U.S. cattle a problem for local rancher

News briefs from the September 2, 2014 Midway council meeting.

Ed. note: Our print edition on September 4 carried the erroneous information that Midway Council had considered covering business license costs for the contractor currently working on the village office. Business licence fees were paid by the contractor and were never under consideration by council.We regret the error.

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At their September 2, 2014 meeting Midway Council was split when deciding whether to cover liability insurance costs for a contractor who is currently working on energy upgrades to the municipal office. The contractor was not aware that the village required insurance when he had placed his bid and it was not stipulated in the call for bids advertising.

Councillors Metcalf and Schierbeck both argued against paying the $750 to the contractor, but the other three members of council voted to approve the expenditure.

Procedure for future bids will be revised to ensure the mistake doesn’t occur again.

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Midway council has received a report from Regional District Manager of Planning and Development Donna Dean on the proposal by Roy Remillard to re-zone property near the arena from Residential 1 to a recreational zone that would permit RVs.

Her report helped clarify the status of the land under the Agricultural land Commission, however Councillor Marguerite Rotvold pointed out that the village Official Community Plan identifies the land for future residential purposes.

A letter will be sent to those involved explaining the ALC information and suggesting that the property owner might want to investigate these opportunities to make the property more desirable on the market. While council is not in a position to move forward at this time on the proposal that the village purchase and develop as part of Riverfront campground, the letter will inform Remillard of their willingness to remain open to further discussion.

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A letter from Rock Creek rancher Jamie Haynes asked council for support in finding a resolution to the problem caused when range cattle from Washington State cross into Canada because there is no standing fence along part of the border.

The cattle have been drifting across the border for about 20 years, and in the past a local rancher corralled them, and the American ranchers would cross through customs and truck them home.

However the corral has been taken down and a new solution needs to be found. Council agreed to send a letter to the International Boundary Commission stating the fence is not there and cattle are coming across and impacting the village hiking trails.

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Work continues to secure Crown Land in Kettle Valley to house the Midway Volunteer Fire Department Rural Response engines and equipment. The Rock Creek Wildfire Management Branch Base Station is going to be available when the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, Wildfire Management Branch leave the site. Council gave formal approval for CAO Penny Feist to proceed with a request for acquisition of property should a tour of the land by key stakeholders prove the site capable of meeting the needs of the department.

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Midway council continues to consider how to fill the fire chiefs’ position when Walter Osellame retires. They are gathering information from other municipalities of similar size to assess their options of whether to make the position a full time job.

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Council was split when deciding whether to cover liability insurance and municipal business license costs for a contractor who is currently working on energy upgrades to the municipal office. The contractor was not aware that the village required insurance and local business license when he had placed his bid as it was not stipulated in the call for bids advertising.

Councillors Metcalf and Schierbeck both argued against paying the additional $850 to the contractor, but the other three members of council voted to approve the expenditure.

Procedure for future bids will be revised to ensure the mistake doesn’t occur again.

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Owners of The Spot Gas Bar have accepted the village’s price for the land they are purchasing along Palmerston Avenue. The price was determined by an independent assessment and the sale will proceed in October.

Purchase of the land will allow the gas station to relocate their gas pumps to a better location further away from Hwy 3.

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Council approved a proposal by School District 51 (Boundary) to create a learning circle in Entwined Tree Park. The Village had to commit to keeping it in the park and to continue to maintain the park.

 

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