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Posted: May 18, 2017

Sparwood Council Facts

The following is a synopsis of what occurred during the May 15 District of Sparwood council meeting.


Centermount Coal

Karen Mills and Dan Farmer from Centermount Coal provided an overview of the Bingay Main Coal Project operations and Environmental Assessment application. The property is located approximately 21 km north of Elkford near the confluence of Bingay Creek and the Elk River.  Total disturbance area of the mine site, excluding the rail line, and access road is estimated at less than 450 ha.  The proposed coal mine will include an open pit with intended use for 12 years with an estimated annual production of one million tonnes of clean coal. Centermount Coal is committed to adhering to the Elk Valley Water Quality Plan, eliminating tailings ponds, liaising with local stakeholders, operating efficiently and safely, and leaving a positive footprint through responsible reclamation.


Development Variance Permit – 1200 Matevic Road

Council authorized notices to be sent out to owners and occupants residing within 60 m of 1200 Matevic Road to advise them that they will be considering varying a section of the Zoning Bylaw at the June 19 regular meeting. The variance, if approved, will reduce the side yard setback from 7.62 m (25 ft) to 2.13 m (7 ft) for the construction of a storage building. If you believe you will be affected by this variance and wish to share comments with council prior to their consideration, you will be provided an opportunity to be heard at the June 19 council meeting, or you may submit your comments in writing to the District of Sparwood before 1 p.m. on Monday, June 19.

Search and Rescue Building

Council approved the contract with Belfor Property Restoration to complete the repairs to the (district-owned) Search and Rescue building, located at 705 Douglas Fir Road, following last year’s fire (pictured above) which took place in December. The contract authorizes a maximum expenditure of up to $166,003.89. The funding for this work is covered by the district’s insurance provider.

Climate Action Progress

In 2008, the district signed the BC Climate Action Charter which is a non-legally binding commitment to make corporate operations carbon neutral by 2012, to measure and report on corporate emissions, and to work toward creating a more compact, complete, energy efficient community. The Carbon Action Revenue Incentive Program (CARIP) is a conditional grant program that provides funding to BC Climate Action Charter (Charter) signatories equivalent to one hundred percent of the carbon taxes that they pay directly. In order to receive the 2017 CARIP grant, the District is required to report publicly on climate actions taken to support GHG reductions in our community and corporate operations by June 1.  This report is available on our website at www.sparwood.ca/climate-action.

Public Relations Committee

The following recommendations from the Public Relations Committee Meeting held May 8 were endorsed by council:

  1.  Development of a policy to recognize volunteers in the community;
  2.  The District of Sparwood float only attend the Coal Miner Days parade in 2017;
  3.  Staff refer all requests received from individuals and/or organizations for printing large banners to a private printing company; and
  4.  Increase the individual value of the scholarships from $500 to $1,000 for a total annual award of $2,000 to eligible Sparwood Secondary students.


Tax Rates Bylaw

Tax Rates Bylaw 1205, 2017, Amendment Bylaw 1206, 2017 was given first three readings at the regular meeting on May 15, 2017 and later adopted at a special meeting on May 17, 2017. When the Tax Rates Bylaw 1205, 2017 was adopted at a special meeting on May 8, there was an incorrect rate for the Elk Valley Tax Sharing Agreement. In order to correct this rate an amendment to the bylaw was required.

Other News

Congratulations Sparwood Secondary Class of 2017

Your graduation is a great achievement, but this is just the beginning.  Your future will be filled with goals, dreams, challenges, and opportunities that will bring you fulfillment and help you make a positive difference in the world.  We wish you good luck as you start a new chapter of your lives and hope you find yourselves along the way.  Congratulations graduates!

Living, camping and hiking in Bear Country

Bears have an incredibly acute sense of smell and can smell the smallest item of food at great distance. Bears are attracted to:

  •  Anything that you have cooked or are about to cook;
  •  Dirty BBQs or camp stoves;
  •  Any item associated with food prep (dishrags, pots, etc.);
  •  Grey water pails and discharge;
  •  Garbage, wrappers, empty bottles, cans, condiments, or anything that has had contact with food;
  •  Containers for gas, oil, or other petroleum products; and
  •  Pet food bowls.

If you encounter a bear while out hiking or within your campsite:

  •  Remain calm and do not run, running can trigger an attack. Never turn your back on a bear, but do not stare at it directly either;
  •  If the bear sees you, talk to it in a low calm voice and take a step or two backwards;
  •  Always carry   bear spray with you and know how to use it. Visit https://vimeo.com/123217603 to view WildSafeBC’s video on the safe use and deployment of bear spray; and
  •  Report any encounter with an aggressive bear by calling the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277.

Upcoming Meetings

Committee of the Whole Meeting

Monday, May 29 at 7 p.m.

Regular Meeting

Monday, June 5 at 1 p.m.

District of Sparwood

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