Quesnel Council Highlights

Council Highlights
February 6, 2018
Cannabis – Future Actions/Regulations
In advance of the proposed legalization of Recreational Cannabis, Council has given direction to various City departments, and the Public Safety and Policing Committee, to work on the following actions:
1.     Directs the Public Safety and Policing Committee (with participation from various stakeholders) to form a working group to develop Cannabis policy in preparation for the legalization of Cannabis;
2.     Directs City staff to immediately ban retailing of Medical and Recreational Cannabis in all zones, including commercial spaces being utilized as smoking lounges, until such time as sufficient consideration of Federal/Provincial Governments’ polices, currently being developed, have been considered and community policy options considered;
3.     Directs City staff to ban the smoking of Cannabis in all public spaces;
4.     Directs City staff to work with the Public Safety and Policing Committee to create new Business Licence categories and fees for manufacturing and retailing Cannabis;
5.     Directs staff to discuss building/fire inspection and risks associated with in-home growing and processing of Cannabis with the Public Safety and Policing Committee;
6.     Directs City staff in consultation with the Public Safety and Policing Committee to develop a communications strategy for the City’s actions and distributing the Federal/Provincial Governments’ education/communications regarding the legalization of Cannabis; and
7.     Council will refuse to support Business Licence applications submitted by existing unlawful Cannabis retail stores/businesses.
Think Tank Session on the Future of Forestry

As part of the wildfire recovery efforts, the City of Quesnel, in partnership with the University of Northern British Columbia and the Wildfire Recovery Team, is planning on hosting a forest sector two-day think tank session. This event will explore the challenges confronting our forest sector and the opportunities available to this community to conduct both research and commercial pilots that will allow Quesnel industry partners to expedite the transformation of Quesnel’s manufacturing sector to match the changes occurring on the forest land base. Watch for the date/times/venues of this session to come forward shortly.
Public Works Facilities – Next Steps
The proposed new Public Works Facility is scheduled to go to as a referendum question in the upcoming October 2018 Local Government Election. In the meantime, City staff are looking at what must be done with the existing Public Works Facility. Council gave direction for City staff to proceed with a Third Party Assurance Opinion on the space requirements for the proposed Public Works Facility, as this will help to answer questions regarding the size of the proposed new facility, which is a major cost-driver for this proposed project. Also, Council asked City staff to proceed with a Detailed Condition Assessment of the existing Public Works Facility. This will help to answer questions regarding how much longer the City can continue to use the existing Public Works Facility, and what it would cost to fix, or replace, this existing facility.
Grant Applications
Council endorsed and approved City staff to submit the following grant applications:
·         Marketing Initiative – Gateway Signage
o    Gateway signage at the entrance to City limits when travelling from the south (Gateway signage for the north is planned for 2019).
  • Capital Investment Analysis – RV Park
    • A cost benefit analysis, proposed business plan, exploring potential locations for a RV Park in Quesnel. This project would become part of the larger Waterfront Development Plan.
·         Capital Investment Analysis – Airport Training Centre
o    There is an opportunity to expand the current fire training centre at the airport. This project would include a review of training requirements and potential uses, and develop a business case for expansion. Flight school training and other classroom uses at an airport location will also be explored.
  • Community Halls & Recreation Facilities – West Fraser Centre Walking Track
    • Installation of a rubber walking track in the West Fraser Centre will add to the amenities of the arena and maximize the use of the 2nd floor space.
·         Economic Diversification Infrastructure – Gymnastics Facility
o    This grant will provide up to $250,000 towards the cost of the new gymnastics facility. Success with this grant is contingent on success with the UBCM Strategic Priorities grant currently under review.
  • BikeBC – Improve Cycling Infrastructure Across Quesnel River
    • Johnson Bridge Cycling upgrade is to install a bicycle lane, using specialized material that will be located in the centre of each driving lane, on Johnston Bridge. This project would improve safety for cyclists.
Start Time of Regular Council Meetings – Proposed to Change from 7pm to 6 pm
Council would like to change the start time of Regular Council Meetings from 7pm to 6pm, and would like to implement this change for the next 2018 to 2022 Council term (November 2018 to October 2022). Proposing this change now will allow nominees/candidates for the upcoming 2018 Local Government Election to know that Regular Council Meetings would start at 6pm. To provide input, the public can email cityhall@quesnel.ca or contact the Deputy Corporate Administrator.
·         1843 – Council Procedure – Change time of Regular Council Meetings to 6pm – First Reading
Next Meetings
·         5:30 pm, February 13, 2018 – North Cariboo Joint Planning Committee
·         7pm, February 20, 2018 – Regular Council Meeting
Council Highlights provide a summary of business conducted by Council at Regular Council meetings. For specific details, visit www.quesnel.ca. Contact: Gina Albers, Deputy Corporate Administrator at 250-991-7471.