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The City of Campbell River acknowledges that we are on the territory of the Laich-Kwil-Tach people of the Wei Wai Kum and We Wai Kai First Nations.
2024-2033 Financial Plan
Council adopted the 2024-2033 Ten Year Financial Plan Bylaw No. 3941, 2023. The 2024 budget includes a moderate tax increase of 3.47 per cent, which works out to an estimated $6 monthly increase on a home of average value in Campbell River, adds needed corporate supports and resources, and maintains current service levels for the community. The 2024 Financial Plan aligns resources with Council and community priorities, with significant investments in improving community safety, particularly in the downtown.
Council adopted Council Remuneration Amendment Bylaw No. 3939, 2023. Last year, Council chose to forgo a wage increase as policy at the time tied increases to inflation, which was particularly high, and committed to have an updated policy in place for 2024. The adoption of this bylaw means that for 2024 and beyond, annual remuneration shall be increased by a percentage amount equal to the percentage increase in the Official Consumer Price Index for Canada at a minimum of one per cent and a maximum of four per cent. This fiscally responsible bylaw will provide stability to the City and cap Council wage increases.
Growing Communities Fund
The City received a $8,587,000 grant from the Provincial Government, under the Growing Communities Fund, and must establish a segregated reserve fund as required by conditions of the grant. Council gave first, second and third readings to Growing Communities Fund Reserve Establishment Bylaw No. 3942, 2023. This fund looks to increase the local housing supply with investments in community infrastructure and amenities. Municipalities are encouraged to work closely with adjacent First Nations, recognizing the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act, to support initiatives that strengthen the social, cultural and economic well-being of Indigenous Peoples.
Quarterly Financial Report
(Received by Council at the December 12, 2023, Committee of the Whole meeting.)
Council received the City’s Quarterly Financial Report for the third quarter of 2023. The report measures the City’s financial performance against the Financial Plan and explains any significant differences in revenue and expenses to assist Council with its strategic decision making. Total revenues for the third quarter of 2023 are largely consistent with expectations, with an increase seen in revenues from building permits, business licences and cemetery plots. Total expenses for the third quarter of 2023 are trending below budget, largely due to a delay in operating project spending, labour vacancies and lower fuel-purchasing costs associated with lower fuel sales at YBL, the Campbell River Airport.
LEGISLATIVE SERVICES UPDATE
Public Notice Bylaw
Council gave third reading to Public Notice Bylaw No. 3938, 2023. The bylaw will modernize how the City gives notice to the public; enhance the City’s objective of open, transparent, and accessible public communications; and create efficiencies and cost-savings within the organization. The proposed changes are informed in part by feedback received through the City’s 2023 Citizen Satisfaction Survey and are in keeping with amendments that were made to the Community Charter and Local Government Act in 2022. The City currently advertises public notices twice in a local newspaper. If the proposed Public Notice Bylaw is adopted, first public notices would be posted on the City’s social media channels and website and second notices would be advertised in the local newspaper.
DEVELOPMENT SERVICES UPDATE
Cannabis Retail Store Licence for 1111 Shopper’s Row
Council defeated a motion to advise the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch that Council supports the issuance of a cannabis retail store licence for 1111 Shopper’s Row. Notices were mailed to neighbouring properties, and Council considered the public feedback received and the lack of support from the RCMP in their decision. Staff will provide the motion to the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch of the Province for their consideration.
Rezoning Application for 2320 Campbell River Road
Council gave first, second and third readings to Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 3925, 2023, to rezone 2320 Campbell River Road from Commercial Six (C-6) to Comprehensive Development Eight (CD8). This would bring the current dwelling units, on five strata lots and common property, into zoning compliance and create new zoning regulations for future residential development at 2320 Campbell River Road. The applicant must provide the City with a copy of a controlled access permit and confirmation that any necessary access improvements have been completed before the amendment bylaw will be considered for adoption. Council decided not to hold a public hearing as the application is consistent with the Official Community Plan (OCP), and Staff provided the required statutory notifications ahead of first reading.
Rezoning Application for 470 Walworth Road
Council gave first, second and third readings to Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 3937, 2023, which would split zone the northern portion of 470 Walworth Road from Residential Estate One (RE-1) to Residential Multiple Two (RM-2) and Residential Multiple One (RM-1). This would allow for the development of a seven-lot, fee simple subdivision with four townhouse units per lot on the RM-2 portion of land. No specific development is envisioned at this time for the property that would be zoned RM-1. Registering a historical statutory right of way and a restrictive covenant to secure the location, dedication and construction of the proposed parkland and road right of ways are required as conditions of rezoning. Council decided not to hold a public hearing as the application is consistent with the OCP, and staff provided the required statutory notifications head of first reading.
LONG RANGE PLANNING AND SUSTAINABILITY UPDATE
Funding Application to Complete Communities Program
Council supported submitting a grant application to the Union of BC Municipalities for the Complete Communities Program. The program supports communities in undertaking geospatial analysis to inform land-use decisions, considering housing typologies and densities, daily amenities, transportation options and supporting infrastructure. Staff are collaborating with the Wei Wai Kum and We Wai Kai First Nations to ensure the Nations’ future land-use needs, development plans and infrastructure requirements will be included in the analysis.
The program aligns with the timing of the City’s review of its OCP and Zoning Bylaw, scheduled to begin in early 2024. The Complete Communities Program grant activities support several of the priorities in the Council Strategic Plan 2023-2026, including Housing, Community Growth, Healthy and Safe Community, and Collaboration.
COMMUNITY SAFETY UPDATE
Noise Exemption for Golf Courses
Following a request from Brad Sinclair, Superintendent, Naturally Pacific Resort, Council received a report about exempting golf courses from the noise regulations in Public Nuisance Bylaw No. 3543, 2014. Council directed staff to prepare an amendment to provide the exemption, which would allow early morning golf course care and maintenance.
Request for Letter of Support for Tree Farm Licence 39, Block 2, Transaction
Council received a request from Brad McRae, Director of Government Relations, Western Forest Products, and directed staff to send a letter of support to the Province for the proposed Tree Farm Licence 39, Block 2, transaction between the K’ómoks, Wei Wai Kum, We Wai Kai and Tlowitsis First Nations and Western Forest Products Inc.
Unsupervised Camping Within City Limits
Council received a petition from the residents of Shady Maples Mobile Home requesting a ban on unsupervised camping within city limits; correspondence from Rodney Semkiw, C & L Supply Rentals, about the encampment on Homewood Road; and concerns about overnight camping at Spirit Square expressed in correspondence from Dak Molnar, Managing Director, The Molnar Group (Real Estate) Inc. Council directed staff to report back with options for responding to the issues associated with encampments at 1299 Homewood Road and downtown, and affirmed their concern for the safety and security of all Campbell River residents and businesses.
HIGHLIGHTS of December 14, 2023 COUNCIL MEETING - NEWS RELEASE