Staff recommends removal of trees at park – Council briefs

Trees at City Park, contingency fund for City Hall and Green approval at council.

At the regular city council on Sept. 2, Grand Forks council heard a recommendation from staff to proceed with the removal of two trees on the north side of the Senior Citizens’ Drop-in Centre in City Park.

Council received a letter from Evelyn Brown, secretary of the centre, stating: “Apparently tree roots have invaded the water line running through the park and has caused a severe leak. This is causing the flooding we see near the trees. We are requesting that the two trees be removed and that the space be made into a parking area.”

In return for the tree removal, Brown said the seniors would purchase four trees to be planted in the park.

“The seniors feel the trees are overgrown,” said Mayor Brian Taylor. “There are some problems with the trees and their impact on the whole front of the building. It’s an issue of safety with the roots (causing problems).”

 

City Hall rebuild

 

Council approved a request from staff for an $80,000 contingency fund for the City Hall rebuild and that it be included in the 2014 financial plan amendment.

City Hall was set afire in September 2013. Rebuilding of the hall is continuing and the remodeled building is expected to be open for business in December of this year in time for the inaugural council meeting for the newly council (Dec. 1).

The contingency would be in place for changes in the rebuild that insurance would potentially not authorize.

“The $80,000 contingency plan, as I said in the meeting, is basically to avoid being blackmailed by the time frames imposed by the insurance company or contractor,” said Mayor Brian Taylor. “There are certain things where we might be in dispute with the insurance company but if we’re confident enough to go ahead with them we don’t want to be held up and have this stretch out any longer than it already has. It’s been a pretty long repair process already.”

 

Green communities

 

The City of Grand Forks received a letter of congratulations from the Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) Green Communities Committee for their success in reducing corporate greenhouse gas emissions for 2013.

“We were able to meet our carbon neutral targets,” said Taylor. “It’s a pat on the back for our responsible attitude towards carbon neutrality.”

The letter from UBCM stated, “As a signatory to the Climate Action Charter, you have demonstrated your commitment to work with the province and UBCM to take action on climate change and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in your community and corporate operations.”

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