Ccl NOTES Jan 14
Calendar to Jan 31st+

by Carolanne Reynolds, Editor

+  BUDGET 2008
The 2008 Budget Booklet is available now!  It's on the DWV website; copies at Library and Finance Dept; use the online forum at westvancouver.ca/forums to post comments.
As presented, the 3% means $83.50 more per year for the average assessment of $1.4M; there's pressure for an increase.  The actual operating expenditures increase is 6% but it counts on offsets to get to 3% but some depts want more and threaten some cuts.  See discussion at end of notes for Jan 14th mtg.  Have your say at the Feb 4th ccl mtg (no mtg Jan 28).  User fees, finding revenue, sponsorships/partnerships, etc can help control costs.
Remember Correspondence was removed Nov 2006 and then reinstated a while later but names blanked out?  We got them to at least put in govts and agencies since the argument of privacy was ludicrous, irrelevant, so they appeared, and then the blanked-out letters.  Well, they've done it again -- the Jan 21 agenda hasn't even a list of letters received!  OUTRAGEOUS!
As ppl have mentioned to me: you give your name and address when you speak at Ccl; letters are part of Public Hearing items, why not in Correspondence?  My simple solution (since legal advice was that letters for a Public Hearing were public) was to name it Public Correspondence.
Anyone wanting privacy has many opportunities (phone, write to staff, or only to a mbr of Ccl); some years ago the practice was confirmed that letters to 'Mayor and Council' were public -- it's addressing your govt after all -- and in an open democracy!!!
+++ HERITAGE AWARDS: Nomination Deadline Jan 25th  ===
On DWV's marvellous website, go to: http://www.westvancouver.ca/article.asp?a=5447&c=898 for more info.  Details were in WVM2008-01.  Call the Hall 925 7055.
If you have a suggestion for an event or an activity, pls call 922 4000, also if you'd like to have a table to display, provide info on, your group at Heritage Fayre, Sunday 24th Park Royal North.  The theme this year is Trade and Commerce.
= Main Items on Agenda Jan 21: Strategy for Dogs; Environmental Strategy and Awards (and request for $32K); Horseshoe Bay Fire Hall site; 3785 Excess Rock Removal; 4012 Marine Rock Removal; Ccl Appointments; DVP 5340 Seaside Place for consideration Feb 4; NO CORRESPONDENCE LIST!!!
Vive le Canada; Heritage Awards; UPDATES; ANIMALWATCH; INFObit; WEBWATCH :-); BOOKWATCH (Irreligion); CALENDAR to Jan 31st+
=  Ccl NOTES Jan 14: Continuation of Jan 7th's ccl mtg: Recommendation to allocate $36,400 of Budget 2008 for World Cup Partnership curtailed by acrid smell in mid-debate; Non-Enforcement of Noise Control bylaw for WVYC request with dates changed to 15th to 21st; 2008 Parcel Tax Roll Review Panel; [NEW agenda item] DNV proposed bylaw wrt Capilano Suspension Bridge (CSB) property on WV side; Adoption of bylaws for utility fees, water regulation, fees and charges but remember, they said public input permitted so there were comments; Correspondence re heritage measures, five-year budget (savings) suggestions, Hugo Ray Park, Dundarave Parking; Workshop on the Budget/Process: comments by each dept head; PQP re more info and (former/future) F&A cmte; release of 2007 salaries after T4 deadline Feb 28 (29th this year?); Cmnty Ctr; agreement with Vancouver Coastal Health
=  Ccl AGENDA Jan 21: Holocaust Survivor: Lesson; THEATREWATCH with philoso-ku; Quotations
===  Vive le Canada
The Canadian taxpayer has given MDA half a billion dollars.  It's a pity if the sale to ATK goes through, the Canadarm will be American-owned.  Maybe we can live with that, but definitely not the loss of Radarsat-2 b/c it's critical to our sovereignty.  It can watch our Arctic and see who's passing through.  The US claims it's international waters.  We think it's Canadian territory.  And if we can't watch who's there or going through?
You will have heard of Paul Cottle who resigned as soon as he heard of the sale (b/c of ATK's landmine manufacturing as well) -- brave principled stand, the more so b/c he's an American!  Must have come here to be one of us.  We can admire and learn from his example.
+++ HERITAGE AWARDS: Nomination Deadline Jan 25  ===
On DWV's marvellous website, go to: http://www.westvancouver.ca/article.asp?a=5447&c=898 for more info.  Details were in WVM2008-01.  Call the Hall 925 7055.
If you have a suggestion for an event or an activity, pls call 922 4000, also if you'd like to display at Heritage Fayre, Sunday 24th Park Royal North.
===   UPDATES   ===
Deferred: CSB rezoning (DNV) of land on 'our' side; Wallace Shipyards heritage de-designation (CNV);  the blacksmith's shop is a significant element of the North Shore's history.
===   ANIMALWATCH   ===
The polar bear has become the poster child for climate change. This film deconstructs the debate and questions whether they can save the world from global warming. See: http://www.cbc.ca/doczone/polarbearfever/video.html
You heard about Knut three-month old cub last year?  Well, now we have a female cub just weeks old -- unbelievably adorable.  See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dV9ssECWvEI and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWQZr3gJ8to
===   INFObit   ===
Amazing.  Watching with wonder.  If Bush can get the Israelis and Palestinians to live side by side in viable states even if only approximating the UN intention, it will truly be a miracle.  We must wish him Godspeed and all the best.
===   WEBWATCH   ===
Reuters: Canada places U.S., Israel on torture watch list http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSN1762987120080117?pageNumber=3&virtualBrandChannel=0
===   BOOKWATCH   ===
*  This book review caught my attention.  'Irreligion' by John Allen Paulos is reviewed by Jim Holt in the NYT Review of Books (Jan 13).
*  One-line summary was: A mathematician tries to refute the arguments for the existence of God.
*  Excerpt from the review:
A physicist, a biologist and a mathematician walk into a bar. Bartender says, "Any of you believe in God?" Which of the three is most likely to say yes? Answer: the mathematician. Mathematicians believe in God at a rate two and a half times that of biologists, a survey of members of the National Academy of Sciences a decade ago revealed. Admittedly, this rate is not very high in absolute terms. Only 14.6% of the mathematicians embraced the God hypothesis (versus 5.5% of the biologists).
But here is something you probably didn't know. Most mathematicians believe in heaven.
*  Naturally I cdn't help recalling the remembering how long so many were distracted arguing about how many angels cd dance on the head of a pin........

===  CALENDAR to Jan 31st+ === [M Hall unless otherwise noted; confi= rm b/c sometimes changes]

+ Mon, Jan 21st ~ 7pm ~  THE CITY PROGRAM - SFU
Next free public lecture (SFU Harbourside): Hallmark Events and Impacts on Housing: A Lecture by Dr. Kris Olds on Monday, January 21st. Reservations are not required for this event only. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.  For other lecture information as well as upcoming SFU City Program courses and workshops, visit http://www.sfu.ca/city .
+ Tues, Jan 22 ~ 4pm ~ Fire & Rescue Services Review WG
+ Wed, Jan 23
~ 6:30 ~ Child Care WG
~ 7pm ~ WV Historical Society at Srs' Ctr
               Author Elspeth Bradbury speaks about her book: A View Through the Trees
+ Thurs, Jan 24 ~ 4:30pm ~ Design Review Cmte
                ~ 5pm ~ NSACDI mtg at DNV M Hall
                ~ 5:30pm ~ Police Bd mtg in Police Dept boardroom
+ Fri, Jan 25th [See Library events also]
   ~ 1 - 3pm ~ The Stewardship Cmnty of the NShore celebrates Jim McCarthy's 20 years of service; Ambleside Youth Ctr, 1018 Marine (near the SPCA); Coffee and Tea provided by The Pacific Streamkeepers Federation; Baked Goods donated by Whole Foods; RSVP Paul at fiona_wright@telus.net
   ~ 5:30pm ~ The Robbie Burns dinner of course.  Info/reservations 998 3162 or 312 0950
+ Sat, Jan 26th
~ 2 - 4pm ~ Spotted Owls - Shadows in an Old Growth Forest
Lighthouse Park Preservation Society's first event in its educational lecture series at the Library,
Guest Speaker: Jared Hobbs, M.Sc. is a Registered Professional Biologist and wildlife photographer based in Victoria, B.C.  He has worked throughout the province on many of British Columbia's rarest species, and was the 2006 recipient of the International Shikar-Safari conservation award for his dedication to the preservation of species and ecosystems.  Everybody is invited.
+ Tues, Jan 29th ~ 4pm ~ Fire and Rescue Services Review WG.

