Field Town Hall Meeting March 13, 2017
Field Town Hall Meeting
Field Community Hall
7:00 pm, March 13, 2017
1a. Fire and Vegetation – Jed Cochrane, Parks Canada
i. Fire has been an important part of the ecosystem and suppression of fire has left an impression on the landscape. Parks Canada (PC) is trying to emulate natural fire regime by using prescribed burns, letting wildfires burn and suppressing wildfires. Area around Highway One (TCH) is a suppression zone. NO wildfires will be left to burn due to risk to infrastructure and public safety
ii. Future Plans in Yoho – all to improve Grizzly Habitat, reduce fire risk, reduce mountain pine beetle impact.
1. Nothing in 2017
2. Float Creek-Ottertail Valley (fall burn) – 2+ years away
3. Mount King (fall burn)
4. Amiskwi-Otterhead Valleys – conceptual phase; 4-5 years away. Well removed from Field with natural fire breaks
iii. Future Plans LLYK
1. Harry’s Hill
2. Baker Creek
3. Alexander Valley (near Jasper)
4. Redstreak Mt
5. Sinclair Valley
iv. Looking for interest from residents to do a community outreach program to educate the community on fuel management within Field. In event of large forest fires near towns or cities, for example in Slave Lake and Fort McMurray, most homes lost to fires through ember transfer. Educating community about fire behaviour, risk areas, how to reduce risks etc. could improve community’s outcome in event of forest fire. Currently have a time set up with Lake Louise in the fall.
v. In 2015 looked at firebreaks and fuel loads. They were measured and considered that Field still sitting in a safe area, but will need more work within 3-5 years.
vi. 2 important species in Field Unit – Whitebark Pine and Limber Pine. Whitebark Pine is listed federally as an endangered species. Almost at northern limit for limber pine distribution (some at Saskatchewan crossing). Limber pine cones are open, while whitebark pine cones closed.
vii. Whitebark pine species are at risk because of blister rust, pine beetle, fire exclusion and climate change.
viii. Planning to plant 2000 whitebark pines within the Field unit every year, starting this year.
ix. Looking for blister rust resistant whitebark pines to study. Some whitebark pines have caged cones (to protect them from predation); the cones will be collected to grow/test for strains genetically resistant to blister rust.
1b. Federal Infrastructure Projects Update – Travis Wert, Parks Canada
1. HIGHWAY CONSTRUCTION
i. Overpass, Culvert work will continue this summer – anticipated traffic impacts available if interested.
ii. Remote Avalanche control system will be installed at Mt Bosworth – anticipated traffic impacts available if interested
iii. Minimum of one lane will be open throughout the summer, except for blasting area (2km West Finn Creek?) ( 20 minute closures). Slide area will be cleared up for the summer and the work will continue
2. YOHO BUNKHOUSE
i. May be enough money in the budget to fix up the bunkhouse and build units within town
ii. Considering building 4 x 3 bedroom duplexes that could be family units or bunkhouse units. Total of 24 beds in town. Have currently identified one lot (Dollhouse lot) and considering one other; the duplex at 207 Kicking Horse Ave would be demolished and replaced. Still looking for other sites. Potential that building could begin this summer.
iii. Planning on having temporary housing – something like an ATCO trailer, located at Boulder Creek – for the summer (similar to system used in Waterton).
3. REMEDIATION Work for Mt Stephen
i. Creek/bridge where cemetery road crosses needs work. Currently in the design phase.
4. FUTURE Federal Infrastructure Work
i. $6 million needed for bridge on the way into town (essentially deferred maintenance)
ii. Kicking Horse/Monarch campgrounds ‘refreshing’
5. GREEN ENERGY PLAN for the Superintendents House
i. Behind schedule, nothing planned for this year
6. OPEN HOUSE at the Water Treatment Plant Monday April 24, 2017
i. Afternoon event, will be posted on the bulletin board
2. FRAA Report – Kathryn Cameron
1a. Yoho Blow Recap
i. General overview assessment: lots of fun and participation. Full weekend event; plan to keep the general format but nix the less popular events.
ii. T-shirts – ink flaked off when washed. Off the Wall heat pressed two shirts then washed them numerous times to test the ink. No more flaking. Should be ready to pick up this week. For sale again.
iii. Thank you letters – distributed.
