Time For Some Exercise

April 07, 2018

Go to walkwithyourdoc.ca and click on the walking icon above Gold River to register. You will receive a pedometer for the walk! May 9th @ 6 p.m. Posters coming out soon..

Council Report

April 05, 2018

Gold River Village Council - April 3, 2018

Suzanne Trevis

Present at the regular council meeting were Mayor Brad Unger, Councillors Rod MacLeod, Darcy Curr, Gordon Waterman and Kirsty Begon.  Administrator Larry Plourde was also present. There were four members of the public and the press in the gallery.

Open Session is the public’s opportunity to ask council questions. There was one question about the Community Paramedicine Workshop advertised at the Arena.  Mayor Unger explained that Paramedic Unit Chief, Donna Schneider, will be hosting a community event to talk about the program. Community paramedics provide primary care services within their scope of practice in patients’ homes or community in partnership with local healthcare providers. The program will help contribute to the stabilization of paramedic staffing in rural and remote communities and will help bridge health service delivery gaps in the community.

A broad provincial rollout of the program began in April 2016 with the selection of 76 rural and remote communities that will receive community paramedic staffing. Gold River is fortunate to be one of the communities chosen.  The event will take place Thursday, April 5th.

The meeting was called to order and one late item was added to the agenda regarding the previously mentioned Paramedicine event.

Minutes of the Regular Council Meeting held March 19 were adopted.

There were four reports on the agenda:

Councillor Waterman submitted a report on the Library Board Meeting held March 17. Performance indicators show membership at the Gold River branch is at a staggering 603!  There were no stats for internet use, an issue that Councillor Waterman says they have been working on since last year. The board also adopted new policies on Procurement, Tangible Capital Assets & Amortization, and Security Video Surveillance.

A report from the Deputy Director on the Accounts Payable for Jan-Feb was received.

CAO, Larry Plourde submitted the 2018 Financial Plan / Budget for review.  The Financial Plan Bylaw received first reading and will go to a public meeting Monday, April 16.  This meeting is the publics opportunity to see how their tax dollars are being spent. There will be a slide show presentation at the beginning of the next council meeting showing where our revenue comes from, and how the village spends it to maintain services.  Members of the community will have an opportunity to ask questions, and council has the option at that time to revise the budget, prior to second and third reading of the bylaw. The Administrator reported that the hit to recreation last year was ‘significant’, but we are holding our own. He also stated that surplus and reserves are seeing us through, but are slowly being eroded.

The Financial Plan / Budget is available for viewing at the village office if members of the public would like to look it over ahead of time.

There was also a Waste Composition Study Report done for the CVRD (Comox Valley Regional District) that discussed an audit done on waste composition at the Comox Valley Waste Management Centre. They sampled 104 inbound vehicles at approx. 100kg per sample. Unfortunately none of them were from Gold River, so the information wasn’t of much use to us as a community.

Council Information Items consisted of a notice regarding the upcoming Public Presentation of the 2018 Financial Plan, Monday April 16 at 7pm.

There were four bylaws up for consideration:

2018 Financial Plan Bylaw No. 707, 2018  received a first reading.Trade Waste and Garbage Amendment Bylaw No. 612.8, 2018, Water Rates and Regulations Amendment Bylaw No. 613.5, 2018, and Sewer Rates Amendment Bylaw No. 614.7, 2018, all received 1st, 2nd and 3rd reading.  These three bylaws allow for a 4% increase to those services mentioned.

There were two items of correspondence this week:

School District #84 invited council to meet and discuss mutual concerns April 9. Three members of council indicated they would be available.  

Vancouver Island Regional Library sent a copy of their “From the Board Table” from March 17.

During Question Period the press asked if the ‘Wast Composition’ tests done by the Regional District were done on a regular basis and whether we could get stats for our own community as this would be quite useful. The Mayor said he would look into it.

The press also asked if Council Waterman could take forward some issues regarding our community’s presence on the VIRL website.  Community members are concerned that our local librarians and local events are not listed on the Gold River page. Messaging the library has not had any affect. They are hoping he can address it at a board level.  Councillor Waterman indicated he was aware of the issue and would bring it up again at the next meeting.

