City of Powell River council has authorized the city to be the primary applicant to apply for, receive and manage $50,000 in combined grant funding to complete a regional poverty reduction plan in partnership with qathet Regional District. At the February 6 council meeting, the recommendation was introduced by councillor Maggie Hathaway, who said some of this has been instigated by First Credit Union, which, along with LIFT Community Services (formerly the PREP Society), have initiated two meetings regarding poverty reduction for the region since June 2019.
Hathaway said if the city is successful in obtaining this grant, a program can be created and the region can move forward on poverty reduction. Councillor Cindy Elliott said she is in support of the grant and is hoping it can be secured so that the barriers in the community can be identified for people who struggle with poverty.
Council adopted a recommendation to establish three new reserve funds. These include the election reserve, the North Harbour reserve and the Willingdon Beach Campsite reserve. Council also voted to close down 13 reserves and amalgamate the funds into reserve funds the city will be maintaining.
The reserves to be closed include: the airport reserve, the barge and tanker wharf operations reserve, the Cranberry Lake Sanctuary reserve, the firehall reserve, the future expenditures reserve, the smoke alarm reserve, the theatre equipment reserve, the transfer site cleanup reserve, the arts and culture reserve, the heritage preservation projects reserve, the insurance claims reserve, the legal reserve and the realignment ministry of transportation reserve.
Councillor George Doubt, who chairs the finance committee, said there is no new money involved; it was a reorganization of reserve funds policy 255 to make it clear what the funds are being held in reserve for and where they are going to be used in the future.
Council voted that City of Powell River Development Cost Charge Bylaw 2561, 2019 be read a second and third time and that it be referred to the Inspector of Municipalities for consideration. The bylaw, which has not been modified for 10 years, recommends increases in development costs for sanitary sewer, water, drainage, roads and park improvement for new development.