Duncan City Council Meeting – 1 April 2019

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The City of Duncan held a Regular Council Meeting on 1 April 2019. Here are our notes on the meeting.

First, here is a link to the Meeting Agenda

Here is the City of Duncan video of the 1 April 2019 Council Meeting:

Here are our comments on the Council meeting:

Item 5.1


There was one Delegation, from Cowichan Valley Youth Services, which asked Council to declare a Duncan Youth Pride Day.

Council was receptive and plans to declare a Duncan Pride Day on 1 June 2019.

Item 6.1

Report of the Chief Administrative Officer

Here is the online edition of the Duncan CAO Report for 1 April 2019 [note: PDF].  It was basically presented to the Council Meeting as written. There were no questions from Council.

Reports of Committees


 Committee of the Whole Recommendations from March 18, 2019

7.1.1. Rack Card Distribution

    • That Council approve the renewal of the Victoria/Vancouver Island distribution portion of the Certified Folder Display contract, July 1 to October 31, 2019 and May 1– June 30, 2020;
    • And That Council approve the new line item in the Tourism Budget, of approximately $5,715 for Social Media/Online Advertising, funded in part from the difference in funds reallocated from rack card revision, print and Certified Folder distribution;
    • And That Council approve the Tourism Budget as attached to the March 18, 2019, Corporate Services Coordinator’s Rack Card Distribution report.”

    Here are links to some of the City of Duncan documents associated with Item 7.1.1:

    2019-03-18 Rack Card Distribution RFD

    Appendix A – 2016 Duncan Rack Card by HH

    Appendix B – Certified Folder Display Agreement 2018

    Appendix C – VI and Victoria Distribution

    Appendix D – 2019 Tourism Committee Budget (2)

    Appendix E – 2018 Visitor Survey

    Councillor Tom Duncan said that rack cards on BC Ferries are not as effective they were in the past. He suggested keeping rack cards in hotels but not bother anymore with rack cards on BC Ferries. He suggested the City of Duncan concentrate instead on social media advertising. We agree with that.

    There was no further discussion or questions from Council. The Motion passed unanimously.

  • Advisory Committee on Disability Issues Recommendations from February 25, 2019


Emergency Preparedness Workbook

  • That Council direct staff to continue promoting the free Emergency Preparedness Workbook through the City’s social media page, website and newsletter;
  • And That Council direct staff to encourage the Downtown Duncan Business Improvement Association to advise their members that the Emergency Preparedness Workbook is available for pick-up at City Hall.

Here are some links to City of Duncan documents related to this Motion:

2019-04-01 Emergency Preparedness Workbook RFD

Appendix A – Mayor New Business Welcome Letter

Appendix B – Mayor New Resident Welcome Letter

The Motion passed unanimously with no discussion.


Country Cabs Wheelchair Accessible Cab

  • That Council direct staff to communicate out to the public, once confirmed, that Country Cabs Duncan Ltd. now has a wheelchair accessible cab available in their fleet, as well as communicate how many accessible cabs the other local cab companies maintain.

Here are link to some City of Duncan documents relating to this Motion:

2019-04-01 Country Cabs Ltd Duncan

Appendix A – Passenger Transportation Board Notice – Redacted

Appendix B – CoD Country Cabs Duncan Ltd Response

Councillor Garry Bruce asked whether this Motion meant that the City of Duncan was advertising for a private company, i.e. Country Cabs Ltd. Councillor Newington says that the City of Duncan is just adding Country Cabs Ltd. to an existing City of Duncan list of taxi companies which maintain Accessible vehicles.

The Motion passed unanimously with no further discussion.


City Walk About Report

  • That Council direct the Director of Public Works and Development Services to review the issues highlighted in the City Walk About Report of May 28, 2018, contact Cowichan Tribes regarding areas of concern that impact both jurisdictions, and report to the Committee of the Whole meeting prior to the end of May 2019, on the status of the highlighted issues.

Here are links to some City of Duncan documents related to this Motion:

2019-04-01 City Walk About Report RFD

Appendix A – 2018-05-28 City Walk About Report

This Motion was Carried with no discussion.


Plastic Straws

  • That Council direct staff to promote tips for reducing plastic straws and single-use plastics on the City’s social media page, website and newsletter, while educating on the need for limited use of plastic straws particularly for people with disabilities.

Here are some City of Duncan documents relating to this Motion:

2019-04-01 Plastic Straw Reduction RFD

Appendix A – Strawgate The Ableism Behind Exclusionary Activism

This Motion was passed with no discussion.

[Our comments: we think this issue of plastic straws has been well debated elsewhere so we hope the City of Duncan does not spend too much money and staff time on this. Anyone interested in this issue can find many information sources on this through a simple Google search.]


