Jul 05, 2019

Ladysmith Council Notebook for June 17th and 24th

Ladysmith Council met for an hour and fifteen minutes on Monday, June 17, 2019.

First on the agenda, Council approved a Zoning Bylaw amendment to allow for a licensed childcare facility to operate at 1134 Trans Canada Highway. The property is zoned as Multi-Family Residential.

The facility will provide child care for infants, toddlers, preschool children, as well as before and after school care. It would be open 7 am to 6 pm, Monday through Friday.

Childcare facilities are regulated by the province and there are specific requirements for the maximum number of children in each age group, in addition to standards for health and safety and washroom facilities.

The changes to the Zoning Bylaw have been referred to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to review the existing driveway access that’s currently off the highway. The property is also accessible from 2nd Avenue.

Council also referred the application to the Community Planning Advisory Committee for feedback.

Next, Council approved a development permit, subject to certain conditions, for the form and character of a new addition to the Ladysmith Healthcare Auxiliary Thrift store located at 910 First Avenue.

The existing Thrift Store building is 474 square metres (5102 square feet) in size and the addition is proposed to be 297 square metres (3196 square feet). 

The Thrift Store will now be required to obtain a development variance permit for the proposed reduction to off-street parking space requirements.  Currently, seven new off-street parking spaces are included in the site plans.  There will also be parking on French Street for persons with disabilities as well as a 15 minute stall for anyone dropping off donations. 

Council awarded the contract for phase 1 of the Baden Powell Street water main replacement project to David Stalker Excavating Ltd. 

The water capital budget was also increased for this phase of the work with additional funds coming from the Warren Street water main project and the projected water surplus for this year. 

Ladysmith Fire Rescue's surplus pumper truck will be heading to the Village of Port Alice.

Council waived the Town's purchasing policy, which provides guiding principles for disposing of assets such as vehicles, and approved the $10,000 offer from the northern Vancouver Island community.

Port Alice has undergone financial challenges in recent years due to the closing of the pulp mill - a major tax payer and employer for the area. 

Port Alice's Council his approved the purchase and the sale is in the process of being finalized. 

Staff will create a policy for a regular practice of Council self-assessment after the idea was proposed by Councillor Tricia McKay.  

A draft Council assessment toolkit was included in the agenda package. It provided guidelines and a survey for individual councillors on how each of them could choose to evaluate their strengths and areas for self-improvement, as well as a separate survey to summarize the effectiveness of the whole governing body. 

Ladysmith Council met for a public hearing and special meeting on June 24, 2019, which altogether wrapped up in 25 minutes. 

The subject of the public hearing was the third reading of bylaw amendments for the redevelopment of the Traveller's Hotel. 

The first bylaw amendment adds a sentence to a section of the Official Community Plan to include that a higher Floor Space Ratio may be considered for the restoration of buildings on the Community Heritage Register. 

The second bylaw lays out site specific changes for allowable floor space ratio, setbacks and building height as part of the Traveller's restoration. It also reduces the number of on site parking spaces from 24 to 9. 

Council directed at its June 3, 2019 meeting, where the bylaw amendments were given first and second reading, that $30,000 be collected for the Municipal Parking Fund in lieu of the foregone parking spaces prior to consideration of final adoption. 

There were no submissions from the public at the public hearing, and a letter sent to Council about the bylaw changes was included in the agenda package. 

The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure will review the site-specific bylaw amendments because the property is within 800 metres of the Trans-Canada Highway. 

Council approved entering into an encroachment agreement with Western Forest Products for a 5’ high page wire fence to be installed along their Rocky Creek Road property. 

The fence will be set back 4 to 8 feet from the curb which is on the Town's right of way.  Steep terrain and trees along Rocky Creek Road make it difficult to install the fence on the WFP property. 

The purpose of the fence is to discourage camping on private property.