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REPORTING · 6th October 2011
Walter McFarlane
Council had a busy time at the Union of BC Municipalities. Each of the Councillors who attended gave a report at the Regular Meeting of Council on Monday, October 3rd.

Councillor Corrine Scott led off. “On Tuesday, the rest of us along with our CAO, Ron Poole, met with Christy Clark, the Premier of BC and had a very good meeting. We brought a number of issues forward to her. She was very interested in what we are doing,” said Scott. “She’s very excited about the developments that are being proposed for Kitimat and we brought the issues that we discussed at Council forward to her. We all had the opportunity to say a few words that went over very well and it really felt good to be working as a complete team in our meeting.”

They also met with Adrian Dix, the leader of opposition with the NDP, John Horgan, house leader for the opposition, Randy Callon, the director of Out Reach and they met with MLA Robin Austin. Scott said she was pleased with both the meetings with the Premier and the Opposition.

Scott also explained the UBCM was now the UBCLG, the Union of British Columbia Local Governments. The reason they changed the name was to include First Nations and Regional Districts.

Councillor Bob Corless complimented Councillor Gerd Gottschling. “[He] lead the chorus from us inviting all these people up here to meet with us. We knew that we didn’t have a lot of time and they seemed very open to us,” said Corless.

They met with Northern Health Authority. Councillor Rob Goffinet took over. Goffinet expressed they raised consistent concerns about health in Kitimat. After meeting with Clark, in the afternoon, they met with the chair and CEO of Northern Health. They listed five concerns starting with the construction of Multi Level Care. Goffinet also raised concerns about having more doctors in the Northwest. He also networked with the Vancouver Island Health Region about corresponding between Kitimat Health Advocacy Group and Hospital Foundation. They pushed Negative and positive concerns noticed around the community.

Gottschling complimented Goffinet on his presentation. “I was a little disappointed though when we were finished that we were basically told that the Northern Health Authority told me they council with Government rather then Us. My concern there was, we are the people, government is of the people, by the people for the people and if their not supporting the people that are presenting the issues, they are not listening to both,” said Gottschling. He added he was not confrontational.

Gottschling also said he was happy to hear Kitimat mentioned three times in the Premiers speech. He was also happy that Nathan Cullen announced he is running for leader of the opposition. He wished the Mayor was present at the UBCM.

Councillor Randy Halyk spoke to the Halibut Issue. “It was the only motion that Kitimat actually presented at UBCM and it did not get on the floor. The discussion was closed before we got to it. I am happy to say there was a halibut motion prior to ours that did get on the floor by the Capital District and I stood in support of that motion. I have to say, sadly, that that motion was defeated so we are in the same boat with halibut,” said Halyk.

Monaghan congratulated him on his pun.

Halyk added he met with ministers from around the province. He received interesting comments across the board from all of them. They are looking at Kitimat with open arms rather then distaste and distrust. They are ready to discuss things.

With nothing else to report, Council moved on and concluded.