Council Roundup: April 2

Everything you wanted to know about Mission's April 2 council meeting.

Municipal Hall in Mission

Municipal Hall in Mission

John McCallum in Mission for Charter Party

Liberal supporters will gather at 3:30 p.m. on April 17 at the Heritage Park Centre Cafetorium to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Special guest Jon McCallum will be on hand to view Bob Rae and Jean Chretien in Toronto as they observe the occasion.

Cory Cassel led a delegation before council to invite members of the public to the event.

Mission receives provincial cash for birthday

This item slipped through the cracks a few weeks ago but has found its way back onto my desk. Mission has received $75,000 from the provincial government toward the 120th anniversary of the district with the stipulation that all written materials relating to the program make acknowledgement of this fact.

Defeated application returns to public hearing.

This story appeared in the April 5 edition of the Mission and can be read right here.

Celebrate Mission event discontinued

The planning committee for Celebrate Mission, formerly known as the Celebration of Community until two years ago, has decided to discontinue this event and focus on creating a new event once the community is more focused and engaged on volunteering.

According to a report filed by Kirsten Hargreaves, manager of social development, the planning committee met in the fall of 2011 to discuss concerns of sustainability of the event due to a lack of staff time. As the only paid staff member, site coordinator John Taves was responsible for an immense amount of work, including booking events, setup and takedown of events, and collecting donations. Taves has since resigned and moved away from Mission.

Celebrate Mission has routinely taken place on the third Saturday of September for the past 12 years at Heritage Park, averaging 700 attendees, although many of these are volunteers themselves. It had been decided that without achieving an increase in foot traffic to the event, a limited budget, few donations, and a lack of staff, it wouldn’t make sense to continue.

“With all the other events that are taking place in Mission, we sort of see that Celebrate Mission can evolve into something even better to prepare for the 2014 Winter Games and to try and bring in more of the community,” said committee member Pam Alexis, adding the committee sees this as a transitional stage into a new event.

Robert Keys, executive director for the Mission Association for Community Living, will present a delegation to council at the April 16 public hearing to request funds for the Illuminaria evening event Sept. 15, so that fans of the event won’t be disappointed.

Municipal workers honoured

Stephanie Key, Deputy director of Parks, Recreation and Culture, and Don Sami, systems analyst, were presented with the annual Mart Kenny Staff ExcellenceAward for their service to the district.

Core Services Review task force meeting open to the public Thursday

The Core Services Review (CSR) will be conducting a internal district employee survey from April 5-20 which might have a potential impact on jobs and staffing levels. According to a statement explaining the purpose of the CSR drafted up by staff, it reads in part, “council would like all employees to know that their aim is [to] address any potential job impacts that may arise from the Review through existing staff vacancies and natural attrition.”

It also says “council is fully aware of the human aspects of the Review and the organizational uncertainty that such a process brings about.”

Coun. Dave Hensman said it’s important to communicate the purpose of the CSR so that employees aren’t “blindsided” by any decisions made in staffing.

“There may be situations where there may have to be cuts or terminations and so I do think we want to be fair to everybody so that they know clearly that the Core Services Review may look at areas that might have to taken care of in a different way,” he said.

The next CSR task force meeting is Thursday, April 5, and is open to the public.

Council approves extending sole source contract

Mission’s council approved extending the sole source contract with Dougness Holdings Ltd. rather than put it to tender as per legal advice. The contact extension, good for two more years, is worth between $100,000 and $200,000 to provide sewer flushing service. Mission is signatory to the New West Trade Partnership Agreement established July 1, 2010, to encourage trade, investment and labour-mobility between western provinces. The agreement states that local governments must provide open and non-discriminatory access to procurement when issuing a tender that exceeds a $75,000 threshold amount.

“They have been doing this particular job since Noah had an ark,” explained Mayor Ted Adlem in moving that Mission extend the contract without seeking competing bids.

“They’ve been doing a good job. Their offer is more than fair in terms of an extension.”

Dougness Holdings has been providing the service to Mission for an estimated 40 years.

Wren Creek development heads to public hearing

A mixed commercial and residential development that has waited nearly three years for environmental approval is coming to a public hearing on April 16.

The site, at Wren Street and Lougheed Highway, is across from the Mission Springs Pub and the new Smart Centre.

The commercial component proposed is roughly 9.3 ha (23 acres) and may accommodate, at a minimum, 310,000 square feet of commercial space, while the residential portion of the site allows for up to 150 units.

The developer is submitting the application under the Comprehensive Development zone to allow for a broad range of businesses and services, which includes a maximum of two drive-thru restaurants.

Although new drive-thrus are not technically permitted under the district’s own bylaws, a previous application for a commercial development at Cedar Street and Lougheed Highway was approved under the comprehensive development zone to include two drive-thrus.

Two previous petitions have been forwarded to council in the past opposing drive-thru restaurants, including a 794-signature petition last May.

The application, which was held up for several years while undergoing environmental approval, has yet to receive final authorization under the federal Fisheries Act, though several mitigation measures have been acknowledged by government agencies, including the purchasing of a nearby trout hatchery, which will be converted into a fish habitat preserve.

The public hearing will take place April 16 in council chambers at municipal hall at 6:30 p.m.


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