City council on March 14 started off with the banner presentation of the 2011 Miss Quesnel Self-Development Program candidates. Six young women from our community were presented with their sponsor banners and candidate tiaras by the reigning royalty.
Cathy Briggs and Trevor Guldbransen presented on behalf of the Canadian Cancer Society’s 2011 Daffodil campaign. The campaign raises awareness and funds for the society to fight back against cancer. The City carried the society’s request to announce April as Daffodil month in Quesnel, along with Daffodil Day, April 27.
CCR rep elected
Coun. Laurey-Anne Roodenburg has been elected as the Cariboo Chilcoltin Regional representative for the North Central Local Government Association.
New Diking policy
Acting Director of Public Works and Engineering, Ken Coombs, advised council on the new provincial policy called “Diking Authorities for New Dikes.” The only effect this policy will have on the City is if and when new dikes are built in Quesnel and whether the dike is built on private property. In that case, the City would need to acquire the necessary land for dike ownership before approval to the dike is granted. Coun. Thapar noted that he will be watching to “make sure the city is protected”, and this type of policy ensures that.
Coombs also presented the ICBC Cost Sharing Opportunities, the results of an initiative between the City and ICBC to share some monetary projects. These include the proposed advanced left turn traffic control lighting improvement of the intersection of Anderson and Abbot Drives. It is a $30,000 project included in the proposed Capital Works Program for 2011. ICBC plans to contribute up to $12,600 towards the project.
Johnston Sub. composting project
Coombs reported on the Johnston Neighbourhood Composting Pilot project which would see a neighbourhood composting site created in Johnston subdivision. City staff met with the Ministry of Environment and a local Conservation Officer on the issue regarding bears and the dangers of attracting wildlife to the compost area. There are fears that it would be unsafe and that the city would be liable in the event of attacks. Coun. Ron Paull protested this statement, “I don’t believe the stories of the bears” he declared, stating there are too many fruit and vegetable gardens already in the neighbourhood for the compost to be an attraction. Another concern Coombs noted is the ongoing costs to the city and the possibility that the volunteers will walk away from the project, leaving it to the city to take over. Coun. Paull disagreed with this statement as well, saying “volunteers should be given a chance.” Coun. Thapar also spoke, “the community brought this project and if the community wants it, let’s give it a fair trial as a test project and see if it’s manageable.” Coun. Roodenburg raised her concern about the liability in response to the bear issue and City Manager John Stecyk said of the issue, “it’s a very real issue.” City council moved to find out more information about the costs for set up, maintenance and the liability issue for further discussion.
More toilets on Riverwalk
There has been a request for more public toilets on the Riverwalk, and the City is looking into adding three more to the system.
Director of Public Works and Engineering, Jack Marsh presented the West Quesnel Land Stability Program 2011 Work Plan Approval. He recommended that Council approve the plan submitted by AMEC Earth and Environmental to carry out the “full scale dewatering program for the West Quesnel Land Stability Program in the amount of $3,446,000.”
He also recommended the approval of the work plan submitted by Urban Systems Ltd. for design, tendering and contract administration for storm drainage of the WQLS program.
The total estimated cost with HST is $4,699,814, with $4,731,000 in funds available for the project.
Coun. Thapar stated that he has been working to get the funds for this project since 2003, and is “very happy to see the project move forward.”
Council moved to approve the plans.