Field Town Hall Meeting January 25, 2016
In Attendance: Marilyn Toulouse, Bruce Bembridge, Karla Gaffney, Joanne Arnold, Travis Wert, Ellen Francis, Elaine Lemieux, Craig Chapman, Kathryn Cameron, Claudia Harding, Jeremy Schmidt, Sally Watson, Mike Vanderveen, Pierre Lemire, Sophie Cais, Ryan Cameron, Kim Chapman, Karen Schmidt, Lloyd Lafrance
- FRAA Report – Craig Chapman
Thanks everyone for coming out.
Great events recently:
- The Friends of Yoho supper in December raised $3672. 34 and it was donated to the community for Hall Improvements. Thanks for the donation! Sally has been pricing stoves and fridges. We decided to apply for matching funds in next grant cycle to maximize our resources. Currently we have two grants on the go and want to wrap them up before engaging in another one.
- Christmas Pot Luck and Skate with Santa were wonderful.
- Upcoming events: Yoho Blow this weekend; next regular meeting February 22, 2016; next FUB March 4, 2016; next Town Hall Meeting March 14, 2016. Mark your calendars!
Yoho Blow – January 29, 30 and 31. Schedule posted on the Bulletin Board.
- Interpretive Skating – Return event, anything goes so get your costume, music and routine ready for Friday night at 8:00 pm.
- Minute to Win It – Challenges at the Hall Friday night.
- Saturday night – Dance with DJ, encourage friends from Lake Louise to attend, shuttle arranged with Lake Louise Ski area to make two runs from Lake Louise with stops at Great Divide Lodge. No shuttle from Emerald Lake Lodge this year.
- Bocce – All ten possible teams have signed up. $20 entry fee per team. Want to play? Register as an alternate player, to fill in as needed.
- Human bowling – Suits ready to try on; all equipment assembled and ready to go. Be brave.
- Scavenger hunt – sign up sheets will be at the Post Office for Friday start and participation throughout the weekend. Combination scavenger/treasure hunt with clues and hidden treasure to collect. Participation reward (involves French butter cream) and draw prize for winner.
- Heritage Relay – Check bulletin board for details.
- Hockey tournament – Rules posted on bulletin board. $20 entry fee per team.
- Downhill Race – Cross country skis, downhill skis, Chariots, bikes all allowed! Important message to spectators this year: adults and kids – No Snowballs. It’s dangerous. We’ll enforce the message through conversations on Sunday. Suggested that we need to plan for a snowball fight next year.
- Snow Sculpture Contest – Warm weather forecast for next few days so get started!
- Jail and Bail – Bruce and Boomer have built an ice dungeon next to the Hall. You pay to put someone in the dungeon and they pay to get out. Puts the fun in fundraising!
- Sunday Morning Ski – with Kicking Horse Ski Club coach Jessica, 10 am to noon with start from town, either Tally-Ho or Monarch.
- Comfy setting in the hall for hanging out. If you have a comfy chair please bring it down to the Hall; we’ll move it out for the dance. Sign up sheets for volunteers tonight, or email Kim.
- FCC Report – Craig Chapman
Meeting with Mike Lovecchio, CP Rail Director of Government Affairs, arranged by Karen Cathcart, Area A CSRD Director, scheduled for February 23 at 6:00 pm to discuss leases and economic opportunities on CP Land, Telegraph Building and other issues. If you have something you would like brought to the table please forward to Craig.
School closure meeting scheduled for February 3, 2016. There have been no developments in town with ideas to date so it seems apparent that the school board vote will lead to a closure. Will transportation be discussed at the meeting? What it would take to not provide school bus service to Field? Equation is pretty much written. If the cost of providing transportation assistance to each family at 20 cents per kilometer is less than running the bus, then 8 students is the number. Small community school has not attracted people and there are not the jobs here to attract people either. Looking at the future, council has discussed what could happen to the building i.e. lease of usable space. Parks Canada currently leases space there and might want more office space. Burgess Shale Geoscience Foundation (BSGF) in cooperation with College of the Rockies could operate a Learning Centre. Craig met with Jon Dudley, Acting Chair for BSGF; definitely facing hard times as well because if school closes their rent agreement will change and they will loose use of the gym, major impacts on their livelihood and success. BSGF in communication with School District 6 on options. Could we fight for keeping gym? School lease with Parks is an unknown factor. Parks is examining where they can be involved. What does the community want? What could it look like in the future if there is need for a school in the future? Is this size needed i.e. that building and that place or is there another option? Resolution needs to take into account needs of current tenants and future school needs. What would be the flow? Keep meeting with school board? Board has to vote on closure before other possibilities can be determined. Lease has to comply with use. School district also has option to sell building as well. No step-by-step guide at this point. Rent? Sale? Both options involve lease, so Parks Canada holds final say. Burgess Shale cost concerns may be related to insurance costs. Utilities are only $12000 annually so not an expensive building to operate.