The last item under New Business had been added as a late item.  Unit Chief, Donna Schneider was looking for assistance from the village regarding the Paramedicine Presentation being held at the Lounge April 5th.  Council agreed to cosponsor the event, in essence waiving any costs involved with hosting at the GMMA (Gerry Morgan Memorial Arena).

With no further business to discuss the meeting was adjourned at 7:42.  The next council meeting will take place Monday, April 16 at 7pm. The meeting will open with a slide show presentation of the 2018 Financial Plan, followed by questions from the public, followed by the regular council meeting.

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Report From Claire Trevena

March 30, 2018

It has been a busy late winter at the Legislature: five weeks in which we have tabled a budget which will make life more affordable for tens of thousands of British Columbians as well as starting to deal with a raft of long overdue legislation. It will take a while to clean up the 16-year legacy of the previous government but we are underway.

Having been in opposition for 12 years, I was very pleased to be able to finally support a budget that puts people front and centre.  Our healthcare investment includes getting rid of MSP premiums and investing in Pharmacare. We have put a record amount of funding into education so there will be more resources for all our kids in the classroom. We are making significant investments in childcare to help families and help businesses, with an initial focus on the youngest and most vulnerable kids. We have committed to a 30-point major programme to deal with the housing crisis in nearly all communities.

And those are just some of the highlights that will help people in the North Island and around the province.  We are consulting widely on a number of issues, including how you think ICBC should work. You can contribute to this here:  consultation process

As Minister of Transportation I was pleased that I was able to deliver on our promise to cut ferry fares by 15 percent from April 1st as well as freezing fares on the routes between the Island and the mainland. We have also ensured the reintroduction of free travel for seniors from Monday to Thursday.  Importantly, my Ministry is conducting a comprehensive operating review of BC Ferries. I’ve described it as “soup to nuts” which means we are examining a wide range of areas. I look forward to getting the report late spring and deciding the next steps for our marine highway.

My ministry has managed to get record infrastructure funding and the North Island will soon start to see some benefits with work happening on roads and highways across the constituency – from Port McNeill to Quadra Island. And I am still working with my colleague, the Minister of Forests, Land and Natural Resources, to get funds to improve the Zeballos Forest Service road.

I am still very concerned about the move from rail to highway hauling by Western Forest Products at their Woss operation. There has been a significant increase of logging traffic on Highway 19 and we are increasing the safety enforcement on the stretch of highway they are using. We are also examining other avenues to ensure the roads are safe and maintained well. The impact of decisions by WFP on our North Island communities remains huge.

Aquaculture has been back in the headlines over the last few months and I continue to receive many emails on both sides of the debate from constituents. I have met with local industry representatives and open net fish farm opponents while my colleagues, the Ministers of Forests, Agriculture and Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, have been meeting on a government to government basis with First Nations and are due to sit down with them again in the coming weeks.

Moves by our government have made possible broadband connectivity for our rural communities. After years of working on the issue I was happy to see positive results which should mean our more remote communities – from Cortes to Kyuquot – will be able to have quality, high speed, access to the internet.

We have a break from the Legislature for the coming three weeks. However, for much of the time I will be travelling the province. I do get some days in the constituency but also will be in the Lower Mainland as well as northern BC. I will be looking at the work of the my Ministry in different communities as well as examining shipbuilding opportunities and engaging with people about the loss of Greyhound service in their regions.

The session continues until the end of May but I remain determined to be back to the constituency every two to three weeks.  But, as always, I can be reached at Claire.trevena.mla@leg.bc.ca or by phone in Campbell River at 250 287 5100 and Port Hardy on 250 949 9473.

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Community Garage Sale

March 29, 2018

The RWES PAC will be holding a Community Garage Sale, Book Sale & Bake Sale during our Spring Fling April 20th. Location tba.

We will be renting tables & asking for books to be donated. The proceeds will help students get to the Mud Bowl Soccer Tournament this year & hopefully help with other after school club field trips & resources.

