To lend assistance to the project, Prince Rupert City Council on Monday evening voted to waive an hour of ice rental fees at the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre to allow for a charity skate in aid of the local Food Bank operated by the Salvation Army.
Mayor Brain outlined the background to the request at Monday's Council Session which would see the Bank of Montreal host a Free public skating session at the Civic Centre, with admission gained by participants through the donation of food to be directed towards the Food Bank.
The request did provide for some discussion by Council members who weighed the lost revenue for the hour with the prospect of providing assistance to the Food Bank which finds its load increase significantly during the holiday season.
Councillor Kinney had a question on the date of the event, which was not known at this time, while Councillor Cunningham asked about the cost of the ice time that had been requested. As there has been date or time indicated at this time, he was advised it would depend on when the Bank intended to host their event.
Councillor Wade Niesh raised his concerns over the idea, calling attention to the position the city was put in recently when it came to raising the fees and charges and suggested that giving away the time was not going to benefit the city towards keeping the place open.
He also has some thoughts to share as to why the Bank didn't donate the money towards the cost, or why another organization didn't step forward to cover the cost. Mr. Niesh also cautioned Council that providing for the free ice rental could set a precedent for other groups to also come forward to ask for free time at the arena in the future.
The Mayor noted that while they will face a number of these requests, he pointed towards the charity aspect of the request and how it will benefit the community, moving the topic forward for Council to decide.
Councillor Cunningham spoke in favour of the request noting the assistance that it will provide to the food bank, which is very busy at this time of the year and is facing larger demand with the issues related to the loss of employment and hours worked at the Canadian Fish Cannery.
The Mayor also found the charity aspect of the request as the area which would guide him on his decision, adding his support to the Bank of Montreal's bid for the rental waiver.
Council provided their positive vote at the end of their discussion.
You can review the discussion from the City's Video Archive starting at the 53 minute mark.
The Bank of Montreal will be using the Public Skate for the Food Bank as part of their plans for their Day of Caring event, where employees of the bank give back to the community.
Once the event has been announced you can find the details on our Community Events Listings and archive page, both are found as part of our right hand column listings.
More items related to Monday's Council Session can be found on our Council Timeline feature, while further background on City Council Discussions can be reviewed on our Archive page.