Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Council Meeting April 19 2011

Adoption of Agenda

Councilor Gallant added a Land under In Camera
Mayor Decoux also requested that the Delegation be moved to Land In Camera
Motion to accept agenda as amended passed Unanimously

Adoption of previous minutes

Minutes of the regular meeting of April 5, 2011, passed unanimously


Shane Stewart development discussion, originally scheduled here council moved In camera

Administrative and Agency Reports: None

Business Arising from the minutes:
1. Budget Appropriation to accommodate the 10% increase in the 2011 Senior Housing Requisition.
Reductions in spending in various areas to offset the $18,500 in additional requisition to finance the seniors housing.

1. Letter from Hon Hector Goudreau regarding Municipal consultation process, after reaching consensus that it did not really answer councils concerns Motion to file the letter as information passed unanimously
2. Letter from John Pundyk requesting that council look at the possibility of putting in place a moratorium on off site levies for the next fifty homes built in the Crowsnest Pass. Council agreed to table this until the next meeting. To allow administration to come back with information on the issue.

Committee Reports
1. Minutes of the March 29 G+P meeting motion to accept passed unanimously
2. Minutes of the March 8 G+P meeting motion to accept passed unanimously
3. Minutes of the March 10 Heritage Board meeting motion to accept passed unanimously. Councilor Londsbury also made a motion to approach Community Futures to request a copy of their list of historical buildings, passed unanimously.

1. Bylaw 826 Green Mountain Land Use Bylaw Amendment (First Readings)
This is to rezone land in west Coleman to build fourplexs, First reading passed unanimously

Notices of Motion:  None

Other Business:
1. Endorsement Policy Councilor Mitchell brought forth  a Motion to rescind this policy, Councilor Gallant spoke strongly in support of the policy, concern raised about the Mayor having the ability to welcome new businesses to the community. Councilor Mitchell moved to table his motion passed unanimously, Councilor Londsbury moved to send it to the policy committee passed unanimously.
2. Community Services Website, Administration brought forth the idea of creating a web site for the Community Services department, Councilors spoke about wanting to look at the entire municipal web site, also to look at the possibility of doing something in conjunction with the recommendations of the Economic Task Force, Councilor Saje felt that the report will be looking at the issue of branding the community. Motion to accept Administrations recommendation was defeated 2-5 with Councilors Londsbury and Mitchell in support.
3. Snow and Ice Control Policy, No suggestions from the public were received, Motion to accept the policy as presented was passed unanimously.
4. Temporary Road Closure Request for Bellevue passed unanimously.
5. Encroachment Agreement, Councilors Saje and Saindon asked to be excused due to reasons of conflict. Motion to accept was passed unanimously by remaining members of council.
6. Boulevard Parking, this issue was brought forth by a member of the public previously, requesting the community standards bylaw be amended to allow this. Councilor Saindon made it very clear that people did not want to be seeing other peoples garbage on their boulevard and strongly felt the bylaw was good and clear and its time for the municipality to enforce it, Councilor Gail agreed very much with that position, a motion was made to Maintain and enforce Bylaw 798, 2010 as passed by the previous council this was supported unanimously.
7. Municipal Historical Resource Designation Process, Motion to accept the process was passed unanimously, a request to meet with the group was tabled until September which also passed unanimously.
8. Approval of the request for the Orpheum Theatre as a Municipal Historical Resource and Notice to designate, was passed unanimously.
9. Appointments to the Crowsnest Pass Library Board, Motion to accept administrations recommendations passed unanimously.
10, Cancellation of the April 26 G+P meeting motion to cancel passed unanimously.

Council Member Reports:
Of note  Councilor Saje made the comment that council should expect to see a Notice of Motion coming shortly on renovating the Elks Hall
Mayor Decoux informed council that the Province had reduced substantially funding to the South west Rockies organization
Councilor Gail spoke about a publication called 13 ways to kill a community, highly recommended it and after reading it realized he himself was guilty of doing many things in the book.

Public Input:
John Pundyk spoke about development concerns, felt that due to a previous bad experience with developers that the community as to be careful in the development of future policy in that in a desire to do the right thing it does not create policy that as the opposite effect of pushing away development.

Motion to go into Camera passed unanimously.


Anonymous said...

So this is the municipalities big marketing plan for its facilities.
Create a new web site for community services, what was this little venture going to cost the taxpayers.

I can see the headline now "Looking for affordable ice time in a lovely old fashioned Quanset".........

