Friday, June 30, 2017

Williams Lake City Council meets Tuesday!

With both School Districts #27/28 (Cariboo-Chilcotin & Quesnel) off until September; Cariboo Regional District Board off until July 21st, Districts of Wells/100 Mile House Councils' off until July 11th and the City of Quesnel Council off until July 25th - only Williams Lake City Council is meeting next week on Tuesday, July 4th at 6pm in WL Council Chambers - On the Agenda:

* Infrastructure Planning Grant for Facility and Pavement Assessment
* Airport Lease #CWL2100 - Ireland/Connatty - Approval
* Pipe Relining - Award of Tender
* E-mail Poll of Council - Soda Creek Road Repaving Contract Sole Sourced to Green Roads Recycling
* E-mail Poll of Council - 2017 Pavement Rehabilitation & Waterworks Contract
* Committee of the Whole recommendations -- Parking on Eleventh Avenue - 1000 Block/Reject Request for a Washroom Bylaw

View the full Agenda here

Wherever you may be - don't forget your sunscreen & fluids and throughly enjoy our Canada 150 Long Weekend!


Update on Rural Water Projects in South Cariboo

Courtesy of the Cariboo Regional District:

Construction has begun on the new water treatment plant for the 108 Mile Ranch water system. Excavation and land clearing started in May 2017 and the plant’s construction will continue throughout the rest of the year. The expected project completion date is by the end of February 2018.
The Cariboo Regional District (CRD) awarded the plant construction contract to BREE Contracting Ltd of 100 Mile House. The new plant will be adjacent to the existing pump house located on Kallum Drive in 108 Mile Ranch.

During construction, crews may need to close Kallum Drive for brief periods or the road may be limited to alternating single lane traffic. Please drive with caution, slow down and obey signs and traffic control personnel.

For the 103 Mile water system, the Boil Water Notice issued by Interior Health remains in effect. It will stay in effect until the new wells and pump house are completed.

The CRD drilled two new groundwater wells in January 2017 and completed pumping tests in March 2017, which determined the well yield and water quality. The final design of the new pump house and disinfection system, along with the associated electrical and mechanical components, is complete and the project will go to tender early in July. The new facility is expected to be complete by late Fall 2017.

The existing wells that supply the 103 Mile water system date back to the early 1970s and do not meet current standards for well construction. As a result, surface water leaks into the wells and contaminates the water during significant rainfall events or period of snowmelt. The new wells intercept the same aquifer as the old wells; however, the new wells meet modern construction standards to prevent infiltration of surface water. 

For more information about the 108 Mile or 103 Mile water system projects, contact the CRD’s Environmental Services Department at 250-392-3351.

The Cariboo Regional District operates a number of water and sewer utilities for small, unincorporated communities located within the Regional District boundaries. Learn more at

Thursday, June 29, 2017

BC NDP to form New BC Government

Earlier today by a vote of 42-44 -- the BC Liberal Government, in place since 2001, lost a vote of confidence in the BC Legislature.  The motion that saw the defeat of the incumbent BC Liberals was:

Resolved -- We, Her Majesty’s most dutiful and loyal subjects, the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia in Session assembled, beg leave to thank Your Honour for the gracious Speech which Your Honour has addressed to us at the opening of the present Session.
But Your Honour’s present government does not have the confidence of this House.

Christy Clark then went, as is tradition/convention, to Government House to advise BC's Lieutenant-Governor (LG) that her government had lost the confidence of the BC Legislature and recommended to Her Honour that the Legislature be dissolved and new elections be held, during a 65 minute meeting with the LG.  The LG refused that advice and accordingly, Christy Clark was then required to tender her resignation and the LG then called upon John Horgan (BC NDP Leader) with the 2nd greatest amount of seats in the Legislature and asked formally if he would form a government to which Mr. Horgan replied that he would be pleased to do so.  Below is a video of John Horgan after meeting with the LG:

Both Cariboo-North and Cariboo-Chilcotin MLA's Coralee Oakes/Donna Barnett will revert to the Opposition side of the House.  BC Premier-Designate John Horgan will now take the next few days to put together a Cabinet to be sworn in by the LG and with a likely recall of the House being in mid to late July with the selection of a new Legislature Speaker followed by a new Throne Speech

It will be interesting to see Horgan's new Cabinet but some obvious choices include Carole James (Finance/Deputy Premier) and Selina Robinson (Community, Sport and Cultural Development)

Finally - given the timing this evening, it would be interesting to see if Horgan's Cabinet will have sufficient time to agree to participate in the usual UBCM Cabinet Minister meetings with local governments which takes place in late September.... My uncle, Alan Forseth, out of Kamloops takes a look at this situation from his own perspective which you can read here

I congratulate John Horgan and his team and look forward to seeing them in action in the days, weeks and months ahead...


CRD Board Highlights - June 29th mtg

Present: Chair A. Richmond; Directors T. Armstrong, J. Bruce, J. Massier, S. Forseth, B. Kemp, J. Sorley, M. Wagner, B. Anderson, B. Coakley, R. Sharpe, B. Simpson, W. Cobb, and M. Campsall

Meeting called to order at 9:45am

Meeting Agenda adopted and CRD Board Minutes of June 9th adopted

Delegations MOB was received

Development Services: 

a) South Cariboo Area Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 5099, 2017 (Area H) was read a first and second time with adoption subject to the applicant offering to enter into and entering into a covenant to ensure compliance with the CRD Shoreland Management Policy with respect to a sewage disposal system and riparian protection

b) Green Lake and Area Official Community Plan Amendment Bylaw No. 5077, 2017 & South Cariboo Area Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 5078, 2017 (Area L) - were both read a 3rd time

c) 150 Mile House Area Official Community Plan Amendment Bylaw No. 5081, 2017 & Williams Lake Fringe and 150 Mile House Area Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 5082, 2017 (Area F) - were both read a 3rd time and that a letter be forwarded to the BC Ministry of Transportation re: Bylaw 5082 in regards to proof of water quality and quantity

d) Quesnel Fringe Area Official Community Plan Amendment Bylaw No. 5035, 2016 & Quesnel Fringe Area Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 5036, 2016 (Area B) - were both read a 3rd time/adopted

e) North Cariboo Area Rural Land Use Amendment Bylaw No. 5072, 2016 (Area A) was adopted

f) The Board approved-in-principle Temporary Permit #8-2017 (Area 'D') subject to:

* The occupancy of recreational vehicles be prohibited during the winter seasons, from November 15 until March 15 of the following year, and henceforth;
* The recreational vehicles must be placed on existing serviced mobile home sites, as per Schedule “A”; and
* Parking of vehicles be restricted to designated mobile home sites.

Board divided. Motion agreed to by the following Electoral Area Directors Stakeholder Vote:

Affirmative - Directors Armstrong, Bruce, Massier, Kemp, Sorley, Richmond, Wagner, Anderson, and Coakley

Negative - Director S. Forseth (Area D)

g) The Board received the Municipalities’ Building Statistics Report, Cariboo Regional District Statistics Report, and the Inspection Activity Report for April 2017

Environmental Services:

a) The Board received the Rural Refuse Site Inspection Report for March 7th - June 13th, 2017


a) The Board approved a $500 Canada 150 Grant for a Canada 150 celebration event in Likely on July 1st

b) The Board approved an Area L Grant for Assistance (Year Round Intake) for the Mountain Spruce Community Centre Society in the amount of $500 for the 2017 Suiphurous Lake Fishing Derby

c) The Board approved an Area K Grant for Assistance (Year Round Intake) for the Alexis Creek Community Association to replace a fridge/freezer at the Alexis Creek Community Hall. Board divided. Approved by the following vote:

Affirmative - Directors Armstrong, Bruce, Massier, Kemp, Sorley, Richmond, Wagner, Cash, Anderson, Coakley, Sharpe, Simpson, Cobb and Campsall