Community Venders welcome to participate with your craft, home business, artists, etc. Keep your eyes peeled for more details.

Thank you for your support.

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The Ridge Will Be Closed Good Friday

March 30, 2018

So that our fabulous staff can enjoy some quality family time this long weekend, The Ridge will be closed on Friday and back open Saturday at noon.

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An Update From Rachel Blaney

Garage Sale Update

March 23, 2018

An update for the RWES Spring Fling/Community Garage Sale: This will take place on April 20/21 from 10-5 at the old Treasure Chest store in the Plaza. We will be renting out tables for $15/one day, and $25 for both. These can be used to sell your baked goodies, homemade gifts/crafts, or anything you have found while spring cleaning, etc.. Bring a friend and share a table!

There will be popcorn and lemonade/pop, possibly hotdogs (to be confirmed), and a used book sale (donations needed!)

We are also looking for musicians to show off their talent and help make this as festive as possible.

We will be adding more information over the next few weeks to keep you posted. We look forward to seeing you there! Please pass the word along to those that may not be online.

Thank you Gold Riverites!

Contact myself at 283-7434 or Brenda Gelean at 283-2180 if you have any questions or further suggestions to help make this a successful and fun event.

Minutes From Council Meeting-Suzanne Trevis

March 20, 2018

Gold River Village Council - March 19, 2018

Suzanne Trevis

Present at the regular council meeting were Mayor Brad Unger, Councillors Rod MacLeod, Darcy Curr, Gordon Waterman and Kirsty Begon.  Administrator Larry Plourde was also present. There were three members of the public and the press in the gallery.

Open  Session is the public’s opportunity to ask council questions. There was a question regarding the dog park as it had come up at the last meeting.  Mayor Unger explained it had been tabled to budget discussions.

Suzanne Trevis asked why the dog park was being located in Nimpkish Park where there is already a lot of other recreational activity going on. As the owner of a large dog she would prefer to see the dog park in a ‘less busy’ area. Mayor Unger explained that the area would be fenced. She pointed out that there would still be a lot of distractions for dogs in the area and asked if there could be more opportunity for input from the public about what they would or wouldn’t like to see at Nimpkish Park. The Mayor said he would take it into consideration.

There was also a question regarding who was considering running in this falls upcoming municipal election. All members of council indicated they would be running again.

The meeting was called to order and the agenda was approved.  Minutes of the Regular Council Meeting held March 5th and the Special Council Meeting held March 8th, were both adopted.  The special council meeting was held to review budget concerns regarding the Centrifuge Project and the issues of a rather large cost overrun for the building. Council still had the option to receive goods or cancel the project, subject of course to $200,000+ of potential cancellation fees.  Council voted to move ahead and continue working with engineers to resolve concerns with the revised engineering costs that were being proposed.

There were three reports tonight:

4th Quarter Financial Reports for the Village’s Operating and Capital Funds;

an update on the CGI Gold River Web Page Video. The next shoot date is scheduled for April 20th;

and confirmation of councils attendance at the 2018 Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities (AVICC) convention, which all members of council will be attending.

Councillor Begon asked that the new flags for the front of the municipal building be out prior to the outdoor video shoot taking place.

Under Council Information Items Councillor Waterman asked when the spray park would be open. It is scheduled to start up May long weekend. A C3C meeting, a three community get together between Gold River, Tsaxana and Tahsis was cancelled due to a death in the community. Staff is hoping to reschedule in the near future.

A Tourism Strategy Plan that received $10,000 in funding at the last meeting, was kickstarted with a Request for Proposal.  The village is looking for someone to work with local stakeholders and the village to develop a tourism strategy. The process would include gathering relevant background information, conducting community engagement sessions and developing a Strategic Plan that includes goals and actionable items.  The entire project must be complete by August 31, so the timeline is rather tight. Close date for proposals is March 28. The RFP has been posted on the village website and was sent out to proponents who submitted proposals for the Economic Development Planning Project.

Councillor Waterman reported that he had attended the Library Board meeting and would have a report on the next agenda.

