Port Ed’s clarification
In a press release by the City of Prince Rupert, Mayor Lee Brain announced on Sept. 8 an agreement made with the District of Port Edward that will see the district pay $500,000 to the city from the Ridley Island Tax Sharing Agreement. In return, the city will reduce rates for Port Edward residents for residential dumping at the landfill. The mayor of Port Edward wanted to clarify.
“First of all these funds are not associated with the Ridley Island Tax Agreement. They are payments for services from our budget,” Mayor Dave MacDonald said.
This year, Port Edward had to pay $300,000 for their sewer sludge disposal at the Prince Rupert dump to reverse the 40 per cent garbage fee increase for residents.
The mayor said the $200,000 next year is offered to support the City of Prince Rupert’s serious infrastructure issues.
“Port Edward will be getting a legal opinion on the Tax Agreement issue prior to any discussions with Prince Rupert,” the mayor said. “We continue to look forward to working together with Prince Rupert. It’s not just a saying on our truck, it’s a mutual understanding on both sides.”
Update on train crossings
There are seven train crossings in Port Edward but the district has decided to upgrade five of them due to cost.
The District has been working on this for years, and Bob Payette, the chief administrative officer, told council they will not be able to get the work done this year. There is a six month procurement process and the district hasn’t started on the process for the material for the upgrades.
All the approvals are now in place. Each of the crossings has been engineered and approved by CN for the upgrades. Council has also approved for guaranteed funds.
The delay came from a prolonged discussion with the harbour authority, Payette said. “It took us longer than anticipated and therefore we’re looking at next year but that gives us another year of budgeting and financial review.”
They will use the extra time to find more support from stakeholders including Prince Rupert Ridley Terminals Inc., Prince Rupert Grain, Pinnacle Renewable Energy Inc. and DP World. The Port of Prince Rupert has already contributed $250,000. At the moment, the district is looking at approximately $1.24 million to upgrade the rail crossings.
Twenty-five year service award
Mayor Dave MacDonald presented the Port Edward fire chief Shawn Pettitt with the long-term service award in recognition of 25 years to the fire service in the community.
Pettitt started with the Port Edward Fire Department in 1988. He became deputy chief and became the First Aid instructor. He became fire chief in 2008.
“On behalf of Port Ed council I want to congratulate you and thank you for your long service and also the service of all your firemen and without you we’d be in a bad spot,” MacDonald said.
The mayor also mentioned that after his last fire, that the RCMP officer was so impressed he spoke with MacDonald and congratulated the district on their firemen and how quick they respond despite being a volunteer-run department.
Third reading for temporary lodging
A joint venture between AltaGas and Metlakatla to convert land they own into camp lodging if a liquefied natural gas project goes ahead is moving ahead in council.
The district held a public hearing held on Sept. 13 on the zoning bylaw no.540, 2013 to permit the temporary lodging.
Bob Payette said there were no naysayers and everyone supported the rezoning at the public meeting. The district also has the Ministry of Transportation approval.
At last Wednesday’s council meeting, the district passed a third reading of the bylaw and next meeting they will be able to vote to adopt the amendment.