+++  Wed, Jan 30th ~ 7pm ~  +++

= Changes and Choices: The WV Housing Dilemma (Kay Meek Ctr)
The District invites you to attend a Public Forum on West Vancouver's housing dilemma. The forum is part of the Community Dialogue on Neighbourhood Character and Housing. It is an opportunity to learn more about current and future population trends in West Vancouver, and the challenges for providing new housing types in our community.
The forum will be moderated by Ray Spaxman, renowned urban planning consultant and architect, and former Planning Director for the City of Vancouver.
Guest Speakers
* Judi Whyte - North Shore realtor; member, Community Housing Action Committee
* Cheeying Ho - Executive Director, SmarthGrowth BC
* Harold Kalke - President, Kalico Developments
* Karl Gustavson - Karl Gustavson Architect Inc.
* Gordon Price - Director, SFU City Program; former City of Vancouver Councillor
Guest speakers will share their opinions on housing and neighbourhoods, in the context of West Vancouver's community values, and the character and heritage of its established neighbourhoods. They will also describe innovative housing initiatives in other communities, to generate ideas and public comment.
Doors open at 6pm; information displays and refreshments in the foyer. 
We encourage you to attend this important community event, to learn more about West Vancouver's housing and neighbourhood issues, and to share your own thoughts and experiences. For more information or to download an event poster, please visit westvancouver.ca/communitydialogue or
call 925 7055.
= The Old Growth Conservancy Society AGM (Srs' Ctr)
The OGC Society brings together members of environmental and recreational communities for the protection of the 54-hectare Old Growth Conservancy on Hollyburn Ridge, and works with the District to implement the Strategy for Protection for the Old Growth Conservancy (available online at westvancouver.ca/parks).
Doors open at 7pm, meeting begins at 7:30 pm.  Memberships will be available.
For more information email parks@westvancouver.ca or call 925 7138.
= Lecture at the Museum
Prosecuting Nazi War Criminals: Examining the Foundation of Modern War Crimes Trials
Guest speaker: Benjamin Perrin, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Law, UBC
Benjamin Perrin is an Assistant Professor at the UBC Faculty of Law, and is a Faculty Associate at the Liu Institute for Global Issues. His teaching and research interests include domestic and international criminal law, international humanitarian law, comparative constitutional law, and human trafficking. Professor Perrin has advised judges at modern war-crimes tribunals, including the Special Court for Sierra Leone and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague. He will discuss the legacy of the post-World War II war-crimes tribunals and their contribution to modern efforts to bring war criminals to justice in countries like Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Cambodia, and the former Yugoslavia.
Admission to the Behind the Wire Speaker Series is by donation. All proceeds made through these programs will be donated to charities in support of humanitarian activities.   For more information, please contact the Museum at 925 7295.

+ Thurs, Jan 31st ~  4:30pm ~ Heritage WG CANCELLED

***  DOUBLE VISION -- Digital Media by Jas W. Felter, Jan 22 to Feb 3
        OPENING NIGHT ~ 6 - 8pm ~ Jan 22; Artist in Attendance ~ 2 - 3pm ~ Jan 26
On Wed Jan 30th from 10am to noon, there's also an Arts Connection event, a Networking Salon for Artists
The topic is "Wild Words for Artists", merging art-making with creative writing -- tips and techniques. Meet other artists, enjoy coffee and muffins, $5 drop-in.

+++  WV MUSEUM +++   BEHIND THE WIRE -- Nov 7 to Feb 9 
THE WARTIME DIARY AND ART OF ROBERT BUCKHAM [full description earlier]; see lecture Jan 30 above

+++  WV MEMORIAL LIBRARY +++ see www.westvanlib.org
+  Jan 12 to Feb 1 -- Gallery at the Library
Maria De Lourdes Ledesma Velazquez & Emilio Goicoechea.  Bright and exciting paintings that capture the Mexican culture on canvas from two Mexican artists who have recently settled in Vancouver.
Artists' Reception: 6:30 - 8pm Fri, Jan. 18, hosted by the Friends of the Library. Everyone is welcome.
+ Tues, Jan 22 ~ 10:30am - 12:30pm: The Irish Theatre: The Plays of W.B. Yeats; Discussion series; open to all.
+ Fri, Jan 25
-- Philosophers' Cafe -- Is Richard Dawkins delusional?  ~ 10:30am to 12:30pm ~ Everyone welcome; $5 admission.
-- Free Friday Night Concert Series Presents: Safa
Doors open 7pm, concert 7:30pm. Seating is limited so come early, enjoy refreshments by Friends of the Library.

  + Tues 5th  ~ 4pm ~ Fire & Rescue Services Review WG
  + Wed 6th ~ 6pm ~ Cmnty Heritage Workshop: Writing a Statement of Significance (SOS) at Srs' Ctr
  + Thurs 7th ~ 5:30pm ~ Rodgers Crk WG

+++ Don't forget to check out www.silkpurse.ca and www.kaymeekcentre.com for their events

