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Council Highlights - October 2, 2018

October 3, 2018
Council Highlights

Community Crime Assessment

Randy Churchill, of Randy Churchill Consulting for Municipalities, is in the City of Quesnel for three days, from October 1 to 3, 2018, listening and gathering information from community stakeholders before bringing a report back to Council with recommendations on how to address our community’s crime issues. Mr. Churchill worked in policing for 30 years, and for 10 years with the City of Nanaimo mainly to reduce this City’s crime issues.

Johnston Bridge – Closed to Vehicle Traffic

As a safety precaution the Johnston Bridge will be closed, effective 9 am, Wednesday, October 3, 2018, to all vehicle traffic until further notice. Pedestrians and cyclists are permitted. A recent bridge inspection found that certain areas of the Johnston Bridge structure are compromised. Industrial traffic must detour through the Red Bluff area via Plywood Road and Maple Drive. Industrial traffic is not permitted through the Johnson Subdivision. The City has hired McCall Engineering to assess the structure of the Johnston Bridge and to determine what vehicle loads/weights, if any, will be permitted, and the scope of work necessary to repair the compromised sections of Johnston Bridge.

Economic Development Transition Strategy

Council has approved the final draft of the Economic Development Transition Strategy (“Strategy”) that has been developed with input from community members, focus groups, City staff and Council. Strategy themes are:

  • Attract and retain a diverse and growing population through local services, amenities, and a strong sense of place;
  • Diversify economic base by creating a positive business climate through innovation;
  • Develop Quesnel as a destination for visitors with improved infrastructure, hosting capacity, and marketing;
  • Strengthen partnerships with First Nations through economic diversification and collaboration of strategic project development.

Each of the above themes have the following strategies/actions planned over the next five years:

  • Destination Development
    • Waterfront, Tourism Tax, Trails, Hosting Community, Indigenous Tourism, Wayfinding
  • Innovative Resource Industries
    • Forestry, Agriculture, Regional Mining
  • Resident and Investment Retention and Attraction
    • Community Marketing, Business Retention/Expansion/Attraction, Community Livability, Resident Recruitment/Industrial Lands, Regional Skills Gap

The next steps include a community mail out that will provide an overview of this Strategy, and highlight current and future actions of this Strategy including upcoming community engagement.

Cannabis Retail – Land Use Policy

At the September 18, 2018 Council requested staff to bring forward policy that would allow for one retail store to be located in the downtown core that would be publicly-owned and regulated by the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch. Council, at the October 2, 2018 meeting, approved second reading of the draft zoning Bylaw 1845 that permits the use of a Government Cannabis Store in the Central Business District Commercial (C-3) zone subject to the following policy:

  • Distances: 500m from another Cannabis store; 50m from a Secondary or Junior School; 100m from a playground or playfield; and 30m from a residentially zoned property.
  • Cannabis Retail Store Application Review Process will be similar to the liquor license review process.
  • Fees for applications reviews and business licenses for Cannabis Retail Stores will be updated in the City’s Master Fees Bylaw update(s).

Also included in the draft Zoning Bylaw 1845 is the permitted use of Cannabis Production Facilities in the Light Industrial District (M-1) subject to the following policy:

  • Facilities and activities of Cannabis production to be completely enclosed within a building.
  • Federal legislation that provides significant regulations/policy around the design and security of production facilities.

Next steps include:

  • Adopt zoning policy;
  • Create a business license fee;
  • Develop procedures for reviewing application, obtaining resident feedback and providing comment to the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch.

Bylaws

  • 1841 – Proposed Elliott Street Supportive Housing Development (2nd Proposal) – Housing Agreement – Final Adoption
  • 1845 – Cannabis Regulations – Second Reading, As Amended, and Set Public Hearing Date for 6:00 pm, Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at City Hall Council Chambers
  • 1846 – Smoking Regulations Amendment (Vaporizing and Cannabis) – Final Adoption

Next Meetings

  • 5:30 pm, October 9 – North Cariboo Joint Planning Committee
  • 7 pm, October 23 – Regular Council Meeting
  • 6 pm, November 6 – Inaugural/Swearing-In Ceremony – Newly Elected Council (Term 2018 – 2022)
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