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REPORTING · 20th April 2010
Walter McFarlane
Kitimat City Council met on Monday, April 19th for their first regular meeting on their new schedule. There was not much on the Agenda. Mayor Joanne Monaghan called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm. All City Councillors were present at the meeting.

Mayor Joanne Monaghan issued congratulations to Malcolm Baxter on his award winning article in the Northern Sentinel: ‘Lack of Fish Threatens Venture.’ Baxter won the Silver at the Ma Murray Awards on April 9th.

Jose Salema took the stand to discuss his new business, Dogz Gone Wild, Kitimat’s newest business. He found the locations for his hot dog cart were not adequate. He did not wish to sell hot dogs from the parking lot but from the green space around the mall.

He pointed out he would be in competition with Dairy Queen and Esso but this is why people go into business. Salema wanted to be able to sell hot dogs and chips. He wishes to be able to sell food at events. He wants to run the cart year round and the health board has approved it. He added if there was a problem with his location, he could set up and tear down the cart in 15 minutes.

Brenda Feldhoff stepped up next to speak about the lighting board at the Mount Elizabeth Theater. Their lighting board has failed and needs to be replaced with new technology, which means they have to replace their dimmer. They cannot find replacement parts as the board is obsolete.

After six instruments have blown for unknown reasons, they have decided the time has come to replace the board. The theater wants to access the capital for next year and an additional $4,850 because the theater is now in dire straits. She expressed this is also a safety issue because when the lights burnt out, several wires burned as well. She asked for funding to address this retrofit.

Councillor Bob Corless wanted to know who owned the theater. The response was this was a joint operation between the district and the school board. Feldhoff said she was going to bring an expert in from Alberta and the school board was going to match what the district put in. Feldhoff estimated she still might be short to cover sales tax.

Councillor Randy Halyk wanted to know why they run as a deficit. Feldhoff explained they do not have the population to support the theater. They also keep the rent down for small groups from the community who wish to use the theater because they want people to use the space.

Councillor Rob Goffinet verified this was an emergency. Feldhoff replied she is afraid to run the theater, as the lights they have just lost were six recently replaced lights, which is devastating for a theater which does not have money. The burning out of the lights also burned through wires.

“We’re at the point where the equipment is too old and has to be replaced and very soon,” said Feldhoff. Goffinet asked if the money could complete the retrofit. Feldhoff responded it should, as the person who they are brining in is reputable.

After approving minutes of Council meetings past, the Council moved on to bylaws. The bylaw on backyard fire pits was finally adopted while the Cardboard ban received second reading. The latter bans cardboard from the commercial sector from the municipal dump.

The Food Cart was sent to Advisory Planning Commission for their comments. Feldhoff expressed he wanted to see what the APC had to say. It was carried. Hall expressed changes for this purpose could require a bylaw.

On the topic of selling the land, Corless wanted to execute the purchase. It was carried. The letter to Council requesting support for alcohol reform was received for information.

Corless moved to help out mount Elizabeth Theater for $15000. Halyk wanted to see the financial details of the theater in the hopes they could help them with their business plan. He suggested looking at reality, as the services did have to stand on their own. McLaren said they did have a chance to look at the numbers during the budget process. Goffinet pointed out the theater was a treasure. He pointed out they spent millions on health and millions on recreation but very little on culture. Work has to be done to promote the theater.

Halyk thought they have to draw some sort of a line. Corless felt the province should be supporting this as well. He felt they should start making hard decisions. Hall said this is not an unusual case. The theater was not designed to recover revenue and was meant to be a cultural center. Halyk retorted Tamitik is run by Council while the theater is not. Corless reminded Council the theater in Rupert, which did not have such support was now closing at certain times of the year. It was carried with Halyk opposed.

Under new business, Hall was given a chance to speak on Saturday’s meeting. The five year plan has been amended. The business plan and the explanatory notes will be on the website on Tuesday. The public has been invited to comment on April 26th although it will not be televised live.

With nothing left to discuss, Council took a five minute break before going in camera. The public left.
Clarification needed . . .
Comment by Yvonne on 20th April 2010
Can someone please elaborate on what "Alcohol Reform" is??