iv. Volunteer Thank You Night – 10 pin bowling in Banff March 20, High Rollers, Banff
1b. Kicking Horse Ski Club
i. 30th Anniversary Celebration – February 16, 2017
ii. Full Moon Ski – February 10 notice apology
iii. Skate Ski Workshop for members March 12 – hard work, great drills, lots of fun
1c. Easter Brunch and Bunny Hop – April 17, 2016
1d. Spring Fling – May 28, 2017
1e. Canada Day – July 1, 2017, Canada’s 150th birthday
i. Giant Beaver has been booked!
ii. Pancake breakfast, courtesy of BC Ambulance Service
iii. Parade – Costume contest – dress up as your favourite Yoho animal. All local businesses invited to enter a float to commemorate Canada 150. Water balloon pick-up contest – everyone welcome to participate.
iv. Field Fire and Rescue Department BBQ
v. Cake contest.
vi. Boat relay race at the pond
vii. Afternoon bocce tournament
viii. Evening dance at the hall including fire pit.
2. Societies Act update workshop – 7:00 pm COTR February 23, 2017, Golden, Kathryn and Desneige attended. Very informative. Sally has sent for a transition kit. We have until November 2018 to make the transition to fully digital format. Failure to comply? Our Society ceases to exist and all assets become the property of the Provincial Government.
3. Community Hall Spring Clean and organization work party March 16, 7:30 pm. Bring your rubber gloves.
4. New stove – purchasing stoves that will work with our current ventilation system.
5. Catholic Church
i. FRAA and the Catholic Church have agreed to the transfer of the building and lease to the FRAA.
ii. Parks Canada has voiced support for the project that fits with the institutional zoning.
iii. FRAA has spoken to funding partners – CBT and CSRD and have received very positive feedback. FRAA will also be fundraising for this project through some new channels.
iv. Business model would involve an Arts and Wellness Centre and would have a supporting revenue stream of rentals from weddings.
v. FRAA is sharing this information at a very early stage but it is in keeping with the open dialog we are planning with the community. The Community will be informed and consulted through all the stages of the project.
vi. This is the biggest project the FRAA has taken on in many years and it will involve a change in the way we operate. There is a possibility for hiring of a Manager for our facilities at a future date. Exciting!
6. Constitution Update and Board Development – meeting with Columbia Basin Trust Non Profit Advisor on Thursday, March 16. Introductory session to see how they can help us rewrite the constitution so it reflects what we actually do and help the Board set direction for operations for the future.
7. Parks Canada and FRAA Facilitated Meetings – To confirm roles and responsibilities, and develop a Memorandum or Understanding or similar agreement to guide the relationship for both organizations.
8. AED – Request from FFRD to share 50% of the cost of an automatic External Defibrillator. Board said yes. Truffle Pigs has offered to keep the device at the hotel. Plan to offer training for staff at businesses/offices in centre of village on use. FFRD researching cost.
9. Keys – If you are not on the board or doing programming, please drop your keys off at the Velvet Antler so they can be given to current board members.
10. BC Hydro Update – From Diane Tammen, by email today:
“It looks like the cause of last week’s outage was a communications failure. Our contractor S&C came to the site on the weekend to download the data and information logs regarding the ESF’s recent operations. S&C are assessing this information and have indicated they may require replacement parts, but expect to have a better idea shortly. Depending on the results of the assessment and the availability of the parts, their technicians may be back on site to troubleshoot and replace the parts the week of March 20th. I will provide you with an update when there is more clarity.
Please thank everyone for their patience. The Energy Storage Facility in Field is a unique demonstration project and the only battery storage facility in the BC Hydro system. The $13 million ESF project in Field was made possible with help from $6.5 million in funding from Natural Resources Canada’s Clean Energy Fund. Since its installation the ESF has provided numerous hours of trouble-free back-up power during outages. That said, we know that any outage is an inconvenience and we are working closely with S&C to ensure the facility is available when it’s needed. We are also working internally to ensure we have an effective maintenance program for the ESF operations.
Please also let Field residents know that in the near future I will be sending them a request to update their account information. This is being done to improve the information flow and enhance our communications. I would like to thank everyone in advance for responding to that request.”
3.Treasurer’s Report – Sally Watson
Files attached to the email
Motion to accept report: Claudia Harding, seconded by Desneige Meyer
4. RCMP Report – From Sgt. Betty Watson, Golden/Field Detachment
“I have included driving complaints in the stats as this will explain the increase in total calls for service. As mentioned in the last meeting I attended, we feel that the increase in these calls directly relates to the cell service now available in the parks allowing for motorists to call in other bad motorists as the time, rather than when they are in cell service and have calmed down then decide not to call.”
See Appendix 1 for detailed stats.
