November 7, 2011 - Minutes

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City of Richmond Meeting Minutes

General Purposes Committee





Monday, November 7, 2011


Anderson Room

Richmond City Hall


Mayor Malcolm D. Brodie, Chair

Councillor Linda Barnes

Councillor Derek Dang

Councillor Evelina Halsey-Brandt

Councillor Greg Halsey-Brandt

Councillor Sue Halsey-Brandt

Councillor Ken Johnston

Councillor Bill McNulty

Councillor Harold Steves

Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m.









It was moved and seconded



That the following matters be added to the agenda:



Item No. 8 - YVR Regional Airport Strategy;



Item No. 9 - a Public Works item;



Item No. 10 - City Centre Community Association ; and



Item No. 11 - the Richmond Family and Youth Court Committee.












It was moved and seconded



That the minutes of the meeting of the General Purposes Committee held on Monday, October 17, 2011, be adopted as circulated.












With the aid of a video presentation, Tracey Lakeman, Chief Executive Officer, Tourism Richmond and Scott Johnson, Chair, Tourism Richmond Executive Committee, presented Tourism Richmond’s Annual Report, and highlighted how Richmond’s tourism industry benefits the local economy. 



During the presentation, Mr. Johnson and Ms. Lakeman also spoke about: 




how Richmond has grown and is now recognized as a destination internationally;




the benefits and growth realized as a result of the 2% Additional Hotel Room Tax;




the Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) Benchmarking Program;




some of the events such as conventions and sports attractions that Richmond has competed for with other cities, and successfully secured;




Tourism Richmond’s vision to see Richmond as a premier west coast destination;




Richmond’s hotel room rates in comparison to Vancouver; and




the renewal process for the 2% Additional Hotel Room Tax. 



It was moved and seconded



That Tourism Richmond’s 2010/2011 Annual Report to Council be received for information. 








Council Referral on BC Hydro Smart MeteRS

(File Ref. No.:  01-0150-20-BCHY1) (REDMS No. 3392394)



Cecilia Achiam, Interim Director, Sustainability and District Energy, and Doug Long, City Solicitor, were available to answer questions.



Reference was made to the UBCM resolution requesting a moratorium on the installation of smart meters, and discussion took place about the provincial government’s Clean Energy Act, which requires BC Hydro to install and operate smart meters in every private dwelling in BC by the end of 2012.  Discussion also took place about: 




how the City does not have the authority to stop the installation of smart meters, therefore the only suitable action at this time is for the City to make a similar motion to the UBCM resolution;




BC Hydro’s communication strategy related to smart meters.  It was noted that a member of Advisory Committee on the Environment (ACE) who had attended a BC Hydro presentation about energy conservation, observed that BC Hydro staff at the presentation had refused to discuss smart meters;




concerns raised by those residents who have already had smart meters installed in their homes, particularly if a moratorium is put in place;




requesting the Medical Health Officer to further investigate the safety concerns related to smart meters; 




concerns for residents who have medical devices that the smart meters may interfere with; and




the feasibility of re-directing concerned residents to the province by providing the appropriate contact information on the City website.



During the discussion, staff was directed to advise members of ACE to provide comments on the matter by the next Regular Council meeting, to be held on Monday, November 14, 2011.



Carol Day, 11631 Seahurst Road, requested that Council agree to send a letter to BC Hydro requesting a Smart Meter Opt-Out Solution (SOS).  A detailed submission of Ms. Day’s presentation is attached, and forms part of these minutes as Schedule 1.



