Horses graze in a field off Burns Ave. in Canal Flats. File photo

Canal Flats Council briefs

Budgets, zoning, grants and more

The Canal Flats council held a Regular Council Meeting on Monday May 13th. The following items were discussed and approved:

• A letter from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing was received, confirming that a $15,000 grant has been approved. The money will be used to assess the sewage treatment plant;

• Council approved a road closure on June 1st from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. for a Canal Days event;

• A grant was received from the CRI FireSmart Community Funding and Supports in the amount of $73,325 for operational fuel reduction. This work reduces the likelihood of wildfires in and around Canal Flats.

• A grant in the amount of $70,000 from the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and a grant in the amount of $8750 from the Columbia Basin Trust were confirmed to support the Canal Flats Economic Development Phase 2 Project. In addition to these grants, council has allocated $20,000 in the 2019 budget to enter into an 18 month contract with Chris Fields, the current Economic Development Officer who will administer the project.

• Council recently participated in the CBT Community Initiatives Program and allocated $43,000 from CBT to the following organizations: Blue Lake Forest Education Society $945, Canal Flats Community Society $24,669, Canal Flats Food Bank $1000, Columbia Lake Stewardship Society $500, Columbia Valley Arts Council $250, Columbia Valley Rockies $500, Columbia Valley Skating Club $750, Family Dynamix $1000, Headwaters Arts Society $1,690, Hospice Society of the Columbia Valley $700, Kootenay Livestock Association $100, Village of Canal Flats History and Culture $1000, Village of Canal Flats picnic tables $9000, Windermere Valley Youth Centre Society $1000, and Wings Over the Rockies $250.

• The 2019-20203 Financial Plan bylaw received second reading

• The 2019 Tax Rates bylaw received second reading

• The Official Community Plan bylaw received second reading

• The Zoning bylaw received second reading

• A public hearing for the Official Community Plan bylaw and the Zoning bylaw has been scheduled for Tuesday June 4th at 6:30 p.m. at the Canal Flats Civic Centre.

2019 Budget Passed by Canal Flats Council

The April 23rd regular meeting of the Canal Flats council concluded much of the work that has been done since the elections last year and moved the Official Community Plan one step closer to adoption.

• A presentation was made by David Adams of Adams Wooley CGA regarding the consolidated financial statements from 2017 and 2018. Mr Wooley gave the Village’s financials “a clean opinion, all looks good”. There was a significant increase in economic development spending, most of which was covered by grants awarded to the Village as a result of the mill closure in 2015.

• An unexpected “bonus” gas tax rebate of $86,718 was received by the Village. This is a one-time transfer from the Province and is tied to specific projects.

• The Chief Administrative Officer Priority Project List was received by council. Priorities include, but are not limited to, passing the OCP and Zoning bylaws, updating the Subdivision Servicing bylaw, developing a village beautification strategy and the continuation of the economic development strategy.

• The 2019 Financial Plan (budget) received three readings and has been adopted by council.

• The 2019 Tax Rates received three readings and have been adopted by council.

• The Official Community Plan received first reading. A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for early June.

• Zoning Bylaw 215, 2019 received first reading. A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for June. The zoning bylaw attends to zoning changes laid out in the OCP.

Village staff provided council with a snapshot of taxation increases residential home owners can expect. Based on an assessed value of $220,000, the increase in municipal taxes wold be $59. Council advised that tax increases for individual home owners may vary based on assessed value and that overall property taxes are an amalgamation of municipal taxes, hospital and education taxes, RDEK fees and police services.

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