=====  CCL NOTES Jan 14th  =====   Cclr Day absent

1.  APPROVAL OF AGENDA   /  2.  MINUTES -- No items scheduled 
Items 3-6 and 8-14 deferred from the January 07, 2008 Regular Council Meeting
3.         2008 Freestyle World Cup Partnership Opportunity
{The presentation had been made and discussion had begun on this item; probably some answers will be provided and then debate.}
     1.  Staff enter into a partnership agreement with the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association to host the 2008 Freestyle World Cup at Cypress Mountain;
     2.  the District provide a combination of services in kind and financial support for the 2008 Freestyle World Cup at Cypress Mountain;
     3.  Up to $36,400 support be approved from the 2008 Budget to provide enhanced levels of service for traffic and security, volunteer coordination and training, transportation and to provide event and program infrastructure and staff training for future events leading up to 2010; and
     4.  Council pass a resolution supporting an Order of Non-Enforcement of Section 7.2.2 of Sign Bylaw No. 4499, 2007 for the placement of banners, pennants, bunting, flags (other than patriotic flags), balloons, or other inflatable devices and Section 9.1 limiting a business premises to [two] signs per business frontage, for (insert the name of who is making the request) between (insert dates), for the purpose of supporting the important community event, subject to all the aforementioned-- signs being removed within [ten] days following the end of the 2008 Freestyle World Cup event.
KSteig, reading parts of letter submitted:
If West Vancouver Council decides to provide financial support from the 2008 Budget for hosting the 2008 Freestyle World Cup at "Cypress Mountain" within Cypress Provincial Park, I respectfully request, as a West Vancouver tax payer, that Council also consider providing equal one-time support toward improving hiking trails within Cypress Provincial Park.
As reported in the November/December 2007 Friends of Cypress Provincial Park Society newsletter which you received last month, park trails are in poor condition due to BC Parks' inadequate funding. It is generally believed that increased publicity about Cypress as a result of the 2010 Winter Olympics will lead to more year-round use of the park, putting more pressure on its deteriorating trails. Most of the southern section of Cypress Provincial Park is within West Vancouver District boundaries. If West Vancouver would like park trails to be seen as an asset to our community rather than an embarrassment, then Council consideration of assistance in trail improvement seems in order.
David Marley: understand budget increase is 6%; if so shd put a stop to these extra amts
{JF made motion, no one seconded so Mayor did but was informed not allowed to}
Sop: did I hear about money for banners?
JF: was deleted
Mayor: shown on screen but deleted, part of $36K
VV: if no one has, I will for discussion, though I intend to vote against
Mayor: since last week, reduced, taken up Cclr Clark's suggestion of fee; banners same as for 2010;
reduced to $26K; leverages $103K
important to know 1400 schoolchildren intend to attend as spectators
Cypress donating $26K for uniforms for volunteers
VV: this section re 'employment engagement'
invite some up and bask in beauty
that's M staff -- on paid time or vacation time?
Mayor: good question
Susan Ney: my understanding that it wd be on staff's own time; encouraging them to volunteer; promoting District
VV: so a couple of days of annual leave
SN: a weekend event
VV: references to their being minimum costs
I'd like a new standard.  I'd like to know how much staff time so we know the true cost
just as we had paying for police it was $89/hr
but our own staff, no formula so don't know how much it costs it
out of pocket, not full amount
when we were pretty well fully enthusiastic in July, the report made reference to youth, so youth opp to train as volunteers and ambassadors
I'd still like us to maintain our position, engage our youth
fair some banners -- don't think we need to pay for them -- but appropriate make Gleneagles av without paying $4K+ rent, those two days fine
but now it says youth....  pay, not enough for youth
welcome to rec ctr to use it, and pay for manuals, don't see why supporting this b/c it's not a real financial partnership
the others are going to be doing this quite apart from us; quite odd
particularly odd: says staff enter into agreement, I rather thought the District wd
so apart from rental for rec ctr, and [staff?], don't see
Christie O'Krainetz: has engaged youth through process and we hope to engage more
1400 coming up to spectate and then will do snowtubing
[referring to volunteer hours] amt needed for graduation
ambassador prog: training, pilot prog by Tourism, will host athletes through Dine Around
WinterSong Festival
so hope youth up to mtn to see on stage as well as that
JF: speak in support and of even in general
when proposed we didn't know what cost wd be but some cost
a remarkable opp for WV and its citizens to begin to learn how we may participate in the Olympic Games
See the $26K as an investment; building our volunteer capacity
volunteer not just for this event and 2010 but for other facilities and services and events
have a lot who volunteer for Harmony Arts; see same at Coho Festival
time we look to broaden, give opp to meet and greet others
opp for us to bring more profile to arts and cultural events -- to Metro Vancouver and  beyond
we've seen Harmony Arts grow to one of the best loved in the Lower Mainland
WinterSong, also bring to that and our cmnty
may even make it a fun place to be
we're greying but I know a lot who'd want to go up there and hear bands
maybe go to KMC and listen to jazz; go to wine and dine events around town
easy to say youth can participate on their own, but in meeting the actual athletes, cd lead to mentoring; an opp we shdn't miss
also an investment in our ability to bring attention to such activities in our cmnty
we can hardly take an ad in the NSNews for $26K, compare with attention we'll receive
help to enliven our biz district, come to dinner and shop
revitalizing our biz cmnty, this is an opp
MS: that's tough act to follow; always feel like talking against motherhood and apple pie
shd separate -- ev supports this event and glad spinoff benefits, restaurants, students, schools, great
the reality is, do we need to spend this $26K, just as they've managed to cover the money for security and bus, can it be found within budget.........
what are you going to cut to come up with this?
anyone? I think it shd come out of X, Y, or Zee
{why not zed???  Surely Mike went to school here in Canada!}
I don't see any reason to come up with more; I think come up with support within budget
allow it all to happen within existing budget
Sop: can remember having a mtg with VANOC and we said, we look to support you in various ways but not supplying any money
can see import, leading up to Olympics
take you back to our Tax Sustainability Agenda, and position we'll be in for next years
looked at sponsorship and that was going to be a new way for new events
p 14, it says "new corporate" -- look to enhance as sponsors/partners; any stepped forward to help?
secondly we have an org sponsored by Canada Post, another supported by taxpayer;
{BZZT! FACT CHECK: Canada Post makes a profit!}
wonder why Canada Post wdn't cover whole cost
think we shd look v hard to bring about, but like Cclr Smith, think we shd find it within our depts
send msg to our taxpayers we're looking at budget to stay within
how can we look at this? keep pushing the envelope year after year?
they, staff shd find the money within existing budget
JC: I waited b/c -- and almost accused of setting place on fire with my words
share view
no issue with Ski Assn, in July; still in favour and of no 4 but I almost resent the way presented to us; like an Arthur Murray dance
$36K down to $26K; lousy way to do biz; apart from 4, can't support
{Thought Bubble: why not start out at $26K?}
JF: by approving the funding $26K, it's not an add-on; we're about to have discussions on Budget 2008 and that's the time to discuss whether more or within...
Mayor: that's what I think; unless staff wants to comment on funding source
Josie Chuback: at the time the report was done we weren't in the 2008 budget; we typically look at areas where contingencies; look at one-time for the year
I did touch base with Dir/Finance
Mayor: not sure what you said
JCh: when report put forward, one of the responsibilities I had, went to Dir/Fin and we look at possibilities
Mayor: so this is a one-time, not part of budget?
RL: we wd treat it as a special project and treat it as such
Sop: then back to staff -- can you find $26K?
RL: if directed to do so, yes
Sop: where wd it come from?
RL: probably come from surplus
Sop: if that's coming from surplus, how can we tell [others?]
VV: talking about $26K, but it's more -- it doesn't count the $4K
and this other part nothing other than staff time (in three places), we don't know unless we know time
we haven't identified the full cost so not done even with the $26K
Mayor: although when Ccl approve staff plan, staff work, etc, assume costs; not funding the World Cup in perpetuity; Call the motion:  FAILS
Cd bring back the issue of the banners
RB: or tonight
JC: move motion [part] 4
4.         United Way Participation Award --Presentation to be provided; received for information
RB: update; staff have collected this past year, exceeded target of $25, collected $25,500; know United Way appreciated this; worth to extend appreciation to staff, especially to admin staff who facilitated that
Mayor: and thanks wrt gift baskets, raffles; staff; we thank you
5.         Request for Order of Non-Enforcement of Noise Control Bylaw from West Vancouver Yacht Club - 5854 Marine Drive between January 15th and January 21st 2008
RECOMMENDED: THAT Council approve the request ... for a maximum of SIX (6) days between Jan 15 to Jan 21 to allow their principal contractor Westshore Constructors to carry out specific construction works involving drilling into the bedrock to secure several piles that support the deck.
Sop: nothing more aggravating than a drill, hammering away anywhere
know unprotected compressor, nothing more annoying; and running to 9pm doesn't sit well with me; the area is a bowl and resonates around
Mr Wells: the actual work will be with a small hydraulic hammer, removing scale; then small electric hammer drill that will drill four holes for reinforcing rods; noise will not be continuous, will be sporadic; expect to have to set for ten piles
Sop: decibel?
Ans: don't have
VV: I've had phone calls complaining about this, and even from one a mbr of the WVYC
how the tides work, you have two, so take evening or morning
Ans: wd be 3 in morning; work wd take six weeks and intend to have this part done within ten days
VV: latest technology being used? way so nbrhd wd not object?
Ans: piledriver being used has a buffer so somewhat reduced but reiterate, the driving of the piles will not occur between 5 and 9pm; just want to set anchor pins
Mayor: by this time next week, will be over.
6.         2008 Parcel Tax Roll Review Panel
     1.  If so required, the first sitting of the 2008 Parcel Tax Roll Review Panel be held on March 26, 2008 at 11:00 am at the West Vancouver Municipal Hall;
     2.  The Director of Finance give notice of the date, time and place of the first sitting of the 2008 Parcel Tax Roll Review Panel in accordance with the Community Charter;
     3.   Cclrs Day, Soprovich, and Vaughan be appointed to the 2008 Parcel Tax Roll Review Panel; and
     4.   Cclrs Clark, Ferguson, and Smith be appointed as alternates to the 2008 Parcel Tax Roll Review Panel.
7.         District of North Vancouver proposed Bylaw No. 7645 affecting the text of the C5 Zone, creating the C5A zone and rezoning the Capilano Suspension Bridge property to C5A Zone
Correspondence Received: Capilano Suspension Bridge's use of Moyne Drive access lane, January, 9, 2008.
Mayor: many wishing to speak but Geri Boyle first
GB explained new zone for Suspension Bridge property, initiated by District to regularize a situation that was induced, and bylaw intended to remedy the situation.  Adjourned from Nov to tomorrow night: We think the bylaw is a good one but cd go further as far as WV is concerned.
As drafted it allows up to 5Ksf on the west side and given 1K already there, suggesting be cut back to 1.5Ksf.  Think useful also to add that no customer service from west side.  We know today ev from east side, give cmnty confidence that's not going to change.
preclude construction traffic?
Metro Vancouver Parks site -- between CSB and DWV boundary
encourage along trail change from C5 to Park zoning; clarify right to cross park
once licence agreement sorted out, helpful to sit down with NV to understand what access wrt this property
Mr Finch (sp?): think I was clear in my letter; want to thank Mayor G-J and Cclr Sop to come on Saturday and see what we're concerned bout
wd like to see two things added
sound problem -- music or what have you, wd be magnified to Rabbit Lane, etc
wd like to see no amplified sound regardless of who owns the property
heard no access on west side to CSB to public -- is that a recommendation or a fact? believe it shd be enshrined in the zoning? b/c if not Moyne Drive will become a parking lot