Negative - Director S. Forseth (Area D)


a) The Board received an In-Camera resolution, for receipt in an open meeting, as follows:

That the Martin Exeter Hall Expansion/Upgrade renovation project be
included in the financial and capital plan discussion in October and that a
Request for Proposals be prepared to obtain a more detailed design and cost

b) The Board received the Consent Calendar as of June 29th
c) The Board received an email and attachments from Kaila Nielsen, Communications Coordinator for the North Central Local Government Association, dated June 16, 2017, advising of Northern Health's Active Communities Grant opportunity

d) The Board received a letter from Shaely Wilbur, President of the North Central Local Government Association, dated June 14, 2017, regarding the letter recently sent out to the Lt. Governor without going through due process

e) The Board received a letter from Todd Hubner, District Manager, Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, dated June 7, 2017, regarding garbage cleanup at the McLeese Lake boat launch

f) The Board received a letter from Elliot Hughes, Senior Policy Advisor, of the Office of the Minister of Finance, dated June 12, 2017, regarding support of Bill C-323: An Act to Amend the Income Tax Act (Rehabilitation of Historic Property)

g) The Board received/endorsed the Prioritization of Board Resolutions report

Committee or Commission Minutes and Recommendations:

a) The Board received the June 8th meeting minutes of the Finance/Audit Committee and endorsed one recommendation from that meeting, as follows:

"That no changes be made to the Cariboo Regional District director remuneration amounts at this time as they are at an acceptable level"

b) The Board received the June 8th Committee of the Whole meeting minutes and endorsed the following recommendations:

i) Grant Applications under the UBCM Strategic Priorities Fund.

ii) Amendments to the Board's Grant for Assistance Policy. Board divided. Agreed to by the following vote:

Affirmative - Directors Armstrong, Massier, Forseth, Kemp, Sorley, Richmond, Wagner, Cash, Anderson, Coakley, Sharpe, Simpson, Cobb and Campsall

Negative - Director J. Bruce (Area B)

c) The Board received the June 12th South Cariboo Joint Committee meeting minutes and endorsed recommendations from that meeting, as follows:

i) Collection of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Products at South Cariboo Solid Waste Refuse Sites
ii) District of 100 Mile House Memo - Royal Canadian Legion Branch #260 Request

d) The Board received the June 13th North Cariboo Rural Directors' Caucus meeting minutes and endorsed the following recommendation:

i) Quarterly Reports for Cariboo Strong

Board divided. Approved by the following vote:

Affirmative - Directors Armstrong, Bruce, Massier, Kemp, Sorley, Richmond, Wagner, Cash, Anderson, Coakley, Sharpe, Simpson, Cobb and Campsall

Negative - Director S. Forseth (Area D)

e) The Board received the June 21st Central Cariboo Rural Directors' Caucus meeting minutes and endorsed the following recommendations:

i) Central Cariboo Rural Roads - request to BC Minister of Transportation to deal with both Pigeon Rd (Area F) and Campbell Rd (Area D)

Meeting recessed at 10:41am
Meeting resumed at 10:55am


Gordon Keener from Xat'sull First Nations appeared before the Board to provide an update on the NStQ Treaty Negotations
A Question/Answer period ensued

Chair Richmond, on behalf of the Board, thanked Mr. Keener for his time/information

Meeting recessed to CCRHD Board at 11:30am
Meeting resumed at 12:41pm


a) The Board received an invitation to attend the Integrated Community Safety Initiative (ICSI) Open House to be held on July 6, 2017 in Williams Lake

Corporate Bylaws:

a) The Board gave 1st, 2nd and 3rd Readings to Noise Control (Electoral Area ‘F’) Service Establishment Bylaw No. 5102, 2017
b) The Board gave 1st, 2nd, 3rd Readings and Adoption to Cariboo Regional District Forest Grove Legion Property Tax Exemption Bylaw No. 5100, 2017
c) The Board adopted Lac La Hache Sewer Boundary Expansion Bylaw No. 5104, 2017

Directors' reported out on activities in their Electoral Area or Municipality

At 1:10pm-- The Board recessed its' public meeting and convened a In-Camera Session as per Section 90(1a/e - appointment/land) of the Community Charter

At 1:58pm -- The Board resumed its public meeting

The following resolution was released from the In-Camera Meeting held earlier today and confirmed in open meeting:

That based on Greg Webster’s resignation, his appointment as Barlow Creek Volunteer Fire Department Training Officer be rescinded effective March 31, 2017. Further, that Cody Dillabough continue as the Acting Training Officer and that he mentor the interested junior member until he turns 19 years of age.

The Board agreed to adjourn at 1:59pm

CCRHD Board Highlights - June 29th mtg

Present: Chair M. Wagner; Directors T. Armstrong, J. Bruce, J. Massier, S. Forseth, B. Kemp, J. Sorley, A. Richmond, B. Anderson, B. Coakley, R. Sharpe, B. Simpson, W. Cobb and M. Campsall

Meeting called to order at 9:30am

Meeting Agenda adopted & Minutes of the Special CCRHD Board Meeting held June 8th and the regular CCRHD Board Meeting held June 9th, both adopted


1) The Board gave introduction/1st, 2nd, 3rd Readings and Adoption to Capital Expenditure (GR Baker Memorial Hospital C-Arm Replacement) Bylaw No. 134, 2017

2) The Board received the June 29th Hospital Consent Calendar

3) The Board received the Interior Health - Capital Projects and Planning Status Report for May 2017

4) The Board received a press release from the Interior Health Authority in regards to National Aboriginal Day and Interior Health's commitment to working with Aboriginal communities to improve wellness

5) At the request of Director S. Forseth - the Board agreed to invite representatives from the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) to a future CCRHD Board meeting to make a presentation on the FNHA

6) The Board approved a Capital Funding Request from Northern Health for an Anesthesia System at GR Baker Hospital and directed Staff to bring forward the necessary Capital Expenditure Bylaw for consideration of 3 Readings/Adoption at the next CCRHD Board Meeting

Meeting recessed at 9:45am
Meeting resumed at 11:30am


Susan Paulsen, Healthcare Recruitment Coordinator, appeared before the Board to provide an update on recruitment and retention activities in Quesnel

A Question/Answer period ensued

Chair Wagner, on behalf of the CCRHD Board, thanked Ms. Paulsen for her time/information

The Board agreed to adjourn at 11:59am

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Celebrating Canada’s 150th Anniversary

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

Fifty years ago my parents immigrated to Canada from Glasgow, Scotland with four boys under the age of 10, a couple of suitcases, and almost no money. We landed in Winnipeg, Manitoba on a bright February morning under a pale blue sky and surrounded by fresh new snow. It wasn’t until we cleared customs and immigration that we found out how bitterly cold it was outside and saw that the snow was piled so high on the sides of the roads they looked like strangely lit tunnels -- Winnipeg was digging out from one of its infamous blizzards.
Unfortunately, during the pre-immigration process we had only been shown movie clips of Winnipeg in the summer, so my parents had actually given away our heavier, warmer jackets to our relatives who had bid us farewell at Prestwick Airport in Scotland. I still remember watching my Dad from the hotel room window the morning after we landed in Winnipeg as he shiveringly skittered from doorway to doorway down Portage Avenue to get us all some long underwear and better outerwear with a money chit he’d gotten from a Canadian immigration officer (which my parents had to pay back).
But, that first winter (during which my Dad almost lost the tips of his ears and fingers to frostbite working an outside job) gave way to an incredible spring and summer of celebration and fun as Canada celebrated its 100th anniversary and Winnipeg hosted the nation’s premier multicultural festival. It was a fun introduction to the breadth and depth of Canada’s multi-ethnic make-up and its celebration of diversity. As brand new immigrants it gave us great comfort to realize that we were living in a nation of immigrants.
Of course, during that centennial celebration in 1967, Canada’s recognition of the foundational role First Nations played in our nation’s history was nominal at best. Over the subsequent 50 years we’ve made some progress on that front, but not the giant leap Canada needs to engage in true reconciliation. That’s why I was so heartened last week when Lhtako Dene Chief Clifford Lebrun said that the “healing can now begin” here in Quesnel after the Lhtako Band Council and City Council unveiled our new recognition symbols and signed a protocol agreement which recognizes that Quesnel is on the traditional territory of the Lhtako Dene.
As we celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary, let’s truly embrace this country’s full history by recognizing that Canada’s “founding peoples” are not of English and French origin, but are the diverse nations of aboriginal peoples who settled this land millennia before Western settlers discovered its bounty and settled here too.
The City’s Canada 150th celebration will take place in LeBourdais Park starting at 11 am. Opening ceremonies will take place at noon and there will be music through until about 3pm. There are plenty of activities planned for the park and a special Canada 150th event for youth aged 12-17 called the “Amazing Selfie Race” click here to download the registration form.
Bob Simpson is the Mayor of Quesnel.  He can reached via email here or via phone at 250-991-7477 or click here