"Hall available for rent, Beautiful facility close to down town Blairmore, don't wait only 334nights available"

Anonymous said...

I see Larry backed off on the endorsement issue.
Some people will be disappointed with his performance!

Anonymous said...

Boulevard Parking

So where am I going to park my HUNTING Truck?


Ellie May said...

Ah Jed lots of room at the centre.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Crowsnest Pass Home said...

$24,780 for the web site

Anonymous said...

My goodness $25,000 they could hire another person for six months with that money.

Anonymous said...

Chapter 1 of "13 Ways to Kill Your Community", by Doug Griffiths and Kelly Clemmer

Anonymous said...

I didn't find the first chapter of his book particularly engaging but the summary of his speech can be found at
and is much more so. Funny I find that many of the attitudes Mr. Griffiths mentions very prevalent in the regular posters around here

Anonymous said...

I kind of like the idea by Pundyuk for the next 50 homes to not have to pay the off site leveies.I would change it to 1 year or 50 homes what ever comes first.Giving some incentive for people including developers to build some new homes.In the long run the municipality gets there money back in taxes.It might just give the CNP the edge they need for people to build here instead of in one of the surrounding communities.It would create work, which brings in more money to spend at local shops and so on ...Any thoughts.

Anonymous said...

I agree with anom. 10:21 lets do something to break the deadness here. It is hard to watch the communities on both sides of us growing and moving ahead while we sit here stagnate

Anonymous said...

Task force will ride in at the last moment, just like John Wayne in the old cowboy movies.
The west (Crowsnest Pass) will be saved from the forces of evil.
Everybody wil live happily ever after.


Anonymous said...

Barry, it's guys like you that are holding this place back. The people on the Task Force are spending their own time trying to solve a problem for the collective good. And what do they get in return -- smart ass remarks from losers like you. Why is it that every time somebody tries to move this place forward, all they get is derision from a bunch of people whose total contribution is to sit on their butts and take cheap shots on a blog? Sometimes I wonder if there is any hope for this place. If there is, it will be from people who come from outside, not from the inbred multi-generation residents, most of whom know how to complain, but haven't made it to the 21st century in their thinking.

Anonymous said...

Can someone explain what an off site levy is, why do we charge it and how much is it?

peter rosner said...

we might need a "gunfight" on mainstreet first that should draw some interest and after that we can get on with things

Chloe said...

The good folk of CNP best hope that the BBoys are not back in town wooing the new council behind 'In Camera' meetings to build new homes with no off site levies being charged. Due diligence is sorely needed before any developer turns a single spade of soil in the CNP in the future. 'Policies in place' do not help when dealing with rogues. Hopefully the River Run site is a reminder of the carnage left by the BBoys.

Anonymous said...

Chloe, speaking of river run...


I am trying to resolve various issues with Olympia.

Olympia has no interest in deferring their o/s management costs re
the Trust Indenture.
Olympia is not in the business of Restructurings and sucking unpaid
Trustee fees.

I have been struggling with Vistas, for months.

The $15M Vistas investors funding is overwhelming.

Had Bradley and Becker not appropriated, what I believe is,
the costs of development, so no financing would be required,
Vistas would be successful, notwithstanding the 08 worldwide
financial meltdown.

**There are no Vistas funds to operate going forward, and
for management costs, consultants and other significant development costs
prior to construction or
to resolve, most importantly,
the substantial funding/financing for Vistas share of the RR
subdivision utilities servicing/financing.
And, I have no structure to enable any new investors/developers to
become involved.

AND, I have too many other Crowsnest Lake and River Run problems to
deal with.

**By my recent review of the Vistas corporate minute book,
I NOW understand that things re Vistas
are worse and very complicated unfortunately.

That is, apparently,
B&B transferred a few other lots into Vistas corp.
**And, such lots are encumbered with a $4M blanket mortgage over
various corps lots in RR.
This becomes another Restructuring.

In result, I am having a problem trying to easily restructure
Vistas1 investors.

Unless Macleod Dixon can figure out some simple structure in Vistas,
which also has regard to the Invesco investors, separately,
it is too complicated.
And, I am not expecting any resolution.

As STONEBRIDGE gets nothing from such efforts,
I have to punt.
After over a million in costs,
I cannot do this anymore.

So, I have advised James today that Vistas Corp will consent to the
Vistas1 foreclosure.
And, Vistas corp will consent to other requisites which
reduce Vistas1 unitholders foreclosure costs, such as an appraisal
and typical proceedings costs.
That is, simply go directly to foreclosure sale.