wd like to see those two added; whether NV will accept that is up, cd be crossed off with the rest
tyvm for your time
Jeff Rhett (sp?): first, thank you v much for listening to the presentation on 19th wch allowed us to get this report
wd like to thank Geri Boyle and Jim Bailey -- think they grasped the situation
went a long way to addressing the concerns
May 25th of 2006, Paula Hubbard wrote that the tourist attraction wd need to be defined...... and that is not included
also that bldgs restricted and again not included
passed in DNV Ccl rescind bylaw and draft new bylaw but they have not done that; they shd listen to their own Planner's report
when CSB sold to Metro Vancouver, it specifically restricted traffic over that prop (except for maintenance)
Remember that prop was donated by WV
Alderman Lanskail at the time said numerous proposals had been made and they were dormant
it was specifically anticipated those 30 acres, no future devt or access through Moyne Drive
Clear CSB does not have access for construction or ongoing operations
like the recommendations as they are, but change 2d: include, provision of supplies and removal of garbage and similarly on 4 for clarity
hope this shows what we're asking is consistent with agreements of 1972 when park established
Noreen Brocks: Jeff has covered a lot of what I wanted to say
a lot not here today b/c a lot going to mtg tomorrow and felt that this was a friendly
had a petition of 116 sigs; a lot concerned
Jeff has touched on history -- always intended this wd remain a greenbelt
after unsuccessful rezoning for apt
the die was cast at that time; prob when CSB devped tree walkway without permit
although required to give notice to Moyne Dr did not do that.....   and did not give notice, nor instruction to be given
trusted eventually wd go away and wd be the end of it; but over last five years continued to have traffic
west side has food services yet plan a natural wildlife area, so get garbage removal
tried to negotiate, not successful
Now NV bylaw -- will limit my remarks to west side; it's not just a corrective bylaw, many challenging that; space non-conforming, now asking
not principal, accessory allows all of this; not corrective, it's significant upzoning
5K of accessory floor space so that means it cd build a restaurant on the west side; can't be stopped
think shd remain park-like setting
now no more limits on tables and chairs!
we're faced with a big problem; if goes through, and not for maintenance only, and if DWV doesn't protect laneway -- if we sell our prop, may become a parking lot
thank Ms Boyle and Jim Bailey; they've been helpful
shd say: whereas bylaw......will negatively impact nbrhd...... downzoning to 1500......
covered enclosures and food limited as now
agree with Jeff we have to restrict operational as well as constructive traffic
Metro Vancouver has allowed this to happen; still negotiating; shd......
add: DWV shd obtain legal advice
wrt access; Moyne Drive, occasional only; a permanent solution
Victoria Halverson (sp?): live on Moyne Dr; oppose bylaw; area is a quiet child-friendly nbrhd; know each other by name, the way it was when I grew up
if goes through, dump trucks, will continue to use although they haven't the right to do so
Mayor: Bob Brynner?
Ans: he's going to be late
Mayor: Steve Jones
SJ: I do communications for CSB; owned by Stibbard family, lives in Vancouver, bn here for many, many years
think there shd be some new perspective; genesis, where came from
not brought by CSB, but by DNV, after bylaw of 1995 wch was brought forward erroneously and took away any devt rights that CSB had
District realized mistake had been made and brought forward this bylaw, and this is a downzoning, not an upzoning
some erroneous info tonight; space devpd limitless, no
shd be understood, if we want to build anything at all on west side, if we were to build secondary space wd have to build primary; so highly impractical to build secondary when you have to build something ten times bigger
5K so CSB can see its way through trees; minimal devt rights
recognize rights of Moyne and have had mtgs
difficult with tree that came down; bad time with storm; tried to dialogue re accesses; we have never had intention to have customers come from west side
our sense, a bit of overreaction to anything CSB may plan
our aim is to have ability to make plans and we have not had that; we've been standing still
we'd have to build a new restaurant to build a new washroom
that forest is Capilano's biz; if a tree comes down that hurts us; if a tree comes down, act of god, not us; counter of what Nancy Stibbard does for a living
make no mistake, this is a downzoning for CSB
we want to put an explorers' cabin down there, to ask us to go down to 1500 -- that makes us to go down to 500sf wch is the size of a double garage -- that's laughable
so we had to do some construction on Moyne Dr, some house will have to come down there if someone sells
Mayor: not personal
SJ: sorry, not intentional; unrealistic to come down to 1500
this is a downsizing, not upsizing
Amiko Ando: on Moyne Drive for 15 years; two doors from access
wd like to acknowledge the District for listening to concerns of residents in area, will go some way to a solution
don't want to reiterate what my nbrs Jeff and Noreen said but do want to read part of a letter from Nancy Stibbard written 2006:
the CSB has no plans to build a restaurant on west side of Cap Riv, destroy .....
wd...  in that envtal restrictions make any devt
so have written a letter no intentions, and then we hear gentleman say how preposterous to limit to 1500sf
don't think it's downzoning, b/c restricts accessory use structures so this is upzoning, not downzoning
wd really like the District to seriously consider rights of access; small service, not even paved, goes between two houses; v difficult when trucks come down, hairpin corner, logging trucks a lot of noise; heard earlier of pile-driving at WVYC but this has gone on for years so really wd app whatever you can done
Mayor:  Mr X still not here?
Noreen Brocks: maybe he's not coming; I'm a lawyer as is Amiko; we and Corrie Kost have gone back to
don't think the District really understands what it's doing; in 1995 zoning changed and restriction put on accessory space
Mr Jones is not correct, washrooms are not accessory, they are primary
all principal use
yes, it's downzoning for principal space
what else; right now can build no more accessory space
huge amount; bring banquet hall and XXX (?) over to west side
I don't know whether they will do it
there shd be no more accessory space allowed on the west side
zoning isn't about good intentions, it's about land use.
Mayor: Cclr Smith, wd you like to put motion on floor
MS: ask Ms Boyle if she's going to make any recommendations wrt changes?
have heard from public
GB: made a note of all the recommendations
one was that a preamble be added; takes the flavour of the report
{reads out}
sets out reasoning and wd be consistent with report
another recommendation wrt obtaining legal advice
if Ccl adopted the recommendation dealing with after Metro Vancouver secures agreement -- as norm wd confer with lawyers
third was adding words "operational" and wdn't have a problem with that, consistent
my discussions with NV staff, they have been working with CSB; recently working to food coming across
Mayor: and food? no amplified noise
MS: wd like to add no 6, that staff present at DNV mtg
Mayor: that's in; need to read into record; can we say as printed?
MS: move with changes
Sop: even as a youngster -- well, not all that long ago
don't wish them any ills; Ms Stibbard and family have done an amazing job
I was out with Ms Brock and Mr French and surveyed an incredible rainforest, park we know and love and the wonderful walk on west side of river
did look down and saw confining way, gate locked, saw some activity
what concerns me more, is Metro Vancouver, I hope will make a sound statement that the area shd be considered changed from C5 to Park.  We have to work in harmony with the environment, I know they do that
Moyne Dr is not a place to have traffic
park, not wide enough, too steep, too many turns
notice now a sign saying no trucks allowed into Moyne area and wonder if enforced
think Metro V shd be telling CSB that that zoning was originally intended for maintenance and repairs and shd go no further, status quo
great tourist attraction but their bottom line does not supersede the residents
opened a door and in past has got opened a bit
Ms Boyle at mtg tomorrow night; principle, we'd do the same for their residents
stunning, want to keep it that way
JF: I walk those trails frequently from my home; that ambiance be maintained
wish CSB all the best; continue on east side, and keep park on west
VV: if sign says no trucks do they have to have to have permit from us?
EB: we have been trying to come to some kind of arrangement; trying to minimize amt of truck traffic; our staff in contact with CSB; in spite of that cmnty still not happy with level of activity; we do allow some pickup of garbage but haven't gone far enough to satisfy cmnty
VV: encourage CSB to take garbage out?
Mayor: intention of motion
JC: one of the most difficult in the eight years I've been on Ccl
do agree with a lot; do think we shd be protecting our residents re traffic, agree service traffic going through
Metro V wch we have a copy today and will be at mtg tomorrow, goes a long way to addressing the problems, not only DNV, but CSB, DWV, residents
just wonder what our reaction wd be if someone else took the stance we're about to take and we'd be offended
don't necessarily disagree with a and b but wonder if we're in position to make those demands to an elected body
not an easy one
Mayor: WV residents are staunch defenders of parks -- look at Lighthouse park, park in 1990
doubt v much if Ccl of the day wd hv agreed with this if thought park not protected
perhaps if I attach a letter saying we don't want in any way to fetter them, but protect
JC: separate them
Mayor: take preamble as given, so item No 1
1.  The DNV be thanked for the opportunity to review and comment further on proposed Bylaw No. 7645;
2.   While the District of West Vancouver supports the direction of the proposed bylaw to reduce the floor area on the west side of the Capilano River, further reductions and provision are requested:
   a. amend the proposed bylaw to limit the maximum principal and accessory floor area of all uses on the west side of the Capilano River to 1500sq.ft. (i.e., the floor area that currently exists of approx 1000sq.ft. plus an additional 500sq.ft.);
b. amend the proposed bylaw to include size restrictions for an outdoor customer service area on the west side of the Capilano River;
c.  amend the proposed bylaw to add a provision to prohibit customer vehicular traffic, excluding emergency traffic, from Moyne Drive;
d.  provide for processes and/or agreements that preclude vehicular traffic generated by new construction from accessing the Capilano Suspension Bridge (CSB) property via West Vancouver.
Item 3 as printed
JC: You missed sound
Mayor: 2e  limits on sound;
back to 3
3.   Metro Vancouver Regional Parks and the DNV be encouraged to rezone the Metro Vancouver-owned lot, known as Lot A of Lot N Block 25 District Lot 607 Plan 14817 PID 007-742-011 and located immediately west of the CSB, to a parks zone such as Park, Recreation, and Open Space Zone (PRO);
4.    The DiWV supports the ongoing efforts of Metro Vancouver Regional Parks to secure a formal [licence] agreement with CSB confirming and clarifying that the Metro Vancouver Regional Parks property may only be used to provide limited access to CSB and only for repair and maintenance, rather than new construction; and
5.     Once the formal [licence] agreement is secured, DWV staff, after conferring with Metro Vancouver Regional Parks, report back on process options to ensure that DWV concerns are addressed regarding vehicular traffic across the Metro Vancouver Regional Parks owned lot, known as Lot A of Lot N Block 25 District Lot 607 Plan 14817 PID 007-742-011 and located immediately west of the CSB.
[wrt sound] Item 6 CARRIES;  thank you
Bylaws in 8 and 9 received first, second, and third reading at the Dec 17 Regular Council Meeting, and residents were encouraged to comment on the proposed rates. {NB: Public input permitted before adoption}
8.         Sewer and Drainage Utility Fee Bylaw No. 4538, 2007
9.         Water Regulation Bylaw No. 4490, 2006, Amendment Bylaw No. 4539, 2007
10.       Fees and Charges Bylaw No. 4414, 2005, Amendment Bylaw No. 4537, 2007
Mayor: This is adoption; strict, stay to three minutes. Mr Roach, heard from you last week; this will be the last year wrt water
EB: want to say phase in for water and utilities this year; for 2009
DR: my understanding was you were accepting comment up to the point; my understanding from last mtg in Dec
Mayor: yes, not likely to debate this at adoption
DR: I have undertaken some analysis of the billing mechanism of the water/sewer put forward and have identified some particular difficulties with it; in interests of time b/c quite technical will submit a paper on it, you can see for yourself wrt billing and timing, we don't begin to bill until April for the first quarter, so there is some time for adjustments, can make and come back for adjustments before we start in process in  billing, not sending out quickly now -- so you've got 60 days