Quesnel Council Highlights - June 27th mtg

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

Single-Use Plastic Bags
Quesnel concerned student, Maya Knauf, provided Council with information regarding single-use plastic bags bans in countries such as Rwanda, China, Bangladesh, Taiwan, Bali and Macedonia, California, Mexico City. Other communities considering single-use plastic bag bans are Victoria, Montreal, Chicago, Austin, Seattle and New York. In 2010, approximately 2.86 billion plastic bags were thrown away in Canada. A direct and ongoing challenge for the community is non-recyclable plastics, this includes plastic bags, are contaminating the community’s plastic recycling waste stream at the local landfill and community satellite recycling sites. Next steps include the Policy and Bylaw Review Committee to explore local government best practices around single-use plastic bags.
Annual Allowable Cut Determination – Quesnel Timber Supply Area
Mayor Simpson updated Council on the recently established Allowable Annual Cut (AAC) for the Quesnel Timber Supply Area and the potential implications this reduced AAC may have for our community. The Chief Forester’s Report outlines that effective June 16, 2017, the AAC was reduced from 4 million cubic meters to 2.6 million cubic meters. There are a number of areas of concern to local forest companies regarding the reduced AAC. Next steps involve the Minister of Forests to apportion the reduced available cut to the licensees, but this may be delayed until a government is formed in the BC Legislature where provincial business then can resume.
City’s 2016 Annual Report
Council has approved the City’s 2016 Annual Report. This report contains messages from Mayor, Councillor and City Manager, a community overview, 2016 Asset Management, 2016 Highlights, 2016 and 2017 Strategic Plans, 2016 Consolidated Financial Statements and 2016 Permissive Tax Exemptions. Please visit the City’s website to view this full report.
Public Hearing – 7 pm on July 25, 2017 - Shipping Containers and Relocation of Seasons House Facility
A Public Hearing will be held at City Hall Council Chambers 7 pm on July 25, 2017 regarding:
Please visit the City’s website through the links above for full details of the two City Staff Reports regarding these two issues.
Spirit Centre – Public Accessible Washrooms, Water Bottle Refill Station, Leases and Non-Profit Bookings
The newly renovated Spirit Centre, that is expected to open just in time for Billy Barker Days on July 13, 2017, will have public washrooms (all wheelchair accessible), a water bottle refill station that is also wheelchair accessible, a 610 sq. ft. open lobby space and a 384 sq. ft. boardroom space that will be available to use by non-profit organizations at no charge, and four office spaces that can be leased. Effective August 1, 2017, two of the office spaces will be leased; one to the Barkerville Heritage Town and one to the Quesnel Downtown Business Improvement Association.
Starbucks Drive-thru – South Quesnel
Council approved the Development Permit, with conditions, for a proposed 2,000 sq. ft commercial building with a drive-thru for Starbucks at the intersection of Balsam Avenue/Rita Road that meets the current zoning requirements and specific guidelines of the South Quesnel Development Permit Area.
Grace Inn Motel Conversion to Housing
Council gave third readings for the OCP and Zone Amendment Bylaws for the proposed development to convert the Grace Inn Motel to a high-density multi-family residential housing complex with conditions that a Section 219 Covenant be filed on title and the Proponent enters into a Housing Agreement with the City. The Grace Inn is located at 530 Carson Avenue.
Canadian Tire – Renovation
The Development Permit was approved by Council to renovate the existing Canadian Tire, located at 570 Newman Road, that will permit store-front changes and a building addition for a winterized garden centre.
Water Upgrades to Pinecrest Water Reservoir – Award of Contract
Council approved the contract to perform civil, mechanical and electrical upgrades to the water distribution system near and at the Pinecrest Water Reservoir to Acres Enterprises Ltd. in the amount of $1,699,900 plus applicable taxes.
Bylaw-of-the Month Program – Water Sprinkling/Irrigation Restrictions 
There is a $50 fine when watering properties outside of restriction days/times that is in effect annually from May 15 to September 30. Even numbered addresses must water on even numbered days and odd numbered addresses must water on odd numbered days between 6 – 10 am and 7 – 11 pm daily. Council may further restrict watering times/days should the need arise. Bylaw Enforcement Staff will be out during the month of July to strategically educate/enforce water restrictions throughout the community.
Bylaws 1806 & 1807 – OCP & Zone Amendments – Grace Inn Motel Convert to Housing – Third Reading
Bylaw 1815 – Cariboo Pulp and Paper Landfill Expansion – Final Adoption
Bylaw 1824 – Off Leash Dog Park – Zone Amendment – Stood Down – Pending Ministry of Transportation’s Conditions/Restrictions
Bylaw 1828 – Zone Amendment – Prohibit Shipping Containers in Residential Areas – First & Second Readings AND Set Public Hearing Date to 7:00 pm July 25, 2017 City Hall Council Chambers
Bylaws 1829 & 1830 – OCP & Zone Amendments – Supportive/Transition Housing (Elliott Drive) – First Reading AND Set Public Hearing Date to 7:00 pm, July 25, 2017 City Hall Council Chambers.
Next Meetings
North Cariboo Joint Planning Committee
July 11, 2017 at 5:30 pm
Regular Council Meeting
July 25, 2017 at 7 pm
August 22, 2017 at 7 pm

Special Wells Council Meeting today!

The District of Wells Municipal Council will be holding a special meeting later today to appoint Andrew Young as Chief Election Officer for the Saturday, September 16th Wells Council by-election to elect one person for Councillor to replace the late Virginia Wilkins who passed away earlier this year

View the full Agenda here


Tuesday, June 27, 2017

SD27 Board Meeting Highlights - June 27th mtg

Present: Chair T. Guenther; Trustees W. Macdonald, L. Martens, C. Dyments, S. Boehm, B. O'Neill and B. Baptiste

Meeting called to order at 6:35pm

Meeting Agenda approved & the Chair recognized that the meeting was taking place on traditional Shuswap territory


1) No members of the public addressed the Board with regard to items ON the Meeting Agenda

2) The Board adopted the June 27th Consent Agenda, as presented

3) The Board approved the preliminary trustee meeting and event calendar for the 2017-2018 School Year

4) The Board approved in principle, revisions to Policy 1210 Parents' Advisory Councils, and that input be solicited via the Governance Committee and for public via the District's website, prior to final approval.

