A townhall meeting held by TNRD director Carol Schaffer in Blackpool Hall on Monday, Feb. 2, although not so stormy as one she held on Feb. 4 in Upper Clearwater Hall, was perhaps more productive on more issues.
As with the Upper Clearwater meeting and with one she held earlier in Vavenby, the main purpose of the Blackpool gathering was to inform people about what the Thompson-Nicola Regional District is doing and to get input on what people would like to see happen next.
The regional district has about $200,000 ready to spend in its 2015 budget on a new park to be located next to Blackpool Hall, Schaffer reported.
Construction should begin this spring.
The TNRD director asked that local residents volunteer to help out. The more work volunteers do, the farther the budgeted dollars can go.
There is also $10,000 budgeted for dock replacement at Ferry Road Park, as well as for an information kiosk to be located there.
The kiosk would tell the whole history of the former ferry crossing, and not focus on any one individual, she said.
Blackpool resident Ron Rotzetter asked how the TNRD lets out its contracts for bids.
He had not been aware there was a contract to do work on the Blackpool firehall until he saw the scaffolding going up.
Local contracts should be advertised locally, he felt.
Services coordinator Sherri Madden said the regional district has policies it must follow when contracts go out for bids, depending on the size of the contract. Anything over $75,000 must go onto BC Bid.
Rotzetter also voiced complaints he has heard about the regional district’s building inspection and other services relating to business.
“The TNRD is not warm and huggable,” he said. “We need to make things work for our community.”
Keith Hanna asked for clarification on plans for the Blackpool firehall. Spending $3,000-$4,000 every three to five years to paint the roof for cosmetic purposes did not sound like a good use of money to him.
On the other hand, he thought investing $18,000 to replace the firehall’s wooden siding with artificial was worth doing.
Hanna also asked about getting a left turn lane on Highway 5 at Jenkins Road.
The matter had been looked at before, said services coordinator Sherri Madden, but there was no reason why Schaffer could not raise it again with the provincial government.
“Maybe you can borrow the one from Vavenby,” Schaffer said, referring to a left turn lane on Highway 5 there that turns off into a little-used logging road.
Noreen Venables asked about getting more streetlights in the community.
Lights are to be put up on Thompson Drive and Foote Road, said Schaffer.
She asked that people let her or services coordinator Sherri Madden know of other locations where they are needed.