City council meeting, Nov. 27, 2018. Heather Norman photo

Quesnel to raise utility fees in 2019

The changes include increases to sewer, water, landfill, commercial garbage and airport fees

Quesnel city council passed changes to the Comprehensive Fees and Charges bylaw on Tuesday night (Nov. 27).

The changes include increases to sewer, water, landfill, commercial garbage, cemetery and airport fees, among others. The changes will come into effect Jan. 1, 2019.

Kari Bolton, the director of corporate financial services for the city, presented a report to council outlining the changes to the bylaw.

Bolton says the Financial Sustainability and Audit Committee reviewed the rates at their Nov. 13 and 20 meetings, and recommended the updated rates to council.

RELATED: Quesnel inching toward first privately-owned cannabis store

Water and sewer utility fees will both be increased, while residential garbage rates remain the same. The landfill will also increase the cost of dropping off a tonne of material, as well as reducing the amount of material resident are allowed to drop off for free.

Water utility fees will increase by a five per cent increase to utility fees, a two per cent increase to bulk water fees, and a two per cent increase to connection fees.

Sewer utility fees will increase by a two per cent increase to utility fees and a two per cent increase to connection fees.

While there is no change to residential garbage rates, commercial garbage collection rates will go up by 15 per cent, which will allow the city to break even on the practice. Mayor Bob Simpson clarified that council would need to take another look at the commercial garbage collection rates in the new year, particularly as it does not serve businesses in South Quesnel.

The cost of using the landfill is also set to increase. In the midst of a Strategic Landfill and Recycling Review, the city is working to determine the future costs of the landfill, in order to expand its lifespan.

The city is gradually working its way up to charging the same fees as the Cariboo Regional District.

The cost per tonne will increase from $60 to $70 for most categories. In the same period, the cost per tonne at the Central Cariboo landfill run by the CRD is changing from $70 to $80 per tonne for most categories.

The amount allowed into the landfill for free will also be reduced, from 350 kilograms to 200 kg. In the CRD, the amount allowed into the Central Cariboo landfill for free will be reduced from 200 kg to 100 kg.

Business licence fees were also adjusted.

New categories were added for establishments serving liquor (which will pay a fee of $125, up from $75 in 2018), as well as cannabis retail (which will have a fee of $1,500) and production (which will have a fee of $5,000).

The new fee for establishments serving alcohol was added to accomodate the cost of things such as the RCMP being more frequently called to such establishments, as well as the time they spend monitoring them.

The cannabis-related fees were added due to the increased risk of, for example, armed robbery.

Other fees were raised as well.

Airport fees will have a two per cent bump, while cemetery burial rates will increase by two per cent. There will not be an increase in plot rates.

Dog licence fees are also going up by $5, which the report says will “help offset the costs of doggie bags on the riverwalk, maintenance of the dog park and the yearly contribution the city makes to the SPCA.”

There will be no fee change for the museum or the RCMP.



heather.norman@quesnelobserver.com

Like us on Facebook

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RANCH MUSINGS: When the pressure is off, what is there to muse about on the ranch?

Columnist David Zirnhelt shares advice for the next generation

Timed event rodeo set for Quesnel’s Alex Fraser Park

No spectators will be allowed at the Gold City Showdown, and ropers will qualifying for nationals

Quesnel library to re-open Sept. 24

The Cariboo Regional District closed all libraries in March due to COVID-19

COVID-19 “exposure event” at Quesnel Junior Secondary School

The school is one of two in Northern Health with exposure to the virus in the first weeks of classes

Fire hydrant and water main flushing begins Sept. 21 in Quesnel

The annual maintenance will take place throughout the city over the next three weeks

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Emaciated grizzly found dead on central B.C. coast as low salmon count sparks concern

Grizzly was found on Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw territory in Smith Inlet, 60K north of Port Hardy

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

CHARTS: Beyond Metro Vancouver, COVID-19 cases in B.C. haven’t increased much recently

COVID-19 case counts outside of Metro Vancouver have been level since July

70-year-old punched in the head in dispute over disability parking space in Nanaimo

Senior’s turban knocked off in incident at mall parking lot

Thousands of child care spaces coming to 35 B.C. communities

Province announces milestone in Childcare BC plan

Most Read