5) The Board approved in principle, revisions to Policy 5145 Protection of Students and Maintenance of Order, and that input be solicited via the Governance Committee and for public via the District's website, prior to final approval

6) The Board agreed to temporarily suspend parts of Policy 1161 Trustee Remuneration (as per draft version), reinstating base remuneration amounts to those just prior to February 2017 and removing extra remuneration paid for the attendance of meetings, with the exception of attending Board approved out of District meetings or conferences of the Ministry, BCSTA (BC Student Trustee Association), and BCPSEA (BC Public School Employers Association), all effective July 1st, 2017 and directed the Secretary-Treasurer to review Policy 1161 Trustee Remuneration and recommend revisions to the Board that support fair, equitable and transparent remuneration for trustees

7) The Board gave 3rd Reading/Final Adoption to School District No. 27 (Cariboo-Chilcotin) Preliminary Annual Budget Bylaw for fiscal year 2017-2018 in the amount of $62,991,786.00

8) The Board directed that answers be provided to questions posed to the Board of Education, in respect of the Audit Planning Report from KPMG, as presented to the Board at its' June 27th meeting

9) The Board held an informal Committee of the Whole session in respect to an item put forward by Zone 1 Trustee Linda Martens regarding South Cariboo School Catchment Zones and School of Choice.  The Board did not pass a resolution, in respect of this matter

10) No members of the public addressed the Board in regards to any matter NOT on the June 27th, 2017 Board of Education for School District #27 (Cariboo-Chilcotin) Meeting Agenda

The Board agreed to adjourn at 7:43pm

Not too late to register for Summer Reading Club

Courtesy of the Cariboo Regional District:

The Cariboo Regional District Libraries in 100 Mile House, Quesnel, and Williams Lake invite children of all ages to join this year’s BC Summer Reading Club:Walk on the Wild Side! The program starts on July 4, 2017, and registration is free.

Once registered, children will receive a special kit to keep track of their reading over the summer months. If they complete the program, they will be awarded a collectible medal.

Children can sign up to attend one free session per week. Each week they will be participating in a variety of fun activities, crafts, and story-times based on the theme Walk on the Wild Side.

The BC Summer Reading Club motivates children to read (or be read to) regularly, which helps maintain or improve reading skills while school is out. It makes reading fun by inviting kids to read what they want and when they want. The Cariboo Regional District Library staff can help children find suitable materials, whether it’s a print book, audiobook, e-book, magazine or any combination of items. The Summer Reading Club will conclude with a celebration party for all participants.

Contact your local Summer Reading Club Program Coordinator for further details. For all current library programs and events, visit us online at or find your library branch on Facebook.

100 Mile House
Telephone:        250-395-2332

Telephone:        250-992-7912
Williams Lake
Telephone:        250-392-3630
Facebook: LakeLibrary

The BC Summer Reading Club reaches more than 85,000 BC children every year. The program is sponsored by the British Columbia Library Association, with financial support from the Libraries Branch, Ministry of Education, and the RBC Foundation.

Partial campfire ban Thursday at Noon - Fraser River West

Courtesy of the BC Wildfire Branch:

Effective at noon on Thursday, June 29, 2017, campfires will be prohibited in parts of the Cariboo Fire Centre’s jurisdiction to help prevent human-caused wildfires and protect public safety.

Campfires will be banned in the Cariboo-Chilcotin Forest District west of the Fraser River and also throughout Itcha Ilgachuz Provincial Park. The use of tiki torches and chimineas will also be banned in these areas as of noon on June 29.

However, the use of campfires, tiki torches and chimineas will still be allowed in the remainder of the Cariboo Fire Centre. A map showing the affected areas is available online:

The Cariboo Fire Centre is currently experiencing dry conditions and elevated fire danger ratings. The fire danger ratings are generally “high” to “extreme”, with a small pocket of “moderate” in the far northeast corner of the fire centre. In the areas where campfires will be banned as of noon on June 29, the fire danger rating is primarily “extreme”.

Category 2 and Category 3 open burns are already prohibited throughout the Cariboo Fire Centre. Specifically, these prohibited activities include:

the burning of any waste, slash or other materials.
stubble or grass fires of any size over any area.
the use of fireworks.
the use of sky lanterns, burning barrels or burning cages of any size or description.
the use of binary exploding targets (e.g. for target practice).

As of noon on June 29, the use of air curtain burners (forced-air burning systems) will also be prohibited throughout the Cariboo Fire Centre.

These prohibitions do not apply to cooking stoves that use gas, propane or briquettes, or to a portable campfire apparatus with a CSA or ULC rating that uses briquettes, liquid or gaseous fuel, so long as the height of the flame is less than 15 centimetres. The use of a campfire apparatus that does not meet these specifications is prohibited.

These prohibitions apply to all BC Parks, Crown lands and private lands, but do not apply within the boundaries of a local government that has forest fire prevention bylaws in place and is serviced by a fire department. Please check with local government authorities to see if any other burning restrictions or fire bylaws are in place before lighting any fire.

Anyone found in contravention of an open burning prohibition may be issued a ticket for $1,150, required to pay an administrative penalty of $10,000 or, if convicted in court, fined up to $100,000 and/or sentenced to one year in jail. If the contravention causes or contributes to a wildfire, the person responsible may be ordered to pay all firefighting and associated costs.

The Cariboo Fire Centre stretches from Loon Lake (near Clinton) in the south to the Cottonwood River (near Quesnel) in the north and from Tweedsmuir Provincial Park in the west to Wells Gray Provincial Park in the east.

To report a wildfire, unattended campfire or open burning violation, call 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.

For up-to-date information on current wildfire activity, burning restrictions, road closures and air quality advisories, call 1 888 3-FOREST or visit:

You can follow the latest wildfire news:

On Twitter:
On Facebook:

Monday, June 26, 2017

2017 Property Taxes due next Tuesday

For those owning properties in rural areas and muncipalities - the deadline to pay your 2017 Property Taxes to your local government is Tuesday, July 4th.  In the case of muncipalities (Wells, Quesnel, Williams Lake and 100 Mile House - you pay them directly.  In the case of the Cariboo Regional District - you pay your property taxes in the Government Agent in Quesnel, Williams Lake or 100 Mile House.

Those owning farms/ranches in the Region and have applied to the Farm Extension Program and have been approved - your deadline is October 31st

For those living in CRD Electoral Areas - for more information, click here

For those living in the District of Wells - for more information, click here (although written for 2015 Property Taxes, the information provided is generally still relevant along with contact information)

For those living in the City of Quesnel - for more information, click here

For those living in the City of Williams Lake - for more information, click here

For those living in the District of 100 Mile House - for more information, click here


Friday, June 23, 2017

Local Gov't Mtgs - Wk of June 26-30

Next week - the following local governments of the Cariboo-Chilcotin will meet:

Wells - Regular Council Meeting on Tuesday, June 27th at 7pm in Wells Council Chambers (4243 Sanders Avenue).  On the Agenda:

* Presentation from Julie Fowler of Island Mountain Arts (IMA)
* Wells Municipal Rental Facility Agreement Policies
* 2016 Statement of Financial Information Report
* 2016 Annual Community Report
* Staff Reports - for information only
* Consent Calendar
* District of Wells Zoning and Tree Protection Bylaw - proposed building width amendments (3rd Reading)

View the full Agenda here

Quesnel: As noted below

1) Public Safety and Policing Committee meeting on Monday, June 26th at 11am in Quesnel Council Chambers (4th Floor, 410 Kinchant Street). On the Agenda:

a) Review of Finalized RCMP Annual Performance Plan and Quesnel Detachment Performance Plan
b) Committee Terms of Reference - Review Updated Draft
c) Preventative Measures - Strategies for Break and Enters (Discussion)
d) Quesnel RCMP Victim Services Program - Request for Financial Support - Transportation Costs for Crime Prevention Production

View the full Agenda here

2) Regular Council Meeting on Tuesday, June 27th at 7pm in Quesnel Council Chambers. On the Agenda:

a) Delegation -- Maya Knauf, Concerned Student re: Single-Use Plastic Bags

b) Committee Reports
c) Annual Allowable Cut Determination - Quesnel Timber Supply Area
d) 2017 Annual Report for the City of Quesnel
e) Shipping Containers in Residential Areas
f) Fire Training Centre Upgrades
g) Supportive Housing (Elliott Street)
h) Spirit Centre - Lease Agreement (Quesnel Downtown Business Improvement Association)
i) Commercial Building with Starbucks Drive Thru (Rita Road/Balsam Avenue)
j) City Hall Office Space Lease Agreement (MLA Cariboo North)
k) Renovation to Existing Canadian Tire (570 Newman Road - DP2017-01)
l) Budget Principles Policy Update
m) Bylaw of the Month - Water Sprinkling/Irrigation Regulations
n) 1 Bylaw for 1st Reading, 1 Bylaw for 1st/2nd Readings , 1 Bylaw for 3rd Reading and 2 Bylaws for Adoption

