Duck race cancelled; curbside pickup to begin
By Nowell Berg
On May 28, City of Kimberley council held its regular bi-monthly meeting.
Councilors Albert Hoglund, Nigel Kitto, Bev Middlebrook, Darryl Oakley and Sandra Roberts were present along with Mayor Don McCormick. Coun. Kent Goodwin was absent.
Fire Chief’s Report
Fire Chief Rick Prasad presented a report on the Departments operations covering January to March, 2018, (Q1).
According the chief’s report, “2018 Q1 saw [a] call volume increase from 2017 Q1.” His report notes the increase came from calls for “first aid (city employees only), motor vehicle accidents, carbon monoxide alarms, and public service calls.”
Even though there was an increase in calls, Chief Prasad said, “It was a nice quite start to the year.”
The top four calls for service were automatic alarms (10), motor vehicle accidents(nine), public service (nine) and carbon monoxide (seven).
Mayor McCormick asked, “What is public service?”
Chief Prasad answered, “It’s what we would call a non-emergency call that we have to check out to make sure it’s not an emergency.”
He used the example of receiving a call from a resident because their carbon monoxide alarm went off. When the department checks and finds the cause of the alarm was because of a low battery it becomes a public service call.
Coun. Oakley asked the chief about the automatic alarms and how many of them were “live fires.”
“Not very many,” said Chief Prasad. “The automatic alarms are triggered for various reasons.” This past winter the Department responded to “three or four automatic alarms” that were set off by frozen water lines.
Also during Q1, the department conducted 69 building inspections in which 78% of buildings were “compliant” with the fire code.
While the city continues to invest in and support the Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP), Chief Prasad noted three of the fuel hazard projects have been delayed due to “weather and condition delays. We’ve seen some climate issues pose some problems there.”
The chief was referring to weather in the last 12 months that affected progress on implementing slashing and burning of target forest areas.
Summer and fall 2017 was “too dry” and crews had to stay out of the forest. Then this spring there was “too much snow, then we went right into dry conditions,” he said.
Chief Prasad also noted the UBCM Strategic Wildfire Prevention Initiative (SWPI) is “no longer active.”
Coun. Roberts asked if there was going to be another program. He responded, “We do suspect that we will see some support for managing the interface [the forest surrounding the city], but right now we’re not sure how that’s going to look.”
Duck Race Cancelled
The Kimberley Helping Hands Food Bank has suspended the annual Duck Race.
After 15 years of holding the Duck Race to raise funds, the Food Bank sent a letter to the city notifying them this years race would be suspended.
Food bank fund raising committee member Barry Cummins said, “After 15 years, our sponsors and volunteers are cutting back. It takes a big commitment to run it [the event].”
He noted the other factor in suspending the race was the insurance liability, which costs more each year.
If the race is to continue in 2019, the Food Bank will need a large group of younger volunteers and a couple of new corporate sponsors.
Want to get involved in a local charity, please email Cummins at [email protected].
Mayor McCormick said the cancellation was “very disappointing,” adding, the race was a big part of the Food Bank’s fund raising efforts.
Coun. Hoglund was “disappointed” about the cancellation as he was sure this year was his year to win it.
Residents can expect the new black garbage bins to be distributed over the next two or three months.
According to Chief Administrative Officer Scott Sommerville, Forest Crowne is the test neighbourhood. Residents there will be the first to receive the shiny black bins, probably in early June. After that, the bins will be rolled out to other neighbourhoods. Bins will be delivered to each residence. You will not be required to pick them up.
The new side-loading truck has arrived and a city crew is being trained to operate it.
With the implementation of the bin program, routes and schedules may change. The city will provide details on any changes.
Residents will also receive information about the bin program along with where and how bins should be situated for pick-up by the side-loading trucks.
Kimberley city council meets twice monthly. All meetings start at 7 p.m. and are open to the public.
The next regular council meeting is scheduled for June 11.