Council Matters for April 6, 2016

Council met to deliberate on a number of interesting issues on April 6.

Graham Bruce of the Island Corridor Foundation and Don McGregor of Southern Rail appeared as a joint delegation to give Council an update on their efforts to resume passenger rail service on Vancouver Island. They are awaiting the final sign-off by the Federal Government on its 7.5 million contribution to rail upgrades to accommodate passenger and freight services.  It was emphasized that this is not designed as a commuter rail system at this time.

The North Cowichan Fire Department and RCMP North Cowichan/Duncan Detachment respond to an excessive number of false alarms from security systems each year, resulting in undue costs . As a result, a new  False Alarm Bylaw was given three readings. It is hoped that increased penalties for three or more false alarms within a 12-month period will result in owners maintaining their systems and contact numbers in good order, reducing the number of false alarms moving forward.

A number of residents from the Richards Trail area attended to hear a discussion of the staff report on the impacts of industrial truck traffic associated with a quarry operation at 7303 Richards Trail. The report indicated that the road could not withstand sustained industrial traffic at the volumes estimated without upgraded to Richards Trail. Council agreed that the road would require these improvements before a highway access permit could be issued for the quarry operation.  Staff will consult with the quarry operator on next steps.

Finally, Council agreed to consider the possibility of developing a Local Area Plan for the Mt. Prevost area during Councils planned Priorities Setting Review in October 2016.

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