District of Barriere CAO Colleen Hannigan presented the following report to Mayor and Council at their Monday, Oct. 21, regular meeting.
Louis Creek Industrial Park (LCIP) Update: Rivermist Excavation, the same contractors that completed the water main relocation on Station Road last year, have been contracted to construct the first phase of the water system in the Louis Creek Industrial Park. Meanwhile work is underway on the corner of Agate Bay Road and Enterprise Way, adjacent to the MOTI gravel pit, by Smile Cultivation on a cannabis grow operation that will be housed in a large greenhouse with adjacent offices. BC Hydro is also nearing completion of the extension of the three-phase hydro looping from the end of Louis Creek Road out to Old Sawmill Crescent and then down Agate Bay Road to the highway. This will provide more security in the provision of three-phase power to this area.
New Fire Engine Update: Chief Wohlgemuth and Deputy Ive have been working with the Finance Department and TNRD on acquiring more detailed information regarding the required purchase of a new fire engine for the District. The quotes received from the lowest bidder have been extended to after Council meets on Nov. 4, in order not to rush this decision.
Recycle BC Update: Discussions have been ongoing between the Thompson-Nicola Regional District and RecycleBC that impacts the final decision around how the District of Barriere’s curbside recycling can get to Emterra in Kamloops. It appears an agreement has now been reached with a proposed on-boarding date of as soon as Oct. 29.
Agricultural Land Reserve Public Engagement Sessions: Two more in-person public engagement sessions have been scheduled so more people can have their say on how to encourage farming and protect farmland throughout the province. The new sessions will be held in Cranbrook on Nov. 5, and in Kamloops on Nov. 14, 2019.
British Columbians are encouraged to share their insights and opinions on how to best address the following challenges:
• Supporting farmers and ranchers in the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) to expand and diversify their businesses;
• Helping new or young farmers become established on the land and in business; and
• Ensuring there is flexibility for residential options while prioritizing agriculture in the ALR.
Since there have been recent changes by government to strengthen the ALR and Agricultural Land Commission (ALC), the ministry is hosting eight in-person sessions, along with the ALC, throughout B.C. to discuss the purpose of the changes. The number of in-person engagement sessions was increased as the result of feedback heard at the 2019 Union of BC Municipalities Conference and from farmers and property owners in the ALR.
• The engagement period runs from Sept. 19 to Nov. 15, 2019. An engagement summary report will then be prepared and made public.
• The ALR was established in 1973 because thousands of acres of the province’s limited farmland were being lost to development every year.
• The ALR includes 46,159 square kilometres of B.C., which are preserved for agricultural use. This area is equivalent to five per cent of B.C.’s total land base.
Online feedback can be provided at: https://test.engage.gov.bc.ca/supportingfarmers/
This engagement session follows the consultation undertaken by government’s ALR revitalization committee in 2018. The final report is available online at: https://engage.gov.bc.ca/govtogetherbc/impact/agricultural-land-reserve-results/