View the full Agenda here

School District #27 (Cariboo-Chilcotin) - Regular Board of Education Meeting on Tuesday, June 27th at 6:30pm in the SD27 Boardroom (350 2nd Avenue, Williams Lake).  On the Agenda:

* Consent Agenda - For Approval
* Upcoming Meetings and Conferences List
* Policies for Review -- Parents' Advisory Councils, Protection of Students and Maintenance of Order and Trustee Remuneration and Expenses
* Multi Function Devices (Photocopiers)
* 2017-2018 Preliminary Budget for 3rd Reading/Adoption
* 2016-2017 Audit Planning Report
* Enforcing School Catchment Areas - at request of Zone 1 Trustee L. Martens

View the full Agenda here

Williams Lake - Committee of the Whole Session on Tuesday, June 27th at 6pm in the Rick Hansen Boardroom (Basement - 450 Mart Street).  On the Agenda:

* Delegation: Jeff Pelley, Inspector/Detachment Commander & Dave Dickson, Manager of Community Safety re Police Commission Report
* Letter from Rossetta Paxton re Parking at Retirement Concepts (Seniors Village) 1455 Western Avenue
* Parking on Eleventh Avenue - 1000 Block
* Request for a Washroom Bylaw

View the full Agenda here

100 Mile House - Regular Council Meeting on Tuesday, June 27th at 7pm in 100 Mile Council Chambers (385 Birch Avenue).  When available, the Agenda can be viewed here

Cariboo Regional District - Meetings, as noted below, will take place in the CRD Boardroom (180D North 3rd Avenue, Williams Lake)

1) Cariboo-Chilcotin Regional Hospital District - Thursday, June 29th at 9:30am.  On the Agenda:

* Delegation at 10:30am -- Susan Paulsen, Healthcare Recruitment Coordinator, will appear before the Board to provide an update on recruitment and retention activities in Quesnel.
* Hospital Consent Calendar
* Capital Expenditure (GR Baker Memorial Hospital C-Arm Replacement) Bylaw No. 134, 2017 -- For 1st, 2nd, 3rd Readings/Adoption
* Interior Health - Capital Projects and Planning Status Report - May 2017
* Interior Health - Supporting Cultural Safety, Humility and Wellness - National Aboriginal Day
* Request from Director Forseth to Invite the First Nations Health Authority to a Future Meeting
* Capital Funding Request from Northern Health – G.R. Baker Memorial Hospital Anesthesia System

View the full Agenda here

2) Cariboo Regional District - Thursday, June 29th at 9:45am. On the Agenda:

* Delegation at 11:00am -- Gordon Keener, Treaty Manager/Negotiator, Xats'ull First Nation
* Delegation at 11:30am -- Devon Lyons, Project Leader, Negotiations and Regional Operations - Cariboo, Min. of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation
* 1 Planning Bylaw for 1st/2nd Readings, 2 Planning Bylaws for 3rd Reading, 1 Planning Bylaw for 3rd Reading/Adoption and 1 Planning Bylaw for Adoption
* 1 Temporary Permit for Consideration (Area D)
* Consider 2 Grant for Assistance applications in Areas K/L
* Consider a Canada 150 Grant to Likely Chamber of Commerce (Area F)
* Release of In-Camera Resolution – Martin Exeter Hall Upgrade
* Consent Calendar
* Committee Minutes/Recommendations to be endorsed
* Noise Control (Electoral Area ‘F’) Service Establishment Bylaw No. 5102, 2017 - For 1st, 2nd and 3rd Readings
* Cariboo Regional District Forest Grove Legion Property Tax Exemption Bylaw No. 5100, 2017 - For 1st, 2nd, 3rd Readings/Adoption
* Lac La Hache Sewer Boundary Expansion Bylaw No. 5104, 2017 - For Adoption

View the full Agenda here

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Repave of Soda Creek Rd starts tomorrow

Courtesy of the City of Williams Lake:

The City of Williams Lake has taken advantage of an opportunity to re-pave a 1.8 km section of Soda Creek Road from the dump turn-off to just past the railroad tracks.

Green Roads Recycling is in the Williams Lake area undertaking work for the Ministry of Transportation, and can perform paving work for the City at a reduced cost, as they are already on site. With equipment capable of performing large volumes of Hot in Place Recycling (HIPR) work at high speeds, it is a suitable and cost-effective treatment for Soda Creek Road.

"The City is happy to be able to address the necessary repairs to a portion of Soda Creek Road, while realizing significant savings. The Hot in Place Recycling process is appropriate for the level of repair required on Soda Creek Road," says Williams Lake Mayor Walt Cobb. "Paving this road is a priority from the perspective of safety and long- term responsible management of infrastructure."

The roadwork will commence on the morning of Friday, June 23rd through Saturday, June 24th.

Seeding Start-Up awards more $$$

Courtesy of the City of Williams Lake:

Another round of successful applicants pitched their business plans and were approved for funding at the latest Seeding Start-Up Review Panel.

The Review Panel, made up of the jointly funded Project Partners included representatives from Downtown Williams Lake BIA, Community Futures of Cariboo Chilcotin, Thompson Rivers University, Williams Lake and Area Chamber of Commerce and City of Williams Lake.

Courtney Vreeman is the owner of Creatively Courtney. As a new Start-Up, Vreeman was eligible for a contribution of up to $1500 from the Youth category of the Seeding Program. Creatively Courtney is a design business creating customized designs on a variety of different materials including wine glasses, t-shirts, ceramics and wood. Vreeman also has a robust business hosting paint nights at CJ’s Restaurant and for private functions like bridal showers.

As a mother of two young children, Vreeman finds that being an entrepreneur works well for her lifestyle, saying “having my own business allows me to work mostly from home around what works for my kids.” Vreeman’s plan for the seed contribution is to purchase a heat press that will allow her to create her products more efficiently. “I am really grateful for this program and that I was able to take the Community Futures Business Plan Workshop,” say Vreeman, “It got me to look at the big picture of where I want to take my business in the future, and was very eye-opening”.

The second successful applicant was Al-Lisa McKay, owner of Miss White Spider Arts. Qualifying in the aboriginal entrepreneur category, McKay has been taking steps to move her “hobby” into a full-time business. Miss White Spider Arts provides multi-media art productions and is becoming increasingly known for Shadow Puppetry productions. She has a full line up of festivals booked for the summer months, and in the winter plans to promote herself as a unique and fun interactive party experience. As a trained ECE, McKay wants to bring her work to children through the robust birthday party market and expose them to the ancestral messages of the many different cultures found in her shows.

“One of the exciting things about participating in both the Community Futures Self Employment Program and the Seeding Start-Up Program is that I have hit a milestone where now I am getting sought out for work rather than having to seek it out.” says McKay.

With an unforgettable name, Miss White Spider, was hired by Downtown Williams Lake to
provide instruction and inspiration to the community through free Chalk Art Workshops in anticipation of Downtown Williams Lake’s Chalk Art Festival scheduled for July 1st as part of the Four Directions Festival. McKay intends on using her $1000 contribution from the Seeding Start-Up Program to produce CD’s for sale, and for printing of promotional materials. “This is making a big difference to me in being able to produce high quality materials that will allow me to market and promote myself.”

The Horticulture Club from Lake City Secondary also successfully pitched to the review panel. As a student-run business, they were eligible for a $1500 contribution that will go towards building a new greenhouse that will be located at the Williams Lake Campus of Lake City Secondary. The business, called “Lake City Grow Operators”, is an extracurricular club that grows plants in the biology lab under the guidance of teacher Jennifer Anderson.