I also told James that I will otherwise cooperate with potential
investors bids for the Vistas1 lands,
as I can, in order to maximize recovery for investors, as it is.

Based on the RR Springs Colliers appraisal, recovery will be
if any stink bidders are prepared to take the risk of buying
property that has
suspect servicing/municipality servicing agreement defaults and
other development issues defaults.

I wish things were different.

Regards, jon

Anonymous said...

Well spoken Anon:9:20. Case in point is the recent campaign to discredit the new pubic works superintendent using the snow removal issue. After vigorous discrediting comments were orchestrated by a few, it is note worthy when the Snow and Ice Removal policy was offered up for public input, virtually nothing was offered by them. What they are really saying is: GO AWAY OUTSIDERS, WE WILL NOT BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE. WE WILL SLANDER AND DISCREDIT YOU UNTIL YOU LEAVE, IT HAS ALWAYS WORKED IN THE PAST

Anonymous said...

Chloe said...
"wooing the new council behind 'In Camera' meetings"

Right on!

I've been working up to a rant about this.

The point of zoning is supposed to be to give buyers and builders certainty about what the area will be like in the future. But in the Pass it seems the purpose of zoning is so that well connected wheeler-dealers can buy cheap land, get it rezoned and subdivided and flip it to other speculators for quick profit.

I think that's why we don't get any outside investment - the deck is stacked in favour of well-connected locals.

John Prince said...

Anon @8:24
That's a bunch of crap. You’re mixing apples and oranges. The fact is we had an excellent snow removal service until around the middle of March when that all changed? Public input from this forum overwhelmingly stated that what we had before worked and didn't need fixing. I stated as much on a post here on this blog. End of story!

If you wish to make more of it than what was actually there that is your business, but to suggest that there was more to it than that is wrong, in my opinion.

Excellent comment and I especially agree with your last remark "the deck is stacked in favour of well-connected locals". That has always been our downfall. Until that changes nothing else will.

Sounds to me like strings are being pulled in a sneaky round about way. Personally, I would have been up front with the people laying it all on the table instead of trying to engineer quick underhanded fixes that give the impression that nothing under this new administration has changed from the one before it, except...

“Tossing out one set of bums for new ones just gives us more of the same bums with different faces.”

the miners journey said...

Anon 9:20 & Anon 8:24 when are you leaving i will help you both pack up. We dont need your kind here the problem with you people is you are trying to change the CNP into what you either just left or got away from for the weekend. You can keep your 21st Century thinking that would be Canmore or Banff. Great for tourists not so great for residents.

Anonymous said...

John, I think you are missing my point, or on second thought you are making my point. I had to go back to the municipal web site to make sure I had my facts straight. Administration put forth a snow and ice policy that council tabled to “advertised to the community for feedback”. What a respectful and transparent thing for council to do, offer the community a chance for input to maybe better the policy. With all the letters to the editor, bricks and blog comments why would these “concerned” people with knowledge on snow removal be silent when given the chance to contribute and better the policy? Some people solve a problem by finding out the under lying issues then offer their good will and contributions to solve the problem. Others look for problems then use them to grand stand. I do not know anything about snow removal or any of the under laying issues the workers and management are contending with and if you do, why not contribute in a respectful manor as offered by the council? Maybe you do not care about snow removal and you are looking for problems to express your bitterness over the community rejecting you as mayor.

Anonymous said...

Why oh why are so many people in this place so negative and suspicious of every little thing? Anyone who actually tries to do something positive,even in a volunteer capacity, manages to hit a wall one way or the other. "Outsiders",or "Newcomers", namely people not born here, but who do actually live here, shop here, and pay taxes here, quite often do have some new and fresh ideas to contribute. One would hope that this community would want to make every effort to improve itself, and bring it up to what it could and should be.

John Prince said...

Anon @9:26
You close by calling for respect and then slinging a cheap shot my way. That's kind of two-faced now isn't it? Which is exactly what your comments are portraying as well. You sir (Mr. Anonymous), are the muckraker.

Once again, we had an 'excellent' snow removal service that got bastardized for no apparent reason and then a call was made to the public for their opinions on a 'policy' for snow removal? Seems to me we broke something, and then put out a call on how to fix it, only to replace what worked with the new revised version of something that now does NOT work.

Wait until next winter and I am sure you will be able to recognize for yourself what now does not work with what use to work quite well, thank you very much.

Anonymous said...

