Council Notes August 20, 2013

Lynsey Kitching



Mayor Wren

Councillors Caisley, Mackay, and McPherson


Policies and Priorities


Business arising from the minutes:

Mayor Wren asked when the curling club will be coming in to speak to council about the state of the club. Barry Elliott explained he has suggested they come to the second meeting in September.

Staff is also working on making sure council is ready and the meetings are setup for the UBCM.

Councillor McPherson went down to the boat launch with Mr. Elliott. They noticed there was still work to do down there in terms of repairs. Public works came immediately to remedy the situation.

Councillor McPherson said the improvements have been well received by the boating community.

Mr. Elliott said he has been in touch with Urban Systems to start going through the environmental process to get the future repairs at the boat launch done within budget.

Staff has also been directed to look into who actually owns the boat launch. They are looking for evidence that Tumbler Ridge actually owns the boat launch and not the regional district.

The repairs have been made to the airport lighting.



Charles Helm and Birgit Sharman were on hand to give updates about the Geopark Symposium, trails, a new dinosaur update, the Emperor’s Challenge and a medical update. Since the Geopark symposium, the Canadian National Committee on Geoparks has reported back stating Tumbler Ridge has what it takes to become a Geopark and in many ways, is ideal. The committee provided feedback on how to strengthen Tumbler’s proposal. For example, indicating a management structure, creating a name/logo for the park and improving the signage around town. The committee was also very surprised by the lack of provincial support. Helm explained the Geopark could be created without provincial support and the committee suggested they begin to work with entrepreneurs and the Chamber of Commerce.

If all goes well, the creation of a Geopark in Tumbler Ridge could be announced at the Geopark event in New Brunswick 2014.

Helm explained it has been a “dream summer” for the Museum Foundation. The first dinosaur extracted from the bone bed (duckbill dinosaur) was brought into town last Thursday.

The WNMS will be working this winter to update the trail maps.

The Emperor’s Challenge topped 1000 entries this year. Sharman explained it was a really hot day and water was an issue, however, Ridge Rotors was awesome and helped keep the water stations manned by Teck, Anglo American, and Walter Energy stocked. She said, “We sure appreciated their help.”

Helm also talked with council at lengths about the nursing situation in Tumbler Ridge. This story will be in next week’s newspaper.



Mr. Elliott looked into the legislative process for the naming and/or renaming of streets within the municipality. In consultation with the Province, he was informed there are two steps: a resolution of Council is required to name or rename a street or a portion of a street; and a bylaw created in accordance with the Community Charter Section 39(a). Mayor Wren is still concerned about the need for the community consult if it is a council initiated street name change. He believes the naming of a street in recognition of something or someone should have an element of surprise for the community. Council will be revisiting the draft street naming policy at a future meeting.


Discussion Items:

Councillor McPherson requested that signage for the race track area be forwarded for discussion. He is concerned about the safety of the people using the figure eight race track and would like to see some signs such as “use at own risk” at the site. Staff is going to do some work and find out if the race track is on crown land and to go over the liability of the area for the town.

From a request put forth by Councillor Snyder, district staff and council will be teaming up and entering the first annual Tumbler Ridge fire truck pull on Sept. 7, 2013.


Regular Meeting of Council

Staff has extended the RFP for the new visitor’s centre as they are starting to get more interesting design concepts coming forward. The options will be coming to council on Nov. 19.

Council is still looking to hear from the Youth Centre Board, but Mr. Elliott explains they are difficult to get a hold of. They will likely be in to discuss their current situation during a September meeting.

A meeting has been set with West Moberly First Nations for Sept. 6.


Petitions and Delegations

Community Development and Campaign Officer Michele Brooke came as a representative for United Way, requesting September be named United Way month in Tumbler Ridge. Brooke is the United Way contact for Tumbler Ridge, Chetwynd and Dawson Creek. The United Way is very involved in raising funds for the community and supporting initiatives. The United Way invests in four organizations that provide regional programs and services; Spinal Cord Injury BC, the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, the Crisis Centre of Northern BC, and the Northern Brain Injury Association. They are also involved and have provided funding for Success by Six, Better at Home, the Good Food Box (an initiative of Work In Progress), the Lego Club operated through the library, the fist annual fire truck pull, community capacity building and the community sustainability plan. Councillor Caisley made a motion to make September 2013 United Way month and fly the United Way flag at town hall for the month.

Pacific Northern Gas (PNG) President Greg Weeres, and Graeme Doak, VP of Human Resources and Government Relations came to council to provide an overview of the virtual pipeline from Dawson Creek to Tumbler Ridge and to answer questions regarding the application PNG has submitted. The story will be in next week’s newspaper.


New Business

The Tumbler Ridge Community Forest Corporation has requested Council to support an application to update the Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP). Duncan McKellar from the community forest explained in an email to Mr. Elliott and council that through consultation with the Ministry of Forests, the CWPP that was completed in 2006 should be updated because of the changes that have happened in Tumbler Ridge over the past seven years. The recommendation to support the CWPP application was carried.

The district was approached by Stantec Consulting Ltd. on behalf of Glencore (formerly Xstrata Coal Canada) with a request for authorization to locate an ambient air monitoring station on the roof of the Community Centre. The term of the proposed agreement is to be one year. This would add a proposed rental fee of $2,250 to the District’s budgeted revenues. The recommendation was carried to enter into a one-year agreement with Stantec Consulting Ltd.

The second council meeting in Sept. will be moved to Sept. 24 because council will be away at the UBCM on the Sept. 17.


Councillors’ Business

Councillor Caisley: Attended the PRRD meeting. School District 59 was on hand talking about school bus transportation issues. There has been a 23 percent reduction in school transportation funding to be fazed in over the next three years. The PRRD also passed recommendations to improve tracking of worker camps in the region. Councillor Caisley would like to invite School District 59 to a council meeting. Attended the opening of Anglo American’s Trend mine. With Mr. Elliott, he will be meeting with Jack Wong, from CDI about the sustainability program this week.

Councillor McPherson: Was happy with the election results, congrats to Bev and Chris. Participated in the Poker Run and said Tumbler Ridge had the most bikes entered all together about 57 bikes across all the communities. He suggested the town could sell post hangers for hanging flower baskets, and there wouldn’t be any cost to the town. The community forest logged the area up on the upper bench. There is tons of firewood up there for people and it would be a good use of the wood.

Councillor Mackay: Congrats to Bev and Chris. Just got back from holidays. Attended the Gwillim Lake celebration, said the performers were awesome. Attended the opening of Anglo American’s Trend mine. The community forest has been asked to enhance the trail at the Murray Canyon Overlook. “When we do it, it will look pretty good.”

Mayor Wren: Attended the opening of the eight RV sites. Still working out details on golf packages and tourism for this area. Several conversations with HD Mining over the last few weeks. They are looking to start mobilizing in the next month. Attended the First Nations’ cultural event at Gwillim Lake. Attended the opening of Anglo’s Trend mine. He has had communication with the WNMS about the Murray Canyon Overlook trail. Would like to have the Grizfest committee come in and discuss the event from this year.