Fire Chief cautions Barriere to be vigilant regarding chimney fires

Chief advises council this is the time to be very careful when using fireplaces

Council members passed the final adoption of two bylaws at the Dec. 17, District of Barriere Council meeting.

The first was the District of Barriere Revitalization Tax Exemption Bylaw No. 99; the second was the District of Barriere Bylaw No. 98.

Fire Chief Al Kirkwood gave council a report for November.  He also advised council, and the public in general, that this is the time to be very careful when using fireplaces.  He has already responded to a few chimney fires in the first two weeks of December.

Chief Administrative Officer, Colleen Hannigan, reported that there is an amendment application on file for a change of works for the waterworks license that was applied for back in 1982.  The amendment was never approved and was forgotten, only being noticed recently as a result of a review of backlogged files.  The District also currently holds two conditional water licenses on Leonie Creek.  It was recommended that the District keep the licenses and maintain the Leonie Dam and water levels at Leonie Lake as an area resource for fire protection, irrigation and recreation purposes.  Council passed a motion to direct staff to proceed with the application.

Council approved Development Permit Application 12-01.  In this application, the applicant is proposing to locate a truck and automotive repair garage and inspection station on Lot 2, KAP17663, which fronts on the south side of Hall Road directly across from Mountain Springs Motel.  The property is currently zoned C2 (service commercial) which permits the intended use.

Council members passed a motion directing staff to complete the necessary strategic wildfire prevention initiative funding application for the preparation of a Community Wildfire Protection Plan.  The current plan is an old one that the TNRD prepared back in 2007, which is no longer up to date.  The grant can potentially contribute 50 per cent of the cost of the plan, to a maximum of $15,000. The remaining 50 per cent would be funded through community contributions.

CAO Colleen Hannigan reported on several District projects.  The District received notification that the application submitted for 100 per cent funding for $15,4000 to facilitate a Seniors’ Mental and Physical Fitness project has been approved.  This money will provide seniors with access to laptop computers and associated internet and computer skills training, with the focus being on “staying connected” – how to use email, facebook, twitter, and other social media.

A reminder that any payments to the District that are due during the period from Christmas Eve to New Year’s Day when the office is closed, will be accepted January 2 with no penalties.

One bid was received for the 2013 Backhoe Services contract from the District’s existing contractor, Quality Construction.  Backhoe services for the Barriere Cemetery will continue to be carried out by Tri Services.

Several Council members thanked the staff members for their efforts on the Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting events.

Resident Barry Thorn asked if staff had researched his question from the last Council meeting, regarding what happens to recycled materials after they are collected from residents.  Staff members replied that all recycled materials are transported to Surrey, where they are sorted.  From there most of the materials are shipped to Vancouver for further processing, with a small amount being shipped to Alberta.

Councillor Smith reported that Interior Health has replied to the letter sent by the District regarding the loss of the lab tech position at the Barriere Health Clinic.  Interior Health is looking into several different possibilities to address the District’s concerns and will be arranging a meeting with the District in the new year.

The next District of Barriere Council meeting will be on January 7, at 7 p.m.