At a Committee of the Whole meeting on June 7, Cache Creek council discussed the idea of having a public meeting regarding the pool, but made no motion about setting a date.
Coun. Wendy Coomber noted that according to the province’s Restart Plan, there will be an increased ability to hold public meetings after Sept. 7 if more than 70 per cent of the population aged 18 or older has received at least one COVID-19 vaccination, and case counts and hospitalizations remain low.
“I’d like to see us finally fulfill our promise to the public to have that meeting regarding the pool,” said Coomber. In May 2019 and again in August of that year, the village promised a public meeting about the future of the Cache Creek pool, which did not open in 2020 and remains closed in 2021.
At a council meeting in February 2021, Mayor Santo Talarico said that a public meeting about the pool could not be held until after this year’s budget discussions concluded.
“The meeting won’t necessarily be a consultation,” said Coomber, “but it will at least be a public meeting regarding the pool. Members of the public might come up with some really good ideas for us that we haven’t considered.”
Coun. Sue Peters said she would like to see such a meeting opened to more than just the pool and have more communication.
“We committed to town hall meetings,” she said. “Hopefully our new CAO will be in place, and we can introduce them and talk about things over the last year-and-a-half.”
Council made a motion to send the village’s policy on fire inspections and its unsightly premises bylaw to the lawyers, as both could come into play once a joint bylaw officer is hired. “They should be sent to the lawyers to read over to make sure they’re adequate for carrying out the remedial action requirements,” said Coomber. Talarico suggested it was something that could be dealt with when a new CAO is hired, but Coomber said they should be sent now to make sure all the steps are in place to proceed with remedial action.
There was a discussion about reopening village facilities and allowing the public to once again attend council meetings. CFO Cristina Martini said she was getting inquiries about when the gym at the community hall would reopen, and Coomber said she could not see having a public gallery back at council meetings before Sept. 7. Peters said that the Ashcroft and District Lions Club was tentatively planning to restart Bingo at the community hall in September, adding that everyone is in “wait and see” mode at the moment.
The final item of business was about developing job descriptions for positions within the village. Coomber noted that this subject had come up in the past, and that it would be nice to start talking about it in advance of union negotiations.
Martini noted that it was an administrative task to develop job descriptions, adding that she and the new CAO would be able to develop a strategy and talk to public works, then present a report to council. Peters noted that job descriptions are important as a point of reference: “They’re a good training and disciplinary tool. I’d like to see a draft and we can have input into it.”
“We’ve talked in the past about what we’d like to see for our village,” said Coomber. “Our unionized staff have a large role to play in that. We can take a closer look at what we’re doing with our person power and align that better with our vision for the village.”
The meeting, which started at 4:30 p.m., ended at 4:46 p.m.