Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Council Timeline: Monday, August 23, 2021

City Council took to the road to the Lester Centre with a full list on the to do list Monday,
the night featuring a 
Public Hearing, Committee of the Whole session and
Regular Council session all taking place on the night 

A lengthy opportunity for residents of the city to express their thoughts on a rezoning request towards development of an apartment building on the city's east side dominated much of the only Council session for August, a session that was shifted to the Lester Centre on Monday night to accommodate the Public Hearing on the night.

That Public Hearing which lasted over two and half hours providing for a range of takeaways before the process was suspended until September.

Monday's session also provided a glimpse at the plans for the CN Building renovation, with Architect Charlie Maddison from Boni-Maddison providing an extensive overview of the work ahead. Once finished, the project will see the Wheelhouse Brewing Company move in to the facility after the city makes use of grant funding towards the extensive renovation work required.

Council also received a range of reports from the Chief Financial Officer and contract planner from iPlan.

Included in those a review of the Permissive Property Tax Exemptions list for 2022 and final approval for the proposed Park Avenue Modular Travellers Hotel.

The night ended with Questions and Comments from Councillors Adey, Cunningham and Randhawa.

Some background on the work of Council for the night can be reviewed from the Regular Agenda package for the August 23 Session available here.  

The Agenda for the Committee of the Whole Session can be explored here.

Council also hosted a Closed meeting, marking the thirteenth such session which has been closed to the public in 2021.  

The details related to the reasons for the in camera session can be reviewed here

The city's notes on the Public hearing can be reviewed here

Further information from our overview and placement in the video archive can be found below, with the permanent record of the council minutes added as they are posted to the city website. 

In attendance Monday, August 23, 2021

Mayor Lee Brain -- Present 
Councillor Nick Adey -- Present 
Councillor Barry Cunningham -- Present 
Councillor Blair Mirau -- Present
Councillor Reid Skelton-Morven -- Present
Councillor Wade Niesh -- Present 
Councillor Gurvinder Randhawa -- Present 

Video Archive for Monday, August 23, 2021


Public Hearing 

( 0:00 -- 2:30:00 )The City Council hosted a Public Hearing into a rezoning request towards a propose Apartment Building off of 11th Avenue East. The session was a lengthy one lasting over two hours and thirty minutes and providing a forum for a range of opinions and statements related to the need for affordable housing in the community, as well as the opportunity for those living in close proximity to the land in question to share their concerns over some of that planning.

Our Account of the Public Hearing can be reviewed here.


Committee of the Whole Session  

( 0:00 -- 1:00  ) Committee of the Whole Session for Monday, August 23, 2021 -- Mayor Lee Brain called the session to order, adopting past minutes and the Agenda for the session underway, 

( 1:00 -- 41:00  ) Presentation from Charlie Maddison of Boni-Maddison Architects  --  The architect who is working the City's renovation of the CN Building on the waterfront provided a thirty minute overview of his work to this point and what's to come as part of the Development Permit Application process now underway.

Council would review the topic further into the Regular Council session. 

( 41:00 -- 42:00 ) Comments from the Public 

The Mayor noted that there were few members of the public remaining in attendance to participate in the Comment period, and with that no one spoke to comments or questions for Council.

 Council then adjourned to the Regular Session for the night.


Regular Council Session

( 42:00 -- 43:00  ) Regular City Council Session for Monday, August 23, 2021 -- Mayor Lee Brain called the session to order, adopting past minutes and the Agenda for the session, adding one item to the night's work, that a traffic report related to the Park Avenue Hotel proposal.

( 43:00 -- 44:00  ) Report from CFO Corinne Bomben presenting the June 2021 Financial Variance Report    -- Ms. Bomben provided some details on the results of the June variance and noted that the various utilities were all continuing to perform as expected, with capital projects continuing through the summer. She also outlined that the dam and land fill projects were still under construction and are expected to be completed by within the calendar year.

Council received the report for consideration.

( 44:00 -- 46:30  ) Report from iPlan, Mr. Robert Buchan provided a short overview of a Development Variance Request for a property on Prince Rupert Boulevard  -- The request for a variance related to a carport that has been constructed in the wrong location and will require a variance to make it a legal at its location. Councillor Niesh observed of his frustration with the work being done without going through the proper process and how the home owners have now have come looking for a variance. 

From that, City Council moved the process forward for public comment from those who may be affected by the work.

( 46:30 -- 55:00   ) Report from iPlan, Mr. Robert Buchan provided a short review  -- Council returned to the topic of the CN Building and a variance request by the City for parking related themes. To that topic the Mayor led off the discussion, starting with a look at the timeline of the project and other elements.

See our item on the presentation here for the full scope of the overview and Council's discussion.

Towards the Development Permit approval Council offered their approval and moved the process forward.

( 55:00 -- 55:30 ) Review of Public Hearing related to 11th Avenue East Apartment proposal zoning  -- With the Mayor having suspended the Public Hearing, which will resume in September, Council tabled the motion on the Rezoning issue without any further discussion.

( 55:30 -- 56:30 ) A Report from the Chiel Financial Officer on the Permissive Tax Exemption Bylaw -- Ms. Corrine Bomben outlined the scope of the 2022 bylaw which will feature two changes. The first changing the location of the Jehovah Witness House of worship, as well as elements related to the city's sub lease of space at the Canfisco Wharehouse to the Prince Rupert Gymnastics Association and the Wheelhouse Brewery.

Council had no comments or discussion on the report and moved it forward towards adoption.

( 56:30 -- 58:30   ) Report from iPlan related to the proposed Park Avenue Modular hotel  -- The Mayor outlined the nature of the next step towards approval of the proposed development. In follow up conversation, Councillor Niesh, referencing the Public Hearing of earlier in the evening, spoke to the need for all forms of housing, including temporary such as the hotel would offer. 

Councillor Cunningham also offered his support towards it, thanking the proponent for his patience during the lengthy process that it required.

Council then approved the motion and approved the project.

( 58:30 -- 1:01:30  ) Questions, Comments, Reports or Inquiries from Council 

Councillor Adey spoke of his impressions of the downtown Urban Garden project and how he was incredibly impressed by the energy and commitment of the people behind it, as well as from their work a look at the wide range of produce that can be grown in Prince Rupert. He also noted of the symbolic nature of how a vacant city block which now has something growing there and how he is pleased to see it.

Councillor Cunningham asked about the status of the city's plans to host Northern Health for an information session. He was advised that representatives from Northern Health would like to have a conversation with the City prior to arranging for a meeting.

Councillor Randhawa offered up his comments related to a recent training program hosted by the two LPG terminals which involved the Prince Rupert Fire/Rescue, RCMP, Coast Guard and other agencies and how he was impressed by the event.

Mr. Randhawa also noted of some concerns on health he has received from the public and how they should be explored at the planned public information  session.

And with that the August 23rd session came to an end.

You can access our Council Session Archive page, where a number of items regarding the Council session, including links to local media coverage can also be found.

As always, our Council Timeline is only a reflection of our observations from the Council Session of the night. Be sure to consult with the official minutes from the City, when posted to their website for further review.

Official minutes of the Regular Council Session from August 23, 2021
(not available yet)

The next scheduled Regular Council session as part of their reduced summer schedule will take place on Monday, September 20th.


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