News Flash

News Flash

Posted on: December 7, 2023

City of Williams Lake Council Highlights - December 5, 2023

CoWL Council Highlights - Dec 5 - Page 1

Halloween fireworks budget to increase in 2024

The City of Williams Lake’s Annual Halloween Fireworks display will continue in 2024, along with an increased budget.

At its Regular Meeting Tuesday, December 5, Council voted to double the existing fireworks budget from $6,000 to $12,000 in2024 after reviewing results from an online public survey following the 2023 event.

Next year’s 2024 Halloween Fireworks will mark the 45thannual show.

The survey was issued after the City received feedback surrounding the event’s noise and potential negative impacts on wildlife, pets and humans.

Of the 924 survey responses, 95per cent said they lived within the City of Williams Lake / Cariboo Regional District Central Recreation Taxation Area. Of those, 77% of respondents said they would like to see the fireworks show continue in the City.

Other options presented in the online survey included a laser light show to music or a drone show, along with an opportunity to provide other suggestions for additions to the event.

Council thanked the community for its feedback and contributions completing the survey.

Council meeting schedule established for 2024

Council established dates for its Regular Meetings in 2024 as follows:

  • January 16 and 30, February 13 and 27, March 12 and 26, April 9 and 23, May 7 and 28, June 11 and 25, July 16, August 13 and 27, September 10 and 24, October 8 and 22, November 5 and 19 and December 3 and 17.

Acting Mayor designations approved for 2024

Council designated Councillors as acting Mayor for 2023/24 for the following schedule: Coun. Delainey(December), Coun. Flaspohler (January), Coun. Lyons (February), Coun. Moses (March), Coun. Nelson (April), Coun. Boehm (May), Coun. Delainey (June), Coun. Flaspohler (July), Coun. Lyons (August), Coun. Moses (September), Coun. Nelson (October) and Coun. Boehm (November).

CRD, NDIT, MIABC appointments finalized

Council made several appointments to the Cariboo Regional District board, Northern Development Initiative Trust advisory board and Municipal Insurance Association of BC board during its Regular Meeting Tuesday.

Mayor Surinderpal Rathor has been appointed to the CRD as the City’s director for 2023/24, while Coun. Scott Nelson will be the City’s alternate director.

Coun. Sheila Boehm was appointed to the NDIT Regional Advisory Board as the City’s director for 2023/24 and Coun. Michael Moses will be the City’s alternate director.

MIABC appointments included Coun. Nelson as the City’s delegate to MIABC, and Coun. Joan Flaspohler and Coun. Boehm as first and second alternates, respectively.

Stampede parade delegation announces official organization status

Representing the Williams Lake Stampede Parade Committee, chair Willie Dye told Council the group recently received official status a non-profit organization and is looking forward to planning for the 2024 Williams Lake Stampede Parade. The City also approved providing $10,000 in funding to host a parade.

Wrestling Day proclaimed in City of Williams Lake

Council proclaimed January 2, 2024 as Wrestling Day in the City of Williams Lake, as well as declared the day a public municipal holiday.

Mayor Surinderpal Rathor noted plans are in the works for a community event in 2025 to help celebrate the City’s unique holiday.

Alliance Church encroachment agreement approved on Third Avenue South

Council approved entering into an encroachment agreement with the Alliance Church for a 20-year term to allow the construction of a new facade entrance encroaching on dedicated City boulevard.

The Alliance Church, located at 261 Third Ave. S., plans to construct a new permanent facade entrance featuring concrete stairs, as well as an accessible ramp, onto the City boulevard adjacent to the property.

Airport funding application to target new airside fuel cabinets

Council approved an application to the BC Air Access Program (BCAAP) Airside Project Stream for airport airside upgrades of new airside fuel cabinets for the amount of $770,000.

The three new cabinets are slated to replace units installed as refurbished fuel cabinets in 1998.

Roots planted for Williams Lake tree protection bylaw

Council gave first three readings to the City of Williams Lake Tree Protection Bylaw.

The bylaw is being introduced as a way to address geotechnical and environmental impacts from tree removal in identified high-risk areas on larger parcels of the City.

As part of its scope, the bylaw will require protected trees to be replaced by new trees.

City to apply to NDIT Local Government Internship Program for 2024

Council approved a 2024 application to Northern Development Initiative Trust for a grant of up to $50,000 to host an intern under the Local Government Internship Program and to commit a financial contribution of $10,000 and staffing resources to the program.

Council noted the City has been a Local Government Internship Program grant recipient on multiple occasions and has greatly enjoyed being a part of the program.

Council updated on 2024-2028 Financial and 10-Year Capital Plan

Following an update by the City’s Chief Financial Officer, Council provided general direction on the preliminary 2024 budget, 2024-2028 Financial Plan and 10-Year Capital Plan. The update from the CFO follows a discussion at the November 28 Committee of Whole Council meeting.

Council will now review further capital items in the new year and will be presenting it to the community for public input in early 2024.

Council to allocate $50,000 annually to endowment fund

Council agreed to allocate $50,000 from Community Forest dividends as an investment into the Williams Lake Endowment Fund. Now in its third year, the fund is earmarked to help fund future grant in aid and fee for service requests from the community.

Asset management program implementation to begin in 2024

Council will proceed with an Asset Management Program in 2024, allocating $110,000 to be included in the 2024 budget for asset management.

Council awards multiple fee for service, grant in aid requests

Council gave approval for several fee for service and grant in aid applications at its Regular Meeting.

The following fee for service and grant in aid requests were granted:

  • Better at Home sidewalk snow clearing ($5,000 for both 2024 and 2025)
  • Cariboo Chilcotin Partners for Literacy Seniors Support Program ($22,920)
  • Cariboo Chilcotin Youth Fiddle Society ($4,000)
  • Gavin Lake Forest Education Society ($2,500)
  • Museum of the Cariboo Chilcotin Society ($2,500)
  • Royal Canadian Legion Branch 139 ($5,000)
  • Williams Lake Stampeders ($5,000)
  • Williams Lake Social Planning Council (preliminarily approved for up to $10,000 pending a discussion at a future Central Cariboo Joint Committee meeting)
  • Guru Nanak Sikh Temple Society ($5,000)

Early 2024 budget approval given for time-sensitive projects

Council gave early budget approval to multiple projects recommended by staff prior to approval of the 2024-28 Financial Plan Bylaw.

The early approval will allow commencement of new projects of a time-sensitive, or weather-dependent nature.

Projects included in the early budget item approval range from paving rehabilitation to airport fuel distribution pump replacement, totalling $2,475,000.

Council to look at expanded water and sewer utilities, adding water and sewer services to Woodland Drive neighbourhood

Council directed staff to prepare a report on water and sewer utilities and potential funding options moving forward, as well as to prepare a report on options for providing water and sewer services to the Woodland Drive neighbourhood.

Five-year lease agreement for landfill site renewed with Cariboo Regional District

Council approved a proposed new agreement for the landfill site on Frizzi Road with the Cariboo Regional District for a five-year term effective January 1, 2024 to December 31, 2028 with three options to renew for a further five years each renewal term.

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