Resiliency Plan (ERAP). Plan to be released shortly. Looking for support – $5K from East End Services towards a $42K budget in assistance of building a new Regional emergency preparedness website.

·       Multiple 2022 Workplans presented by RDKB Managing Staff including: Victim Services with interest initiative in pursuing a therapy dog.  KB Regional Fire Service. *Note: large increase in first responder calls to overdose incidents from 2020 to 2021. Over 120 calls and counting. Culture, Arts and Recreation workplan presented and East End Transit. Details and deliberation will continue in New Year.

·       Director, Mayor Morrisette – Re: Green Link Update, announced the funding support to hire design consultant to pursue route of link trail. In the process of reviewing proposals. Trail has now hired a consultant with grant $ to support their trail/ route contribution to the Link.

·       Director Grieve – Re: North -South Highway corridor information. Looking to send a letter to coordination with LCIC in support of advocacy for the exploration of upgrading infrastructure towards this low-level travel corridor from the US Waneta border North. I mentioned the support of support forthcoming from City of Rossland to LCIC in similar support.

Board and Staff Special Meeting Nov. 23, 2021 by Zoom

·       A Blue sky/Brainstorm meeting to discuss upcoming 2022 meeting calendar and meeting format for 2022. Staff presentation of proposed calendar with changes suggested including the addition to two meetings in January dedicated to service workplans and budgets to support greater in-depth understanding and discussion.

RDKB Board Meeting Nov. 25, 2021 by Zoom

·       Delegation: Habitat Trust Foundation: Dan Buffet and Steve Kozuki, Forest Enhancement Society BC, presented a 2021 project update highlighting Kootenay Regional investments of $1.55M including Fort Shepard Conservancy Area projects and K-12 Educational program – Connecting Kids with Nature.

·       Chief Derby reported on recent and future meetings with Provincial Officials and Contractors regarding concerns with increased traffic on Hwy. 3 with the closure of other important highways to the Coast. RDKB staff will continue to advocate for increased winter maintenance and policing for safety measures as well as strong and collective advocacy for cellular coverage on both Hwy 3 and 33 highway corridors.

·        Staff Report Re: Covid Restart Funds – A discussion regarding allocation of these funds. Board supported the allocation of $30K towards vulnerable populations – staff will explore and report back options to consider.

·       RDKB Communications Update – Francis Maika reported that she will be leaving the RDKB for work for SD 8 in the New Year. Currently transitioning with staff assistance and RD will be pursuing a replacement for this position right away.

·       Staff Report – J. Dougal Re: delay potential for important infrastructure projects with new Provincial environmental regulations. Projects include McKelvey Creek upgrades and Columbia Pollution Control Centre. Turns out that building permit exemptions from City of Trail where both projects are located will alleviate the need to comply with the new regulations, thus now seeking such exemptions from City of Trail – Board approved.

·       Staff Report, CFO Barb Ihlen:  First draft release of 5 year Financial Plan with summary pages for each service. Notable cost increases proposed for a number of services. Board and staff will dig deeper into workplans and budgets in New Year meetings.

·       Loan Anticipation Bylaw passed by Board for RDKB to borrow up to $10M to support financial obligations until tax revenue flows in – July 2022.

RDKB Board Meeting Dec. 8, 2021 by zoom

·       Delegation: Independent Lumber Manufacturers Association (ILMA) Re: Impacts of Ban on Old-growth Logging Spokesperson: Dan Battistella, President and ILMA members. A Power Point presentation in regards to the impact of the Provincial Government’s announcement of Old Growth Timber Deferral on smaller lumber producers. A number of ILMA members have businesses within or close to RDKB and it’s communities.

·       Staff Report – 2022 Draft RDKB Meeting Calendar is now completed and approved.

·       Letter of Support for North-South Corridor J. Chandler, General Manager of Operations/Deputy Chief Administrative Officer The draft letter dated December 3, 2021 from Board Chair Linda Worley to Minister Rob Fleming, Transportation and Infrastructure, regarding the north/south corridor and the Waneta Bridge, is presented. Suggested inclusions to letter will include collaborative efforts with LCIC and Trail Chamber of Commerce.

·       Building Bylaw Contravention: 945 Queen St, Rossland B. Champlin, Manager of Building Inspection Services A staff report from Brian Champlin, Manager of Building Inspection Services, regarding a Building Bylaw Contravention for the property described as: 945 Queen Street, Rossland, BC Electoral Area B/Lower The owner, Kevin Fairweather, has constructed an accessory building / structure without a valid building permit.

(End of Councillor Morel’s RDKB Report)

Council recessed to an in camera session, and your elderly reporter changed into her spiked boots out in the Miners Hall foyer, then trundled home through the new, somewhat wet and heavy snow . . . wondering wearily how much longer to continue reporting on Rossland’s City Council meetings.

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