It was moved and seconded




That the staff report entitled “Council Referral on BC Hydro Smart Meters” from the Interim Director, Sustainability and District Energy, dated October 24, 2011 be received for information;




WHEREAS significant and serious health, privacy and other concerns have been identified regarding the installation of wireless smart meters in British Columbia; and




AND WHEREAS BC Hydro is proceeding with its program to install wireless smart meters in British Columbia although it recognizes there is active discussion and ongoing research into the possible health and environmental effects related to radio frequency signals and its is aware the World Health Organization has called for further investigation on this matter in its press release issued on May 31, 2011;




THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the City of Richmond request a moratorium be placed on the mandatory installation of wireless smart meters until the major issues and problems identified regarding wireless smart meters are independently assessed and acceptable alternatives can be made available at no added cost to the consumer, and that homeowners be given the option to opt-out of the Smart Meter Program whether or not a smart meter has been installed in their home;




That letters be written to the Premier, the Minister of Energy, the local MLAs, and the CEO of BC Hydro accordingly; and




That a letter be sent to the Medical Health Officer requesting that he conduct an investigation as to whether smart meters pose a health hazard.



The question on the motion was not called, as staff was directed to post the motion on the City’s website and advise concerned residents to direct their letters to the provincial government. 



The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED.




Global Accessibility Map (GAM)

(File Ref. No. 11-7000-06/2011-Vol 01) (REDMS No. 3246778 v.5)



In answer to a question from the Committee, Alan Hill, Cultural Diversity Coordinator, joined by the Manager, Community Social Development, John Foster, advised that GAM focuses on public facilities, and does not identify every building in the City.




Councillor Harold Steves left the meeting (5:04 p.m.).



A brief discussion ensued about how accessibility within the City is essential for all of the population, and not just those living with a disability. 



It was moved and seconded



That the City partner with the Rick Hansen Foundation and Richmond Centre for Disability (RCD) to support the launch and development of Global Accessibility Map Customer Service and Professional Assessment tools.







Police Presence in the Downtown CoRE

(File Ref. No. 09-5000-01/2011-Vol 01(11.43 V11)) (REDMS No. 3376028)



Renny Nesset, Officer In Charge (OIC), Richmond RCMP, joined by Phyllis Carlyle, General Manager, Law & Community Safety, advised that a community police office would provide additional service in the downtown core, however it was not required for operational response.




Councillor Harold Steves re-entered the meeting (5:09 p.m.).



A discussion then took place about:




communicating with the public about which services would be provided at the community police office, and which services would only be available at the main branch;




estimated time of completion of the proposed community police station project.  It was noted that it may take approximately two to three months to complete the project subsequent to its approval;




the proposed hours for the community police station, which are: Monday-Friday, 9 am to 5 pm;




how community police stations lead to an increased perception of police presence;




a phone, connecting directly to E-Comm, would be accessible at the front door of the proposed community police station;




the proposed operation of the community police station would include the expectation that RCMP Officers working in the downtown zone would attend the community station to do paperwork rather than the main branch;




the RCMP rotation schedule and shifts, and the feasibility of hiring two permanent officers for the location; and




the RCMP budget and funding availability for the proposed three year trial project. 



During the discussion, Ms. Carlyle made reference to a court proceeding that took place in June 2011, which awarded retro-active pay to RCMP Officers.  She noted that an appeal process was underway regarding the matter, and that a decision may be made by the end of 2012.  Ms. Carlyle explained how the decision on the matter would impact the City, stating that if the decision is upheld, the City may have to compensate RCMP Officers in retroactive payouts of approximately 1.5 million dollars, and an increase in the RCMP base budget of approximately $980,000, without hiring any additional members.



Staff was directed to provide details on the monetary surplus generated by the RCMP for 2010, prior to the next Regular Council meeting, to be held on Monday, November 14, 2011.



It was moved and seconded







a City Centre Community Police Office be considered on a 3 year trial basis:





at 5671 No. 3 Road, as the temporary location in the downtown area;





a maximum of $573,800 in total costs over 3 years ($167,000 in capital costs and operating costs of $406,800) be funded from the existing RCMP budget; and




staff report back annually regarding the success of the program.



The question on the motion was not called as discussion continued about:




ensuring that ongoing review of the program takes place, including the number of operational days per week, and public education;




using the proposed community policing station as the focal point for members who are deployed in the area;




deployment tactics for the bike squad.  It was noted that members of the bike squad would be required to report directly to the main branch, and load a van with their equipment, prior to heading to a location from which they would be deployed;




the benefits associated with locating the Youth Intervention and Restorative Justice Programs in the downtown core; and




the need for greater foot patrol in the City’s downtown core.



