SURREY ASSOCIATION OF SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES

 

MINUTES OF GENERAL MEETING

 

Thursday, June 17, 2010, at 7.00 pm

 

Port Kells Community Hall, 18818  88 Ave.

 

Persons present:   Leonore Bradley (Guildford Community Partners), Bonnie Burnside (Whalley CA), Bob Dhaliwal (West Panorama Ridge RA) Deb Jack (Surrey Environmental Partners), Barb Paton (Semiahmoo RA),  Grant Rice (South Westminster RA), Velma Wilson (Cloverdale CA),  Rosemary Zelinka (Elgin Ratepayers and Coordinator for Surrey ASC).

 

1.   Chair for the Meeting

Bonnie Burnside was appointed Chair of the meeting. Congratulations were extended to Bonnie for receiving an award from the Surrey Leader as “Mentor of the Year”.

 

2.  The Minutes of the April Meeting were approved as circulated.

 

3.  Business arising from the Minutes

 

a)  Bylaw enforcement

In Rick Hart’s absence (for which apologies were received), there was a general discussion on bylaw enforcement issues.  Issues identified related to truck and equipment parking on agricultural land, pesticides, tree-cutting, lack of confidentiality for complainers, and graffiti.  A letter sent to Council and the response from the Mayor was discussed.  It was suggested that City staff and community safety officers should be more proactive in reporting infractions. 

 

 It was agreed that the Bylaw Enforcement Committee of Darlene Bowyer, Ann Cassidy, Rick Hart, and now Grant Rice, would be requested to meet and report back to the September meeting with recommendations on how to proceed and potential topics to focus on.

 

b)  Secondary suites

Report R134 re the proposed secondary suites survey was discussed.  It was noted that while the City had responded favourably to some of our concerns, it had ignored issues re sample size (although Council itself increased this), sequence of questions, duplication of questions, lot size, in-law suites, neighbourhoods voting on suites, and the need for legal opinions re if building inspectors can ignore the building code and if existing suites can be recognized as legal if they don’t comply with the building code.

 

It was agreed that the Coordinator would send a letter (draft circulated) to Jean Lamontagne copied to Mayor and Council, expressing our concerns re how we are quoted in planning reports,  and particularly about misinformation in the report implying we agreed with the recommended survey.  It would also request that future planning reports have a section for community comments where our comments can be made in detail.

  

c)  Sustainability Indicators

The Coordinator reported that progress on developing sustainability indicators to implement the Sustainability Charter had stalled, pending a review by staff of potential targets for the indicators.  The latest draft of the sustainability checklist for developers was circulated and concerns were expressed about its usefulness.  More of a scorecard format was suggested.  A letter will be sent to the City’s Sustainability Manager to this effect.

 

d)  The notes from May’s strategic planning session are not yet available.  Comments were made that we had not got very far because of the amount of time spent revisiting our previous efforts, which is not unexpected due to fresh people attending and the length of time since our previous session.  This matter will continue in the Fall.  In the meantime, some draft standing rules to address some of the governance issues will be circulated to members.

 

4.  New Business

 

a)   Deb Jack advised of the City’s open house on June 24 regarding the Ecosystem Management Review’s identification of areas and wildlife corridors to be potentially protected. It was noted that there are as yet no policies as to how this will be done after the areas are identified.

 

b)  The Coordinator advised that the Executive will deal with transferring our finances to Coast Capital Savings in order to take advantage of more favourable banking costs.

 

c)  The Coordinator advised of meetings on June 22 and 23 regarding Translink’s Surrey Rapid Transit Survey.  Several Surrey ASC members will be attending.

 

d)  Deb Jack advised of a workshop on Effective Public Engagement to be given by John Werring of the David Suzuki Foundation in mid-late July. If interested, please contact Deb at dbjaq@telus.net

 

5.   Next meeting

September 16.

 

6    Adjournment

The meeting adjourned at 9.25 pm