Town Council December 11, 2017, regular meeting
Significant updates from the December 11 regular meeting of Peace River Town Council are below. You can view the agenda and all Council items here.
Council Grants, Donations & Funding
Attracting and retaining quality events and activities for the Town of Peace River is a key mechanism in promoting tourism, economic and community development Council’s policy on Grants Donations and Funding aims to help achieve that.
This year council has budgeted $50,000 for these types of groups and programs. The plan is to disperse the money in equal quarterly installments where possible.
These events and activities have a positive effect on the quality of life of the community as a whole. Council wishes to ensure that budgeted funds are allocated to events and activities that will enhance the Town’s reputation not only as a tourist destination but also as an attractive place to reside and to conduct business. At the same time, Council recognizes its duty and responsibility to the ratepayers of Peace River to ensure its funds are used in the most productive and meaningful manner.
This meeting council weighed requests from each group. Below is a list of each group, whether their application was approved and so for much. To view the complete application please click on the name of the group.
Click for more info and instructions on how to apply for the Council Grants, Donations & Funding Program.
Peace Regional Airshow – $0
Peace River Winter Swim Club Swim Meet – $1472
Peace River Women’s Shelter Festival of Trees Children’s Event – $0
Peace Region Dance Society Dance Festival – $1000
Peace River and District Chamber of Commerce Diamond Davis Business Awards – $1250
Carnaval de St-Isidore – $1000
TriRiver Triathalon Event Sponsorship – $2500
Underground Music Society – Deferred, more info requested.
Council approved the interim operating budget summarized below.
Municipalities require an operating budget to operate from day-to-day, the Alberta Municipal Government Act also requires municipalities to pass a balanced budget each year. Deliberations for the 2018 budget are beginning in January. As a result, Council approved the following interim budget, which is 50 percent of the approved 2017 budget. Full details on the 2017 budget are available online, details about the 2018 budget process are also online.
In June 2016 the Town of Peace River was made aware of the PurpleRung foundation and their goal of building transitional housing structures in Peace River.
Since then we have worked with the group and contributed $3750 towards assistance with their foundation. Recently the issue of homelessness has been a discussion topic in the community, as a result, Town Council requested staff provide a briefing note outlining the process over the last 18 months. To view the original briefing note click here or the link in the title. The timeline from the briefing note is presented below, however, additional details including a copy of the
|Key Date||Key Event or Action|
|June 2016||PurpleRung and their proposed development was initially brought to the Towns attention in June 2016 when concerns were raised by a number of Town residents and neighbours to the property at 10014-99 Street where new, partially complete and unauthorized structures were being occupied by a number of homeless/underhoused persons. Some of the concerns raised included:
· Unsightly and messy premises
· Intimidating or coarse language directed at passersby
· Passersby and nearby residents feeling intimidated or unsafe
· Fire safety of the structures
· Access to bathroom facilities and the homeless persons accessing nearby private bathroom facilities without permission
|August 4, 2016||Administration meet with PurpleRung director, Brent Taylor, to discuss the unauthorized subject structures and direct that the structures must be removed.
A letter to that effect was also provided.
|August 8, 2016||PurpleRung submitted a request to present to Council at the September 12, 2016 meeting.|
|August 17, 2017||The unauthorized structures were removed from the site.|
|September 12, 2016||PurpleRung presented to Council.
No direction to Administration resulted from that presentation.
|October 14, 2016||PurpleRung submitted a partial Development Permit Application for an "Office & Prototype Shop / Addition of Transitional Shelters on site."
|November 10, 2016||A meeting is held between PurpleRung and Administration to review the issues with the Development Permit application. The issues identified included:
1. Land Use Bylaw: The Land Use Bylaw did not/does not include an appropriate use listed in the Commercial District that would allow Administration to consider the application. The Town does not have the authority to issue a development permit where the use is not enabled in the district. The only way for the use to be enabled within the district is through the Land Use Bylaw amendment process.
2. Development Permit Application: The development permit application would require additional information:
a. Architects - multi-dwelling unit buildings require an architect's stamp. Any deviations from code would need to be supported by an architect. An architect must be involved from the beginning of the process and not only at the building permit stage - a requirement of their profession.
b. Site Management Plan - daily management and operation of the site; operating and neighbourliness rules.
c. Social Supports Plan.
d. Exit Strategy - How would the site be vacated, should a temporary permit not be renewed?
e. Retaining wall must be engineered.
3. Codes: The proposed development, as submitted, does not meeting Building Code and may not meet other safety codes and health codes. Professional support for the Building Code variance is required and any variation from safety code would require the application to prove that the deviation from the code meets or exceeds the code.
4. Community Concerns - Administration communicated that the Town had received a number of complaints/concerns from residents and neighbours of the property.
At this meeting Administration identified the following initial next steps to PurpleRung;
a. A community meeting initiated by PurpleRung to address community concerns and initiate a dialogue; and
b. A Land Use Bylaw amendment application.
|November 14, 2016||PurpleRung requests a letter of Support-In-Principle from the Town by end of day (November 14, 2016) to support a grant application. Administration is unable to obtain Council direction at a public meeting within the specified timeline.|
|November 21, 2016||Development Permit is refused on the grounds that the proposed use is not currently enabled within the Land Use Bylaw.|
|December 12, 2016||RFD to Council regarding a letter of support and direction to draft proposed amendment to the Land Use Bylaw.
