Recap of UBCM 2016 Print Article Font Size
Council_0169.jpgOn behalf of the Town of Golden, its elected council and members of staff, I am pleased to share with you some of the highlights of Council’s trip to the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) Conference last month.

This year, Town Council took its own selected issues to the Province to garner support and provide advocacy for continuing initiatives, making changes, or providing assistance within our community.

We had the great opportunity to meet with Hon. Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure to voice our appreciation of the partnership with MOTI in relocating the Provincial Visitor Centre to the old weigh scales site; our thanks for the completion of the final link of the paved pedestrian path between the strip and downtown; and for the work to move forward projects like the Hwy. 95 Bridge replacements and the Kicking Horse Canyon Stabilization. The Minister also said that there were some productive conversations happening with the Federal government regarding the 4-laning of the Trans Canada Highway east of Golden.

During our meeting with the Hon. Mike Morris, Solicitor General and Minister of Public Safety, Council advocated for better access to care in our community. This included asking the Minister to reconsider the move toward procurement vs. direct award system of contracting social service agencies as this will mean that some programs may end up being delivered from outside the community.

Golden is one of 14 municipalities that receive Resort Municipality funding and as a group, we all got together to let Minister Shirley Bond and her executive staff know the value of the program.   Of note was the recent report commissioned by the 14 RMI communities - valuing and rationalizing the program. The Province indicated that it is taking the report seriously and has commissioned its own report as follow up, with the intended outcome of deciding on how the RMI program can continue.

We were also able to extend our heartfelt thanks to Minister Bond and her staff, for their involvement in helping with the issue of the Kicking Horse River access. We also thanked her for the $45,000 granted to find a solution to this issue.

While meeting with the Hon. Peter Fassbender, Council asked the Minister to revisit the 2013 Strong Fiscal Futures report submitted by UBCM and begin meaningful dialogue with a commitment to strengthen the local government finance system in ways that provide the means for communities to sustainably address long term capital infrastructure and operational needs without relying solely on the backs of property tax payers. You can read this report by visiting www.ubcm.ca.

This year at the Conference, Golden was awarded over $662,000 under the Clean Water and Wastewater program.  This will allow us to complete Phase two of our Community Sewer System Improvements project. To learn more about this project, and to get more information on the outcomes of the 2016 UBCM, please click HERE.

Mayor Ron Oszust