City curbs dam spending

Port Alberni city councillors have axed $300,000 for repair work to the McLean Mill dam and re-allocated the money to road repair instead.

City councillors have shaved some projects and saved others in an effort to reduce the proposed residential tax rate in Port Alberni.

After the smoke cleared at Monday’s special budget meeting, councillors wrestled the tax rate down to 11.5 per cent. They originally proposed a 13.7 per cent increase.

The rate is based on an average single family residence with an assessed valued of $183,200.

Several big ticket items were cut from the budget.

Council nixed $300,000 earmarked for repair work to the McLean Mill dam and re-allocated the money to road repair instead. Council okayed $245,000 carried over from 2012 for dam safety work with any money left over to go to road repair.

City manager Ken Watson apprised council of a letter from provincial dam official John Baldwin. The city is the dam owner, Baldwin said, “…and will be held responsible for any damages that might result from the failure of the licensed works.” Baldwin asked to be notified of the city’s intentions regarding the dam within 30 days.

Also cut was $250,000 in upgrades to the Kitsuksis road bridge on Gertrude Street. Engineer Guy Cicon proposed that the bridge deck and walkways be widened. The money was instead moved to the road construction budget.

Councillors also trimmed the Port Alberni Fire Department’s budget. They nixed $41,000 for replacing a pickup truck, and made $2,600 in administrative savings.

Councillors requested a report on the pros and cons of not spending $40,0000 this year to revamp the fire department’s record management system, as well as a report on not replacing its 1970s-era pumper truck.

Council voted against spending $27,000 for infrastructure to webcast city council meetings. Instead, it chose to spend $3,000 to rebroadcast Shaw channel 4 for Internet streaming.

Council’s paperless $8,000 initiative involving iPads for councillors, as well as $8,000 for computers for the engineering department will go ahead.

Another round of special meetings is slated for next week.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Twitter.com/AlberniNews

Just Posted

Body discovered in Port Alberni building

RCMP turn investigation over to BC Coroner’s office

Remains of two people found in Ucluelet

Officials have not said whether or not the remains belong to Ryan Daley or Dan Archbald

First Vancouver Island heat wave of the summer is here

Environment Canada issues a special weather statement as temperatures creep into the 30s

B.C. turns up the heat

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for most the province due to high temperatures

Alberni Valley Vintage Tractor Club contributes to charity

Funds raised from hay sales go towards BC Children’s Hospital Foundation

Canada won’t ‘play politics’ on U.S. migrant children policy

The U.S. government is under fire over its ”zero tolerance” policy

North Island College gets $328,000 for forestry education funding

Announcement in Campbell River part of $1 million around B.C.

Cheers erupt as Federal Court judge approves historic gay purge settlement

Gay military veterans said they were interrogated, harassed and spied on because of their sexuality

Helping B.C.’s helpers cope

The MRT has helped almost 7,000 first responders and street workers in 57 communities in B.C.

Border officials argue B.C. man’s Facebook posts threat to Canada’s security

A B.C. Supreme Court judge acquitted Othman Hamdan of terrorism charges last September

Reena Virk’s mother has died

Both of Virk’s parents became activists against bullying in wake of daughters’ death

Search for capsized fishers near Tofino enters fourth day

“There’s a lot of shock in the community in terms of how we could end up at this place.”

B.C. announces $75M to help friends, family care for seniors at home

Funding will go towards respite care and adult day programs

Timely tide attracts another pod of orcas to Victoria

The pod left the harbour about 30 minutes later

Most Read