Regular Meeting of Council: April 18, 2016

Trent Ernst, Editor

Councilor Caisley (Chair), Councillors Howe, Kirby, Krakowka



Doug Beale, Public Works Manager, to present on the National Public Works Week. He says that they are planning on holding an open house on May 20.


Donny van Dyke, Manager, BC Community Relations, to provide an update. In the last eight months, he says, commodity prices have stagnated or are in decline. Northern Gateway would move crude oil. He says Heavy oil is at $25/barrel in Edmonton. To get it to the coast adds a premium of about $12 to $13. What this means for Northern Gateway is that economics of the project is very good. They’ve made inroads with First Nation negotiations, and have signed agreements with 28 groups.

There still remains some significant challenges. First and foremost is First Nations agreements, especially with groups in Northwest. There are also legal challenges that should be resolved in the next month or two. He says Enbridge is parent company, and Enbridge recently purchased two gas plants from Murphy Oil. There are two job postings for local area. They’re not directly connected to Northern Gateway, but a good example of how the community works. We’re still some ways away from construction, but will be collecting resumes and connecting with local contractors. They have a specific target for finding companies based in region to do a certain amount of work.

Councillor Howe asks about the Murray River Crossing. “It’d be better if it were called En-tunnel, rather than Enbridge.” We share your wishes, says Dyk. Right now we’re situated 2.5 km below Kinuseo Falls. When we originally did our geo-work, it was inconclusive. Technology has improved, but we still need to do work. Because of our legal standing, our funding partners are not able to make the investment at this time, but we will do it prior to starting construction. It is an absolutely shared goal between the company and the community.” Howe says we don’t have a mining community anymore, and we’re really pushing tourism, and a couple million doesn’t seem like a lot considering the company is going to make billions of dollars. That’s something you want to have nailed down. “It’s not an issue of not wanting to do the geotechnical work, it’s just that right now there is this legal cloud hanging over us. We are absolutely committed to doing it.” Councillor Caisley asks what the timing around that decision. Dyk says Council will be briefed on work that is happening and will be kept up to date. “As we receive more information, we will keep you updated.”


Alistair Howard, Director, Project Development, BC to discuss the Moose Lake Project. Boralex’s, says Howard, has over 1000 MW of power around the world. Working with Aeolis Wind to develop the Redwillow site.

Two most active projects are the 15 MW small wind projects, Babcock and Moose Lake. Moose Lake is adjacent to Meikle Project, while Babcock is near Quintette. Moose Lake is contingent on interconnection studies, but hoping to start in August. Babcock is awaiting interconnection results from BC Hydro, and won’t start for a couple years. They’ve selected Borea as their prime contractor, and will be using Enercon Turbines. They expect 37.6 person years.

Redwillow has potential for 400 MW, fully permitted, and ready for construction by mid-2017. Unique proposal to locate manufacturing of turbine components in Tumbler Ridge.

The idea is to manufacture towers out of concrete. This dramatically improves employment impact, with $600-million value ad and 2800 direct and indirect jobs. It isn’t just about power; stimulates economic growth.

Councillor Howe asks if there’s any life for manufacturing facility beyond the Redwillow Project. Howard says that’s Enercon that would need to talk to it, but they have no plans to shut it down. 4000 MW of wind into Alberta in next few decades. Redwillow would be an anchor tenant for project.

Councillor Caisley asks about Job Fairs. That will happen a month or two before construction says Howard.


Tim Snyder, Lions Club, to request that Council include a gator for the Lions Club Park in the District’s 2016 Budget. Snyder says having a gator would help in miscellaneous duties. The park is District property, and Lions gives 20 percent to District, and pours money back into park. New playground, washroom upgrades, etc. These improvements are to District assets. The Lions, he says, are hoping to set up an agreement with the District like the arrangement with the lawn mower where District owns and maintains it, but Lions operate it. Cost would be about $12,000.

CAO Jordan Wall says getting this into the 2016 budget would be tough, but says 2017 would be possible.

Councillor Howe asks how this compares to the District’s gator. He suggests maybe a new one to replace the District and pass the older one down to the Lion’s.

Wall recommends moving this to 2017, but if Council were to give unanimous consent, it could be done. They will discuss it in the future.


Harry Prosser came to discuss a labour intensive solution for trail maintenance for the District of Tumbler Ridge Trails. Prosser says he’s been here before, but it’s been a while. He says he has had a meeting with the Mayor who suggested he come before Council to have this discussion. He says to do any kind of work, labour intensive is better. He says he’s heard the District is looking for mulching services. A five man crew, he says, would be less than half the cost and do a better job cleaning the trail. Less debris means it’s easier on vehicles. Mulchers can’t handle danger trees, and renting a Mulcher sends the money out of the community. He says the horse loggers were the ones that got the community forest up and running.

Councillor Kirby says he has a good point, and should be directed towards the committee that is going to be created to look at these issues. Councillor Howe says the Council has mostly eliminated the idea of Mulcher already. Wall says the trail maintenance committee would create a terms of service and put it out for bid.



Correspondence received from Bob Gammer, Community Relations Manager, BC Hydro, advising of planned power outages for the Tumbler Ridge area on June 5 and August 28.



Council gave first and second readings to the District of Tumbler Ridge Animal Responsibility Bylaw No. 633, 2016. Item is tabled, as Council would lose quorum to have the discussion.



