Smithers Town Hall. (File photo)

Smithers Town Hall. (File photo)

Smithers council’s last meeting ties up loose ends

OCP and Zoning Bylaw adopted

It was an unusually quiet and short meeting of Smithers council on Oct. 11 as the outgoing council wrapped up its four-year term.

Councillor Lorne Benson was absent and Councillors Greg Brown and Frank Wray joined via Zoom.

It was the last regular meeting of the term and a few loose ends were tied up.

The Official Community Plan (OCP) and the Zoning Bylaw were adopted.

READ MORE: Public hearing for community plan rescheduled following confusion

The OCP was in the works for more than a year. The OCP is a general statement of the broad objectives and policies of the local government respecting the character of existing and proposed land use and servicing requirements in the area covered by the Plan. It serves as the foundation for all policies, regulations, and decisions pertaining to land use and development in a municipality. It has been 12 years since Smithers updated it.

Also on the agenda, was an official request from the Smithers Skateboard Park Society for $75,000. The society would like the money to go toward landscaping around the new park. The society was hoping for a quick answer to help them get other grant money to finish the new facility, however, they did not get that. At the Oct. 11 meeting, council decided to put off the discussions until budget deliberations in November. To date, the town has not contributed financially to the project.

At the meeting, council did authorize the selected bid process for project management services for the Arena Ice Plants Consolidation Project. They also allowed town staff to award that project contract to Colliers Project Leaders at the estimated fee of $75,000.

According to a report to council, during spring/summer 2022, the town and Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako staff determined that the curling rink ice plant would be included in the consolidation project, and that the new arena waste heat recovery system design for the pool would also be included.

A new, increased budget was established to accommodate the RDBN inclusion The final design is ongoing and tendering is expected later this year with construction slated for next summer.

The meeting ended with some emotional good-byes as a majority of the councillors were not seeking reelection and knew their time was up around the table.

In the Oct. 15 election, Gladys Atrill was returned as mayor. The only two councillors who sought reelection, John Buikema and Frank Wray were also successful.

They will be joined by four new faces at the council table when the new term begins Nov. 8.


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