Archive for ◊ October, 2008 ◊

• Thursday, October 30th, 2008

There weren’t many in the gallery at the P and P meeting last night although it was nice to see a couple of candidates there. Here’s the Jerrilyn version of what took place. It won’t be complete and there won’t be a lot of detail as I didn’t take minutes.   All of the following comments are my own thoughts…just the way I saw the meeting. Policy and Procedures meetings are discussion based, there is no voting on issues.

The meeting was chaired by Councillor White and began with a review of the minutes of the October 14th meeting.  At the October 14th meeting of Council, the CFO made a report regarding the Golf Course renovations, in which he stated that at the June 24th Policies and Procedure meeting, he had told Council about the spending over runs.  I said that I had made notes at the June 24th meeting and had nothing written in my notes regarding the substantial cost over runs. I then read all of the minutes regarding the golf course from the meeting of June 24th out loud, as follows:

“Following a lengthy discussion on the long-term strategy of the Golf Course, Council gave direction for staff to put out an ad seeking “expressions of interest” to see who may be interested in purchasing it.’

I asked that this quote, which was read at the Oct. 14 P and P meeting, be added to the minutes of October 14th.

Councillor Holmlund then asked that her comments regarding the District investments be added to the minutes as well.

The agenda was amended.  The first item on the agenda was an introduction of the new RCMP detachment commander.  I had the pleasure of introducing Sgt. Kurt Render to everyone (that’s right, another Kurt).  Sgt. Render comes to us from Prince George and said he is looking forward to his time in Tumbler Ridge.

Next Clark Hazelhurst discussed the possibility of constructing a building that will house federal (RCMP) and provincial (court, ambulance, fire, fire, conservation) agencies under one roof.  This possibility was something that was being looked at by Cpl Peats.  I see this as a great idea, but there is a long way to go before this building could be built.  Staff was directed to continue looking into this, seeking out other examples of this type of initiative.

The next item to be discussed was put forward by Councillor McPherson.  He spoke about the tour Council was given of the Community Centre. Council went to look at  issues which include deterioration of the envelope of the building.  Councillor McPherson said he was surprised to see how much the building has deteriorated, this was echoed by Councillor’s Holmlund and White. The District has had someone in to look at the envelope of the Community Centre and a quote for repairs was given.

Councillor Holmlund then gave a brief presentation on the FCM Sustainable Mission she attended in Vancouver and Whistler.  Unfortunately her power point presentation, which consisted of many pictures didn’t work.  The meeting was adjourned and Mayor Caisley left.  The rest of Council and  those in the gallery stayed for a while as Councillor Holmlund gave her presentation without the powerpoint.

Prior to the P and P meeting was a special meeting of council to discuss a variance issue.  A family in Tumbler Ridge has requested that they be able to enlarge their entrance to create greater accessibility for their son, who is in a wheelchair.  Council asked why this issue wasn’t being looked at by the Board of Variance which was formed earlier this year.  Acting CAO Kim Isaak said it was because they were still awaiting training for the Board of Variance.  Council agreed to this variance.

Jerrilyn’s thoughts:

Compared to some of the rather eventful  meetings we have had recently, this one was calm.  The new detachment commander is very approachable, I encourage people to take the time to get to know him. He will be an asset to our community.

The idea of having a “Government Building” is very appealing .  Many of the facilities currently being used by Government organizations are too small, no longer meeting the needs of the community or non existent.  For example, provincial court is held in the Community Centre. Could this create safety issues for families who are there to enjoy the facility?

Tumbler Ridge has a need for the services but no where to house them.  I think that if funding can be obtained for this type of intitative, we need to look at getting behind it.  There wouldl have to be buy in from the Federal, Provincial and Municipal government to make this a viable project.

The community centre is another issue altogether.  This is something that will need to be dealt with relatively quickly.  As I suggested at a previous P and P meeting, I would like to see Tumbler Ridge look into some of the grants that are available for repairing the Community Centre envelope (which is another word for shell or structure).  The Premier announced, at the UBCM, that there would be money available for “green” initiatives.  This would definiatley qualify, as many of the problems with the Community Centre are energy inefficiancies and health and safety issues.

Thanks for stopping by and if you have any questions or comments, please contact me.

• Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008

I know that there are some of you out there refreshing this page every few minutes in the hopes that I have added something new (mom…). Rather than waste your time in your web browser, you could be spending quality time in your email inbox instead. For those of you who know how RSS works, you can subscribe to this blog using the RSS feed icon below. For those of you who don’t know what RSS is (like me; my brother set that up for me…) you can subscribe by email by filling out this form.

