North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Association (NTFFRA) president Jill Hayward requested and received a $500 grant-in-aid sponsorship for the upcoming New Year’s Eve Bullarama event at the North Thompson Agriplex. It was agreed that the two tickets to the event that come with the sponsorship will be offered in a local contest or draw to be decided by the NTFFRA.
Hayward also presented the mayor, council and staff on hand with 10 Canada 150 official tulip bulbs each as an awareness promotion for the Canada Day celebration event and logging show competitions at the fairgrounds July 1, 2017.
Yellowhead Community Services representative Grace Baker requested and received a grant for $500 towards three women’s wellness sessions to be held at the Ridge during November.
Lorne Richardson, marketing coordinator for the Lower North Thompson Tourism Society (LNTTS) made a presentation to mayor and council regarding the LNTTS technical plan being presented to tourism British Columbia. Richardson commented that this area has done “incredibly well” this year in the tourism sector “with revenues up 38 per cent, which is pretty much standard across the province”.
Acting fire chief Rob Lennea reported he was planning to retire from the department in December, but due to the resignation of fire chief Al Kirkwood he will be filling that position for six months until another permanent chief can be found.
Nora Johnson presented the quarterly budget review to council and answered any questions they may have had.
Council discussed at length staff’s request to amend the Cemetery Bylaw and the Fees and Charges Bylaw to reflect proposed fees within a presented staff report. The discussion was tabled to the next council meeting so that council could have more time to review the requested increase in fees.
CAO Colleen Hannigan presented council with the Barriere Solar Aquatics Operational Sustainability Plan Draft.
The draft plan has been submitted by the District with their Rural Dividend application for funding of the associated pilot project that is being proposed.
Hannigan noted she also included a letter of support the district received from Ms. Waage at Barriere Secondary, who has developed a curriculum for her grade 11 biology class around the Solar Aquatics Wastewater Reclamation Centre (SAWRC). The pilot project would provide additional funding for four part time contract employees to work, for six months from the approval funding date, specifically on bringing the revenue-generating agri-business/tourism/research and education components into play.
Regardless of whether funding is approved or not, staff and willing volunteers will continue to work on revenue generation and the plan will again be brought forward to council during 2017 budget discussions if there are any major budget impacts at that point.
Hannigan said the tanks in the plant are currently growing cattails, mint, water lettuce, water hyacinth, iris, water lilies and duckweed.
It was also reported that the first load of wood chips from Woodco was delivered to the wood boiler at the Solar Aquatics Centre and the boiler should be up and running by Nov. 15.
Councilor Ward Stamer reported he attended the annual general meeting of the North Thompson Volunteer and Information Centre and that he was elected to their board of directors.
An Economic Development Building Blocks Workshop will be held on Nov. 18 at the Dutch Lake Community Centre in Clearwater with Myles Bruns and Terry Olsen officiating. District representatives will be attending.
The next regular council meeting will take place on Nov. 21 at 7 p.m.