City of Powell River Council will consider the dissolution of Powell River Waterfront Development Corporation (PRWDC).
At the committee of the whole meeting on Tuesday, August 13, city director of economic development and communications Scott Randolph brought forward the request to dissolve the corporation because it is no longer needed.
Randolph said PRWDC was established in 2003 to undertake waterfront development projects on behalf of the city. In 2006, it was decided that the corporation would act as a shareholder of PRSC limited partnership, which was a partnership of Tla’amin Nation, Catalyst Paper Corporation and the city.
The limited partnership had taken ownership of approximately 800 acres of properties considered surplus to Catalyst’s operations in return for a $4.5 million secured mortgage.
According to a staff report from Randolph, goals for the limited partnership were to attract investment in the portfolio of lands for the purposes of diversifying the local economy and creating new jobs and revenues.
The city and Tla’amin took over PRSC in 2012 when Catalyst was under creditor protection and entered into an agreement to sell its shares and retire the mortgage for $3 million. The share transfer and mortgage retirement were completed in September 2014.
Randolph said in 2018, a decision was made by the PRSC board to do a shareholders’ draw to extract the remaining parcels of land and dissolve the limited partnership as well as the managing partner of PRSC Land Developments Ltd.
“That dissolution was completed in December 2018 and after a failed attempt to sell a 10-acre portion of one of the properties, a decision was made by this council to purchase the two remaining properties that PRWDC held and that process was completed on July 25 of this year,” said Randolph. “With regards to PRWDC and its future, I reported to you on October 2 of last year when we were doing the consent resolutions that with the pending dissolution of PRSC and its managing partner, that a review should be done of PRWDC’s mandate and structure to determine what role it should play in the future.”
Randolph said now that the city has completed the purchase of PRWDC’s properties and its debt with First Credit Union has been extinguished, staff feel there is no need to maintain the corporation, as the city already has one other dormant corporation, Powell River Power Development Corporation (PRPDC), that it maintains for future use. If there comes a time when the city is ever in need of utilizing a standalone corporation, staff feel that PRPDC’s articles of incorporation can be amended to suit another purpose.
The city’s solicitors will handle the dissolution of PRWDC, if approved, at an estimated cost of of $1,500. Additionally, DMD Professional Chartered Accountants will be engaged to perform an audit of the corporation’s 2019 financials up until the point of dissolution and prepare its corporate tax return. Cost of the audit and filings will be covered by the residual funds held by PRWDC and is expected to cost no more than $4,000.
Randolph said as per the resolution of the shareholder of Powell River Waterfront Development Corporation and the assumption and distribution agreement, the city will assume all of the corporation’s assets and debts.
“With the extinguishing of PRWDC’s loan with First Credit Union, it does not carry any debts that the city would assume,” said Randolph. “The corporation is expected to have approximately $84,000 on hand after its final expenses are paid.”
The resolution to dissolve PRWDC is expected to be on the agenda of the Thursday, September 5, council meeting.