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• Tuesday, October 21st, 2008

Hi everyone!  As promised, here is one of the Resolutions from UBCM.


THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Province of British Columbia examine the application of the BC Carbon Tax with the intent of mitigating impacts and creating incentives for local governments and residents to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.  Carried

Jerrilyn’s notes: This resolution was time consuming, clocking in right around the one hour mark.  There was a motion to pass a friendly ammendment to mitigate in those areas which don’t have transit choices.  This ammendment did not carry but the resolution as stated above, did.

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• Tuesday, October 21st, 2008

Today I was talking to someone about the explosive devices which have detonated under two sour gas pipelines southeast of Dawson Creek, in the past week.

The first explosion blew a 1.8-metre crater in the ground near a sour gas pipeline last Saturday. The second blast, just four days later, blew a small leak in another pipeline 20 km from the first.

As the person who wrote the Tumbler Ridge Emergency Plan, this is a huge issue for me. Fortunately, in this event, no lives were lost but when something like this happens it reminds us of the possibilities.

I just wanted to take a minute to remind everyone that *in the event of a leak or explosion that sends hazardous gasses into the air, evacuation of the community may not be the safest plan. Unless the hazardous material is flammable, emergency response professionals recommend that you stay indoors until you receive instructions to leave.

Here is the suggested protocol for such an event:

  • Go indoors and stay there
  • Close all outside doors and every door inside the building
  • Close all windows.
  • Do not use kitchen or bathroom vents.
  • Set thermostats so air conditioners, furnaces and hot water heaters will not come on
  • Do not use fireplaces or wood stoves. Close all dampers
  • Do not operate the clothes dryer
  • Stay in one well-sealed room, on the top floor is preferable.
  • Stay away from windows and doors if possible. Put damp clothes, sheets or towels around unsealed air pathways (under the door, cracks, windows) to prevent air from coming in.
  • Avoid smoking as it contaminates the air
  • Do not leave the building until told to do so
  • Stay tuned to local television or radio for information
  • Do not use the telephone; leave lines open for emergency personnel.

Our well weather-stripped buildings slow the movement of air into the buildings and any hazardous material that does enter is weakened when it mixes with the indoor air. It is imperative that you stay indoors, especially if you see a cloud, vapour, or smoke from the hazardous material outdoors or you can smell it indoors. You will be safer inside.

* I took much of this information from the District website. Oil and gas activity have increased substantially since I wrote the emergency plan and with what has been happening, I just wanted to make sure people are aware that in the event of a sour gas well leak affecting the air in Tumbler Ridge, it is very important to stay inside and follow the preceding directions for your own safety.  Schools, business, and families should all have this information and have a room designated in the event of a sour gas event and make it as air tight as possible.

As the fire of 2006 and the recent bombings have shown us, the north is not immune from disaster.  The more we can do to prepare, as a community, as individuals, the better off we are.

Thanks for stopping by,

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• Monday, October 20th, 2008

My daughter called me yesterday to tell me that the Mayor of Dawson Creek had passed away. At first, I didn’t believe it. Calvin was 43 years old, a young man, full of life and energy. He had been diagnosed with lung cancer, but it wasn’t that serious, I was told. While he had decided against running for mayor again, he was still planning on running for council in the upcoming election. 

But sadly, it is true. Calvin leaves behind his wife, Faith and young son, Austin. Our thoughts and prayers are with them at this time as they deal with the death of a man taken too soon.

• Monday, October 20th, 2008

The past several months have been filled with learning for me.  Back in the spring when I ran in the by-election, the issues facing Council were clear. The town was speaking loud and clear on the direction they wanted to the community to move.

I have listened to what you have been saying to me and I have acted on it. Thank you for trusting me.

Now, on to business.

I would like to speak a bit about what happened at the UBCM.  We had meetings with Stan Hagen the Minister of Agriculture and Lands to discuss fossil protection, the Honourable John van Dongen Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General to discuss ATV licensing. There was also a meeting discuss the road to Kinuseo Falls. These meetings were all very successful and I felt that we were heard.

I will be posting some of the resolutions that were passed at the UBCM for your information in days to follow.  

One of the sessions that was of interest to me was Building Sustainable Communities.  This was a very timely half day workshop which gave insight into strategies which are in place to encourage low cost housing, multi family housing, carbon neutral development, safe growth, etc.

Another session that was extremely interesting was called Auditing Your Fire Department.  This is something that I have asked that the Tumbler Ridge Fire Department take part in.

Thanks for stopping by, I will begin putting some of the resolutions up tomorrow.


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