{yes; wch some tried to point out at the Dec 17 mtg but rather than defer they said there cd be input; and now told unlikely to debate!  DeBait and switch?}

another observation wrt some research I did with CMHC, webpage cites City of Vernon water efficiency program, have had universal metering since 1992 and for ten years following have reduced water consumption by 30%
Vernon charges a base rate of $15 per quarter, flat, IOW no difference between one group of customers and another
and the usage charge is 46.5 cents per cu mtr, again flat
sewer charge, $1.69 per cu m,  based on usage of first quarter of current year
come back to this paper/presentation, I'll find that out; I'll demonstrate some of the problems I have with database on water consumption (in WV)
Mayor: I know Mr Laing has spent time with you in past and will again
Ray Richards: two separate reports so three minutes each
let's look at sewage and drainage bylaw, no draft budget for utilities at Hall today so can't tell if surplus or deficit
look at definition -- universal metered customer
show me any person connected to the sewer system, that commenced Jan 2007, a person is connected -- we have a human being connected to a sewer system
capital P? no definition -- a mistake in drafting you say; the whole thing is a mistake
says universal; but there is none for sewage, that relates to water
definitions in the water bylaw don't apply in the sewer bylaw
maybe I don't have to pay anything, not covered in this bylaw
residents were connected a long time ago, long before Jan 2007; why change in sewer, water?
Mayor: staff
RR: that's the key, not staff; does Ccl understand
Mayor: questions; will ask Mr Barth
EB: asking why reference to universal metering for water in relation to sewer
water a proxy for sewer, don't have meter for sewer but approximates that, makes that connection
RR: that doesn't hold water b/c there's a base charge; no connection for what meter put in, sewer been in since who knows when
but there's a base charge -- just crazy!
Mayor: justification for that
EB: in moving from a metered to a flat rate, looking at differently; aggregate or average of what cost to run system; fixed costs for us running the systeml what we need to do whether you flush or turn on the faucet or not
moving to system, going to user-pay methodology but doesn't eliminate costs that incur regardless, for example of you turn tap on; even if you don't turn on tap, you still need water main; that's in base charge
Mayor: two more minutes
RR: you see the base charge to have sewer av, why shd it change b/c Jan 2007 or some other year?
Shdn't.  Just ridiculous.  And it's quite different
there is quite a difference if you are one of the old ppl or one of the new
no reason for fixed charge to be different; shd be there regardless if when put in, b/c sewer, not water
now a couple of other matters
Mayor: water? one more minute
RR: sewage; there's drainage in there;  what sense does it make to levy the higher rate on a residence that had its water supply commencing Jan 1st 2007 for $17.41 per quarter, and levy for residence with meter installed prior to 2007, $7.64 per quarter -- and that's for drainage
drainage, that's to do with size of roof and pervious surface not related in any respect date meter put in; why have the two rates? just ludicrous
now switch to--
Mayor: you've been there for eight minutes; we really have to get on with our--
RR: important you shd consider water as well
if gas utility came to DWV saying, we're going to give you a higher rate for the new cmnty ctr b/c  meter installed after somebody else, you'd say that's not right
if electrical came along and said a higher rate just b/c you've got a new meter, you'd say, that's not right, that's wrong, but you've done that for the water
furthermore you've said a duplex unit is a multi-familiy unit and gets charged higher rate for its water than a sgl-fam, the initial part
I have three nbrs, three ladies, widows, not quite as old as I am; they get a pension
they don't use the min amt of water in their places -- billed at 42 cents a cu metre but they pay 52 cents on a cu m on all water they use, but you in your big house pay 42 cents, but these old ladies, and I,  b/c I'm in a duplex unit, pay 52 cents -- where's the sense in that?
Mayor: I think we've spent quite a bit of time; will ask Mr Barth to reply then Ccl debate
EB: wrt base rate for metered customers; phase in for existing metered customers, not b/c felt diff when you get your meter; rationale not based on when you got your meter, rather that when rates originally set didn't accurately reflect all the true costs and to go to implementing the full base rate for those existing customers, wd hv meant v signif increases for them, and it's always been part of our goal to make sure something cmnty wd embrace and be seen as positive; as far as they knew they were paying full cost, not that they were getting away with something
had heard concern over length of time to bring everybody to same level/base rate, originally over five years, substantially shortened that now, as of 2009, so now within one year, all users, sewer and water, will be paying full base rate
RR: also refer to multi-family and water use rate
Mayor: excuse me, I wd like you to clarify on the seeming disparity between sgl and multi fam.
There's no more opp for public input
EB: we spent a year developing these rates and worked with a consultant; for that specific question, ask Mr Fung to come forward
RF (staff): my understanding is a duplex exhibits in many ways same sort of characteristics as a sgl fam home, ie some yard and some outdoor uses, sprinkling, as opposed to a pure townhouse or apt block, so our intention that a duplex wd  be treated the same as sgl fam and no actually categorized the same as a townhouse and a multi-fam unit
can check with Finance staff and make sure our intention carried through and if some account classification needs to be reviewed, it will be; not our intention to treat duplexes diff from sgl fam
Mayor: that's Ccl's understanding as well
8:55  JF: moved adoption
MS: if we've asked the public to comment; don't see how we can ask them to comment, and ignore it
ask Mr Laing if we can defer it
RL: at this point not great issue; not sure what clarification we can provide
EB: seems the primary issue is the phasing in of the base rate
approach we adopted with water Ccl agreed with; only 2500 accts in cmnty; not much more staff can provide
Mayor: are you making a motion to defer?
MS: then can I speak?
{YES -- MS made motion and VV seconded}
MS: I support water conservation but not on Ccl
$1.8M purchasing and spent 3 to 4 times amt putting in meters
see cost of $200K wch wd hv eaten up savings
also agree you cannot charge citizens diff rates; fundamental charge same for same service
maybe we shd hv a 90-day WG to look into this; I have some suggestions
Sop: this is not the first night it's been discussed
Mr Roach has been extremely helpful and knowledgeable and had others; looked at all these issues wrt fairness and equity
staff have looked at length of time between flat and metered and shorten that time down to 2009, a considerable drop
from what I understand, real benefit even in first year
don't think we need another week b/c not going to be told anything we haven't already heard
heard from citizens
this is our fist year, six months, made some adjustments
JF: I agree with Cclr Sop; first year metering in effect learned some lessons; continuing to modify and equity in 2009
frankly pleased we're escalating the time so equal payments made sooner than later
VV: sympathize with Cclr Smith and remember when we had a thorough going over and did see things not quite right or fair; we didn't have a solution that made it any better other than shortening it; best we cd do at the time; unless Cclr Smith has another idea
just accept not going to be fair and get on
Mayor: only had 14 or 15 complaints; benefit over years; congratulate staff
Sop: savings Mr Barth?
EB: about 20%; not just right thing to do, can reduce what we buy from GVRD
Mayor: vote on deferral? defeated. Motion:
JC made motion
Carried with Cclr Smith opposed
NOTE:  The recommendation to set dates for DVPs or DPs should be done in a separate recommendation from the regular consent items (SS June 26/06)
11.       Consent Agenda Items - Reports and Correspondence --mexcept No 39
12.  Correspondence List -- {listed in previous WVM}
(39)     December 11, 2007, regarding Five-Year Budget Plans
VV: think it shdn't be here for no action
huge, over 80% on salaries and benefits, extraordinarily high
normally wd have an external review
not had a review for several years, not since Cuff Report in 1998; we need an arm's length review and wonder when we'll get around to this
budget, matters of efficiency; when
RB: at pleasure of Ccl, staff cd bring back this for Ccl debate
Mayor: cd refer it to budget debate
9:07 DONE
Sop: on New Year's Eve I sat in for you on 15th; band fantastic; hot chocolate; I just got up to say 4, 3, 2, 1!  just marvellous from 11pm, Fire and Police letting off fireworks; wonderful night
VV: I have a bee in my bonnet about getting things right; believe error in our Dec 16 Tidings [in NSN] wch refers to the 2007 survey results.  It says about our cmnty, 86% feel they receive good value for the property taxes they pay.  That number shd be 20% b/c the actual question was, do you consider that you get v good, or somewhat good, or somewhat poor or v poor value for property tax dollar for the M portion.  The answer was 20% said v good value; 66% said somewhat good value.  Now 'somewhat' good qualifies it on the down side, it means less than good, so we cannot add the 20% that said v good to the 66% that said somewhat good and say 86% -- it's just not true.
Mayor: doesn't somewhat plus very equal just good?
o   wd like to invite everyone to Chamber breakfast Wed 7:30; my annual address to cmnty about the year ahead of us and the two years or work that Ccl, the cmnty, and staff together have accomplished.
o   huge thanks for resurrection of the N Sh Youth Safe House; Tony and Kim Allard (sp?), West Van residents, out of the goodness of their hearts donated $340K wch served as a catalyst to get the attention of the NShore, the prov, the fed govt, the Rotary Club, and Service clubs; and
16 young ppl have stayed in that Safe House since Dec 21st when it opened, demonstrating tremendous value; a big victory for all govts and the cmnty.
***   COUNCIL WORKSHOP  ***  slides and overheads for deptal presentations
Mayor: budget, first night, we've got several mtgs to go. Mr Laing, wd you like to introduce?
RL: first public presentation of the details of Budget 2008; Ccl has been working on budget since September, some depts earlier; budget booklet on web, and will have copies tomorrow
discussion of our budget target; high level summary; proposed expenditures; divisional narratives with revenues and expenditures; 2007 accomplishments, workplan issue; 2008 general capital program; and in back section, utility budget and user rates adopted this evening
The budget framework for 2008 as approved by both the F&A cmte
{they received it, not aware approved it; another example of 'received for information' confusion as to what meant?
and Ccl itself
{and at what ccl mtg was a 3% approved? or was that in camera?
was to maintain existing service levels within a target tax rate increase of 3%
challenges; initially had gap of $1.5M
signif measures in closing the gap; new and enhanced revenue sources; booklet talks about what some are
$183K from new permits and fire alarm fees; $270K from fire reviews and inspections; $75K from enhanced planning recoveries and bldg permit fees -- those are the three largest; others listed
book also talks about outstanding challenges we have not accommodated; four cd not be accommodated
in Police, request for $500K enhancement to service levels; Fire $250K to enhance existing overtime budget; new Cmnty Ctr, $250K to cover half of operating costs increases; possibly add'l $200K for rec if don't follow through on phase to reduce rec subsidies
Increase of $83.50 on $1.4M average assessment
newsletter with some of the fiscal realities, mailed to all homes Feb 1st
material to Ccl Feb 4th; five-year financial plan; available at Finance Dept and on Dist website
Feb 11 for public mtg for Ccl to receive input on Budget 2008; and Feb 18 Ccl's opp for discussion and budget bylaws shortly afterward
not asking for public agreement at this point
