Short-Term Rental Bylaw adopted
By Nowell Berg
On November 8, City of Kimberley council held its regular bi-monthly meeting.
Councillors Kyle Dalum, Kent Goodwin, Nigel Kitto and Darryl Oakley were present along with Mayor Don McCormick. Coun. Jason McBain and Sandra Roberts participated by video conference.
The press and public were not in attendance. The meeting streamed live on the city’s YouTube channel. Watch the archive here.
Short-Term Rental Bylaw Adopted
After a brief discussion, council voted in favour of finalizing the Short-Term Rental (STR) Bylaw and bringing it into effect.
Coun, Roberts said, “I’m so impressed with the work that Justin’s [Cook, planner] done on this. The manner in which he’s dealt with all the comments and concerns and the fact that he’s managed to mitigate pretty much all of them. It’s really nice to see the work being done in such a cooperative way and in a way that is really going to make a difference for us all.”
Planner Cook informed council the city has “retained Granicus as a monitoring and compliance service to identify and undertake enforcement measures, which may include fines or revocation of business licences of non-compliant STR operators.”
Starting immediately, the city has application forms and an information guide available on the city’s website.
STR Operators will have until January 15, 2022 to file an application and pay the license fee. Any license issued between now and the end of 2021 will be valid through to December 31, 2022.
Bear Stewardship Committee Established
Danica Roussy, WildSafeBC Community Coordinator, petitioned council to establish a Bear Stewardship Committee (BSC). The committee would be made up of professionals from city staff and other provincial agencies who will work together to finalize the city’s Bear Smart status bear management plan.
According to Roussy, the Bear Smart program will “address the root causes of human/bear conflicts, thereby reducing the risks to human safety and private property, as well as the number of bears that are destroyed each year.”
Chief administrative officer Scott Sommerville said Roussy proposes city staff be part of the BSC, “which I think is a really good idea.” Sommerville told council he felt the committee’s work had more to do with “solid waste management” than a bear issue.
Coun. Oakley voiced his support for the committee. “We’re a city surrounded by a lot of wilderness, so wildlife interactions are going to happen. It’s very unfortunate bears lose their lives to solid waste management issues.”
Establishing the Bear Committee is the last step in achieving Bear Smart status. The city and committee will focus on “reducing attractants, bear conflict and the destruction of bears” thereby making the city “safer and cleaner.”
As part of the Bear Smart initiative, the BSC will meet three times per year starting in 2022 and continue through 2024.
Council approved the committee’s formation and city staff participation.
Nordic Travel Grant
Council approved a travel grant application from local Nordic ski racer Quinn Morgan.
Morgan will participate in the 2022 Canadian Cross Country Ski Championship in Whistler, March 20-27. She will also compete in Provincial, NorAm and Western Canadian Championship races next year.
Pam Walsh, Manager of Community Development and Communications, informed Council Morgan received the grant last year, but “did not end up using the funds because those events were canceled.” Walsh indicated there is an expectation the races with “go ahead next year.”
Council approved a $300 travel grant and wished Morgan “all the best.”
Kimberley city council meets twice monthly starting at 7 p.m. Due to pandemic restrictions, the public is not allowed to attend Council Chambers.
The next scheduled Council meeting: November 22. It live streams on the City of Kimberley YouTube channel.