By David F. Rooney
A request from the Chamber of Commerce that the City explore the possibility of running power to lamp posts on First Street and Victoria Road so that festive lighting can be added to them at Christmas has been referred to the Engineering and Public Works Committee.
While the discussion around the Council table was generally in favour of it, Councillor Antoinette Halberstadt objected because “first of all we have budget constraints” and people don’t want their taxes raised. She also said “Victoria Road is fine the way it is.”
However, Councillor Chris Johnston noted that “we’re just asking for more information and contrary to what you say Victoria Road needs some work and has for years.”
Council has asked municipal staff to look into the possibility hiring a environmental consultant to help coordinate the City’s efforts to comply with provincial climate change targets.
“This is something we have talked about in the past,” Mayor Dave Raven noted during the discussion on this issue, which emanated from a letter sent by the North Columbia Environmental Society.
“The hiring of Jill Zacharias (the City’s Social Development Coordinator) has shown how successful such a position can be,” NCES President Sarah Newton said in the letter. “She has organized community stakeholders, non-profit groups and government agencies to get the best possible care for osme of our most vulnerable residents. We could expect the same if the City of Revelstoke hires a consultant to create the same networks that Jill has achieved in the social realm for the environment.
“Provincial Gas Tax funds can be accessed for this position so that no additional tax burden will be created for taxpayers.”
Councillor Antoinette Halberstadt said the City needs to hire an environmental consultant now as “at present it’s difficult for staff to manage this off the sides of their desks.”
Councillor Tony Scarcella said he couldn’t support the motion until he saw what impact this might have on taxpayers and Councillor Chris Johnston said he would support as long the City made it a part-time position — not a full-time position we’re spending $100,000 a year on.”
City staff have been tasked with finding out how a part-time consultant may be hired, what they might be expected to do and at what cost. They will report back to Council in four weeks.
Councillors Chris Johnston and Antoinette Halberstadt locked horns again over a request by the South Fraser Family Court and Youth Justice Committee that the City of Revelstoke back a letter-writing campaign intended to convince the province that it should arrest and detain youths with substance abuse problems and hold them until they agree to seek treatment.
Halberstadt was all for joining the letter-writing campaign immediately as, she said, a way to open up discussion, however Johnston strongly objected.
“To me this sounds like Clockwork Orange,” he said, referring to the Anthony Burgess novel and movie, starring Rodney McDowell, of the same name that focused on a hoodlum in a future society who is forcibly re-programmed to be pro-social. “Let’s not go there… forced treatment, mandatory treatment where they are locked up? I can’t support that.”
Neither could the rest of Council. Halbertstadt’s proposal that the City join the campaign failed when Johnston and Councillors Tony Scarcella and Steve Bender voted against her and Councillor Phil Welock. Halberstadt then proposed that the request be sent to the Health Advisory Committee for further study. That proposal passed.
Rumours about the Aquatic Centre aren’t what they’re cracked up to be, says Brian Mallett, director of Engineering and Public Works.
“City staff have become aware of a rumour around the city that the foundation of the Aquatic Centre is cracked and that the problem is compounded by water leaking from the pool,” he said in a memo. “Council needs to be aware that this is not the case.”
Mallett said the foundation of the adjacent Community Centre near a small storage room int he southeast corner of the building is actually cracked and has been for about 10 years. So far, municipal staff have been monitoring that problem and fixing it over time. However, the cracking has continued and now a structural engineer has been commissioned to prepare a report detailing how it can be fixed.
With regard to the Aquatic Centre, Mallett said there was some “minor settlement cracking which has not progressed.” When the pool is drained for maintenance the water is dechlorinated and discharged into the sewer system at a regulated rate. If it must be emptied at a faster rate then the dechlorinated water is discharged into the storm sewer system.
In either event, there are no cracks in the Aquatic Centre causing water to leak from the pool.
Take that, Rumour-stoke?
City Council’s regular meeting that was to be held on Tuesday, jan. 26, will instead be held at 3:30 pm on Wednesday, Jan. 27.
Council agreed to change the date of its meeting because the Olympic Torch will be arriving in Revelstoke on Jan. 26 and the celebrations to mark its arrival are scheduled to begin at 4 pm — just 30 minutes after the start of Council’s meeting.
The City issued 12 new business licences last month, raising the total number of licences in Revelstoke to 841, that’s up from 829 in November and 814 in December 2008.
The new licences went to Eagle Pass Heliskiing, Horizon Retail Construction, Revelstoke Powder Rentals, re-Psyched Consignment Sporting Goods, Forest City Design, Revelstoke Paragliding, Revelstoke Resort Rentals, Powder Stoked, Back on the Rack, Bricor Mechanical Ltd., Rockford Wok/Bar/Grill and S. Lord Wood Finishing Co.