Highlights from the city council meeting held Monday, April 8, 2019:
Tax hike rejected
The city will dip into its tax stabilization reserve and boost its investment expectations this year to offset a late and unexpected $601,000 shortfall in its operating budget. Council unanimously rejected a proposal to increase tax rates to make up the difference, calling its move a compromise as it gears up for a major financial policy review later this year. Read more by clicking here.
• Council approved a $5.82-million contract to Knappett Industries Ltd. of Fort St. John for the third phase of 100 Street corridor improvements. The project will finish 100 Street four-laning from 110 Avenue to 119 Avenue. The first two phases were completed in in 2017 and 2018, and a storm sewer extension under the CN Railway is expected to be finished this spring.
• Council approved a contract to Interoute Construction of Fort St. John (DGS Astro Paving) for asphalt maintenance to city streets as needed this year. The city has budgeted $1 million for that work this year.
• The city has awarded the contract to broker the sale of the surplus Condill land to Ron Rodgers with NorthEast BC Realty Ltd.
• The city has awarded a $63,787 contract to Carbon Mountain Drilling of Fort St. John for repairs to Well #5 of the city's water supply system. The city has budgeted $142,500 for well rehabilitation this year.
• Council approved an $18,800 sole-source contract to HiCube of Delta to buy two gun storage units for the RCMP detachment, pending an option to buy the units directly from the manufacturer.
• Coun. Tony Zabinsky acknowledged Mayor Lori Ackerman for being named the Canadian Energy Person of the Year by the Energy Council of Canada. The city is honoured to see Ackerman win the award, he said. “That makes me very proud that we have you as our leader,” Zabinsky said. “You are very vocal and passionate. You represent us well.” Read more by clicking here.
• Council will write a letter in support of the Doig River First Nation, which has applied for federal funding for a land-use study to formally establish the K'ih tsaa?dze Tribal Park.
• Council authorized its members to attend the SPARK Women's Leadership Conference in Fort St. John on May 15 to 16. The $375 registration fee for each councillor who attends will be charged to council's travel budget.
• Coun. Gord Klassen will represent the city at the BC Leadership Prayer Breakfast in Vancouver on May 16, 2019. Klassen had already planned to be in Vancouver that week for personal business.
• Council endorsed Coun. Gord Klassen to stand for election for the board of directors of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Member municipalities will elect directors at their AGM May 30 to June 2 in Quebec City. Having the city’s voice at the table is valuable, Klassen said.
• Council adopted Council Policy No. 141/19 - Guiding Principles to Review and Negotiate Development Agreements.
• Council gave first three readings to Community Services Fees and Charges Bylaw No. 2460, 2019, which sets out proposed recreation fees and service charges through to 2023.
• Council adopted Water Regulation Bylaw No. 2457, 2019. The bylaw regulates city water supply and distribution, and includes updates on the roles and responsibilities of the city and consumers, requirements to install water services and connections, sets water standards, and outlines how billing disputes are resolved and how the city collects on unpaid accounts, and more.
• Council gave first three readings to 101 Avenue Between 86 and 88 Streets Local Area Service Establishment Bylaw No. 2461, 2019, and 101 Avenue Between 86 and 88 Streets Loan Authorization Bylaw No. 2462, 2019, for road improvements. The cost of the project is an estimated $1.5 million. The city would pay for just over $1 million from its capital budget, while $509,000 would be charged to property owners in the project area.
• April 6 to 12 was proclaimed National Dental Hygiene Week to promote good oral health care practices and celebrate the dental hygiene profession. City hall will be lit up in purple to mark the occasion.
Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at firstname.lastname@example.org.