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North Coast Regional District in brief: May 26 meeting

Re-branding pricing negotiated, recycling depot upgrades, NCRD passes audit, Oona River celebrations
The NCRD applied for $1.8 million in funds to upgrade and repair some aspects of the Regional Recycling Depot. File photo

Re-branding pricing negotiated

The North Coast Regional District continues to negotiate its re-branding initiative price tag, originally billed at $80,000.

Staff are looking to have that number reduced through negotiations with successful proposal contractor UrbanUp Studios Inc. $20,000 has been applied for through Northern Development Initiative Trust’s Marketing Initiatives Program to cover part of the costs. The final bill will be decided upon later this spring.

Recycling depot upgrades

The NRCD board provided a resolution of support for the regional district’s application for $1,760,490 from the UBCM (Union of B.C. Municipalities) Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF).

If successful with the grant, the money would cover 100 per cent of the costs associated with implementing repairs and upgrades needed for the Regional Recycling Depot after a capital replacements plan was developed last year.

The project would take place over two years from 2018-2019 and include a new roof installation, an enclosure of the crusher portion of the glass crusher and an exhaust fan in the room, repairs to damaged interior walls and protection for structural columns, concrete floor slab crack repairs, installing a storage bunker for loose cardboard, electrical code and lighting system compliance repairs, upgrading the fire alarm and energy systems, constructing an elevated loading dock, truck scale and small vertical baler, and more.

The depot is facing growth as more communities in the area utilize the depot such as Port Edward, Haida Gwaii, Metlakatla and clients, which include School District 52, the hospital, Ridley Terminals Inc. and Prince Rupert Grain.

NCRD passes audit

A report via teleconference by Steve Kietzmann, an accountant for Carlyle Shepherd & Co., on the draft Audited Financial Statements for 2016 for the regional district resulted in a passing grade.

“Overall the regional district is in good financial health,” said Kietzmann.

“An area we look at is the recycling revenue. Is everything received for what’s being shipped out? … As a general comment there, which I find very positive is the surplus has increased in the recycling function.”

Liabilities increased as a result of payroll accrual, cash and investments increased by over $500,000, while cash due from municipalities dropped from $15.9 million to $14.9 million. Staff remuneration and benefits totalled over $1.2 million, director remuneration was $155,475 and director travel added up to $39,893. The district is also looking to hire a full-time planner in the future.

The board then approved the draft statements.

Oona River celebrations

The NCRD board resolved to contribute $1,300 from the district’s surplus in mainland recreation funding to Oona River’s Canada 150 celebrations from June 30 to July 3. Organizer Peter Brown requested a donation of up to $2,000 for the costs of guest ferry transportation to and from Prince Rupert.

“In light of it being Canada 150 and with it being surplus funding we can move forward. It’s more of a one-time thing,” said director Mike Racz.

Friday evening includes a welcoming, with events all day Saturday and a breakfast planned for Sunday. For more information, visit the Oona River 2017 Canada Day Event page on Facebook.

NCRD joins coastal association

In addition to being a part of the North Central Local Government Association (NCLGA), the NCRD was recently accepted as a member of the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities (AVICC).

AVICC members approved the inclusion at its AGM in April in Campbell River. All municipalities in the NCRD can now be approved for membership with AVICC. The NCRD now carries dual membership with the NCLGA and AVICC.

The membership inquiry was made by NCRD vice-chair Des Nobels late last year and supported by director Greg Martin. Martin attended the AGM and spoke to membership on the request, and rescinded the Village of Queen Charlotte’s membership with the NCLGA in favour of AVICC, citing shared issues with the coastal association as opposed to the more interior-based NCLGA.

The NCRD will pay $229 in membership dues to AVICC on top of its membership dues to the NCLGA.

“That’s comparably 1/5 or 1/6 to what we pay to NCLGA,” said NCRD corporate officer Daniel Fish.

Staff will now look into costs of attending next year’s AVICC AGM in Victoria.

Trestle, dolphin replacement

BC Ferries began a $12 million project to replace a timber trestle and two mooring dolphins on May 23 at the ferry terminal. The expected completion date is in December.

“There will be no effect on the sailing schedule through the summer, however commencing in October 2017 the sailing schedule will be altered to accommodate the installation of the trestle sections,” wrote the company in a correspondence to the NCRD.