The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED with Cllr. G. Halsey-Brandt opposed.




Sustainability Framework – Proposed Solid Waste Strategic ProgrAM
(File Ref. No.:  01-0370-01) (REDMS No. 3395281)



Margot Daykin, Sustainability Manager, Community Services, and Suzanne Bycraft, Manager, Fleet & Environmental Programs were available to answer questions.



A discussion ensued about the possibility of creating a policy to mandate the recycling of building materials resulting from the demolition of houses.  Staff noted that the City was currently working with Metro Vancouver on a draft bylaw that would provide guidance at the demolition permit stage.



It was further noted that one of the mandates is to increase the recycling of wood waste, and that donation of such materials to Habitat for Humanity would also be reviewed.



Staff also advised that a report to Council regarding an eco-centre was forthcoming, and that although the City of Richmond has one of the best recycling depots in the lower mainland, an eco-centre would provide increased improvements. 



It was moved and seconded



That the Solid Waste Sustainability Strategic Program, as presented in Attachment 1 to the report dated October 18, 2011, be endorsed as the solid waste component of the City’s Sustainability Framework.







Metro Vancouver: Pan-Municipal Affairs Service Establishment BylAW

(File Ref. No.: ) (REDMS No. 3400974)



It was moved and seconded



That Council endorse the adoption of The Greater Vancouver Regional District Pan-Municipal Affairs Service Establishment Bylaw No. 1157, 2011 by Metro Vancouver.







(File Ref. No.:  05-1400-01) (REDMS No. 3400659)



It was moved and seconded



That Council consent on behalf of the electors to the Labour Relations Conversion and Amendment Bylaw by adopting the following resolution:




“The Council of the Municipality of Richmond consents on behalf of the electors to the adoption of ‘The Greater Vancouver Regional District Labour Relations Conversion and Amendment Bylaw No. 1166, 2011.”







YVR Regional AIrPORT Strategy

(File Ref. No.:  ) (REDMS No. )



A discussion took place about requesting YVR Airport and the Ministry of Transportation to expedite the completion of a Regional Airport Strategy.  It was noted that in response to a letter sent by the Mayor to the Ministry of Transportation regarding a strategy, the Ministry had indicated that YVR was responsible for such a strategy.  



It was noted that City staff is in the process of setting up a meeting with YVR, and that staff would include Transport Canada in the meeting as well.  It was suggested that staff may wish to request the City of Abbotsford to join the discussions as well.  The General Manager, Planning and Development was requested to follow up and report back. 





(File Ref. No.:  ) (REDMS No. )



Reference was made to the submission of a petition requesting the construction of a walkway from Walter Lee School to Williams Road.  It was noted that the person who submitted the petition stated that City staff advised a walkway was not possible.



In response, Robert Gonzalez, General Manager, Engineering and Public Works, indicated there are currently three requests for such walkways.  Such requests are typically included in the capital plan for review and ranking by Council. 



Staff was directed to report back on the three walkways at the next Public Works and Transportation Committee meeting under the Managers Reports section of the agenda. 





(File Ref. No.:  ) (REDMS No. )



Reference was made to a letter addressed to the General Purposes Committee, from the City Centre Community Association, thanking City Council for its support.  A copy of the letter is attached, and forms part of these minutes as Schedule 2.





(File Ref. No.:  ) (REDMS No. )



Reference was made to a conference that the Richmond Family and Youth Court Committee (RFYCC) had hosted, for which the City had provided $10,000 in funding.  It was noted that the RFYCC had successfully raised the funds through sponsorship, and was now returning a total amount of $10,229.25 to the City.  A letter from the RFYCC regarding the funds is attached, and forms part of these minutes as Schedule 3.













It was moved and seconded



That the meeting adjourn (6:04 p.m.).








Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the General Purposes Committee of the Council of the City of Richmond held on Monday, November 7, 2011.



Mayor Malcolm D. Brodie


Shanan Dhaliwal

Executive Assistant

City Clerk’s Office