By David F. Rooney
Council will direct municipal staff to poll major community agencies and partners nu April 30 regarding the development of a River Usage Strategy.
The strategy is intended to produce a “broad-based agreement for surface, access and river bottom usage.” Momentum for this strategy began building directly after a local man sought a business licence to operate a jet boat tour business up towards the dam and down river to Begbie Falls.
Click here to read about David Adshead’s jet-boat tour proposal and to see a video of his jet boat, an image of which you can see below.
The City has no authority over the what happens on the surface of the water. Water transport of all kinds is regulated by Transport Canada. A lengthy public process can, ultimately result in changes to federal regulations. But it can be a long, acrimonious and controversial affair. For instance, a coalition of private individuals and environmental and recreational groups have for years been attempting to restrict the use of motorized vessels on the Upper Columbia between Radium and Donald. Opponents have fought tooth and nail to prevent the restrictions from being enacted. They are still in limbo even though the proposed regs were first published in the Canada Gazette — a necessary step in the regulatory process — back in 2008.
The City does, however, have authority over the river bottom. The strategy will explore all regulatory options, including this one.
Council has agreed to close the part of the downtown core on Saturday for the Revy Rail Jam.
Mackenzie Avenue will be closed from Second Street to Victoria Road and First Street will be closed from Orton to Connaught. between the hours of 9 am and 10 pm.
Council also agreed to road closures on May 31 and June 3 for Bike to Work Week activities. The closures will affect Mackenzie Avenue from Victoria Road to First Street, only, between 6:30 and 9 am.
Council has agreed to write a letter to the BC Liberal government asking it to do more to help reduce the level of poverty in the province.
Councillor Antoinette Halberstadt had asked Council to sign a letter provided by a group called the BC Poverty reduction Committee that calls on the province to improve food security, provide adequate income support for the unemployed, improve working conditions, address homelessness, provide universal publicly funded day care, enhanced training for low-income people and enhanced mental health services.
Councillors balked at that, saying that while they agreed with most or all of the goals, they didn’t want anyone else putting words in Council’s mouth.
Staff will work with Mayor David Raven to provide an appropriately worded letter.
The Revelstoke Museum & Archives is planing a Multicultural Heritage Picnic at Farwell Park on Sunday, June 17, from 11 am until 3 pm.
The event will be a celebration of both National Multiculturalism Day and the 125th anniversary of the founding of community of Farwell, as Revelstoke was first named.
Council granted the Museum permission to hold the event in the park.
The City will hold a public meeting at the Community Centre on April 21 to discuss snow removal in the downtown core.
City staff will at that time provide a number of different options for removal times intended to be as convenient as possible for downtown businesses and residents.
Plans to build a full-scale bridge across the Illecillewaet River at the site of the old CPR abutments were killed not that long ago when the City realized that a conventional bridge would cost over $1 million, but the dream of a span across the river now has new life.
Community Economic Development Director Alan Mason told Council on Tuesday that he would like its permission to explore the possibility of building a pedestrian suspension bridge over the Illecillewaet. It could be built in the same location but would not require the abutments.
The bridge project would not require any taxpayers’ money but could be built for about $500,000. The City already has about $400,000 in grants committed to a bridge project and is confident it can get another $150,000 in grants, he said.
Mason told Council he has recently been in contact with Sahale LLC., a Seattle-based company that has experience in building pedestrian suspension bridges. (Find out more about this company at www.sahale.com.)
Nine new business licences were issued by the City in February bringing to 823 the total number of licences in Revelstoke from 809 in 2009.
The new licences went to Eagle Car Klean, Rockey Mountain Alarms/Shuswap Fire & Safety Ltd., K3 Cat Ski, Town Crier Tours, Jessica Stewardson Photography, Revelstoke Connection Ltd., Kristina Inc., Symbiotic Solutions Consulting and Buckingham Auctions Ltd.
However, that is a decrease of four licenced businesses since January.
On the construction front, 11 projects, including s start to the new Best Western Hotel on Laforme Blvd., are responsible for almost $8.3 million in new building in town.
At this same time last year there had been a paltry $107,000 in new construction.
As towns become resorts they also seem to experience an increase in public intoxication and rising incarceration rates. Rvelstoke is not an exception, as indicated by RCMP Staff Sgt. Jacquie Olsen’s report to Council this month.
Her stats show increases in the number of drug offences (eight in January from four in January 2009), Liquor Act violations (26 in January from 16 in January 2009) as well as 20 roadside suspensions for drug and alcohol consumption, 21 Liquor Act tickets and the temporary jailing of, so far this year, 100 people for various infractions.