Three out of the four accounts of arson in the North Coast region have been in the Port Edward trailer park.
Prince Rupert RCMP Inspector Blake Ward presented his quarterly report at the district council meeting on Sept. 12, and explained that they are investigating the trailer fires but he feels that they weren’t lit intentionally.
“It’s not an arsonist going around trying to torch things, the intent of them being lit may not be purposeful. It may be someone being in there and not paying attention to what they’re doing,” Insp. Ward said.
Earlier this week, the District of Port Edward began to clear the trailers on Stonecliff Properties’ land after the district imposed its “unsightly premises bylaw” following the most recent fire in June.
“We’ll pay if she doesn’t and then it’ll go on her tax bill, it’s that simple,” said Mayor Dave MacDonald.
The first two trailers had been taken down as of Tuesday, Sept. 12. The work is expected to be complete by next week.
Council moved to rezone a parcel of land next to the municipal office and school for multi-family residential to accommodate seniors housing.
Last year, the province approved of Port Edward’s request for affordable seniors housing. An eight to 10 unit building is planned to be built next to the district’s community centre.
The district raised concern over Greyhound filiing a request with the transportation review board to cut passenger services to Prince Rupert and other northern B.C. communities.
“With all these buses being subsidized I understand why they’re doing this,” MacDonald said, pointing out the provincially subsidized Highway 16 bus and the Northern Health connection service bus.
Council passed a motion to send letter to the company asking it to keep its passenger services in the region.
At the end of the month, CN is upgrading four train crossings in Port Edward at a cost of $1.5 million. Adding the crossings to the rail route will end train whistling noise whenever the train passes through district.
The district’s $975,000 sewer and stormwater pipe upgrade project will also be complete before the end of the year.
Clean, neat and green contest
The district is giving some incentive to property owners to improve the look of their land. The contest started in August, and asked residents to take a “before” photo of their property, and then by the Sept. 30 deadline they will submit an “after” photo of the work done to improve their lot’s façade.
First place will receive $500 and second prize is $250. Only four property owners have signed up so far. Anyone interested in signing up last minute can call the District of Port Edward office (250-628-3667).