Regular Meeting of Council: June 4th , 2008
In attendance: Mayor Caisley, Councillors McPherson, Holmlund, and White.
13 people in the gallery.
Official minutes can be obtained for this meeting at Town Hall.
1.Call to Order: 7:03pm
Variation of Agenda. The delegation will address Council before the Business arising from the Minutes.
2. Adoption of Minutes:
(a) Minutes of the Regular Meeting of Council of May 20th, 2008-adopted as presented.
3. Business Arising from the Minutes:
(a) Reconsideration of Covenant Removal, Re: Motion #08-14-08
Mayor Caisley stated, ?There is no doubt how I feel about this resolution?. ?In retrospect, it was a mistake to see 17 properties to one individual?.
The motion from May 20, 2008 stands in a vote of 3:1 (Mayor Caisley against).
4. Petitions and Delegations:
(a) Ryan Murray, Re: Removal of Covenants from District Properties.
Ryan Murray addressed Mayor and Council regarding the removal of the covenants on both the residential lots and commercial lots. In a letter dated May 28th, 2008 Murray stated he would like to address council on his ?informed opinion? as a ?local property owner, investor, property development consultant and citizen of Tumbler Ridge?.
He stated that all those who bought the commercial properties in question two years ago did so with a ?conscious business risk?, knowing full well what the covenants meant. Also, there is one numbered company that owns 17 properties which will no longer have to adhere to the covenants. Murray stated that he would ?have bought property if the covenant was not part of the sale? and feels it is ?illegal, negligent and immoral? to remove the covenants?. He also believes that it is a decision ?made against the best legal advice of BC?. He suggested that the decision made by council to remove the covenants will bring forth many legal suits. Murray offered Council four suggestions which he believes will solve the issues at hand. They are 1. Accept the lawyers recommendation(not choose the alternative options) and rescind the motion. 2. Reconsider covenants separately and look at how the property has been managed. 3. Place retrieved properties back on the market for sale and 4. Table the motion if this is not dealt with.
Councillor Holmlund: ?Mr. Murray are you threatening Council with a lawsuit??
Mr. Murray stated ? I am saying your actions are threatening a lawsuit?.
Councillor McPherson: ?We took one of their (the lawyers) options? and we were told to ?view them (properties) all the same? stated McPherson. McPherson asked, ?Do you (Mr. Murray) think the advice given to us and the options given to us by our legal advisers are illegal??
Councillor Holmlund: ?I understand that you mentioned Mr. Thompson (re: his 17 properties), but we looked at the whole set. Our lawyers gave us three options. We discussed all the options and it was our choice as to what we were going to do.? ?We have put a lot of thought and a lot of time into? this Councillor Holmlund stated, ?It has nothing to do with the election (in November)?.
Mr. Murray: ? I firmly don?t believe that it is necessary to deal with all the properties the same?, stated Murray. ?I think what I am suggesting is the best choice?. Murray believes this issue should be brought forth for public consultation.
Councillor White: ?That approach (dealing with each property individually) got us into trouble?, explained White. ?Our lawyers said we were being judge and jury and showing bias? if we were to do one thing for one person and something different for the next.
(a) UBCM, Re: 2007 Resolutions
Council received a copy of the federal response to the 2007 resolution (Re: Conflict in Afghanistan) put forward by Council and endorsed by the UBCM membership at the Convention.
The Resolution states the Union of BC Municipalities take any action deemed appropriate to note our admiration and support for all the men and women now serving with the Canadian Armed Forces.
(b) The Council of Senior Citizen?s Organizations(COSCO) of BC, Re: Conference
There is a COSCO conference on ?Senior?s Health, Housing and Income in a Global, Age-Friendly Community? September 15-16th, 2008 in Richmond BC.
Motion to send information of the conference to the Seniors Needs Meeting to see if there is an interest in attending the conference-
(a) BC rail Caboose
The recommendation: That Council accept the expression of interest received from Dan Cassan and enter a two year lease agreement with a monthly rental rate of $200 for the use of the BC Rail caboose for the purpose of rentals and sales of canoes, kayaks, bicycles, snowshoes, cross country skies and other hiking gear-was carried.
(b) License of Occupation Renewal-Tumbler Ridge Weather Station
The recommendation: That the District renew the Weather Station License of Occupation from June 1, 2008 to May 31, 2013 at an annual lease of $300 AND THAT the Mayor and CAO be authorized to sign the renewal agreement.-carried.
(c) June 17th, 2008 Regular Meeting of Council The recommendation:
That the Regular Meeting of Council scheduled for June 17th, 2008 be rescheduled to Monday June 16th and that staff be directed to post notice of the change-was carried.
(d) FCM Sustainable Communities Missions The recommendation:
That Council approve the registration and travel expenses for Councillor Holmlund?s participation in the FCM Sustainable Communities Mission from August 17-22nd, 2008-was carried. Total cost is approximately $3500.
(e) Golf Course Golf Carts
The brand new golf carts will come with a three year bumper to bumper warranty which would cover any potential breakdowns. They will also come complete with all equipment and include the cart chargers.
That Mayor and Council purchase 15 Club Car Golf Carts at a price of $49,230 plus applicable taxes, as per their quote, and that the expenditure is funded from equipment reserves-was carried.
(f) Statement of Financial Information
That Mayor and Council approve the 2007 Statement of Financial Information-was carried.
(g) Schedule of Meetings
Next Policies and Priorities Committee Meeting-June 10, 2008 at 7pm.
Next Regular Meeting of Council-Monday June 16th, 2008 at 7pm
Councillor McPherson: McPherson would like to discuss Casual Concepts a the next meeting, regarding their interest to have a business set up in a trailer.
Councillor White: Councillor White greeted the WOW (Words on Wheels) bus. There are computers, play areas and lots of books.
White commented that the Post office has requested to be open one evening per week rather than being open on Saturday. Canada Post will not change the hours based solely on a request from staff but a letter of support from Local Government will go a long way.
Councillor White attended a presentation given by the International Fund for Welfare of Animals regarding the two grizzlies that are to be released into the wiled. He also attended Dr. Charles Helm?s book launch with approximately 200 other people.
Councillor Holmlund: Request to go for a visit to Site C on June 16th-motion carried.
Councillor Holmlund would like to invite the 5/6 classes from Tumbler Ridge Elementary School to the next council meeting in order to get an update on their fund raising efforts for building a school in Africa.
Holmlund attended the alternate approval process at the Community Centre. She stated there were a few comments regarding the Districts spending and said the presentation was good.
Mayor Caisley: No business to report.
9. Question and Answer Period:
Mr. Wayne McBrearty: ?Is there a connection with the taking back of lots and the firing of Lonnie Miller??
Mayor Caisley answered, ?It is fair to say yes?. In terms of his termination (without cause), ?his refusal to proceed with regards to carrying our directions of council which was contrary to the advice of the District solicitors and his solicitors? was an issue.
Wayne McBrearty: ? So the five who voted (to remove the covenants) wanted him fired??
Mayor Caisley explained to Mr. McBrearty that in order to fire without cause, there needs to be a two thirds majority which would require a minimum 5 out of 7 on Council to vote in favour of the firing.
Wayne McBrearty: ?Has anyone figured out how much this will cost-firing a man with no just cause??
Mayor Caisley explained the negotiation process has begun and when there is a firing with no just cause, a monetary settlement will be reached.
10.Closed Meeting Items:
(a) Personnel and Labour Relations
The recommendation: That Council resolve to a closed meeting of Council as per section 90 1(a) and (c) of the community charter was carried.
11.Adjournment: moved to a closed meeting at 8:23pm.