draft, how staff carried through for a 3%
a couple of typographical errors, will be corrected tomorrow morning
propose depts appear in order in book
RB: MClrk will put pages up on screen; ADMINISTRATION
Emergency Planning has been moved from Fire to Admin
Prog initiated by province
research and upgrading of website technology...
review of public engagement
neg of new master Sq Nation agreement
targets: 4600 calls for services, bylaw; 9500 tix issued
website visits, 1.8M; ccl mtg 92 and 43 ...  FOI
implementing the bizpal prog; Police Dept, Fire Dept; primary object to recover
evaluate bylaw services delivery
electronic mgmt prog
2008 civic election, a major undertaking; implement new website will require training
support initiatives such as Rodgers Crk
finding time for staff training
downloading from prov govt; constantly having new regulations; efficiencies wherever possible to reduce cost; resource consumptions; hoping transferring from manuals to electronic; ongoing duplication of systems
happy if clarification
Mayor: ask staff to concentrate on 2008 so Ccl can
$972K new revenue flag for us, professional advice; big outstanding challenges
Susan Ney, HUMAN RESOURCES: about $1M: 600+ employees plus 100+ temp staff
negotiation of all six, contracts with unions; WVMEA Feb 6; inside/outside Library; Blue Bus Feb 13; Police later this spring -- huge
Police, Library, DWV -- provide assistance to all three employers
budget constraints; focus on skill shortage and increasing difficulty; started branding prog
av/median staff age down from 43.5 to 42
efficiently use training fund
av retirement age risen from 58 to 60 so hoping to keep staff we've got so they can continue
how to encourage staff to stay
9:31 RL, FINANCE: ...  New IT ... Public Sector Acctg Board; tangible capital assets; asset mgmt program... takes one of current
... evaluating impacts of growth; operating impacts; benefits to cmnty
three of the four highlights I mentioned are long term
we'll be challenged in assembling these, across WGs; b/c of multifacet, seems to be nature -- collaborative, cross-dept; requires different attitudes
staff we hire, clerical skills from past no longer valuable to us; looking to WGs
Kash Heed, POLICE: not going to go over this; [discussions/process] going on till Feb so if questions will answer
budget we're ~$11M; wd like to look at amts over 3%; $508K short
FTEs; shortfall, request for two new positions
reduced by 2.5 FTEs b/c two employees wd be absent and were added to operating shortfalls
in 2008 we need to restore those FTEs to more accurately reflect operating costs
shortfall: currently our legal fees are $25K -- must cover
legal advice, police chief disciplinary authority
to meet those obligations, $75K increase for a total of $100K
uniforms and equipment upgrades: replace some items worn for some time, upgrade standards
waterproof jackets for traffic, $X for vehicle inspections; asking for $20K for a total of $97K
training and education, so important in Policing in 21st century; and for retention
we're at $45K; av per officer $400, others $1400 asking for...
travel must cover Police Board, travel for training, investigations suspects who have fled WV
operational travel $20K; overtime not sufficient, small increase $20 to $86K
as for c.... contractual ...  $220K
staff increase, seeking one, for investigations, need a separate unit; crime analyst; going to target our...
continually targeting; $182K; just an explanation of $500K -- [need] $508K
important that I give you a bit of understanding where to get if not approved; will have to have discussion with my board
two areas I may have to consider cutting services; a lot of discussion expected at bd level
1: cd cut traffic section -- to other duties
folding cmnty servcs unit $417K but danger, wd hv to pull out of schools and Blockwatch, victim services
those areas I as Chief Constable will look at, long discussions with Board if we do not get
continue to deliver best police service possible; reduction of crime and fear of crime
Mayor: thank you; see Nancy Farran of Police Bd here
Jeff Oates, FIRE Dept:  can speak at Feb 11 about past and what's on board...
budget increase of $64K so we can meet our obligations; will cover the overage experience last year
overage from Fire Dept
second line from bottom on slide $463K in revenue, mentioned in book as 1700% revenue generation
not increase in budget; decrease and resp for difference; to cover this, not common in regional jurisdictions
user fees -- adopted earlier [this evening]
currently first false alarm is free, now first is $150 and goes up
inspection fee -- reinspection $250
first in prov to instituted; bldg permit fee; emergency preparedness
challenges: labour costs will eat up most of increase if settlement for Police 3.5%
staffing not being addressed in this budget
training $600 per firefighter and my request for $1000 per firefighter was rejected
...not ...  vehicle ...  at 3% can't maintain present service levels
banning overtimes, or curtailing ....
this budget status quo with generating revenue but still O/T probs
all topics for Fire WG, first is next Tues, have five mtgs before getting to March
EB, ENGG AND TRANSPORTATION: utilities are included in the budget booklet; don't intend to speak to that this evening, think we've spent enough time on utilities
exciting: this is a low-density style village, involved problems; difficult -- spread along shore, even snow removal difficult for efficiencies; also side of mtn, reason I live here but difficult to provide engg services
cmtny with high expectations
been trying to stay within CPI, the reality is that within construction, much higher so
stay within 3%; and try not to impact services; so looked at ways to increase revenues; fees and charges, make sure current
while not part of taxation, come from same ppl; tried to look at what doesn't come directly from taxpayer
advertising on bus shelters
signshop, looking at expanding that to other Ms, others who have need of that service
want to make sure not competing with private sector
find new sources of revenue without causing probs for others
disappointed to say that in the Survey our sidewalks one of the areas least satisfaction; that's back to funding levels
if less than 3%, we'd be looking at reduction of cleaning of sidewalks, cul de sacs , etc ....
funding for vegetation control
may even have to look at not clearing snow for example
depressing news; the things I'm excited about
big initiative is Spirit Trail -- maximizing what we get from other govts, got $2M from LocoMotion and another $500K from TransLink; in 2008 Phase One from LGB to Dundarave
new Almondel bridge, will come forward with contract this year
traffic mgmt improvement; plan to move forward with transportation plan; move away from SOV
improvements to LGB; Rodgers Crk; move ahead with Ambleside Gateway; signif work on asset mgmt
looking at a systematic way of looking at our utility infrastructure
JC: move [mtg] to end of biz
Mayor: do we need that in workshop?
SSch: we do
SJN, PLANNING: through increasing fees, to 90% so reducing net cost to ~$300K
handled $224M in construction values
2008, do intend to do complete revamp of rezoning bylaws of M -- complete Amb Town Ctr; complete Heritage Registry; dialogue on incentives; Nbrhd Character; Rodgers Crk Plan; a land prog
our challenge is to get through to 2009
KP, PARKS: liked Mr Barth's presentation; rang true, will run through
$16M: have revenues of $7.5M so cost $8.6M; $195 per capita
page 40 Olympic preparation, all sourced from grants, donations, matching funds
don't want to dwell on 2007 but we removed about $400K from budget in 2007
2008 is going to be busiest in whole decade...
new Cmnty Ctr; new governance structure, board; goal one social sustainability
Hugo Ray Park; Child Care
bolstering our effectiveness on social services
looking for ways to further our arts and culture goals
we are responding to challenging times, 3% still pressures
developing a new volunteer strategy; resource devt; sponsorships
flexibility among managers b/c we see changes
staffing shortages Ms Ney referred to, v real for us
a couple of years advertise and got 50 now 15 and maybe 5; for first time cancelling progs
frontline staff working O/T b/c no one there
revenue unpredictability -- change in weather, rain, and severely affects goal revenues
new cmnty ctr, think we're going to do well; lots of optimism
expectations, shortages, staff overload; relationships; external resources; governance a lot of work, exciting
service level not included in this budget: Cmnty Ctr operating costs, full programming in Sept
est was $250K, increase in size now $500K; half for utilities and maintenance and half for customer service and programming; part of consultation with public
none of this allows for any transition funding for move into new Cmnty Ctr; possible impact -- $300K; may result in increase in fees; largest is subsidizing, seniors, youth, and chn; consultation
Ann Goodhart, Chief Librarian, LIBRARY: presenting on behalf of Library Bd, several mbrs here
budget request meets target of 3%; will be able to continue all current services
this plan 2006 to 2010 was reviewed by Ccl prior to adoption and can be viewed on our website
goal for 2008, launch new enewsletter; will be available to public in February, can sign for it on our website
purchased self checkout units in 2007, will begin to use them in 2008
hope to be able to have RFID, including conversion
plan to continue to refine our work on delivery model
mainly moving resources around within budget; moving things around within depts, etc
will see some changes in service points
cmnty archives, hope moving them to Library and providing access to public
received almost 2000 surveys at front door, and will come back with report when done
can fill out survey on website
2010 strategic plan-- exciting huge amount of time over past 18mos; if approved by Ccl
bookmobile service, seeing changes in residential facilities, service ppl not able to come to Library on their own
Mayor: concludes? summary?
RL: been a challenge; took seriously 3% target; exceptional exercise over six weeks to address them; up to Ccl to see if we've achieved in an acceptable manner
including all four of those items, wd increase 1.5% so wd be 4.5%
{see the four items in his introduction he said this  budget with 3% increase cd not accommodate}
3.   DISCUSSION [10:14]
Sop: face this ev year; received this on-table tonight; want to get a look at it
in all the years I've been on Ccl the projected budgets always higher, never lower, never even
always on an uphill spiral
wonder if somewhere in the not-too-distant future at the way we do biz in WV and how we do biz
not critical of staff
how costly is it going to be five and ten years down the road?
any indicators as to what we'll be facing? how long since reviewed efficiencies?
we've had criticism of our salaries -- been review of that over past ten years?
needs don't stop; ever-growing; have to take a v hard look
corporate biz plan we do ev three years has to be tied to budget in front of us
not to take away from our staff; somewhere along the line it's going to break
FSTF made recommendations and some followed
other Ms facing higher than ours
we're facing higher assessments; we've had good value for our dollars
one v good reason, why we aren't producing a zero tax increase
I'll stop there; will have to look at all the figures
Mayor: something missing from some presentations -- what if not 3%; Fire and Police did
looking at closure of the Library on a Sunday
AG: if Ccl decided to go through with 3% and excess
Mayor: if no increase
AG: if unable to cover raises
JF: thank the staff for presentations this evening; thank Mr Laing and his dept for tax booklet
obvious we're facing some challenges -- as a cmnty and a Ccl
what want to see remain and what perhaps reduced
if 3% budget, not able to provide same services as last year
look at what this may mean; where cuts have to be made; going to be difficult for cmnty; I'm going to need to go home and read the booklet too
VV: look at affordability; only 7% want to pay more; don't know why go ahead
not with household incomes
56% said wd choose to pay more only if to maintain
just list current and what enhancement; what 7% want to support
wd like to connect those facts
{That was what bugged me and I felt there shd hv bn another question.  It's one thing for ppl to say they're willing to pay more but the critical question is how much more.
And that wasn't asked.}