In September of 2014, the Province of British Columbia established minimum standards of training required for fire services personnel in British Columbia, says Fire Chief Matt Treit in his report, with each local government having to declare its firefighting service level, which must be established as formal policy and is required to be reflected in the fire department’s operating guidelines. “The Tumbler Ridge Fire Department has always trained to the highest of the three levels (Full Service Operations Level) and so there will be no changes required to budget or staffing levels,” says Treit. “Some fire department operational guidelines will have to be amended to reflect the new standards of training.” Council declares the service level of the Tumbler Ridge Fire Department to be the Full Service Level as described in the Competency and Training Playbook from the Office of the Fire Commissioner.


Over the past decade many of the repairs that have done at the aquatic centre were temporary ‘band aid’ solutions, says Wall. Improper installation of past mag starters and panels need to be redone, as they should have been vapour proof and were not and also have dangerous wiring and grounding issues. Rock features that were removed due to deterioration have revealed extensive damage that should be repaired.

In some places the repairs on the electrical system have been held together using wood screws vs. the required mechanical ones. “Much of this damage is due to the fact that the aquatic centre has been using a salt water system which the building was not designed for and initial repairs were not done correctly or to code,” says Wall in his report. While the pool is shut down, staff recommends upgrading the repairs “in a way in such they will be long lasting solutions that will bring the aquatic centre up to code. This administration’s philosophy is that a long term solution, while more expensive now, will save more money in the long run and not simply move the problems down the road.”

The original cost of this project was $242,700, but staff is seeking approval to increase it to $297,700, an increase of $55,000, to allow these fixes to take place. “Some of the added work will be to repair old ‘repairs’ that have been done improperly causing hazards in the aquatic centre. To not undertake these repairs would increase the likelihood of accidents occurring in the future, raising the District’s liability risk,” says Wall.

Councillor Krakowka thanks Ken Klikach for taking them on a tour of the facilities and showing them the repairs needed. Council increased the funds to $297,000.


Staff is hoping to complete crack sealing on the middle bench in 2016, which would add $40,000 to the total cost of the project, which would basically double the cost of the crack sealing. This is normally done as part of the operational budget, but because it is such an increase, staff has committed to bringing forward. Beale says crack sealing is regularly scheduled; each bench happens each year. But because the middle bench is larger than the other two benches, it will cost more money. Council moved to include this in the 2016 Financial Plan.


In order to implement the ORV bylaw, Council moved to include $30,000 in the 2016 Financial Plan, which would go to signage, trail work and fencing. Wall says they have been in discussion with the ATV club which may lead to some changes. Howe asks if this is just this year or annually. Wall says this is just for this year, but in the future there may be more work on other ORV routes.


Council approved no more than $700 of in-kind services and $3000 in grant-in-aid for the Chamber’s event to be held on April 28th 2016, waiving their Grant in Aid Policy. Councillor Krakowka asks if he has any conflict of interest in this. Motion is tabled to end of meeting. At the end of the meeting, Wall says it is up to the Councillor, but this is Council giving money to the Chamber; there is no contract between the Chamber and any business to purchase from them. Councillor Krakowka decides to stay, as he thinks this will be good for the community. Motion passes.


Council approved $40,000 in the 2016 Fiscal Plan for the Chamber of Commerce’s JCP application and waived the District’s Grant In Aid Policy. This topic, says Councillor Caisley has been discussed a number of times before, so there is no discussion.


The District of Tumbler Ridge moved to purchase a second V-MUX display unit and polished aluminum wheels for Ladder 7 with the cost not to exceed $13,000 CAD (taxes excluded).


Council approved Mayor McPherson’s travel to Ottawa for an amount not to exceed $3,500.


Council discussed the RFP for a Core Services Review, which will be added to each department’s Strategic Plan.


Council decides on a funding level for the Chamber of Commerce and waived its Grant In Aid Policy. Councillor Howe says he prefers the first option, while Councillor Kirby prefers option two. “We’re getting our value out of our VIC centre by keeping it open year-round.” Councillor Krakowka agrees. However he is wondering if Council should be paying for the cost for the chamber manager. Councillor Kirby says we invest a lot of money into tourism, and we need to stand behind that decision. This year has shown some great numbers, she says, and she doesn’t want to see the hours decreased this year. “The programming and everything that’s going on over there is excellent.” She recommends that council increases the Fee For Service by $119,933. Councillor Howe says that’s $180,000 keeping the building open, and he doesn’t see the benefit of it. Motion is defeated. Councillor Howe moves that Council increases the budget by $26,448. Motion defeated. Councillor Kirby moves that the fee for service be increased by $101,153. Motion passes. Councillor Howe opposed.


Council approved a $31,000 increase in the Tumbler Ridge Public Library’s budget. This will, says Councillor Caisley, increase the budget back to 2014 levels. Councillor Kirby says the library came and presented and the amount of stuff they were doing was impressive. There is some discussion as to what the total budget is. Council invites Library Manager Paula Coutts to speak to the issue. She says this is not an increase, but a reinstatement. Last year, they were told all departments were being asked to decrease their budgets which they did. She is asking the budget be put back to $213,000.


Council authorized registration and related travel expenses in the approximate amount of $4,630.30 for both Mayor McPherson and Councillor Mackay to attend the 2016 Minerals North Conference being held in Smithers, BC on May 18-20, 2016.


Councillor Krakowka has nothing to report.

Councillor Kirby provides a report from the Branding Committee Meeting, which is getting close to being finalized.

Councillor Howe has nothing to report.

Councillor Caisley attended PRRD meeting. Attended efficiency review meeting. Attended tour of facilities. Attended meeting with Beale and Torraville around Cemetery bylaw update. Attended Tourism Committee meeting at town hall. He suggest Council needs to consider a date for the next town hall meeting.