Grand Forks city council supports conversation on national park

National parks and provincial grants are discussed by council on Dec. 16.

Kevin Maffioli (right)

National parkDuring a presentation during the Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday morning, council heard a presentation by the South Okanagan National Park Network which asked council to pass a resolution in support of the national park feasibility project.“I just want to make sure in this motion, we are supporting the initiation of dialogue between the province and this group; we’re not supporting the national park,” said coun. Michael Wirschagin. “It wasn’t all that clear. It looked at first they were looking at support for the park. What they are looking for is a letter of support to sit down once again.”At the regular council meeting on the evening of Dec. 16, council voted unanimously to send a letter of support to MLA Linda Larson and Mary Polak, minister of environment, asking the province to re-open discussions with regard to the South Okanagan National Park.“They wanted to make it clear that what we were supporting was the continued involvement of the province and the people of B.C. in the discussion,” said Mayor Brian Taylor. “They’re being asked to sit down and look at some of the critical issues here. There’s support for it because it’s protecting sensitive environmental areas and that’s going to benefit us all in Southern British Columbia.”Phoenix FoundationOn Dec. 16, Grand Forks city council received a request to submit an application on behalf of the Phoenix Foundation of the Boundary to the Healthy Communities Capacity Building Grant.Doug Allin, city administrative officer, recommended the city not just look at stream one, which is for $5,000, but stream two as well.“There’s an opportunity for $20,000 there,” he said. “Would it be good for council to pass that resolution now so we don’t have to potentially come back to the table? If we get the resolution now it’ll help expedite the process.”Council passed the motion unanimously.The Phoenix Foundation is planning to develop Vital Signs project for 2014. The project will update and identify trends that may have developed since the last Vital Signs review and report in 2009. The overarching goal of the Healthy Communities Capacity Building Grant (HCCBG) is to support local governments to create conditions that enable the health and well-being of B.C. citizens and communities. The application for the HCCBG needs to be submitted by  municipal government, which is why the Phoenix Foundation is requesting the City of Grand Forks make the application.Vital Signs is a process that gather current data, information and research in 11 o 12 areas and results in an issues and indicator report. The findings include sectors such as social, health, economic, culture, food security, education, transportation, environment and more.

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