Policies & Priorities Committee Meeting

These are not the official minutes: a copy of the official minutes can be picked up at Town Hall.

May 8th, 2007, Present: Councillors Hunter (Chair), Sipe, Holmlund, White, Kirby, and Mayor Caisley.

Absent: Councillor Colledge.

1.) Call to order at 7:00 pm.

2.) Motion was made by Councillor Holmlund to approve the minutes from the Policies & Priorities Committee meeting of April 23rd, 2007. Seconded by Sipe. Carried. There was only one correction. Councillor Hunter clarified that Lonny Miller was titled Chief Administrative Officer.

3.) There was no business arising from the minutes.

4.) Review of the agenda. CAO Lonny Miller added items 12, 13, and 14 to the agenda. Item 12 was to discuss May 29th as a possible date for the Town Hall meeting. Item 13 was the rescheduling the June 5th meeting. Item 14 was for an update on the Emergency Social Services (ESS). Motion was made by Councillor Sipe to accept the agenda as amended. Seconded by Kirby. Carried.

5.) Price adjustments for service commercial & industrial lots. Report of Economic Development Officer (EDO). EDO Ray Proulx gave Council a report on suggested price adjustments for the service commercial (C2) and industrial (M1) lots. Proulx said that the prices outlined in the report for the lots were the appraised values of last summer for a bare lot. All of Council was in agreement for the EDO to prepare mid-point prices for the lots in a report and present it to Council in four weeks. Councillor Sipe requested that the CAO find out the costs of putting a service road in between the lots straight through to the highway for accessibility.

6.) Family park phase two-project update. Report of Economic Development Officer (EDO). Mayor Caisley asked EDO Ray Proulx what the maximum budget was for phase two. Proulx said $10,000 is the maximum for the budget. Councillor Holmlund suggested that a separate meeting be held for discussion and to look over the plans. All of Council was in agreement.

7.) Expression of interest for Claude Galebois School. Council discussion. CAO Lonny Miller suggested that Council give direction to staff prior to the May 16th School District meeting as to what they want to do with Claude Galebois School. Councillor White is to make a presentation of Councils? position at the School District meeting. Mayor Caisley suggested that Council go to the meeting saying that ?yes?, the community is interested in the premises. He said that options for use of the school can be looked at on a later date. Councillor White hopes that the school board will provide some type of feedback of options of what to do with Claude Galebois once Council has expressed interest.

8.) No Go Zone. Council discussion. Councillor Sipe indicated that he and Councillor White had been working on a control area or a No Go Zone for the District of Tumbler Ridge. This will require oil & gas, wind, and drilling companies to give advance notice to the district of their plans to develop and in what area they plan on developing. There is no official control area set up as of yet, Sipe said. So far, most of the companies have been complying by making their development plans known to the district. Councillor Holmlund said that the decision to restrict or ban the oil & gas, wind, and drilling companies within a designated zone or area needs more clarification. She suggested consulting or speaking with the companies directly as another option. She added that if there are any areas that should be banned for development, it should be the aquifers area. All of Council was in agreement. Councillor Hunter said, at present, the companies do not have to contact the district in the preliminary stages of development but they are required to do so in the actual development stages. Holmlund suggested that a meeting be held between the District, the Oil and Gas Commission, and the Department of Mines and Energy to get more information and discuss options. All of Council was in agreement. Councillor Hunter requested that the CAO and staff investigate who the key agencies are and which of their representatives can attend a Policies and Priorities Committee meeting for discussion. Councillor Hunter suggested that another meeting be set up with the residents of Tumbler Ridge to express their feelings on a No Go Zone within 2 kms of central Town Hall and the aquifers area.

9.) Fire Protection Committee. Report of Fire Chief/Bylaw Enforcement Officer. All of Council was in agreement to form a committee within the community to represent a Wildfire Protection Plan. The recommended committee members would be comprised of CAO Miller, Chief Golob, Councillor Kirby, and Hunter. The suggested committee and information about the plan will be brought forward at the next regular Council meeting.

10.) Community forest & pine beetle update. Verbal report of Chief Administrative Officer. CAO Miller handed out a report from Larix Forestry Inc. regarding the pine beetle situation within Tumbler Ridge. Overall, an estimated 1221 trees are infested with the pine beetle. Miller said that this about 0.54% of our forest area. It will cost an estimated $60,000 to $70,000 to remove the infested trees. Councillor Hunter gave direction to CAO Miller to provide a report for the following options: actual costs to remove 1221 trees, a preventative, or the option to do nothing. This report is to be brought forward at the next meeting for Council to review. Miller said that he will also pursue funding from the Government for next year. The deadline has passed for funding for this year.

11.) Council invitations.

(a) CAPP-Tree planting project May 16th, 2007. A letter from The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) in the agenda informed Council that they would be having a tree planting project on May 16th at 12:30 pm at Tumbler Ridge Elementary School. Councillor Hunter suggested that all of Council attend.

(b) Discover Energy- May 25th, 2007. A letter in the agenda invited Council members to the Discover Energy open house meeting on Friday, May 25th at the Community Centre. Council was invited to a viewing prior to the public session between 1:00-3:00 pm.

12.) Town Hall meeting date. All of Council was in agreement to having the Town Hall meeting at 7:00 pm on May 29th, 2007.

13.) Rescheduling June 5th regular meeting of Council. The regular Council meeting of June 5th was rescheduled to June 7th at 7:00 pm.

14.) Emergency Social Services (ESS) update. CAO Miller suggested that Council express appreciation for the services of Jerrilyn Schembri, ESS Coordinator, and Colette Ernst, ESS Alternate. Both Schembri and Ernst have submitted their resignation to ESS for personal reasons. Mayor Caisley said that a letter of recognition was already being drafted up.

15. Meeting adjourned at 8:45 pm.