Council provided direction to schedule an informal meeting between PurpleRung and Council.
|January 30, 2017||A meeting is held between PurpleRung, members of Council and administration.
PurpleRung communicated two key requests:
1. For the Town to amend the Land Use Bylaw to enable PurpleRung's proposed transitional housing use; and
2. For the Town to provide a letter of Support-in-Principle, which would be used to support grant applications for funds to enable their activities.
Council posed a number of questions to PurpleRung, including:
1. Is there a business plan in place?
2. How will the Society/residences be funded long term?
3. Who manages, maintains and oversees the site?
4. Is there an onsite manager?
The Town has not received any documentation addressing these issues.
Town staff is directed to bring forward a briefing note to a Priorities and Governance meeting of Council.
|February 10, 2017||PurpleRung applied to FCSS Grants to Groups.|
|March 6, 2017||A briefing note was presented to Council, summarizing PurpleRung and the Town's actions to date. A summary of the January meeting discussion and a draft of a general "Letter of Support" was also attached.
No direction to Administration resulted from the Briefing Note.
|March 2017||PurpleRung received a 2017 FCSS Grant to Groups in the amount of $3,750.00.
The grant proposed to fund:
1. Training fees and conference registration fees for events geared towards Homelessness, stigma reduction, or volunteer development training.
2. Homelessness Count or similar data collection initiatives including the cost of hiring someone to direct the project, or training costs to train someone from their committee to complete the task.
A Report is to be submitted to FCSS upon the completion of the data collection initiative.
PurpleRung was invited to take part in the Town of Peace River FCSS Family and Youth Interagency Committee after they were awarded FCSS Grants to Groups.
|March 10, 2017||PurpleRung attended the FCSS Family and Youth Interagency meeting.
PurpleRung was invited to share information about the FCSS funded components of their Homelessness initiative and invited to become a subcommittee of the Family and Youth Interagency Committee, to which they agreed. As a subcommittee, PurpleRung was added to the bimonthly meeting agendas as a standing item, which allows them to provide updates about their initiatives to the various non-profit agencies in attendance.
|April 4th, 2017||PurpleRung representative attended a Provincial Housing Conference, as a part of the FCSS Funding. The Town CAO also attended this conference.|
|April 10, 2017||Administration sends a letter to PurpleRung, confirming the outcomes of the requests communicated at the January 30, 2017 meeting.
"At this time, Administration does not have direction from Council to initiate any PurpleRung-specific Land Use Bylaw amendments. PurpleRung has verbally expressed a desire for a Land Use Bylaw amendment to enable their proposed development, but has not applied for an amendment to the Land Use Bylaw. Administration recognizes the gap in the Land Use Bylaw as related to emergency shelters and anticipates that a major Land Use Bylaw update will address this issue. However, the Town does not have any plans to initiate a standalone amendment process.
The Council has chosen to not provide a general letter of support at this time, pending further information regarding the PurpleRung business and operations plan provided by your organization. However, the Town remains open to the possibility of providing a letter of support in future, for a specific grant application. Should PurpleRung wish to include a letter of support from the Town of Peace River, please request the letter a minimum of one month prior to the grant application deadline, to allow the Town sufficient time to process your request."
|May 2017||A complete application to amend the Land Use Bylaw was received from the Peace River Regional Womens Shelter, to amend the Land Use Bylaw to ensure:
1. That the Women's Shelter is a legally existing use; and
2. That the Town may consider an application to expand the shelter.
|June 2017||The Land Use Bylaw was amended in June 2017 to include "Emergency Shelter" as a discretionary use in the Community Development District (COM). Emergency Shelter is defined as follows:
"means a development operated by a government or not-for-profit organization for the primary purpose of providing temporary, emergency accommodation for persons requiring immediate shelter and assistance. This use may include, but is not limited to, accessory office functions and the provision of related programs and services. Typical uses include a women's shelter and a youth emergency shelter."
This Land Use Bylaw amendment does not specifically enable the transitional shelters proposed by PurpleRung. Also, this use is not enabled within the lands identified in the previous PurpleRung development permit application.
|April thru September 2017||Resource links were emailed to Purple Rung to support their Homelessness Survey initiative. Support was also provided through survey feedback, survey sharing and promotion with local agencies. Additional resource connections for Purple Rung were also provided.|
|September 13, 2017||A member of Purple Rung was not available to attend the Family and Youth Interagency meeting.
FCSS was requested to (and did) bring PurpleRung's information to the meeting on their behalf. Information about their Homelessness Survey was circulated by FCSS staff and groups were directed to provide their completed surveys to the PurpleRung Committee.
|November 10, 2017||PurpleRung re-submits the development permit application for "Office & Prototype Shop / Addition of Transitional Shelters on site" and requests a presentation before Council. The submitted development permit application has not substantially changed from the application that was submitted and refused in October 2016.|
|November 15, 2017||PurpleRung attended the Family and Youth Interagency meeting.
PurpleRung shared an update and encouraged participation in the Homelessness Survey and provided a report on the Us & Them movie screening, which was partially funded by their Town of Peace River FCSS Grants to Groups Funding.
|November 24, 2017||Development Permit is refused on the grounds that the proposed use is not currently enabled within the Land Use Bylaw.|
|November 27, 2017||PurpleRung presented to Council and submitted a Land Use Bylaw amendment application. The application was incomplete in that it was not accompanied by the application fee.|
|December 2017||It is expected that PurpleRung will compile and report on the results of the survey, per the requirements of the Municipal Grant.|
Live Council Updates
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