Regular council meeting — January 13, 2015
The agenda (270 pages) for Port Moody’s first regular council meeting for 2015 can be accessed from clicking this link.
Public input is allowed in person at the meeting, and residents can also email comment to council (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Below are a just a few of many items on the agenda.
Unofficial Community Plan
The UnOfficial Community Plan is back on the agenda as the final item of the night — 12.3.2.
Although the OCP was adopted by council (5:2) on Oct. 14, 2014, it is still unofficial because it was adopted in contravention of the agreement Port Moody has with the regional district (Metro Vancouver, also known as Greater Vancouver Regional District /GVRD).
Prior to adoption, council held a closed door meeting on Oct. 7, 2014 to discuss the legal issues around the OCP (and decided to proceed despite probable litigation).
Council’s action of Oct. 14 did prompt the regional district to launch a legal petition challenging the document. Port Moody’s plan for conversion of industrial lands to general urban zoning is a point of contention.
Typically, agenda items appear with a staff cover memo summarizing the background and recommendations or alternate options.
However, in this case, the item has no cover memo and is just a simplified timeline of events. To view, click link below.
To comply with the regional district requirements (as agreed upon), the OCP cannot go forward as currently written. It is not a simple matter of changing the colour on a map (as suggested by Mayor Clay in a recent news article).
Why is there no cover memo with recommendations on the process to fix the document, and how the city intends to resolve the dispute?
Residents want to be informed and involved, and want a plan accepted by the community.
When is it appropriate to hold “closed” council meetings?
Port Moody council holds frequent closed meetings — meetings not open to the public, including agendas and minutes of the meetings.
While there are legitimate reasons for holding closed meetings (e.g., personnel matters, certain legal matters), the Community Charter notes a “General rule that meetings must be open to the public” (link here).
On the upcoming agenda, item 12.3.1, Appleyard Centennial House Resolutions, there are excerpts from 13 separate closed meetings on the subject from January 2011 to April 2014.
Was it necessary to hold all of these discussions behind closed doors?
It begs the question of what else is discussed without public disclosure and whether there is discussion taking place that the public has a right to know about, and provide input on.
To view the list of closed meetings and resolutions regarding the Appleyard House, click on the link below.
2015-01-13-Appleyard House Summary
Item 9.2 — zoning bylaw text amendments — commercial medical marihuana
For the full staff report and recommendations, click on the agenda link at the top of this post.
Below is a map of areas that may be approved for commercial production of marihuana.
If the proposed bylaw receives 1st and 2nd readings on Jan. 13, 2015, a public hearing will take place on Tues., Jan. 27, 2015.
As shown, the proposed areas are quite extensive, some in close proximity to residential.
If you have comments, concerns, or questions, you can attend the meeting and/or contact council (email@example.com).
As always, the Moody Centre Community Association welcomes your comments, either on this site, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.