The biggest problem with snow removal has always been the fact that it does not just snow from 7am to 3:30pm.
We went through this when I lived up north, what happened for years was the employees would come in early or stay late and just rack up the overtime. It became an entitlement, instead of the real solution of running some of the crew on an afternoon shift during the winter. When the economy went bad and money got tight in Fort Nelson, council was forced to cuts costs, initially when attempts were made to "change", the people that felt they were entitled know many ways to make the people being forced to enact change look bad.
So yes things went astray and people stood up and argued this has not been a problem for years why now.
"Change" nobody likes it especially when it takes away entitlements.
Yes very easy for a group of people that live in the community for a long time to run around and say the roads are not plowed due to this new guys "changes" but its so easy to shut a piece of equipment down I see it every day at the mine.


John Prince said...

Your perspective has given me a new insight into why suddenly we have a problem with our snow removal service. Thanks for sharing!

p.s. I personally have not yet met any of our new management team and therefore, have no interest or desire to do any headhunting. Why would I? My concern is that excellent services such as spring cleanup and snow removal have either been taken away or drastically reduced in what I felt were miniscule cost saving measures that were both ill-conceived and counter-productive, while to-date having done nothing that I can see or know about with respect to our real problems, such as filling in the potholes that litter this community, for one?

I guess, I recall how when at B.C.I.T., due to cost cutting measures there during the recession in the 80’s, they started from the bottom up in laying off custodial staff, turning what was a pristine campus into a litter filled dump in no time at all, and as such, I see the same scenario playing itself out again, here. We need to be looking at things from the top down, rather than the bottom up, because history has shown us that we never seem to make it to the top when it comes to cuts, now do we?

In summary, I guess what I am trying to say is that their priorities would not be my priorities. But then again as you have pointed out, I do not have all the facts to make a sound judgement. I am only responding to what I am seeing, and what I am seeing are things going from bad to worse in areas that were doing just fine.

Anonymous said...

Joe, you are a very observant guy who articulates your thoughts well. Like Peter I will quote from a Neil Young song...there's more to the picture then meets the eye. Who would have thunk it, a person would actually make management look bad because they wanted to keep their entitlement.

Anonymous said...

@ Miners Journey
That type of crap is oh so helpful. By the way at what point do you become a "Local" after living,working,raising a family and paying taxes for 5 years or 10years or 15 years? How long does it take? Do you have to have multi generations live here?
What is your oh so brilliant criteria that allows a person to voice an opinion that differs from yours and not be accused of being an outsider and offered help to move on?

Anonymous said...

Dean any idea how much is spent on overtime each year?

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
the miners journey said...

the problem with you people is you dont have the courage to stand out for what you believe in. You want someone else to do it for you were just lucky that you bless us with your knowledge some one else can take the ball and run with it. Its easy to make suggestions and hide behind anomynous comments grow a set and put yourself out there back up what you believe--Peter Rosner

Crowsnest Pass Home said...

Its a considerable amount somewhere between $4-500,000 per year.

John Prince said...

WHAT?? $400-500,000 annually? If that is true then this is something that should have been addressed some time ago, and it is good then that it's being addressed now.

This also fits right in with what Joe was saying, doesn't it? In any event, our new administration appears to be doing their jobs in wrestling this beast to the ground. Good on them!

Anonymous said...

What are you saying by inviting these citizens to leave the Pass? It reminds me of some locals who used their newspaper to publish a pubic invitation for Mr. Prince to leave town when he expressed independent opinions. Are you saying we do not want opinions submitted anonymously? After observing the many who jumped on board to marginalize Mr. Prince I do not agree a lack of balls is the only explanation why someone would post anonymously. The Pass has a rich history of being a little unfriendly to independent thought.

Without question anon 9:20 went too far in his comment about the inbred multi-generation residents needing outsiders to bring the Pass into the 21st Century but many things said on these blogs often go a bit too far. But to the larger question take another look at Barry’s off handed comment and the inference of it. Your light hearted comment about a gun fight seems to indicate you do not put much weight on Barry’s jest. Anon 9:20 does not feel the same way you do as he obviously takes exception to the inference the Task Force has no value and is a stupid idea. I think anon 8:24 is trying to make a similar point about all the negative public comments on snow removal. The comments leave the impression we must sure have a stupid person in charge of public works or he would not be changing something which obviously needs no change.

