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Posted: July 13, 2014

Happy summer everyone!

utejurasMayor’s Message for June 2014

By Village of Canal Flats Mayor Ute Juras

Well, June has come and gone and thanks to less rain and slower melting snowpack due to cooler nights we have made it through without major flooding.

Village of Canal Flats council has finally adopted the Roads and Traffic Bylaw and this means that the changes made are in effect. For the details on these changes please contact the Village Office or check out the Bylaw on the website.

I do have one correction, however. I reported in an earlier Mayor’s Message that one of these changes included that parking of recreational vehicles, boat trailers and utility trailers on boulevards was permitted from May 15 until September 30. In fact, utility trailers are not included in this. The purpose of making this change was to allow residents with recreational vehicles and boat trailers to be able to park in front of their property during the season without having to put them into storage between trips. I apologize for this error and the confusion it may have caused.

At the last meeting council authorized the chief administrative officer (CAO) and the Mayor to sign the Community Works Fund Agreement under the Administrative Agreement on the Federal Gas Tax Fund between the village and the UBCM (Union of British Columbia Municipalities). This means that we will receive a guaranteed annual grant in the amount of $78,000 until 2024. The Federal Government also expanded the scope of eligible projects. Some of these include road infrastructure, pathways, trails, drinking water, wastewater, recreational infrastructure, cultural and tourism infrastructure and many more. Recent projects where we have used this funding were the Arena Retrofit Project and the Water System Project. For more detailed information on the agreement check out the UBCM website at

Council has authorized the CAO to apply for the Disaster Financial Assistance funding for $34,400. We have been advised that we are eligible for the replacement and paving of McGrath Avenue (from Dunn Street to Arbuckle), the replacement of the drywell at Burns and Grainger and possibly the removal of the slide and sloughing materials at the Painted Ridge Subdivision. These projects are a shared program with the province at 80% and the village at 20%. The total cost is estimated at $43,000 which means the village’s portion would be $8,600.

Sticking with the paving theme. At the last council meeting we authorized staff to apply $140,000 of our Roads and Paving budget to the repair of Grainger Road leading up the beach. Part of this cost of the paving will be funded by the Water Upgrade Project covering only the disturbances caused by crossing the road with waterlines. The additional funds will allow fixing of the remainder. The work will start within the next few weeks.

At that same meeting we also received two Arena Capital Expenditure reports. One on the new lighting installed which will reduce annual user costs and the other on the installation of Low E ceilings in place of insulation.

Both of these projects came in well under budget due to the tireless efforts of our Arena Manager Mathieu Fournier. Mathieu continues to research and tries to come up with more cost effective ways to achieve what has been approved in the budget. This due diligence will translate into us being able to fund additional small projects to improve the arena or reduce the tax requisition for the next two years. This will be a discussion between the Electoral Area F Director Wendy Booth and the Village of Canal Flats Mayor. Thank you so much Mathieu for your continued efforts and dedication. It is very much appreciated!

Ok, now for some fun stuff.

You may or may not have noticed some posters going up regarding the annual Tour of the Arts by the Columbia Valley Arts Society. This year they decided on a different kind of fundraiser. They asked the three Columbia Valley mayors, Radium Hot Spring’s Dee Conklin, Invermere’s Gerry Taft and I to partner with a local artist and come up with a piece of art.

Dee created a glassblown piece with Bavin Glassworks; Gerry worked with Crossroads Collectives to create a piece made out of wood and I tried my luck with pottery and created a yarn bowl coached by Tom Symington and Gerry George of Columbia Ridge Pottery.

The public is now encouraged to vote for their favorite piece of art by purchasing votes for $1 each. You may vote as many times as you want. Display of the art works and voting is located at the Radium Visitor’s Centre, Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce at the crossroads in Invermere and at the Columbia Discovery Centre here in Canal Flats. Voting is also available at the June 28 – August 2 Invermere Farmer’s Market with final voting throughout the day at the August 3 Tour of the Arts.

I also have some ballots, so if you can’t get to any of these locations feel free to contact me. The winning mayor will be announced at the Invermere Music Fest the evening of August 3. The winning mayor will receive $500 to a charity of their choice generously provided by Wende Brash of ReMax Realty. I have chosen to give the money to the Hospice Society should I win.

CFParkVIewProceeds of the votes will go to the CV Arts which support many of our Canal Flats artists. Please vote and vote often for these worthy causes!

Last, but certainly not least, I had the pleasure of attending the Canada Day celebration this year at the beach.

A big thank you goes out to Lee-Ann Lechman for organizing the cake and serving it as well as the Fire Department for an incredible display of Fireworks. Also thanks to all who came out to enjoy the festivities and our beautiful beach.

Have a great July; enjoy the sunshine, play lots but most importantly stay safe!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions/concerns (Phone: 250-489-9070, E-mail: [email protected])

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