Council to review options for annual Halloween Fireworks alternative
At its Regular Meeting on Tuesday, May 2, City of Williams Lake Council asked staff to prepare a report for potential alternatives to the Halloween Fireworks show put on annually by the City at the Williams Lake Stampede Grounds on October 31.
The direction was determined after Council received a letter from the Williams Lake Trail Riders Association noting adverse impacts of the fireworks display on animals, such as horses stabled at the Grounds, family pets and wildlife within the area.
Upon receiving the report with a list of potential alternatives from City staff, Council will decide on a direction moving forward.
Council offers direction to City bylaw services on addressing homeless encampments
Council endorsed some immediate direction for City Bylaw Services Officers to address homeless encampments in the City.
The short-term direction includes the ability for bylaw services officers to take additional steps to deal with encampments within the city, including identifying temporary overnight locations, weighing the pros and cons of each option.
Council also agreed to continue advocating for more support from both the Provincial and Federal governments surrounding the complex issue of homelessness in Williams Lake.
Council also stressed the importance of a creating public communication strategy to obtain feedback on components surrounding homelessness in the community and its effects on all residents.
City proclaims May 14-20 Victims of Crime Week
Following a presentation from Penny Stavast, Director of Antiviolence Programs with Canadian Mental Health Association - Cariboo Chilcotin Branch, Council proclaimed the week of May 14-20 Victims of Crime Week. Stavast also invited Council to attend the upcoming Williams Lake Sexual Assault Centre and Community Based Victim Services Open House on Tuesday, May 16.
Stavast said she has been working with Interior Health and the Cariboo Memorial Hospital to offer more supports for victims of power-based crimes including domestic violence, child abuse and criminal harassment.
Council endorses GoByBike Week and Politician on a Pedal Challenge
Following a presentation from Scout Island Nature Centre Air Aware Educator Erin Hitchcock, along with representatives from Streets for All Williams Lake, Council proclaimed the week of May 29 to June 4, 2023 'GoByBike Week' in the City and encouraged the community to participate.
Council was also invited to participated in the Politician on a Pedal Challenge during this week.
Accessory Dwelling Units zoning bylaw adopted
Council adopted a bylaw to allow for the regulation and streamlining of the permitting process for the construction and use of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) within the City.
An accessory dwelling unit (ADU) is a small, standalone house located on an existing lot with the main house. An ADU can have one or two storeys and can be above a detached garage. ADUs must meet the zoning regulations and building code, and they must receive a building permit before construction.
ADUs were initially proposed as one solution to help address a housing shortage in the community.
Bike bridge budget updated to reflect increase in costs
Council approved a bike bridge construction budget increase of $16,000 and an increase to the engineering budget of $18,000 for costs associated with rebuilding a bike bridge in the Williams Lake River Valley following damage caused by the devastating floods of 2020. The project originally started in 2018, however, following the flood event, the bridge could not be installed as originally constructed.
City to support Yeqox Nilin Justice Society with Indigenous Court anniversary event
Council agreed to support the Yeqox Nilin Justice Society's Indigenous Court Anniversary Event coming up June 2 at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex.
Following a presentation from Yeqox Nilin Justice Society staff, Council approved a request for $5,000 to be drawn from leftover grant-in-aids funds to support the event.
The 2.5 year anniversary of Indigenous Court - an alternative justice system - will mark the official grand opening after the event was postponed several times due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Auditor presents City's 2022 audited financial statements and auditor's report
Council received and approved its 2022 City of Williams Lake annual financial statements, as well as the auditor's report.
During a presentation, Kane Fraser of MNP Chartered Professional Accounts, said the City is in good financial standing and its financial statements present fairly.
Council adopts code of conduct
Council has adopted a Code of Conduct to outline expectations for Councilmembers to adhere to when carrying out their duties as elected officials.
The Code of Conduct is outlines several principles for guidance including discrimination, harassment and workplace behaviour, usage of social media, and measures for compliance and enforcement.
Council approves street closures for upcoming events
Council approved temporary street closures for the upcoming Sunday, May 7 Realm of Toys Easter Festival (sections of Oliver Street and Second Avenue North) and the Wednesday, June 21 National Indigenous Peoples Day Celebrations and Parade at 10 am in downtown Williams Lake.