By Steve Hubrecht
The new community centre is officially going ahead after the District of Invermere council formally adopted a loan authorization bylaw allowing the district to borrow as much as $5.6 million to fund the project, at the council meeting on Tuesday, November 12th.
The motion passed unanimously at the meeting, as two decades of discussion about building a community centre at the old David Thompson Secondary School site (just across from Sobeys) finally turned to action.
During discussion on the matter, council members reiterated that they will consult with as many potential user groups as possible, but at the same time expressed a desire to move forward quickly with the project.
We cant give everything to everybody, but we should certainly explore all the options, said councillor Paul Denchuk, participating in the meeting by speaker phone. We need to be careful we dont exclude anybody.
We did make a commitment to consult with the community, said councillor Greg Anderson.
Invermere Mayor Gerry Taft agreed, but said it should be guided consultation that fits within the parameters of reality and that some things (such as looking at building at the current community hall location instead of the old David Thompson Secondary site) shouldnt be up for debate.
We sold the public on that location (the old David Thompson Secondary site) and thats what we have a mandate for, said Mr. Taft, adding that changing direction now and opening up discussion on the location would be an invitation for debate to go for two more years before any progress is made.
We should be firm on location, maximum size and maximum budget. We have to have strong parameters otherwise this just isnt going to get built; well just argue, said Mr. Taft.
Council members received and discussed a report from district staff on the results of the deer cull question on the referendum (more than 70 percent of voters were in favour of using a cull as a tool to manage urban deer).
It provides us some direction going forward. Its nice to take it to the public and we got an opinion and thats good guidance for us, said Mr. Anderson.
A deer cull is still in the tool box to deal with the urban deer. It doesnt mean its the best tool or the only tool, said Mr. Taft.
Council then passed a motion to write a letter to the province requesting funding support should the district opt to carry out a deer cull in the future.