August 17th, 2009 Present: Mayor White, Councillors Wren, McPherson, Beale and Schembri. Official Minutes can be obtained from Town Hall
1.Call to Order: 7:00pm
2.Adoption of Agenda-adopted as amended.
8.4 Biomass update,
8.5 Playground Speed Signs
3.Adoption of Minutes for July 6, 2009-carried.
4.Business arising from the minutes:
·Paving should be complete on the new hotel next week. Ms. Isaak will be going on a tour of the hotel soon. There are still plans for the restaurant to be open September 1st, 2009. No official announcement has been made regarding the new name of the hotel.
·Councillor Beale would like to pass along a thank you to Public Works for cleaning up Wolverine Avenue. The associated cost to clean up the area will be recovered through taxes and if that is not possible, then District will acquire the land(this process is called remedial action).
·Mayor White reminded Council the Jackfish Lake Road event is the 29th of August. Please attend if you can.
·Drug and Alcohol Policy: there has been no feedback yet from CUPE, explained Ms. Isaak.
·Dunne-Za Venture: the District has not had a response from the letter sent to Dunne-za denying their request for a fee waiver.
Conference Travel Expense Approval.
Either the ESS director or a staff member will be attending this conference. Therefore, Council has agreed to save costs by NOT sending Councillor Schembri to this conference. Whomever attends can give a report to Council on the information received at this conference. This will save $2260.60.
1.1Small Talk Forum
There will be a small talk forum September 29th during the UBCM Convention.
Councillors are encouraged to submit ideas for these forums. The topics should be on issues that extend beyond our own community of Tumbler Ridge. Home care, health care, recruitment of nurses and how to be green on a small budget were all ideas presented.
Best Practice/Success Stories may also be presented. The Senior?s Needs Committee was mentioned as a possible topic.
8.1 Town Hall Meeting
The next Town Meeting will be Tuesday October 20, 2009. Topics will include but are not limited to: Tree Cutting (Pine Beetle Mitigation), Seniors Update, Community Centre renovations, Biomass plant, and an update on meetings with Ministry of Highways. Councillors will also give short reports on what it is they have been working on. As per the first Town Meeting, the audience will be able to ask questions.
8.2 Special Meetings
Councillor McPherson would like special meetings to be limited. There have been several special meetings he has had to miss. He stated he does not mind missing the meetings, what bothers him is feeling out of the loop for missing them. Ms. Isaak explained there are some issues which are time sensitive, therefore special meetings are required. Council discussed combining regular meeting nights with special meeting nights. There will either be an earlier start with the special meetings before the regular meetings and/or have them after the regular meetings.
8.3 Recruitment of Nurses.
Councillor Wren commented there has not been a lot of progress with Nursing Recruitment for Tumbler Ridge. There is a nursing shortage for all of BC, especially in the north. Councillor Wren has presented to Northern Health the idea that Tumbler Ridge be represented during recruitment seminars while at universities.
Councillor Wren suggested the District of Tumbler Ridge come up with more incentives that are specific to Tumbler Ridge to help attract nurses to our town.
The agency nurse that was here in Tumbler Ridge was hired from Ontario and it cost Northern Health $20,000 to bring him here to give our two nurses a much needed break. Councillor Wren explained getting an agency nurse is a short term solution and an expensive one.
Councillor Beale would like Council to continue to put pressure on Northern Health.
Councillor Schembri spoke to a recruiter for the RCMP and they are willing to look at recruits specifically with a spouse who is a nurse.
Councillor Wren thinks a discussion on what the town can offer is important. Some ideas were: paying for specialized training, housing bonus and checking at the mines to guarantee work for the spouse.
8.4 Biomass Update
Mayor White announced the vice president of Zilkha?s Biomass Energy, Larry Wieks, will be visiting Tumbler Ridge on August 20, 2009. Zilkha has a plant in Ontario and they are looking to invest in BC. Wieks will also be visiting Terrace as a possible location. The company would produce enough electricity to run the plant and they would produce pellets for the European market. During Weiks? visit,
they will drive out to a couple potential sites for the plant as well as take a helicopter ride to see the extent of the pine beetle damage.
This company has a potential to employ 70 people at the plant and 70 people in the bush. More information will follow.
8.5 Playground Speed Signs
Councillor Beale would like the playground signs taken down on Mackenzie Way. It is a nuisance to police this area and there is not many children that play in the park at the old Claude Galibois School, explained Beale. Ms. Isaak explained she has spoken to Clark Halzehurst in public works and they can take them down if it is the wish of Council.
This will be placed on the next regular Council meeting agenda for a vote.
9.Question and Answer Period/Comments
Mayor White asked if there are hunting areas around town. He commented he had witnessed someone on horseback with a gun going after a moose. Responsible hunters should know where they are allowed to hunt. Note: Hunting within the town is prohibited.
Cat Traps: The cat trap program has been suspended until further notice. The traps were being rented but an overpopulation of cats at the Dawson Creek SPCA has resulted in the suspension of the pilot project for now.
Dentist: No further information about a dentist is available at this time.
Nursing Recruitment: Offer a debt reduction incentive.