CR: Carolanne Reynolds, Editor, West Van Matters.  Happy New Year!
just a couple of questions after listening to the budget presentations, thank you.
Is it possible to have the binder of info that we used to get in the past (and I can ask this after the mtg of Mr Laing so it doesn't keep your time here).  {Strange expression, Carolanne!}
I think you'll know what we're talking about b/c we did get it a couple of years ago.
We wd like more complete information on the Information Technology (IT Dept), and I think that's something Mr Laing wd be able to provide later.
{BTW, though asked in past, didn't get it so shall try harder this year.}
In trying to help with the Police budget.
I noticed in the North Shore News just a little while ago that they were having a mtg wrt volunteer auxiliaries, so since the RCMP had that mtg to look at auxiliaries, that might be something that our Police Dept might look at -- have some volunteer auxiliaries to do some of the work that isn't as dangerous as our brave policemen do.
wrt Quarterly Investments
I understand the return has been quite low.  I wonder if Ccl has been receiving the information on the Qtrly Investments {what I mean is the qtrly report on the investments}  and what -- I mean there's a range -- but what, uh, if there's anything going to be done to make sure they come up a bit.
and lastly, I understand that the Finance and Audit Cmte ended its term in December, and I understand there's a new one, a larger one, that's going to be started; and I wondered when they wd meet, and if they will be able to see this budget and have comments as well.

