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Prince Rupert News in Brief: Nov. 23

McBride traffic lights update, Minister Coleman outlines PNW timeline, yacht club building moves forward, relaxed liquor laws and more

  • Wed Nov 23rd, 2016 8:00am
  • News

Yacht Club building earns permit

A development variance permit was granted by Rupert council to 121 George Hills Way (Prince Rupert Rowing and Yacht Club) for the building to exceed the maximum height outlined by the current zoning bylaw. The building can now be built up to 47 feet, exceeding the 35 feet limit, due to the lighthouse’s height.

Comments were submitted about the lighthouse’s light, with some residents not wanting it to be so bright as to cause light pollution. The city does not regulate lighting from buildings like this, said Zeno Krekic, but also said the organization is a reputable one and should work with residents to find a solution. The light is a 500 watt bulb. The effects on the view of the harbour were also determined to be minimal.

Council supports NDIT application

Rupert council supported a motion for staff to apply for a grant of up to $20,000 from Northern Development Initiative Trust for the Business Facade Improvement Program. The program provides funding for municipalities to enhance economic development by encouraging private sector investment in business facade improvements to create a positive visual impact.

Minister Coleman details PNW timeline

Pacific NorthWest LNG’s investors are scheduled to complete their total review of the project and surrounding market conditions, and decide on the immediate fate of the project in summer 2017.

That was the message given to B.C. Minister of Natural Gas Development Rich Coleman approximately a month ago by [company primary stakeholder] Petronas executives in Malaysia.

After reports surfaced last week through Bloomberg that Coleman was given an April 2017 date on whether the company would proceed with the project or not, the Ministry of Natural Gas Development confirmed that a decision is expected by Petronas and its partners before the end of the summer.

“Minister Coleman met with Petronas executives about a month ago in Malaysia. The business development trip was an opportunity for the minister to meet with the recently appointed chairman of the board for both Progress Energy Canada Ltd. and Pacific NorthWest LNG Datuk Mohd Anuar Taib,” the ministry outlined in an email late last week.

“Petronas and their partners are in the process of reviewing the various elements of their proposal, along with the 190 conditions within the federal government’s environmental approval. The company indicated it would complete the review sometime next summer,” ministry representatives continued, adding that the Malaysian trip was not related to the 2017 opening of a B.C. trade office.

McBride traffic lights to be replaced

An intersection traffic light at Third Avenue and McBride Street will take a ‘few weeks’ to be replaced after a vehicle collided with a traffic signal pole and knocked it off its base.

The intersection, which has become a four-way traffic stop with blinking red lights, is one of the busiest in Prince Rupert during peak traffic hours, but remains a priority for the Ministry of Transportation.

“Last week, an incident occurred involving a single vehicle colliding with the traffic signal pole on North East corner of 3rd and McBride. The impact required the removal of the damaged pole to ensure the safety of people using the intersection. Until the signal pole is replaced, the intersection will operate as a four-way stop,” wrote Alexandra Korinowsky, Ministry of Transportation public affairs officer late last week in an email.

“Due to the location and type of damage and surrounding infrastructure, an engineered repair design is required, which is currently underway. We anticipate to have the work complete within the next few weeks. This is a top priority for the ministry and we appreciate everyone’s patience while we work to have repairs made as soon as possible,” she wrote.

Relaxed liquor laws

The provincial government will ease the liquor licence for businesses looking to add alcohol to their revenue stream.

As of Jan. 23, 2017, businesses from barber shops to books stores can apply for a liquor licence to serve customers. The province stated in a press release on Nov. 16 that this will add opportunity for manufacturers such as craft breweries and wineries to sell products to a broader range of businesses.

Staff will still have to be certified to serve and the businesses will still have to abide by the same regulations as all licensees. Earlier this month, the province also announced that licensed restaurants, bars and caterers will be allowed to create infused or aged liquor to serve their own craft cocktails.

The move follows an evolving practice of aging cocktails that has become popular in the U.K., the U.S. and other provinces in Canada.

B.C. laws currently require liquor to be poured and mixed in front of customers and the product can’t be infused or aged, it must come from the original bottle.

Four Rupert businesses up for awards

Entrepreneurs are recognized across the province in the Small Business BC Awards and there are four Prince Rupert businesses who have been nominated for one or two categories.

The Argosy is nominated for best marketer, Premier’s People’s Choice; Good Times Games and Electronics is nominated for best community impact; Wheelhouse Brewing Company is nominated for Premier’s people’s choice, best company; Rupert Lawn & Garden is nominated for best community impact and Premier’s people’s choice.

Small businesses can be nominated by anyone online, or they can also nominate themselves. Supporters can vote for the businesses online and the deadline to vote is Nov. 30. The top 10 companies with the most votes move on and are given one month to appeal to the panel of judges.

The finalists will be announced on Dec. 12 and the winners will be announced Feb. 23, 2017.

Rupert radio station shuts down

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has revoked the Aboriginal Christian Voice Network’s broadcasting licence for CIAJ-FM 100.7FM in Prince Rupert.

The network had requested that the CRTC terminate its licence on Oct. 25.

In 1999, the non-profit, non-commercial radio station began operation and featured Christian music and religious programming. The station’s licence was renewed in 2006, when it also became the Aboriginal Christian Voice Network.