Yoho Trading Post site: Council understands that we must tread carefully when commenting on how businesses operate, but community is not keen on current operation. Council would like to see that site opened sooner rather than later to a call for proposals. Foundation lease is currently in overhold. Questions have gone to the Department of Justice for guidance; Ellen has asked for additional staff to deal with the site. Parks Canada wants to make certain that whatever is done there provides the opportunity for something really great to happen. This has been added to list of outstanding items. Probably will not be a quick fix. May be contamination issues on site that need to be mitigated; researching possibilities so it could be used by anyone. Bruce expressed concern about the front line image for the community of Field. The Trading Post sits there boarded up with plywood. Is there something that can be done to make it look less derelict? The community has only one chance for a first impression. As a Parks Canada townsite, what do we want to say at the entry? No one is happy with the current presentation. Moving toward special year, 2017 and Canada’s 150 Birthday Celebrations, although every year is special.
Catholic Church: Karla Gaffney will address next meeting of council on February 22, 2016. Offer accepted August 19, 2015 but the final papers are not signed. Diocese and realtor are dumbfounded at the process. Purchasers have asked for alternate uses but received no feedback to date. Lease says place of worship. Other parties are interested in the church. Does Parks Canada have way to block moving the church? Not currently in consideration so there’s no need to discuss. Parks Canada will meet with Diocese and Karla. There are no final details at this time.
Hall Improvement Project: Chris Allen will purchase and install Wi-Fi and security systems for the hall. New acoustic panels have been delivered, and are ready to install. LED lighting has been installed inside and outside; well done Matt Morrison. Thank you for the great work. Banff Fire and Safety has installed the new fire panel and system, just waiting for panel cover. New soundboard has been returned, repaired and ready to go. Portable sound system is excellent.
- Treasurer’s Report – Sally Watson
It must have been Christmas because we spent a lot of money. Please see files attached to the email.
Kathryn moved to accept; Claudia seconded the motion.
- Parks Canada Townsite Manager’s Report – Ellen Francis
Would like to start with introductions; bringing other members from our team for residents to meet. As you know, we manage both townsites of Field and Lake Louise. Introduced: Elaine Lemieux, Realty and Municipal Officer; Joanne Arnold, Housing Coordinator, Mike Vanderveen, Highway Service Centre; Travis Wert, Asset Manager. Community members introduced themselves.
Canada 150 Celebration ideas for 2017: Government announced free visitation for parks in 2017; Parks Canada examining implications. Looking at Lake Louise and Field for offering: what do we want to achieve and how can we provide positive visitor experience? There will be meetings/discussions around principles, something new or special in shoulder or off seasons and ensure current offerings in high season are stellar. We will involve stakeholders, businesses, residents; invitations are forthcoming. Looking at what other venues are offering in Jasper, ID 9, Banff, and Canmore. Plans will coordinate so all events align. Time to start thinking about ideas as community or individuals. The intent is to bring people together but not control the conversation.
Snow removal: E-mail notifications working well. Snow removal more effective when vehicles are moved off street. Please communicate with Elaine, by email, any problems, and please offer solutions. Feedback welcome. Highways team has cleared bridge and currently hauling snow from in town. Please be patient when there are equipment failures; we are doing our best.
Federal Infrastructure Initiatives: Parks Canada is advancing projects internally but has nothing to offer publically at this time as per Ministerial Announcement guidelines. On the Yoho Bunkhouse project, we are defining accommodations by demographic needs. Parks Canada wants to provide suitable staff housing; working with an architect. Is there enough money for that project? Yes. With the new administration, there are many possibilities in Parks Canada as a whole and LLYK specifically.
Keeping the Community Clean: We have received reports of golf balls and dog feces left around town. Please clean up after your activities and after your pets. If you are not comfortable approaching people, please correspond with Elaine by e-mail.
Superintendent’s Residence: Frozen pipes lead to flooding in early December. Significant improvements are planned, with access to FHBRO funding. Great report on the house itself if anyone is interested in reading it, but generally, because of heritage status the current carbon footprint of the building is horrendous. Parks Canada and FHBRO hope to use this building as a heritage model operated by green technology in ways that have not been available. Building has to be livable and lived in, and Parks Canada wants it to be used. Can it be used for Parks Canada housing only? It could be used by other organizations that make it a showcase of green technology where it is potentially open to the public. Use of the facility is in discussion.