I for one think both these comments are valid and deserve contemplation. I do not think Pass residents need smart outsiders to enlighten them but maybe we need to look a little closer when undermining statements get thrown out for public consumption.

the miners journey said...

anon 6:12 you seem very sensible but if you know me i am not as pleasant and usually call a spade a spade. What i dont like are cheap anon comments that discredit the people of the CNP. My reply was not aimed at all those that comment anon because there are some valid points made here. But i will tell you this in my lifetime of being here there are two groups. the ones that actually get out and volunteer and do something to make this a better community and another group that either complain and do nothing but have lots of suggestions for the volunteers hopefully that clarifies things.--peter rosner

John Prince said...

Anon @6:12
"The Pass has a rich history of being a little unfriendly to independent thought."

The main reason newcomers do not volunteer is because of what anon @6:12 so astutely said above. This community is intolerant of newcomers, new ideas and change. While at the same time knowing they are getting older and can't do what they use to, they nevertheless do not want to let go of their positions and/or power. People are not stupid, word gets around on how others have been used, abused and mistreated by the locals. Until a paradigm shift happens here you will find more of the same i.e. newcomers sitting on the sidelines while long-time residents complain they can't get any help. Is it any wonder?

Nothing makes this point more clear than in how long-time residents in this community cannot let go of the mayor's chair, even going so far as to keep a crook there for years only to eventually be forced to replace him with an Iggy... “just visiting!”.

Anonymous said...

$4-500,000 per year in o/t yet you did nothing about it while on council for 2 terms? If memeory is right you sat on the Negotiation committee as well, giving significant icreases to the union/municipal workers.

Crowsnest Pass Home said...


Two issues you have raised here the overtime and the issue of myself being involved in bargaining.

I did sit on council for two terms, both councils were 4-3 spilts the first council the spilt almost always went Irwins way. The second council was much better, willing to look at different idea's.

Unfortunatly it takes the first year of a term to get a feel for things (new councilors).
Election timing in Alberta is nuts, two weeks after an election the budget process begins, how much input does a new council get?

Next problem council is a reflection of your community, you can have a council that is made up of working folks, retirees, or local bussinessmen or a combination of all three. This point will make more sense when I respond to your comment regarding bargaining.

My first term on council yes I raised this issue but how much support do you think I received.
Second term new council, many changes nothing happens in the first year. Second year some members of council recognize that there is an issue.
Early 2010 I think it was Councilor Cole that brought forth a motion to put in a ban on overtime with a couple of exemptions, one being for issues of an emergent nature and two for employees whose jobs require them to attend meeting outside of regular hours.

To think that you could completly eliminate overtime is unrealistic.
Water line breaks at 4pm do residents go without water until the next day? No
Large Snowfalls etc.
Part of the overtime is created by collective agreement language that sets the hours of work.

Yes I believe we did begin the process of reducing overtime by the end of the year due in part to councils direction, I would assume probably $100,000 savings in this area.

Second bargaining:
Our employees are represented by CUPE, and have one of the better agreements in rural Alberta. This is one of the strongest locals in the province my opinion.

No different than the overtime issue I don't blame the employees or their union for that.

Lets face it, if anyone of us had an employer that allowed us to run up hundreds of hours of overtime make $30 per hour have all kinds of time off and great benefits we would all take advantage of that.

Its councils and administrations job to set the direction to look after the taxpayers best interests.

Prior to bargaining seven members of council sit down with administration, discuss the issues set a direction.

Your part of a small community you have a member of council who as a spouse that works for the municipality they can not be a part of those discussions or vote on a position.
Then you have other people that are pro business, some that are pro union. We all know this, so does the employees and the union. Some of the toughest bargaining wasn't with CUPE it was within our own council.

CUPE does an admirable job of representing their members. Councilors should realize this going in to bargaining and let CUPE negotiate for their members and understand that their job is to represent the taxpayers.

(I know CUPE members are taxpayers too, but they represent 1% of the taxpayers, 100% of the taxpayers pay the costs)

What I am saying is as long as Council is divided on the issues heading into bargaining. Cupe will reap the benefits, there is no value to threating to hold the line if the union knows you are going to fold like a cheap tent the first time you face a challenge.

Did I agree with every part of every deal made with CUPE not a chance, did I believe that council as a whole was prepared at any point to take them on? Not a chance.

Maybe this council will be different, we will find out at the end of the year, the collective agreement is up Dec 31st. Just remember if they are prepared to take the union on, it will be nasty, it will be political, there will be all kinds of games played.

Right now the Town of Pincher Creek is in the bargaining process it will be interesting to see whats happens there.

If they get 4% in Pincher do you think they will settle for 2% here?