“Being able to build a greenhouse will give us a better space to grow a better product,” says student entrepreneur Tannis Thompson.

Currently the business sells hanging baskets, flowers, tomato plants, and vegetables. Their product is on display in the store fronts of some commercial businesses around town. Profits from the group go back into the business for supplies, and they also fund different sports teams for travel for out of town tournaments. As social entrepreneurs, the seed money will give them a boost to continue to grow more, so that they can sell more and give back more.

“It is a multifaceted program that is run by volunteer students to fund extra-curricular events for other students, it has an environmental approach to growing, provides students exposure to aspects of business and provides a local product to the community,” explains Anderson. The greenhouse and new grow tables are scheduled for construction in the fall, and will enlist the help of the trades-construction program to build it. “I am excited about the seed money that is funding a project that involves cross-curricular programs. It will help build school community and provide opportunities
for the new provincial curriculum of project-based learning. The future goal is to expand our operation to include fresh produce to the culinary arts program. There are many directions this could go, including a course option for students to get graduation credits,” says Anderson.

Participants have been working with Seeding Start-Up Coordinator Beth Veenkamp to get ready for the Pitch Presentations, and for mentorship after the cheques are cashed and the work of running the business continues. “My role is to work with participants to provide whatever support they require to run a successful business. With my ability to connect people to other business mentors in the community, their ongoing association with the strong team at Community Futures, as well as provide my own feedback, participants have a lot of support to get through that initial hump of start-up.”

If you have a business idea that you would like to grow, contact the Seeding Start-Ups Coordinator, Beth Veenkamp at 250-392-8480

41st Parliament of BC begins today!

At 10am today - the 41st Parliament of BC commences.  Firstly - Her Honour, the Lieutenant-Governor (LG) will take her place upon the Throne and will advise MLA's, through BC's Attorney-General (Hon. Andrew Wilkinson), that she can't advise her reasons for calling MLA's together until a Speaker is elected

After the L-G retires, the Clerk of the House (Craig James) will then took over, as per Standing Order 11.  After some brief remarks - the Clerk will advise as to the candidates as per Standing Order 11(c)(i) which requires MLA's not wishing to be candidates to advise the Office of the Clerk no later than 6pm the night before.  Should an election be required, the Clerk and his assistants will conduct the election, as per Standing Order 11, until a MLA receives a majority of the votes or in the case of acclamation, the Clerk will make such a declaration and that MLA will then take the Speaker's Chair, thank the members for the high honour of being elected Speaker, declare a brief recess to change into the appropriate clothing, return to the House, recognize the Premier, the Leader of the Opposition and the MLA for Oak Bay-Gordon Head (Andrew Weaver - BC Green Party Leader) who traditionally congratulate the Speaker on their election win and then the House will adjourn until the afternoon where the Speech from the Throne is read by the L-G, some routine business is conducted and then the House will adjourn until the following Monday at 10am

Will be interesting to see how many MLA's (other than the Premier/Cabinet Ministers' who are not allowed to be Speaker, as per Standing Order 11(b)(iii)) file notice withdrawing their candidacy for the Office of Speaker, in addition to the actual contents of the Speech from the Throne.  It has been already reported by media that the Speech from the Throne will include references to increase welfare payments by $100 and to introduce legislation to "Ban Big Money" from our political system

I believe it will be an interesting Day 1 of the 41st Parliament of BC, from start to finish, for sure!


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

CC Joint Committee Highlights - June 21st mtg

Present from CRD: Co-Chair J. Sorley; Directors S. Forseth/B. Kemp

Present from City of WL: Co-Chair Mayor W. Cobb; Councillors I. Bonnell, J. Ryll, C. Smith and L. Walters

Meeting chaired by Mayor W. Cobb

Meeting called to order at 5:35pm

Meeting Agenda was approved

Minutes of the April 26th, 2017 meeting of the Central Cariboo/City of Williams Lake Joint Committee was adopted


1) CCACS 2016 Annual Report

The Committee was presented with the Central Cariboo Arts/Culture Society's 2016 Annual Report
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - Report received

2) Fees & Charges By-Law Amendment re Private Pool Rentals and Sponsorship Swims

The Committee was presented with a report from the Manager of Recreation, City of Williams Lake
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - That it be recommended to the CRD Board:

"That the recommended amendments to the Fees and Charges By-Law for Swimming Pool Private Rentals and Sponsorship Swims for the opening of the new facility in late 2017 be approved and the necessary Fees/Charges Amendment Bylaw be brought forward for consideration of 3 Readings/Adoption"

3) Esler Recreation Advisory Commission - 2017 Spring Meeting Minutes and Recommendations

The Committee was presented with a report from the Manager of Community Services, Cariboo Regional District
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - That it be recommended to the CRD Board:

"That the report of the Manager of Community Services, CRD, be received and the following recommendations from the Esler Recreation Advisory Commission be endorsed:

i) that the proposed capital projects for Minor Fastball and Slo-Pitch be approved
including: the Minor Fastball league will purchase a new mower and the Slo-Pitch
league will constmct bleachers and fencing. Further, that $5,000 for capital projects
for each user group be approved as allocated in the Central Cariboo Recreation and
Leisure Services (CCRLS) budget and business plan for 2017.

ii) that the Esler Recreation Advisory Commissision members for 2017 be appointed as
follows: Linda Barbondy for the WL Slo-Pitch League, Luke Moger for the WL
Soccer Associations, Nick Surette for the WL Minor Fastball Association and Judy
Reilander and Judy Newbery for the Esler Community Association.

iii) that the Use and Occupancy licence between the Cariboo Regional District and the
Williams Lake Minor Fastball for use of the Esler Sports Complex be renewed for a
further 5-year term at the same terms and conditions, and that the appropriate
signatories be authorized to enter into the renewal agreement."

4) Pool Upgrade Project - Monthly Status Reports for April and May 2017

The Committee was presented with a report from the Manager of Community Services, Cariboo Regional District
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - Report received and Staff report back at the September 21st Central Cariboo / City of Williams Lake Joint Committee meeting in regards to options for a Grand Opening event for the newly renovated Sam Ketcham Pool

5) Proposed Amended Central Cariboo / City of Williams Lake Joint Committee Terms of Reference

The Committee was presented with a proposed amendment to the Central Cariboo / City of Williams Lake Joint Committee Terms of Reference
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - Item deferred to the September 21st Central Cariboo / City of Williams Lake Joint Committee meeting

6) Late Item at request of the Chair - Rear Parking at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex

The Chair/Councillor C. Smith presented a verbal report to the Committee
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - That Staff report back to the September 21st Central Cariboo / City of Williams Lake Joint Committee meeting in respect of options for the current rental parking in the rear of the CMRC

7) Action Page

The Committee was presented with a document entitled "Action Page, dated June 21st, 2017"
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - Report received

The Committee adjourned at 6:20pm

CC Rural Caucus Highlights - June 21st mtg

Present: Chair S. Forseth; Directors B. Kemp, J. Sorley and B. Anderson

Meeting called to order at 4:30pm

Meeting Agenda approved/CC Rural Caucus meeting minutes of May 11th approved

The Chair noted that the meeting was taking place on traditional Shuswap territory and that today was National Aboriginal Day and in 2018 - it will be renamed National Indigenous Peoples' Day


1) Central Cariboo Rural Roads

The Caucus had before it a report of the Chair
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - Report of the Chair be received and letters be forwarded to the BC Minister of Transportation expressing concerns about the state of both Pigeon Road (Area F) and Campbell Road (Area D)

2) Communications with Highway Contractors'

The Caucus had before it a report of the Chair
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - Report of the Chair be received and that a letter be forwarded to Interior Roads requesting that they appear biannually (Spring/Fall) at the Central Cariboo Rural Directors' Caucus

3) Membership with the WL/District Chamber of Commerce & WL Central BIA

At the request of the Chair - this item was deferred to the September 21st Rural Caucus Meeting

4) Action Page

The Caucus's Action Page was presented
Discussion ensued thereon

Resolved - Action Page received and Items 2 and 3 be removed

The Caucus adjourned at 4:59pm

Chinese summer camp opportunity for Cariboo students

Courtesy of the Cariboo Regional District:

Local high school students have the opportunity to participate in a two-week language and culture trip to China this summer. The Chinese Bridge Summer Camp runs from Aug. 13-27, 2017, in Suzhou City, Anhui Province. Interested youth, ages 14-18, must apply by Friday, June 30, 2017.

