District of Barriere CAO, Colleen Hannigan presented the following information to mayor and council at the Monday, May 16, regular council meeting.
Rural Dividend funding applications were discussed at a round table discussion that occurred on May 2 at the Ridge. Jill Hayward spoke on behalf of the North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Association. They are prepared to submit an application this round to put a concrete floor in all, or part of, the Agriplex to the amount of approximately $100,000. This will be the community’s one submission for a large project.
A group led by Brian Bondar, with the Barriere and District Chamber of Commerce as the eligible organization, has been investigating the concept of a Tourist Information and Interpretive Centre for the highway at Barriere. They are planning on submitting an application for business plan development for this project. Large infrastructure projects themselves are not eligible but applying for Project Development funds to cover a feasibility study or business plan development for the project may be approved for a $10,000 grant.
District staff are recommending that the District apply for Project Development funding to cultivate an Operational Sustainability Plan for the newly constructed Solar Aquatics Water Reclamation Centre with the objective of creating one or more revenue streams for the building in an attempt to achieve as close to financial net-zero operational costs as possible. This planning process would include investigating potential partnerships and/or co-operative development of entrepreneurial agri-business incubation opportunities, graduate research opportunities, high school curriculum programming, etc. A resolution from council is a requirement for submission.
The Thompson Nicola Regional District may apply for a larger project grant in the fall for the Geopark initiative in the North Thompson, but at this time they are asking for a letter of support for a Project Development application to collect more detailed area data to build on the feasibility study that has already been undertaken by Tourism Planning Group and Lions Gate Consulting.
It was concluded at the round table that the district would support the fall fair’s application for the concrete floor and that it would be fine for more than one request for a $10,000 project feasibility grant be applied for by both the chamber and the district. If one or both are not successful in the first round they could be reapplied for in the fall.
Hannigan reported to the district that Gurgant Gill from RM200 Holdings (Barriere Esso) has recently completed a subdivision of his lands along Highway 5N. The new lot, just north of the Esso/Subway lands, will be accessed from Russell Road along an undeveloped road dedication that was part of the subdivision process. Gill requested that this new road, when it is developed, be given the name Gill Road. A resolution from council approved this request.
The site preparation for the Splash In The Past pad, including the drain field, electrical connections and water supply will be commencing this coming week. The Barriere and District Chamber of Commerce has generously donated their old log tourist info building which will be relocated to the site to house the required utilities.
Hannigan reported there has been a delay in line painting within the community due to cancellation by the chosen contractor brought about by an equipment failure that can’t be easily rectified in a timely manner. Another quote is presently being sourced by the roads department.
She also reported that there has been an increase in break-ins and vandalism at both the small house and the large future municipal office building (HY Louie Property) along Barriere Town Road. As well, the two large willows that provided some of the aesthetics and shade to the site were blown down during the last large storm. Staff recommended that the small structure be demolished and removed and the site be cleaned up. The cost was estimated at $3,500; $3,000 for demolition and removal, and $500 for site remediation. Council approved the request.