Conflict between residents and snow-clearing contractors has led Creston town council to consider amending its noise bylaw.
The issue came to a head last winter when residents in the Creston Valley Mall area complained about early morning snow plowing of the parking lot. Mall representatives countered that the lot had to be cleared before early workers parked their vehicles. To be able to keep the lot safe for the public requires it to be completely cleaned after a snowfall. Conflicts also arose over the clearing of other parking lots within the town limits.
Council voted at the Sept. 13 regular meeting to direct staff to undergo consultation by arranging a public forum. It will also consider the licensing of snow-clearing contractors.
•A change in the business licence cost structure is being considered. Under the current structure, business licences vary in cost, based on a combination of business type, floor or ground area used, number of employees, number of rental units and number of vending/dispensing machines on site. Fees range from $40 to more than $100 per licence.
Town staff provided council with information about how other communities licence businesses and an open house will be scheduled to discuss options that include a restructure of how fees are assessed or moving to a single fee system.
•A public hearing will be scheduled to invite comments on the rezoning application of a 10th Avenue North property owner who wants to subdivide a one-acre parcel into two lots. Four similar properties have been approved for subdivision in the same area.
•Free parking at metered spaces will continue though the end of 2011, giving Council time to consider whether meters should remain or be removed. A three-month summer study that examined parking spot usage in the downtown core indicated there is no overcrowding of metered or parking lot spaces and that there is a low rate of drivers who abuse the two-hour limit in the Cook Street parking lot.
•A revision of bylaws to build on the work done by the Bear Aware program was deferred until the next meeting due to the absence of Coun. Wesly Graham, who was in Vancouver on Union of BC Municipality business and Coun. Tanya Ducharme, who was excused for work reasons. The revisions would be put in place to discourage practices that encourage bears to enter properties within town limits.
•Eighteen building permits were issued in August, including seven for new single-family residences and one for a five-unit strata title development. Building permits to date total more than $10.25 million, about $2 million more than at this time last year.
•A $3,000 contribution was earmarked for the Cops for Kids charitable foundation. Each year, members of the RCMP ride bicycles through the southern interior of the province to raise funds to support children in crisis in local communities.
•Council learned that Gleaners now accepts unwanted cellphones, print cartridges and digital cameras, which they turn into cash by sending the items to the Think Recycle Program.
•Staff will seek to get clarification on the legal status of the Pioneer Phoenix Restoration Society, which received $2,000 in funds to assess the viability of Pioneer Villa for other housing uses. There has been a recent controversy after some members moved to disband the society and have its status as a society rescinded.