The goal of the summer camp is to facilitate communication and connections between Canadian and Chinese teenagers. The program will help Canadian youth learn about Chinese culture and the students will serve as ambassadors as they raise awareness of Canadian culture throughout the trip.

During the two weeks, students will take Mandarin Chinese language courses and cultural courses in traditional Wushu, Tai Chi, calligraphy and painting. Students will have opportunity to interact with Chinese students and participate in ambassador activities. They will also tour local attractions and visit the rural areas of the region to understand their peers’ lifestyle better.

The Chinese host school will cover all the costs for the students while they are in China, including food, accommodation, transportation and group activities. Students are responsible for their flights, accommodation and meals to and from China, as well as their personal travel insurance, visa application fees and all other personal expenses.

The Cariboo Regional District and other B.C. local government and business delegates recently returned from a trade mission to several Chinese municipalities. In Suzhou City, the group met with directors at a local university and several secondary schools, including Sucheng No.1 High School, to discuss opportunities to connect the youth of both regions.

Furthering those conversations, Suzhou City has invited Cariboo-Chilcotin high school students to attend a Chinese Bridge Summer Camp. Sucheng No.1 High School and Vancouver-based Canada China City & Town Friendship Association (CCCTFA) are co-organizing the trip with the support of the Bureau of Education and Sports of Suzhou Municipality.

Interested students are encouraged to talk to their school about the opportunity. Recognizing schools may not be able to participate due to the short timeline, students interested in participating independently of their school can email Chair Al Richmond at for trip information and the application form. He will also connect them to Sucheng No.1 High School’s representative in Vancouver.

Learn more about the recent B.C. regions’ trade mission to China at To see photos from the trip, visit

Leadership by the Numbers

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

There was some confusion last week resulting from Council’s decision to affirm the engineer’s recommendation for the Reid Street redesign despite the fact the engineer’s report contained the results of an online survey suggesting the public wanted a different design. The online survey indicated that “the public” wanted status quo, while the consultants had recommended a slight change to the current streetscape to accommodate wider sidewalks. Council’s decision to “ignore” the public’s wishes, as expressed in the online survey, upset and confused some people who attended the Council meeting (and who happened to agree with the online survey results).
There are only two situations in which Council (or any other elected body) is compelled to act as a result of a majority vote: an election and a referendum.
The outcome of an election gives the duly elected Council the mandate and obligation to lead the City over a four-year period. This mandate inherently gives Council the authority to make decisions based on the best available evidence, information, advice from experts, and input from the public. Since many decisions of Council are complex, and all too often the public will have a wide array of opinions and advice for Council on most of these decisions, the elected Council must exercise leadership and make decisions knowing that some members of the public will not be happy and will feel that their voice was not heard.
The critical factor for Council is to strive to make informed decisions in the best interests of the community, even if some members of the community do not agree with Council’s decision. Those unhappy individuals, along with the rest of the community, ultimately get to exercise their authority over Council by marking a ballot at the next election.
The second situation that compels Council to act on the majority will is a referendum. Like an election, referendums give every citizen an equal opportunity to mark a ballot and express their wishes on a particular issue. At the local government level referendums are generally used to seek borrowing authority to fund a major project, like the arena that is near completion or the upcoming referendum on a new public works yard for the City. One authority that a municipal Council or Regional District Board does not inherit as a result of an election is the ability to incur debt, that authority remains with the voting public, therefore locally elected bodies are compelled to abide by the outcome of referendums.
Other than elections and referendums, an elected Council is not compelled to lead by the numbers: whether those numbers are reflected in the results of straw polls, online surveys, or a packed gallery. Straw polls, online surveys, and attendance in the gallery are not necessarily reflective of the majority will, not necessarily informed opinions, and not necessarily reflective of the best interests of the community as a whole (both in the present and in the future). Council should definitely consider the information they gain from all of these kinds of input, but none of them, individually or collectively, compel Council, legally or morally, to act in a certain way.
In the case of the Reid Street redesign, the results of the unscientific straw poll taken at the Open Houses where people sat through the full presentation from the engineers mirrored the desired outcome the engineers recommended in the report tabled with Council. On the other hand, the online survey allowed individuals to vote multiple times and did not require people to read the background material before voting for one of the concept options, and the majority of respondents online voted for the status quo. Council noted all this public feedback on this important investment along with the expert advice provided by the engineers, and then, by majority not unanimous vote, made a future-oriented leadership decision that its electoral mandate enables it to do.
 Bob Simpson is the Mayor of Quesnel.  He can be reached via email here or at 250-991-7477

Quesnel Council Highlights - June 20th mtg

Courtesy of the City of Quesnel:

Lhtako Dene Nation Traditional Territory – officially recognized
On June 20, 2017, Council held a Special Open Meeting where all members of Quesnel City Council and the Lhtako Dene Nation Council signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). This MOU officially recognizes the Lhatko Dene Nation Traditional Territory and a commitment to work in cooperative intergovernmental relations on future partnership opportunities around economic development, natural resource management, efficient and affordable service delivery and cooperative land use planning. Council passed a resolution, at its June 20th Regular Meeting, to officially recognize the Lhtako Dene Nation’s Traditional Territory at the beginning of each Council meeting that is reflective of the meaningful dialogue, that has occurred over the last two-years, towards mutual respect, recognition and reconciliation. Next steps include official Lhtako Dene Nation signage and flags to be permanently installed at civic properties in Quesnel.
Northern Health – Opiate Crisis/Needle Exchange Program
Reanne Sanford, Regional Nursing lead, Harm Reduction and Sexual Reproductive Health, and Carol Mankowskie, Public Health Resource Nurse, from Northern Health presented information regarding the community’s current drug overdose crisis. In 2016, as reported through the GR Baker Memorial Emergency Room, Quesnel area had 19 drug overdoses, and as of March 31, 2017, there have been 11 drug overdoses. Most of the drug overdoes have been a result of opioids (illegal or prescribed) and heroin occurring mostly in private residences. Northern Health’s Harm Reduction program aims to reduce harms associated with substance use for both individuals and communities. Next steps include Council to consider Northern Health’s request to purchase Sharps Disposal drop-boxes for strategic community locations that would assist people who use substances to safely dispose of their needles.
Quesnel Lions Society Seniors’ Housing Complex
Council approved the Development Permit and gave final reading of Zone Amendment Bylaw 1782 for the proposed 30 unit apartment on the corner of Reid Street and McNaughton Avenue for independent seniors housing.
Cenotaph plaques
A group of Grade 5, 6, and 7 students, and their teacher, Sarah Guest, from Kersley Elementary School have been working with community stakeholders on a project to update the Quesnel Community Cenotaph to recognize those who served the Canadian Armed Forces in the service of peace, or in conflicts, overseas following World War I, II and the Korean War. The students have secured $1,350 from the Quesnel Rotary Club, and raised $150 through their own fundraising efforts, to purchase three new commemorative plaques. Council approved the three new plaques to be installed on the Community’s Cenotaph that read: “In the Service of Peace”, “Persian Gulf 1990-1992” and “Afghanistan 2001- 2014”.
Seniors Fair and Resource Guide – grant application
Council approved staff to submit a grant application to the New Horizons for Seniors Program for the development of a Seniors Resource Guide that list senior resources and list local senior-orientated activities. Further, this project will include hosting a Seniors Fair that would: provide an opportunity for all seniors groups and organizations to showcase their senior-orientated services, for local seniors to learn more about the services/activities available to seniors, and volunteer opportunities available for seniors to participate in the community. The Seniors Fair would include a lunch and socialization opportunity for seniors with volunteer drivers that would offer transportation to/from the event. If the $25,000 grant application is successful, this project would be 100% grant funded with no funding required from the City.
6-Month extension for zone amendment application (Racing Road/Valhalla Road)
Council granted a six-month extension, to December 28, 2017, to the Applicant proposing to develop a multi-purpose indoor recreation facility (bowling lanes, mini-golf, banquet room, birthday party area, lounge with liquor license) with an accessory dwelling unit and attached retail space on the corner of Racing Road/Valhalla Road in South Quesnel. A bylaw lapses if the requirements to proceed on adoption (fourth reading) are not completed after one year from the date of the Bylaw’s third reading, which in this case was June 28, 2016, as per the City’s Development Services Policy.
Quesnel Skyfest Society
Council gave their support for the Quesnel Skyfest Society to apply to the Liquor Control Board for a Special Event Permit that would permit the Society to sell beer/wine/coolers to the general public during the daytime shows on August 5 and 6, 2017, between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. and is restricted to specific serving sizes, prices and quantities.
Bylaw 1824 – Off Leash Dog Park – Zone Amendment – Second and Third Readings
Bylaw 1782 – Zone Amendment – Quesnel Lions Society - Seniors Housing Development (Reid Street/McNaughton Avenue) – Final Adoption
Next meetings
Regular Council meetings
June 27, 2017 at 7 pm
July 25, 2017 at 7 pm
August 22, 2017 at 7 pm

