City getting EV charging station

Council briefs from the Aug. 17 regular meeting of Grand Forks City Council.

How They Voted Aug. 17

EV Charging Station

Green-minded residents and visitors alike will soon be able to charge their electric vehicles (EV) in downtown Grand Forks at no charge.

At its regular council meeting on Aug. 17, council approved a motion to proceed with the EV charging station project. To make it possible, council approved amending the 2015 financial plan from surplus to include the installation costs of $5,000.

The project (online at plugshare.com), which is run in conjunction with Thompson Okanagan Tourist Association and Destination Osoyoos, is designed to improve the Highway 3 and 97 routes for EV traffic.

Municipal ticketing

Council approved final reading of a motion to amend the municipal ticketing and information bylaw.

The amendment will direct staff to start imposing fines for violations of the sprinkling regulations. The amendment was made after it was discovered that there were no provisions in the municipal ticketing and information bylaw to apply fines for sprinkling violations.

Fine list: for stage 1 (alternate days watering) is $50 for the first offence, $100 for the second offence and $150 for the third offence; stage 2 (CURRENT – twice per week) is $100 for the first, $200 for the second and $300 for the third. Stage 3 (once a week) is $150 for first; $300 for second; and $450 for third. Stage 4 (no watering) is $600 for all offences. Please visit online at grandforks.ca for full watering regulations including times.

Noise control bylaw

Council carried an amendment to the noise control bylaw. The amendment will address business and industrial operations. The clause will allow for better control and enforcement of the bylaw in regard to the hours of work and noise produced by the industrial operations in the industrial park.

The vote was 5-1 with Councillor Neil Krog voting against.

Council reports

Mayor Frank Konrad

In his written report to council on Aug. 17, Mayor Frank Konrad stated that he attended a cheque presentation with MLA Linda Larson July 30 at the Grand Forks Airport. He stated that the cheque was for a grant for the upgrade of the beacon lighting.

Also on July 30, Konrad noted he had the pleasure of being visited by Dan Alblas, MP for Okanagan-Coquihalla, and Marshall Neufeld, Conservative candidate for MP for South Okanagan-West Kootenay. Alblas presented Grand Forks with a Canada 150 grant, which will be used for playground upgrades.

On Aug. 7, Konrad attended the opening ceremonies at CannaFest. He was able to meet with organizer Chuck Varabioff beforehand and was impressed with how nice and informative he was.

Councillor Thompson

Councillor Thompson attended a meeting of the Phoenix Foundation on July 22. She announced that the board has contracted for the position of youth coordinator after the resignation of Roland Kruger.

Thompson attended a special meeting of council that approved the application of a development variance permit for a property on 18th Street.

On Aug.  5, she attended a meeting of the transition housing project steering committee. A review of the draft preliminary needs assessment for housing needs for the homeless was done, with some recommendations for change to the document prior to presenting to council