Policies and Priorities meeting: April 8, 2015

Trent Ernst, Editor


Present Councillor Caisley (chair), Councillors Howe, Kirby, Krakowka, Mackay.



Murray Westerberg from Borea appears before Council to speak about the company. “Our main purpose in being here is to just present ourselves and answer any questions,” he says.

Borea, he says, is dedicated to building Canadian wind energy parks. Their main office is in Quebec City, but Westerberg is from Abbotsford, where they maintain a second office. A third office is in Toronto.

Borea is owned by two family based companies. Pomerleau and Blatner Energy. Blatner is one of the largest wind energy installers in the states, and the two work together.

Borea has installed 1632 turbines in Canada, or one in every three wind turbine in the country. Most projects are in Quebec, Southern Ontario, Alberta, and BC including Quality Wind, Dokie Wind, and Bear Mountain, though many of these were installed by Eagle West, which was purchased by Borea. “We are building our reputation in Western Canada,” says Westerberg, who joined Borea from Eagle West. “The biggest difference between the two companies is that Borea does roads, foundations, and turbine installations, where Eagle West used to do just turbines.”

They have tendered out a list of equipment they need for road building, which is the first thing that needs to be done and will start next week. They will also be looking for a contractor to build the substation and will be buying or building an Operations and Maintenance Building in town.

Borea’s mission, he says, is to add value to Canadian wind energy market. “We want to be known as the best, not necessarily the biggest. We have never missed a deadline, which is why we get so many repeat jobs from Pattern Energy. Last year we had over a million man hours with only one minor lost time incident. We value teamwork, and hope to work with local contractors and people looking for work.”

Integrity, success, professionalism and quality are company’s value, he says. This will be wind project 39 for the company, and they will be using GE Turbines.

They will be starting work on the foundations in July to October. “We need people to run equipment, to supply concrete. Collector system needs to be built, and we’ll need sand for that. We will be finding subcontractors for the substation and the transmission lines.”

Next year in May, Borea intends to start on installation, which will require cranes and a lot of personnel. If all goes well, they should be finished by November of next year.

Councillor Kirby asks where the equipment is coming from for road building. Westerberg says it is coming from all across the Peace region. However, they have obligations to work with the local First Nations, so, contractors out of Saulteaux and McLeod Lake. Those commitments were made three or four or five years ago through the Environmental Assessment Process, well before the current situation in Tumbler Ridge. “It’s a challenge to meet those commitments and the commitments  we need to do for Tumbler as well,” he says. “Borea is doing what they can to do something that works for everyone.”

However, this is only for the first eight weeks or so of road building. “We need to fulfill these First Nations obligations, and road work is something they are qualified to do.”

After that first eight weeks, they will be moving into foundations, concrete work, crane work.

Councillor Mackay asks about water.

Westerberg says their existing water allotment is coming from Moose Lake, but they are looking at other options, like groundwater on site, as Moose Lake is a bit far away. Councillor Mackay says Moose Lake is a very shallow lake. “If you take a substantial amount of water from it, you might damage the lake.”

Councillor Howe says one thing that’s new to him is the collector system. “Does that mean it will be underground?” Yes, says Westerberg.

Councillor Kirby asks how many people were at the trade fair. Westerberg says he’s not sure, but they came in with a box, and it was full by 11 in the morning. “We had to have got at least 300 resumes today.”

Councillor Howe asks about housing. He’s worried that Moose Lake will become a shanty town. “Is the plan to house people in houses, apartments…what?”

Westerberg says they haven’t dictated how subcontractors will deal with it, but Borea will be putting up people in apartments and houses. “Right now we envision we will be housing everyone in town.”


“I am not a public speaker so I will keep this short,” says Cosgrove. “As I understand it, the Monkman RV park is owned and operated by the District. I propose an onsite host.”

Cosgrove says she would be interested in being this host. It would provide more security for campers, and the ability to give out information.

Councillor Howe is surprised the District doesn’t have anyone out there. CAO Barry Elliott says not on site at least. “Public works will go out and collect fees, maintenance will go and clean, but there is no full time presence on site.” Howe asks how much revenue the site generates. Elliott says that is not available tonight, but can be provided.

Councillor Mackay thinks it is worth looking at. He says at the end of the last year, a bunch of people took off without paying and there was a lot of revenue lost.

Councillor Kirby agrees it is a good idea. The thought of having someone out there is a good thing. “In the past we haven’t promoted the RV park to its full potential. Having someone out there is a great idea.”

Cosgrove says she would promote the site using social media, she could take reservations, she could install fire pits. She says the playground needs upgrading and a fence, but it’s got a lot of potential. “There just needs someone there welcoming. I’ve been here twelve years. We don’t want to leave. Doing everything we can to stay here.”

Elliott says it would take some organization, and to figure out all the background information. The District would have to put it out for RFP, but it could be done.

Councillor Howe asks if it would be unreasonable to think we could have this ready for May long weekend?

Elliott asks for Council’s indulgence. “I need to get a sense of what needs to be done first.”

Councillor Mackay asks how would this affect Grizfest, knowing there was someone out there. He says it would be a good thing.

Councillor Krakowka asks if she was thinking about just being the campsite host or actually taking on the campground?

Cosgrove says  she wouldn’t be able to put any money towards it, but she’s hoping that there’s some way that they can work together.



Correspondence dated March 18, 2015 from Lori Ackerman, Mayor, Fort St. John and Rob Fraser, Mayor, District of Taylor advising that a pertinent news release and correspondence is attached for Council information.



After a lengthy discussion at the last regular Council meeting, the discussion was brought forward until tonight. There was some concern that the minutes from March 1 did not appear to be accurate, says Elliott. See story page 7.


The Deputy Corporate Officer provided a draft spreadsheet/form for tracking non-resolution action items described as “Staff Direction” for Council review.


Brought forward from the Council Meeting held March 18, 2015

Councillor Krakowka says he remembers asking if the Chetwynd chamber could come up and talk about it.

Elliott says there is a grant this falls under. “While we can’t guarantee a grant, it is an option.”

Councillor Mackay says there is a history of communities working together. He reminds Council that Chetwynd put our entire community up during the fire. He suggests that Tumbler Ridge should be at the event with the Tumbler Ridge tent, too.

Councillor Howe says Council is talking about $10,000 to put up Christmas lights on the Visitor Information Centre (VIC). “This will be there for years, and it is a steal of a deal.”

Elliott says there is $12,000 set aside for something like this for the VIC anyway. There is some discussion about just going for the platinum sponsorship, but Councillor Howe says $10,000 is a steal of a deal.


The Ronald McDonald House 2015 Charity Golf Tournament is being held on July 17, 2015 at the Lakepoint Golf and Country Club in Fort St. John and sponsorship is being requested.