NORTH ISLAND GAZETTE FILE PHOTO OF COUNCIL Staff advised Port McNeill Council that the Green Communities Committee have awarded the town a ‘Level Three’ recognition.

Port McNeill awarded ‘Level Three’ recognition by the Green Communities Committee

The next Town Council meeting is scheduled for Sept. 16 at 7:00 p.m. and is open to the public.

Earlier this summer, Port McNeill Council submitted its Climate Action Revenue Incentive Program (CARIP) report to the Province. This mandatory public report is required by the Province and summarizes the actions taken by the Town of Port McNeill over the previous year.

At last week’s council meeting (Sept. 9) in response to that submission, staff advised councillors that the Green Communities Committee (GCC) had awarded the town a ‘Level Three’ recognition. There are a total of four levels and the GCC recognized Port McNeill for, “demonstrating significant climate action to reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions” for the 2018 reporting year.

Among the achievements noted for the town in 2018 were: The upgrade to Stage 7 water distribution in sections of town, installation of a back-up generator for wastewater lift stations and funding applications for various projects that would improve the energy efficiencies of the town. A copy of the report can be found on the town’s website.

The town’s submission also noted there were still items left to do, including: Developing a Community Energy & Emissions Plan, along with a Community Sustainability and a Community-Wide Climate Action plan. Those items along with several other strategies to account for growth while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and implementing the BC Energy Step Code are, according to council, issues that will be addressed in the Official Community Plan review and update. The latter is expected to get underway later this year.

In other town news, council accepted first reading of the Permissive Property Tax Exemption Bylaw. If passed, the bylaw will continue the practice of allowing property tax exemptions for five churches (Bishop of Victoria, United Church of Canada, Full Gospel Church, Port McNeill Baptist Church, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) and six not-for-profits (Broughton Curling Club, Royal Canadian Legion, Guide/Scout Hall, Port McNeill Lions Club, North Island Community Services Society and the Broughton Strait Campground). The proposed bylaw exempting these properties would be for a period of four years, running from 2020 to 2024, after which each group would have to reapply. There is still no word from the federal government concerning the town’s infrastructure grant application for work needed on the Beach Drive slope remediation.

The next Town Council meeting is scheduled for Sept. 16 at 7:00 p.m. and is open to the public.

– Bill McQuarrie article

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