Mayor Unger reported that he had emailed with representatives from Emcon about concerns with the road maintenance this winter. They advised that they would include the village in discussions next fall, along with the MLA and the Ministry of Transportation, to go over items such as road conditions in winter, brine and the size of gravel/rock that is thrown out.

He went on to report that the Parks & Recreation Facebook Page would be up and running soon, possibly within the week.  The Parks & Recreation Manager did express concern around having a social media policy in place. The Mayor stressed that this was an information only site and would not be open to commentary.

Mayor Unger reported that he had attended a Village Voice meeting last week. He gave them a verbal update on how the Economic Development Strategy was working. He said they discussed Community Gardens, unsightly premises and ideas around a co-op grocery store. There were also concerns about the lack of rental property within the village. He stated that he had spoken with Mr Buzz, manager of the Garden Apartments, who advised that he always has one unit ready to go. He works on getting another ready when that is taken. The Gold Crest Apartments are still in probate and can not take on new renters at this time.

The Village was also responding to a request from the government for information on possible cell tower sites. Staff has identified two locations previously mentioned and provided gps coordinates. They are still waiting for feedback from the MMFN.

Council has also been advised that the ATV club will be running a conference May 4th - 6th in Campbell River.  They will be discussing routes on the North Island that include Gold River. This is a great opportunity for us, two of our councillors indicated they would be attending.

The Mayor went on to report that he had attended an ICET (Island Coastal Economic Trust) meeting where they had discussed support for a community trail between Tahsis and Zeballos.  They approved a $450,000 grant that will help move the project on to stage two.

Mayor Unger had also looked into what was needed to submit our water for BC’s best water challenge. Timing was good, the deadline for entries is April 27th. He is hoping staff can get an entry ready in time.

Apparently a resident had asked council why Gold River was not eligible for the Northern Allowance. There had been a rumour circulating that Tahsis residents were getting this tax break to the tune of approx. $600 per household.  Administrator Plourde advised that we had never been eligible and that to his knowledge no community on Vancouver Island was eligible. Council agreed to have staff look into what was happening and report back.

There were three items of correspondence:

Firewise Consulting re: Proposed Framework for Governance regarding Road Rescue;  UBCM 2018 Annual Dues; UBCM update on the Working Group on Responsible Conduct. Councillor Waterman confirmed the dues notice was a formality as they would be paid anyway. No further action was taken.

During Open Session a member of the public asked whether Emcon used the same size gravel everywhere. He felt the size of rock used on the road this past winter was “beyond reasonable” and he didn’t believe they were within regulation. Mayor Unger responded by saying that Emcon had been using 12mm gravel, which was within regulation, but that they had discussed going down to 9.5mm and using different techniques.

With regards to the rental housing discussion, the press asked what council was doing about the lack of available rental space within the community. Our two apartment complexes and the mobile home park, all need a massive investment in their infrastructure to bring them up to par. Right now, there are no rooms available at all. She pointed out that this was a concern for the entire community and wanted to know what council was doing to address the problem.  Mayor Unger stated that they were not currently doing anything, but the Administrator pointed out that these issues were addressed in the OCP (Official Community Plan). He said that low cost housing, opportunities for density bonuses and lands specifically designated and zoned multi family were all addressed in this document and were councils way of dealing with these issues.

No one, other than the Administrator, seemed aware that this was the case. It is also obvious that they are not utilizing this information in any plans to actively move the community forward, which is concerning.  The lack of any kind of preplanning regarding the rental situation should also be a big concern for the community.

Michael McGee asked why there was such a short time frame on the RFP for the Tourism Strategy (two weeks) as it didn’t leave much time to reach interested people. He pointed out that by keeping it short and only contacting previous applicants, they were really limiting themselves. The Administrator confirmed it was a village imposed deadline, that the entire project had to be completed by Aug 31, and they felt the sooner they got started the better.

With no further business to discuss in public, council adjourned to move in-camera, pursuant to the Community Charter section 90(1)(c) labour relations or other employee relations.

Due to Easter, the next council meeting will take place Tuesday, April 3rd at 7pm.

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