Budget: The budget was presented at Field Utility Board on Wednesday, January 20, 2016. The quarterly report from April to September was delivered to Councilors tonight. Still waiting for some information to complete last quarterly report.
Outstanding Items List: We will continue to review items on the list.
Remote Water Meter Change: In order to provide efficient service, utilities staff will schedule appointments for remaining houses. Sally’s new meter not reading any use. Elaine will look into it. Some meters have malfunctioned. Residents have asked that notices not be taped to doors with packing tape; it pulls the paint off.
Water Reservoir Site Signs: Make suggestions if you feel there is more that needs to be done to enhance security at the site. Council feels that there needs to be better security. Significant trail use now is obvious. Video surveillance suggested by RCMP would provide information if the locks are cut again, and use of that popular trail would not be curtailed.
Emergency Plan: Parks Canada continues to review and change the document. We will consult with the community when ready.
Lot release: Potentially there is one lot possible to release.
3a. Asset Manager’s Report – Travis Wert
Mount Dennis Slope Stabilization: monitoring program in place for spring review. Not expecting significant data until thaw starts in spring.
2nd Avenue Drainage: Gathered anecdotal evidence and geotechnical observations. Spring observations critical to monitor drainage from old reservoir. Estimate that Parks Canada will have to redo all work done on 2nd avenue to make drainage better than it is now.
Parks Canada Reports – Discussion
Bruce: We need a grader. Speed plows and loaders don’t do as good a job.
Mike: Actually, the grader has been here fairly often this winter. Some days we send in the plow; it leaves a windrow. Then we send in the grader; it leaves a windrow. The loader removes windrows. Then the snow is hauled – requires loader and trucks. The equipment that is used in the village is based on conditions, resources and need.
Karla: We used to have a one-ton equipped with a plow but we haven’t seen it recently.
Mike: That was an old fire truck from Kootenay; it was worn out, has been surplused and auctioned off. Basically, a single axle truck is not as effective here because it needs more weight to negotiate the snow and hills in Field.
Karla: Are you entertaining contracting Gottler more often?
Ellen: Gottler operates out of Golden; they will be asked to do emergency routes when highways team is over stretched and not able to come into Field. Gottler does not do regular or fine work. Townsites pays the costs, and is used only for Field not for Lake Louise.
Mike: We are testing an attachment for our plows that works like a grader.
Craig: Parks Canada used to have a bobcat that did fine work like removing windrows and clearing around fire hydrants. It’s not used anymore.
Mike: Bobcat belonged to technical services, not highways and the service was provided by a willing Parks Canada utilities staff member who has since retired.
Kathryn: Thanks for leaving the snow on Stephen Creek road for the Downhill Race this weekend.
Canada 150 Celebration ideas for 2017
Karla: Will grant money available for events?
Ellen: Let’s keep in touch and see what is possible.
Craig: There is partnership potential for Yoho and Field; not a lot of deep pockets here but lots of heart.
- Fire Chief’s Report – submitted by Jamie Harbottle, presented by Claudia Harding
Callouts (November to Present): 20 MVA (4 of which we had No Response, Lake Louise Fire Responded). Two of the call-outs involved fatalities: one near Yoho West Gate and the second near rock work at Sherbrooke Creek on the Big Hill. There was 1 Vehicle Fire, fully involving a Grey Hound Bus.
New Recruits: Maggie and Tina are now Probationary Fire Fighters. Tina is planning on returning in the spring.
Rescue Truck: Currently in Radium. Estimate another 1-2 weeks until paperwork goes through.
Equipment: New portable pool and fire hydrant adaptors; this will improve fire fighting capability in remote areas.
In-House Training: Auto Extrication techniques.
Callout Turn Out: Generally ok. 9-5 on weekdays is a problem with very few fire fighters in town.
Ellen: Working on ways to recruit people that don’t live here but work here and would be available to respond to call-outs during the day.
- Round Table
Karla: New magazine Canadian Rockies Annual, produced by Crowfoot Media. High quality, soft cover annual, archival quality mountain culture magazine with striking visuals and outstanding design. May 2016 release dare, advertising closes February 15. For more information visit: http://crowfootmedia.com Crowfoot Media rate cards and info attached to this e-mail as well.
Kim: Thank you to Kicking Horse Ski Club for the groomed dog-friendly trail to the switchbacks on the Yoho Valley Road this year. Great job! We’re looking forward to the annual Ski Club supper on Saturday, February 13, 2016.
Meeting adjourned at 8:50 pm.