5. Parks Canada Reports
i. Community Waste Bin. Will be scheduled for last two weeks of May. Cost will be added to the budget
ii. Visitor Experience – New Acting (long term) Manager Richard Dupuis. From Riding National Park where he was Visitor Experience Manager and recently served as Acting Superintendent.
iii. Michael Vanderveen is here from Townsites if anyone has questions for him.
i. Emergency Planning. Will work on the Field Emergency Plan in the fall and will be passed on to the community for input.
i. New Parks Canada location signs will be installed on the TCH before May – updating several of the current signs for the busy summer.
ii. CP Train Whistle – From Christine Brown, CP Community Connect email@example.com
“CP is a federally regulated company, required by law to sound the train whistle at all public grade crossings within Canada as prescribed by the Canadian Railway Operating Rules (CROR). The rules apply 24 hours a day and the whistle must be sounded even if the crossing has flashing lights, bells and crossing gates. The train whistle must begin at least a quarter mile before each crossing, and is sounded in a sequence of 2 long – 1 short – 1 long whistle, and the last long whistle must be held until the crossing is fully occupied by the train. The train whistle is a significant safety appliance, which provides a last warning to the public of an approaching train. CP takes public and employee safety very seriously, therefore it is CP’s position to sound the train whistle at every public crossing. The only exceptions to whistling regulations are crossings where federally approved whistle prohibitions have been put in place. Note that if at any time there is a safety concern such as trespassers or animals on the track or adjacent right of way, the crew will sound the whistle to warn of the approaching train.
You can approach your municipality to ask if they have interest in seeking whistle cessation at nearby crossings. It is important to be aware that crossings with crossing gates are not automatically exempted from use of the train whistle. The municipality would still have to apply for whistle cessation, and are responsible for the crossing safety assessment and additional insurance if the application is successful. Information on the process of applying for a whistle cessation can be found at: https://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/railsafety/railsafety-976.html .
CP must operate around the clock in order to meet the needs of a complex network of customers, industries, and other transportation connections. We are under statutory obligation to our customers to whom we have the responsibility to provide adequate and suitable service. Just as would happen with highway and road traffic, should there be time restrictions to roadway use, restricting the hours of train operations would cause congestion, goods and people would be delayed, and businesses and consumers would suffer.
You may wish to know that there are rules regarding the length of time that a train can block (be stopped at) a public grade crossing. Under the Canadian Railway Operating Rules, there is no time limit for which a train can occupy a crossing as long as it is moving, no matter what the train speed is. However, if the train is completely stopped, or shunting, for over a period of five minutes where there is evidence of vehicular or pedestrian traffic wishing to access the crossing the crew would be required to move or split the train as soon as possible. The clock resets each time the train moves.
It is important to keep in mind that CP property is a heavy industrial zone, and train operations can result in the transmission of industrial nuisances to adjacent properties. This can be disruptive to public convenience and although we try to minimize the effects of our operation on people living nearby, sometimes this is unavoidable.”
iii. CP Sediment Trap – work completed.
iv. TCH Twinning Open House. Dates have not yet been finalised. Hopefully in May at the Community Hall with preliminary plans that will include ‘intersections for major turn offs’.
6. Friends of Yoho – Helen Barry, President
i. Back open in the VRC Friday, Saturday, Sunday – until May 1st , then open daily
ii. May have something to add to Canada Day – Amuse Troupe (from Golden) to do a piece on the naming of the Kicking Horse River (with grant from the Heritage Rivers Society).
iii. Friends of Yoho will have regular summer programming, including S’Mores evening, Historic Walks, CPR weekend. No Full Moon walks this year – the moon rises too late.
iv. Deb Bancroft’s last year with Friends of Yoho.
v. Celebrating 30th Anniversary this year and will have a bigger and better dinner this fall.
7. Field Fire and Rescue Department – Claudia Harding
i. Two call outs February: Avalanche on the TransCanada Highway and one stand down. FFRD did excellent job in clearing all traffic from avalanche path.
ii. One call out so far in March: Head on collision, 1 fatality declared deceased on scene.
iii. AED – $700 raised at Canada day, FRAA willing to contribute $700 from the Tip Fund and FFRD society willing to cover gap up to $500. Chief is exploring options for extra funding from Stars fundraiser. Currently looking at a quote – all in for $2000, hoping to put in central location here in town. Truffle Pigs has agreed to keep it at the hotel. Request to ask Canada Post if we could extend the hours of access to the postal boxes to keep it there as other option.
8. Round Table – nothing added