The Other City Council Meeting

Ron Bolin: Feb. 3, 2012

Disguised as an innocuous committee meeting, the Finance and Policy Committee of the Whole (FPCOW) will meet on Monday, Feb. 6, 2012, in the Board Room at City Hall at 4:30 pm, as it does on most Mondays alternating with regular Council meetings.  This committee is made up of all members of Council and it differs from what is otherwise known as a Council meeting in two distinct areas:  first, no bylaws can be passed in a FPCOW meeting; second it is held in a small board room at City Hall, it is held at a time inconvenient to working  citizens and there are no intruding cameras to record the proceedings.  What can be done at these meetings is approving spending and the notification of Council regarding upcoming project expenditures that may exceed the $250,000 limit set for Staff to manage in accordance with the budget without explicit Council approval.

For example, on Monday Council is asked:

  • to approve $30,182 in 2012 Arts, Cultural and Festival Grants;
  • to approve $175,988 in 2012 Cultural Operating Grants;
  • to provide in principle up to $300,000 toward a $1.8 million project to replace 4 existing barns on the VIEX grounds with a new consolidated barn structure;
  • to approve the transfer of $74,500 of the Port Theatre Society’s capital reserve to their 2011 operating deficit;
  • to receive the externally completed review of the City’s contracted services  which totaled $31.7 million dollars in 2010.  To read this report see:
  • Notice of issuance of a tender tor traffic signage services for a period of one year with the option to extend the contract for three more years.  This contract was worth $364,000 in 2011;
  • Notice that a tender seeking a general contractor for the construction of the Rotary Park Tourist Information Kiosk, Sani-Dump stations and Dog off Leash Park is to be issued and is expected to exceed $250,000;
  • Receive a report discussing the City’s grant to the Vancouver Island Symphony which recommends an increase in grant funding of $26, 760;
  • Receive a report regarding the issuance of public tender calls for Materials Supply for the Water Treatment Plant and Number one Reservoir which are estimated to be in excess of $3 million dollars;
  • Receive a report regarding Contractor Pre-qualification for construction contracts regarding the Water Treatment Plant and Number One Reservoir;
  • A presentation regarding a project at 5300 Rutherford Road and a Delegation regarding the same property a review of the environmental monitoring of that same project.

The Agenda for this meeting with considerably more information is available at:

You may agree with me that this Other Council Meeting deserves to come out of the dark and further into our attention.