On May 6 , 2019 Grand Forks’ City Council had a bunch of meetings. 4 of those were public. Links to agendas for the meetings today Committee Of The Whole as a web page or as a PDF doc Public Hearings as a web page or as a PDF doc Regular meeting as a web page or as a PDF doc
First there was a Committee Of The Whole at 9AM. The presenter for the Community Forests was not present so that did not happen. There was a presentation by Angela Nichols on a Community Courtesy Circle – this was previously presented on this website here. A School Re-Wilding project by teachers and students of Perley School was brought before council looking for water access. But without a teacher to present it council was unsure of what exactly was being asked for and who was actually doing the asking. Bylaw 2064, the Smoke and Vape Bylaw came back and it still makes it an offense to light up on any city sidewalk . . . An Elections Amendment bylaw, 2042-A1,was discussed as well.
At 6 PM there were two public sessions One was a Hearing about a proposed Subdivision, Rezoning and Consideration of approximately 0.5 hectares for parking lot expansion to relieve traffic congestion and alleviate safety concerns at John A. Hutton Elementary School and the other a Feedback Session regarding an application by Non-Medical Cannabis Retail store.
The Evening meeting had a couple of requests for liquor permits by events taking place this summer. For the first time council covered them as one item on the agenda. Another was a temporary use permit application by Cannafest to use land adjacent to Brycen Place for parking. They also covered the 2019 Tax Rates in bylaw 2058
A Public Meeting was held at Perley School on May 1, 2019. The group Citizens For A Better Grand Forks put the event on with the City sponsoring it. Over 160 people showed up.
The meeting was Moderated by Michael Strukoff.
The links in the list below should open a new window with the meeting video cued up at the position in the meeting that the link referred to. All you have to do after that is press Play.
OR you can watch the video in its entirety below.
Apologies in advance to anyone whose name I’ve misspelled or associated with the wrong organization. And if I’d had more time I’d have put in the actual question text instead of ‘question ##’ . . . but people who did not show up want to see it so I’ve put it up in this fashio for now.
Council had only one public meeting this day. They did have a secret one
as well but of course we can’t be there to tell you what happened in
that. (the mayor let some of the cat out of the bag later on just before
the start of question period)
In this meeting you get to hear about a number of things.
Urban Systems appeared but not to talk about any particular project they have going – nope, they were there to explain who they are, how they are organized and what they do. Did you know that Urban Matters who is helping with Flood Recovery matters is part of Urban Systems? So if you’ve ever wondered about this outside firm our town spends so much money with it’s worth a listen.
The Boundary Flood Recovery team lead, Graham Watt, was also presenting an update on Housing. Council has moved discussion about Snow Clearing to a future date – which will likely see them discussing Snow in the middle of the Summer . . .
One of the biggest pieces of news came out in the Late Items – in an earlier, in-camera, meeting the City and BC Housing had been discussing the possibility of a land swap. Specifically the City would like BC Housing to consider putting the Supportive Housing development on the 4 lots the City has purchased on 70th Street immediately adjacent to the housing development currently proposed for the space between the Women’s Transition House on 19th Ave. if BC Housing goes along with it this will require a public consultation process because of zoning changes. That promises to be a very interesting process considering people near both locations do not want the project in their locales . . . you can get the gist of how rocky this may be from the feedback they got in the question period.
Preparedness Week saw things happening in Grand Forks from April 11 to 13th
Beginning on April 11 with a presentation on Your Finances After The Flood from Grand Forks Credit Union and Community Futures hosted by Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy at Selkirk College.
On April 12 and 13th 2 blocks of Market Ave. in Grand Forks were closed to traffic so a number of demonstrations and information booths could be set up for preparedness week
One of the things they wanted to point out to people was how to properly do sand bagging. Flooding in your home or store is bad enough but imagine the frustration after a lot of hard work placing sandbags only to have that water infiltrate past them. There are ways to make that less likely to happen and make the barriers better. Paul Edmonds from Red Dragon Consulting takes us through it.
Remember what it was like trying to stay abreast of the changing threats over the last few years? Do you listen to the radio? Which website has the most up-to-date information? Are there public postings for those who aren’t on the web? Where? How do you know? Well the Regional District has take a step forward in keeping you informed about threats as they happen. They’ve brought out an App (Voyent Alert) for phones and tablets that will get Push notifications about threats as they unfold. Push means you don’t have to make the App visit the website – it gets a notification all by itself. So if there’s a wildfire coming to where you are right now. or a flood, the App will let you know. It runs on both Apple’s iOS or Google’s Android systems. Listen to RDKB’s Interim Emergency Program Manager Mark Stephens explain more.
What if you’ve gone out into the wilderness hiking, biking, snowmobiling, or hunting and something happens and you need help. What are you going to do? Did you bring a GPS? Good – You know where you are. But how do you get that information to Help? Do you have a Satellite phone? No? How about a Two-Way radio? One that works in the mountains . . . Or as you lie there with your broken leg / burst appendix / cuts and scrapes will you be wondering how long your body will be there before its found? It doesn’t have to be that way or have that bad an outlook if you have an In-Reach device . . . with one of those rescuers can know exactly where you are and you can let them know what is wrong so they bring the right supplies to help you. Listen to Scott Lamont from Grand Forks Search and Rescue explain.
Politicians from various levels of government (not the feds) were present. Local city councillors were serving up pancake breakfast with the Elks on Saturday. Other were there to talk about what has happened, is happening and will take place in the future. Mayor Taylor, RDKB Chair Roly Russell and Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness Jennifer Rice spoke.