Vanderhoof council: Final pool design in, youth centre back

Community Forest committee seeks community members, ice costs discrepancies questioned, Rio Tinto update, and more.

Final pool design

Vanderhoof Aquatic Centre’s design is finalized and adopted by the district council on Oct. 11.

Going to tender on Nov. 15 and including contractor hiring by Feb. 1, the pool is estimated to require 18 months to build.

The final design includes a six-lane, 25-foot lap pool, a leisure pool with lazy river, hot tub and sauna, south-facing skylight windows, and change rooms for men, women, and families.

A community meeting for the public to understand and ask questions about the final designs will take place on Nov. 8, 6:30 p.m., at the district office.


Youth centre returns next year

Carrier Sekani Family Services is looking to be the new manager of Vanderhoof’s youth centre.

Located on First Street and previously run by CNC, the centre closed in June when the college decided to withdraw its support of family support services in the region as part of its restructuring process this year.

With support from local partnerships, CSFS will start operations with three days a week, 3 to 6 p.m., while it seeks funding for additional programs and longer hours.

With a potential reopening date in March 2017, the centre may need to be relocated to a new location, in the event that other groups secured the current space in the meantime.

The district council confirmed that previously-allotted $30,000 can contribute to the youth centre’s rental costs.


Community Forest committee and plan

A committee of five, composed of two district councillors and three community members, will meet regularly until June 30 next year to create a working plan for Vanderhoof’s community forest.

Interested members of the public are invited to contact the district to become part of the committee.

The Working Plan will direct how the forest will be developed, taking into consideration community values such as recreation trails and environmental concerns, as well as First Nation engagement. The plan is different from a forest stewardship plan, which provides a framework to manage the forest according to provincial regulations, and a forest management plan, which includes objectives and building principles for the forest.


Ice costs discrepancies questioned

Carl Larson, a representative of Old Timers Hockey, seeks fairer costs for adult time, in comparison with youth time.

With decreasing number of participants and later ice time allocations i.e. 9:45 p.m., Larson expressed that the undesirability of certain times should be reflected in the costs. Youth ice, subsidized by the district, costs $65 while adult ice costs $128.


Rio Tinto Update

Nechako Reservoir’s regulator is revamping their public communication this season, with a new Vanderhoof-based community communications advisor and interactive online tool that reflects real-time reservoir data.

Historical, current, and forecasted flow facts on the Nechako Reservoir are now shown on and new staff member Jacqueline Lytle will be based in Vanderhoof for more community engagement.

Lianne Olson of Rio Tinto also presented to the district council that the company’s percentage of customers from Asia decreased from 95 to 75 per cent in the last five years, as a result of new Chinese producers entering the market with low cost labour and hydro power.


CNC millwrightry

The College of New Caledonia is working with provincial government for a new Vanderhoof campus and a positive announcement may be in coming, said CNC president Henry Reiser to the district council on Oct. 11.

For now, eleven students of the college’s millwright program in Vanderhoof are transported regularly to Prince George for select sessions of the course.

Introducing new regional operational staff Nicolette Prince and Karen Bancroft, CNC academic vice president Jay Notay explained that 10 potential local venues for the program in Vanderhoof were investigated, but proved to be not viable.

Three of the most possible locations either are too small for the current class size, require $50,000 of equipment upgrades — which is not feasible for a temporary venue — or has an owner who would prefer to sell instead.

A councillor questioned whether the cost of bus transportation is lower than short-term upgrades, and another asked about whether minimum class size numbers can be changed for rural communities such as Vanderhoof, to accommodate for small population size.

Reiser stated that he will support Vanderhoof in presenting to the B.C. government for a rural approach to education.


Tax exemption request

Nechako View Senior Citizens Home Society’s request to have their location on Northside Road exempted from property tax is deferred to next year, as it came too late for bylaw adoption deadline.

A councillor also expressed that the district council recently supported the society in other ways, such as their driveway renovations.


Arena concession upgrade

With funding granted by the Nechako-Kitamaat Development Fund Society, the district’s arena concession will undergo industrial facility upgrades by November.


District office potential expansion

The district-owned building that served as the former home of the Vanderhoof Chamber of Commerce is discussed as potential extra office and exercise spaces for public works and firefighting crews.

More confirmed plans will be discussed during budget talks later this fall.


Community transport update

To run a free community transport service for the next three years, the District of Vanderhoof will contribute $17,900 per year, while Saik’uz First Nation contributes $10,000 per year and B.C.’s Highway 16 Community Transportation Grant Program — to be applied to — will cover the remainder 70 per cent of the costs.


Council attendance

Mayor and councillors’ meeting attendance in 2016 so far was reviewed on Oct. 17, with Mayor Gerry Thiessen receiving full score, followed by Councillor Steve Little at 97 per cent, Brian Frenkel, Ken Young, and Kevin Moutray at 94, John Murphy at 69 and Darren Carpenter at 53.

A councillor raised the question of being excused from meetings due to non-council work obligations, and district staff is instructed to adjust counts accordingly.


– with files from the District of Vanderhoof


Just Posted

People had a chance to interact with different animals at the petting zoo, participate in mutton busting, and buy everything local during the Fall Fair held in 2019. (Aman Parhar/Omineca Express)
55th Fall Fair in Vanderhoof cancelled

Alternative events eyed once again

Grads at Riverside Park in Vanderhoof, B.C. (Aman Parhar/Omineca Express)
Vanderhoof celebrates 2021 graduates

NVSS grads got together at Riverside Park on Friday, June 11 in… Continue reading

Singing and drumming was heard in downtown Vanderhoof on Monday, June 14. (Aman Parhar/Omineca Express)
Photos: Honour Walk held in Vanderhoof

An honour walk was held Monday June 14 in Vanderhoof, remembering the… Continue reading

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Tk’emlups te Secwepemc Chief Rosanne Casimir stands outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School after speaking to reporters, in Kamloops, B.C., on Friday, June 4, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Kamloops chief says more unmarked graves will be found across Canada

Chief Rosanne Casimir told a virtual news conference the nation expects to release a report at the end of June

A woman wears a vaccinated sticker after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. ranks among highest in world in COVID-19 first-dose shots: health officials

More than 76% of eligible people have received their 1st shot

A screenshot of the First Peoples Cultural Councils First Peoples’ Map. (First Peoples Cultural Council)
Online resource blends B.C.-Alberta’s Indigenous languages, art and culture

Advisor says initiative supports the urgent need to preserve Indigenous languages

An artists conception of the new terminal building at the Pitt Meadows Regional Airport.
Air travel taking off in B.C., but lack of traffic controllers a sky-high concern

There will be demand for more air traffic controllers: Miller

Canadian Armed Forces experts are on their way to North Vancouver after a local homeowner expressed worry about a military artifact he recently purchased. (Twitter DNV Fire and Rescue)
Military called in to deal with antique ‘shell’ at North Vancouver home

‘The person somehow purchased a bombshell innocently believing it was an out-of-commission military artifact’

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Most Read