At its March 6 regular meeting, Council dealt with a varied agenda. First up Inspector Hewco presented the RCMP detachment's 4th quarter report. He went on to note one of the detachment's latest successes was the arrest of a prolific offender that had engaged in a wave of criminal activity throughout the Valley.
Council then considered the contribution of up to $2,000 towards the development of a conceptual facade improvement plan for the west side of Willow Street in Chemainus, in partnership with the three affected landowners. These properties currently have canopies that extend into Municipal 'air space' and date back to the last successful Chemainus revitalization of the early 1980s. Council approved the contribution and expressed its desire to support changes that would complement the street works envisioned in the Chemainus Town Centre Revitalization Plan.
Council also received an update on the new Regional Visitor Information Centre planned for the BC Forest Discovery Centre site. The groundbreaking ceremony is set for 10 a.m. on Tuesday, March 12 at the Forest Discovery Centre.
A motion was introduced to cap the 2013 budget increase at 2%. After some debate, a subsidiary motion was passed to postpone consideration of the motion to the March 20 meeting for further discussion. In the meantime, Council preferred to wait for a report from the Chief Administrative Officer that outlined the impacts of implementing this proposed reduction in the budget that Council has worked on for the last five months.
Later in the meeting, Council voted to accept Abingdon Research's proposal in the amount of $3,960 to conduct a survey of North Cowichan residents to determine the degree of support or opposition for an additional 1% property tax levy to specifically fund projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and energy use in North Cowichan. After hearing the results of the survey, Council will consider whether or not to include the 1% increase in the 2013 budget.
The entire meeting is now available online should you wish to view the discussion on any of the above agenda items.
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Mayor Jon Lefebure