A regular council meeting for the District of Barriere took place via video conferencing on Monday, June 15, at 7 p.m.
District Manager of Transportation, Trent Folk, attended and spoke in regards to a Road Resumption involving the Yellowhead Highway as it passes through the District. He noted that the Southern Yellowhead Highway 5 existed prior to the incorporation of the District of Barriere on Dec. 4, 2007, and that plans showing what is now the Southern Yellowhead Highway date back to the establishment of the Barriere townsite in 1913. The Province, through the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (and its’ predecessors) constructed and maintained the highway. An amendment to the Transportation Act on July 30, 2010, required all plans showing land intended to become arterial highway to be identified as “Arterial Highway” on the Plan. In order to vest title in the Province, an Order in Council pursuant to Section 35 of the Community Charter was required to resume the properties for the purpose of establishing them as part of the Provincial highway system. Barriere Council have agreed to what they call “a housekeeping decision” to the resumption of the Southern Yellowhead Highway 5 as presented and authorized the Mayor and CAO to sign the agreement on behalf of the District. It was noted that the District has not been responsible for maintaining this section of the Yellowhead in the past and will not be doing so in the future as it is the responsibility of the Province.
A 34 page Barriere Housing Needs Report Draft was presented to Council for them to review and bring back for discussion at the next regular council meeting. Copies have also been supplied to Simpcw First Nation and the Thompson Nicola Regional District for their input as well so that housing needs can be addressed.
Barriere Fire Chief, Ashley Wohlgemuth, presented the Fire Department report for the month of May. She summarized that there were 12 fire calls during the month, with one being a vehicle fire and one a structure fire. She noted the balance were all complaints about burning, but in almost all instances the burn was within regulations.
“We still have the burn ban on,” said the Chief, “But we ended up only giving one fine during May. Campfires are the only thing that is still allowed, and there is to be no burning of green brush or anything making smoke because of COVID-19 regulations.”
She said the Fire Department has a “fairly new crew right now, and we want to make everyone ready for wildfire season. It is nice to get practices underway again, mostly outside, and we are fully sanitizing the trucks and everything after each usage. We will also be getting things going again in regards to fire inspections now that businesses are opening up again.”
A proposal submitted at the June 1 regular council meeting for a Thompson Nicola Regional Library Story Walk Installation in Fadear Park was presented by District staff with cost estimates to the District for the installation of the provided Story Walk signage of $1788, and an annual maintenance cost of $840 to come from the Parks Surplus Account. Council approved the recommendation.
Council agreed in a discussion regarding being able to install water infrastructure to all of the lots at the Louis Creek Industrial Park (LCIP), that to do so will require the sale of at least one of the other lots that are still available. However, at this time all of the lots that have completed their purchases are now on the system which is working very well. It was also noted that an income of $4,000 to $5,000 would be forthcoming from the sale of water from the LCIP reservoir to a construction company that has now completed their project.
Legislative Services Manager, Tasha Buchanan, reported that plans for a Barriere Canada Day First Responders’ Parade are still on track. The parade will begin at 12 noon on Canada Day, July 1, will be headed by the RCMP, and will include the Fire Department, Barriere Search and Rescue, and Barriere First Responders. Councillors who wish to participate in their vehicles with their families may also participate if they wish. The parade will leave from the Fire Hall and end back at the Fire Hall after touring through the community. The parade will be seeking applause for all of area local front line workers and for Canada.
The District announced that the new Chief Administrative Officer for the District of Barriere is Bob Payette, who will be starting July 1, 2020. Payette was online during last Monday’s council meeting and commented that he is looking forward to moving to the community with his family.
The next District of Barriere Council Meeting will take place on Monday, July 13, 2020 at 7 p.m. via audioconference.