At its Feb. 28 regular meeting, Creston town council passed a motion to allow the community pride committee to seek federal funding to include a War of 1812 commemoration in the July Canada Day celebrations, but without the support of Coun. Judy Gadicke.
“Why on earth are we doing this?” Gadicke asked. “This all happened down east and I don’t see the relevance.”
“It’s free money,” Coun. Wes Graham said.
The resolution passed, with Gadicke declaring her opposition by voting against it.
The commemoration was initially brought up at the Jan. 31 council meeting.
•The meeting got off to a slow start when it became apparent that a representative from Columbia Basin Trust (CBT), scheduled to speak on proposed broadband Internet service to the area, was not in attendance. CHT chief operating officer Mark Halwa never did arrive.
•Graham conducted a development variance permit meeting for a property at 714 Alder Street. The variance was proposed to allow construction of a front porch as part of a renovation that would put the house in line with neighbouring houses.
No opposition to the permit was received from the public and it was approved.
•A resolution was passed to support Salt Spring Island’s call for investment in rural cycling infrastructure. Salt Spring Island will be hosting a rural mobility solution conference that will focus on cycling issues in June.
•January was a slow month for local construction, building inspector Ross Beddoes reported. Only one permit was issued, for a residential renovation. In January 2011, two commercial renovation permits were approved.
•A proposal was passed to place a “river of sturgeon” on the chain link fence above on the parking lot on Highway 3 near the Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce building. Gadicke reported that school students throughout the Creston Valley will be painting wooden cutouts of the fish to celebrate the annual spring sturgeon release. The resulting “mural”, to be patterned after the Stream of Dreams on the south fence of Centennial Park, will also commemorate the Man in Motion Tour, during which Rick Hansen will be visiting Creston. Hansen will be asked to paint one of the more than 700 wooden fish.
•Council endorsed an application for three senior staff to apply for scholarships to take professional courses related to their work.
•A request for funding to help the Creston Chiefs bantam rep team with costs to participate in the B.C. provincial hockey championships in Burnaby was deferred until budget discussions. Council is considering eliminating, or drastically cutting, all grants-in-aid as it seeks ways to reduce the impact of policing costs on Creston property taxpayers.
•Fire chief Bruce Mabin presented a report on the fire department’s activities in the final quarter of 2011.
A total of 135 responders attended 29 incidents, which included structural and vehicle fires, false alarms and motor vehicle accidents, he reported.
A total of $324,000 was lost in property in seven fires, but firefighting efforts saved an estimated $992,000 in property, Mabin said.
•Engineering manager Colin Farynowski reported that the Ministry of Transportation is preparing preliminary designs for the intersection of Northwest Boulevard (Highway 3) and Canyon Street. He asked for council’s input as to whether it wished to see the viability of a roundabout intersection (which doesn’t require traffic lights) be considered along with a traditional traffic light-controlled intersection. Council agreed that both options merit consideration.
•Council approved a request from the Creston Valley Regional Airport Society to suspend further leasing of farmland surrounding the airport, with the understanding that the society would bear the loss of lease income.