Duncan Disability Rack Card

  • That Council authorize staff to mail the Advisory Committee on Disability Issues rack cards to seniors’ housing facilities, for approximately $40, including but not limited to: Cairnsmore Place, Duncan Manor, Duncan Kiwanis Village, Sherwood House, SunridgePlace, Wedgwood House and Valley Seniors Organization.

Passed unanimously with no discussion or questions.

Reports of Staff


Towing Policy

  • That Council repeal the Downtown Towing Policy, as approved on March 18, 2019;
  • And That Council approve the Towing Policy, as attached to the April 1, 2019, report by the Director of Corporate Services.

Here are links to some City of Duncan documents on this issue:

2019-04-01- RFD Towing Policy

Appendix A – Towing Policy

Appendix B – Downtown Towing – Tracked Changes Version

Here is a link to a Cowichan Valley Citizen article on this issue.

This Motion was passed unanimously with no discussion or questions from Council.


City Square Management Agreement

  • That Council abandon the practice of considering the payment to the Downtown Duncan Business Improvement Area (DDBIA) for managing City Square a “grant” and instead characterize the payment as a “fee for service”;
  • And That Council instruct staff to amend the City Square Management Agreement with the DDBIA to include a $4,000 fee for service for managing all events in City Square, other than the Farmers’ Market;
  • And That the City Square Management Agreement also reflect a $3,000 contribution from the DDBIA to the City, out of the rents they receive from the Farmers’ Market, to partially compensate the City for parking management, hydro, and garbage collection.

Here is a link to a City of Duncan document on this issue:

2019-04-01 – RFD City Square Management

This passed unanimously with no discussion or questions from Council.

Councillor Tom Duncan stated he agreed with this policy. This policy is supported by the City of Duncan CAO and, according to the CAO, by the DDBIA.

Councillor Garry Bruce wanted more information on the financial figures involved. So do we.

We will send a request to the City of Duncan for more information on these financial figures and we will posted them in future.

9. New Business – none


Bylaws – First, Second, Third Reading

  • That Council give first three readings to “Fees and Charges Amendment Bylaw No. 3192, 2019” – a bylaw to establish the cannabis licence application fee at $300, plus the cost of the required public input process.

Here are some links to City of Duncan documents on this issue of Cannabis Licensing for Retail Cannabis Operations:

2019-04-01 Cannabis Licensing Fees RFD

3192 Fees and Charges Amendment Bylaw – Cannabis

Liquor and Cannabis Licensing Policy

Paige McWilliam explained that the Licensing Fee has been set at $300.00 because that is the current licensing fee for Liquor operations in Duncan. License fees are set at the same $300.00 fee as liquor outlet licensing fee because the approval process for both types of location is similar. She also noted that other municipalities charge for license AND public input process.

The Motion passed unanimously with no discussion or questions from Council.


Reports From Mayor And Councillors

Councillor Bob Brooke – attended Housing For Humanity meeting and was impressed by the Habitat For Humanity Business Plan. We will do some research on this and post what we find.

Councillor Jenni Capps – went to premiere of a local movie called A Just Society, which is about the opioid crisis in the Cowichan Valley. Councillor Stacey Middlemiss was apparently involved in the production of this video in her private capacity.

We have not seen this video of A Just Society. so we cannot comment on it at this stage. We looked for it on YouTube but were unable to find it. [See our post about the Seattle Is Dying video]

Councillor Tom Duncan – attended Island Savings Centre Board meeting. The “Naming rights” are up for discussion. Ground has been broken for the new Chemainus Library, which will be opening later this year.

City of Duncan Councillor Michelle Staples (photo: City of Duncan)
City of Duncan Councillor Michelle Staples (photo: City of Duncan)

Mayor Staples

  • Commissionaires have new uniforms, which look “dashing”. [Note: we have asked the CAO about the Duncan (formerly) Commissionaires having been hired as City of Duncan employees. We will post that information when we get it.]
  • Commented favourably on the movie A Just Society mentioned earlier by Councillor Capps. [See our post about the Seattle Is Dying video]
  • Attended CVRD Board discussions, which focused particularly on storm damage in December 2018 and the need for emergency planning.
  • Will be attending Cowichan Tribes Sports Camp
  • Attended Cowichan Housing Association Meeting with Councillor Bob Brooke attended. There is a new Housing Coordinator, John Horne.





Intergenerational Day – June 1, 2019

  • That Council proclaim June 1, 2019 as Intergenerational Day in the City of Duncan.

Here is a link to a City of Duncan document about Intergenerational Day:

2019-06-01 Intergenerational Day Proclamation_Redacted

The City of Duncan will also be declaring 1 June 2019 as Duncan Pride Day. See 5.1 above.

The Meeting then went into Closed Session.

We will be researching a few point arising from the meeting and will post what we find.

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