Water restrictions could be lifted by the end of September if weather forecasts hold true, Creston town council learned at Tuesday’s regular council meeting.
Arrow Creek flows are only 25 per cent of expected levels, town engineering director Colin Farynowski said.
“But after this weekend’s forecasted hotter weather temperatures are expected to drop and we will be able to move back from Stage 3 to Stage 2 next week,” he said. “By Oct. 1 we should be able to lift all restrictions.”
•Council agreed to continue the use of firefighters and equipment to respond to medical emergencies, which Creston Fire Rescue Chief Mike Moore said has had a positive impact on service to the public and for the work experience program firefighters who do most of the responses.
“Our people and equipment are often the first to arrive at a scene and this gives our WEP team valuable experience in their training,” he said.
Moore said that the service is especially important when both of the local ambulances are busy when an emergency call comes in.
The discussion was prompted by a letter for the City of Burnaby, which expressed concerns that increased wait times for BC Ambulance Service response to emergencies was having a negative impact on its fire department’s resources.
Moore said that he understood concerns in larger urban centres, but that the system is working well in smaller rural communities.
•A zoning amendment bylaw for the property at 227 12th Ave. N. was given first and second readings, allowing staff to prepare for a public hearing on a rezoning application that would put the property into the general commercial zone.
The former residential home is now being used as an office by A&KB Ventures.
Council directed staff to discuss parking access options with the property owner. It has received complaints about increased traffic in the alley behind the property since the business purchased the lot and building.
Beddoes said the rezoning fits in with the current Official Community Plan because it extends the existing commercial downtown core.
•Council expressed an interest in changing the cemeteries regulations bylaw to allow spouses of veterans to be buried in the veterans section of the cemetery even if they predecease their veteran spouse. Staff will report back with possible changes to the bylaw.
•Council was informed that the town can accept tax deductible donations for memorials in the dog park. In addition, town policy allows volunteers to do approved work in places like the dog park after they have taken an orientation session.
•A request to install a sidewalk connecting Northwest Boulevard to Canyon Street via Railway Boulevard south of the railroad crossing was referred to 2016 budget discussions.
•The Creston Valley Airport Society has received a Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure grant to do a $210,000 upgrade to the runway lighting system. The grant requires partial matching funds from the town and Regional District of Central Kootenay areas B and C. Council approved a $10,000 share to be accessed from its existing Community Development Fund account, which is held by the RDCK.
•Five new firefighters have been selected for the work experience program. They will replace the current crew when its one-year term is up. Moore thanked Area C director Larry Binks for participating in the candidate interviews, adding that Binks’ experience in his BC Ambulance Service career was a valuable asset.
Only one of the new firefighters is from British Columbia. The others are from Ontario, Moore said.