National Aboriginal Day 2017

Today is National Aboriginal Day - an official day of celebration to recognize and honour the valuable contributions to Canadian society by Canada's First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. National Aboriginal Day is the same day as the summer solstice (the longest day of the year) and was chosen for its important symbolism to many Aboriginal peoples. More information can be viewed here.  It was first recognized in 1990 by the Quebec National Assembly (Legislature) with national recognition by former Governor-General Romeo Leblanc in 1996

Later today - the Northern Shuswap Tribal Council is putting on a local parade/event celebrating National Aboriginal Day from 10am - 2:30pm.  More details here

CBC News has done a wonderful interactive story on Canada's Indigenous Peoples which you can view here

Also - Canada's Prime Minister announced this morning that, starting in 2018, National Aboriginal Day would now be known as National Indigenous Peoples' Day.  View his full statement below:

“Over twenty years ago, the Government of Canada, together with Indigenous organizations, designated this day – the summer solstice – as National Aboriginal Day.

“Every year, we join together on this day to recognize the fundamental contributions that First Nations, Inuit, and the Métis Nation have made to the identity and culture of all Canadians. The history, art, traditions, and cultures of Indigenous Peoples have shaped our past, and continue to shape who we are today.

“No relationship is more important to Canada than the relationship with Indigenous Peoples. Our Government is working together with Indigenous Peoples to build a nation-to-nation, Inuit-Crown, government-to-government relationship – one based on respect, partnership, and recognition of rights.

“We are determined to make a real difference in the lives of Indigenous Peoples – by closing socio-economic gaps, supporting greater self-determination, and establishing opportunities to work together on shared priorities. We are also reviewing all federal laws and policies that concern Indigenous Peoples and making progress on the Calls to Action outlined in the Final Report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I wish everyone a happy National Aboriginal Day. I invite all Canadians to take part in the #NADCanada activities in their community and to learn about the history, cultures and traditions of Indigenous Peoples. The 150th anniversary of Confederation this year reminds us of the legacy of the past. As we look forward to the next 150 years, we commit to move ahead together in a spirit of reconciliation and respect.

“This year, I am also pleased to announce that from here forward the Government’s intention is to rename this day National Indigenous Peoples Day.”

Finally - this day has always significance on a personal level as I'm always thankful for having/knowing Indigenous Peoples in my life including my Area's Alternate Director Phyllis Webstad, CRD Area 'J' Director Roger William, Cheryl Chapman from Xat'sull First Nations, Gord Keener - Xat'sull's Treaty Negotiator and also sits' on my Area's Advisory Planning Commission and Wayne Lucier who is Metis.  All of these people, I greatly appreciate in my life, both political/personal and I thank you for what you provide me with in education and otherwise -- Sechanalyagh! (Thank You in Chilcotin) and Yerí7 skukwstsétsemc! (Thank You Very Much in Shuswap)


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

WL Council Highlights - June 20th mtg

Present: Mayor W. Cobb; Councillors I. Bonnell, S. Nelson, J. Ryll, C. Smith, and S. Zacharias

Meeting called to order at 6pm

Meeting Agenda and Mins of the June 6th, 2017 meeting of WL City Council, both adopted


1) Mayor Cobb presented a "Accessibility Award of Merit" to Nirmal Singh of Town Taxi

2) Venta Rutkauskas, Coordinator and Marg Evans from the Community Arts Council of Williams Lake appeared before Council to discuss their Proposal for Wind Chime 'Soundscape' Project

A Question/Answer period ensued thereon

Mayor Cobb, on behalf of Council, thanked Ms. Rutkauskas/Evans for their time/information

Resolved - That Council authorize Staff to work with the Community Arts Council in respect of their Wind chime 'Soundscape' Project


1) Council received for information the accounts payable computer cheque listings dated June 8 and 15, 2017

2) After one member of the public (John Pickford) addressing Council -- Council received/approved the 2016 Annual Report in accordance with Section 98 of the Community Charter.

3) After receiving no public input -- Council approved Development Permit #3-2017 for property at 300-1185 Prosperity Way (Platform Properties)

4) Council approved a proposed purchase and sale of a portion of 850 Oliver St. at a value of $4.25 per square foot, subject to property consolidation

5) Council received a Temporary Commercial Use Permit Application - #01-2017 for property at 80 Fourth Avenue South, directed the usual notifications take place and that the application be formally considered at the July 18, 2017 Regular Council Meeting

6) Council awarded the three (3) year contract for Waste & Recyclable Collection to Central Cariboo Disposal Ltd. for the annual cost of $513,670.20

7) Council received/ratified an email poll pertaining to Airport Lease Agreement No. CWL2100 - Ireland / Connatty, as follows:

"That the proposed new Lease Agreement No. CWL2100 for David Ireland and Lyle Connatty be received and Staff be authorized to post the required Notice of Disposition in accordance with Section 26(3) of the Community Charter; and further, subsequent consideration of approval of the Lease Agreement be referred to the July 4, 2017 Regular Council Meeting"

8) Council awarded the Pavement Rehabilitation & Waterworks 2017 contract to Peter Bros. Construction Ltd. and directed City Staff to reduce the project scope up to 15%, per the terms of the contract, to meet original approved budgets

9) Council adopted the following Bylaws:

a) Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 2265 (185 Fourth Avenue North - former Cariboo Lodge site)
b) Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 2257 (105 to 117 Paxton Road)

10) Late Item - Council approved the use of City equipment for the repair of the Thunder Mountain Speedway track in conjunction with Municipal Services volunteer labour.

11) Council received the June 20th 'Council Information Package' as follows:

* 2017 Canada Day Weekend in Williams Lake - Events Poster;
* June 8, 2017 - Salish Sea Trust re A Personal Proclamation for Our Oceans & Waterways;
* June 9, 2017 - Cariboo Regional District Board Highlights.

Members of Council gave oral reports as to their recent activities

The CAO gave an oral report as to his recent activities

Media Question Period:

a) Radio - History on Volunteer City Staff labour for local community projects - Mayor Cobb/Councillor Bonnell responded to the question

Council agreed to adjourn at 6:47pm