All five members of council were present at the regular meeting of Cache Creek council held on Monday, Nov. 23, which started at 4:30 p.m.
Asset management plan
Chief Financial Officer Cristina Martini confirmed that the village is still waiting to hear about a grant from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to assist with asset management planning. The village is collaborating with Ashcroft in the development of a plan for Cache Creek.
Council discussed a motion to change utility billing from annually to quarterly. Coun. Annette Pittman asked for clarification about how discounts would be applied, and was told that if a person is eligible for a discount, it will be applied to each quarterly bill. The motion was passed unanimously.
Council passed a motion closing the village office from 9:45 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Dec. 17 so staff can attend a Christmas luncheon. At the request of Coun. Lisa Dafoe, the motion was amended to reflect that the luncheon would proceed subject to provincial health orders.
The 2021 meeting schedule was passed unanimously. As per the new schedule, council meetings will be moving from the second and fourth Monday of each month to the first and third Monday of each month beginning in January 2021. With the Village of Ashcroft keeping their meetings on the second and fourth Mondays, it means that the two villages will no longer have meetings on the same nights. Mayor Santo Talarico had previously noted that this would enable council members from each village to attend the other’s meetings if they wished. It was also decided to move to a standard 6 p.m. start time for council meetings, rather than alternating between 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Fire department use of community hall
The Cache Creek Volunteer Fire Department (CCVFD) had requested free use of the Cache Creek community hall and waiving of the damage deposit on Jan. 16, 2021 for a Christmas party, and Dafoe stated she would have to recuse herself due to a potential conflict of interest. However, Councillors Sue Peters and Wendy Coomber asked why it was on the agenda, when council had approved a policy last year granting non-profit groups in the community one free use of the community hall per year.
Three members of Cache Creek council have relationships with members of the CCVFD, an issue which arose at a previous meeting when the department requested free use of the coverall in the park. All three council members recused themselves due to potential conflict of interest, leaving only two council members and no quorum, meaning no motion could be discussed or passed. It was decided to let administration grant the CCVFD their one free use of the community hall for calendar year 2021 without council passing a motion. Peters also stated that as no members of the department benefited financially from the decision, she did not feel that the three council members were in conflict of interest.
Coomber reported on a meeting with Emergency Management BC. She noted that this year saw the third-highest recorded levels on the Thompson River in 70 years of monitoring, and that more of the same is expected going forward. Chief Administrative Officer Martin Dalsin said that a higher than usual snowpack is predicted this year; it is already heavier than normal. There is a 50/50 prospect of an extended winter with a late spring, which normally means warmer temperatures over a very short period of time. “If that happens, we could have more flooding than normal.”
Sewer system grant application
Council discussed a motion to apply for a grant under the UBCM Community Emergency Preparedness Fund, Structural Flood Mitigation, for the Cache Creek sanitary sewer system flood resiliency project. It was one of several projects discussed with TRUE Consulting, and was determined to be the most critical of the projects needing funding. Peters noted that she did not not want the sewer outfall pipe project to fall off the radar, saying that there could be problems with it in the spring flooding. Dalsin said additional work needed to be done on the sewer outfall before funding for that project could be applied for.
The meeting went into closed session at 5:05 p.m.
All minutes and agendas for Cache Creek council meetings can be found on the Village’s website at http://www.village.cachecreek.bc.ca/. The next scheduled regular meeting of council is on Monday, Dec. 14 at 7 p.m.