Mayor: when are we expecting the report on the F&A Cmte? the terms of reference?  Mr Beauchamp?
RB: we're hoping within the next week or two.
Mayor: the 21st, b/c it wd not be our intention to not have the F&A cmte continue as we go through this process
CR: Since there will be a mtg next Monday and then no mtg until Feb 4th, that's why I wondered how soon they'd be meeting so that they wd hv the information early and be able to [comment].  Perhaps the former chair cd comment or is all to do with Mr Laing?
MS: Well, at 10:30 at night --
{well, we do love Cclr Smith dearly, but he still hasn't come to terms alas with mtgs that sometimes go over so that he sounds willing to continue to the end.  Maybe a nap wd help as insurance?  Nonetheless he grabs the baton passed....}
the sad demise of the 2007 F&A cmte mtg is, cd, if we discuss it, cd take some considerable time.
I don't know whether you want to have this discussion right now, but you know, the bottom line is, I had high hopes that we'd be able to get things, a lot more things accomplished in the F&A Cmte, than it turns out we did. 
And I think there was a disconnect between the Terms of Reference that the cmte mbrs thought we had, and the T of Ref that others, and staff, that were used to the old Finance Cmte, where they only looked at items that were referred to them by Ccl.  I think that caused a real disconnect in the work we were able to get done.  For example, in the T of Ref we had it was clearly within our purview to look at the operating results for the qtrly and semi-annual results.  Here we are, mid-January, we haven't even seen the third qtr operating results to the end of September, so--
Mayor: Cclr Smith, it's your cmte and it's your--
MS: was my cmte, it's expired
Mayor: well, [was] for two years, and we'll work together to get those T of Ref and expand the ppl on the cmte by next Monday
MS: so that's a commitment that we'll have this discussion more fully next Monday?
Mayor: [if?] it's on the ccl agenda, of course
{UPDATE: as you see in ccl agenda for Jan 21 below, it's not on the agenda.  Will it arrive on-table???}
CR: thank you.  My concern was, knowing of the demise, just so you know my concern, how soon is it going to be reconstituted; was really the main point
Mayor: don't think demise is quite the right word; we've--  we wish
CR: --expected Ccl--
Mayor: --the distinction between the Audit Cmte and that function, and the F&A Cmte's and it's up to Ccl to decide what it wants to do both with the T of Ref and the mbrship, and so, it is timely as it fulfilled its year-long term
CR: right; my concern was how soon they wd, b/c we've got the budget, and how soon they cd get started; that was the main thrust of my question.
Thank you very much.
Mayor: David Marley
David Marley: having sat here for the last three and a half hours, it's been v instructive
have a much better appreciation of what you do, and I thank you for it
I too have questions not comments; Carolanne asked one of the ones I was going to ask -- and Madam Mayor I thank you for your response to that
want to be clear about something
when I spoke earlier I was talking about a per cent increase in the anticipated operating budget of the District, not the per cent increase in the taxes
my information is that the proposed budget if it stays at the 3% tax increase, wd involve a 6% increase in operating expenditures, and I'd like to know if that's true; and if not, what is the proposed increase in operating expenditures.
Mayor: thank you for that clarification
RL: overall will include increase of 5.5%
just the deptal; those on a gross basis have increased by 6%; brought down the net
RL: overall increase 3% with revenue
operating expenditures to go up 6%; before considering revenues, 5.5% overall
DM: why rush was May 15; rush to middle Feb,
Mayor: been criticized; tried to move budget to fall, by Dec
hope bulk of discussion Feb and Mar
DM: hearing Mr Laing earlier only about one public mtg about Feb 4/11
F&A Cmt shd be reappointed as Ms Reynolds said ... and that they too shd look at this
when is the remuneration going to be av; last year end of April but T4 end of Feb so av
RL: FIA schedules involve more than preparation of T4s, tax benefits, expenses
anticipate discussion with prov wrt recording police salaries
as soon as we can; in normal course mid-Mar pushing it, but end Mar
Mayor: newsletter going out Feb 1st
DM: report has salaries over $75K, suppliers over $25K
imp for Ccl to know; known well in advance
Apr 23 [final budget bylaw introduced?] last year so March a real improvement
Mayor: Mr McTavish lengthy letter; thank you for your comments
happy to talk to you tomorrow; some of your questions don't pertain to the budget
Don McTavish {referring to the last F&A mtg}: I attended with Cclr Sop and some others
v informative; first one I've ever attended; understood minutes wd be issued
Mayor: so minutes of last F&A mtg.  Mr Laing?
DMcT: assured wd be issued
Mayor: at subsequent mtg

{Well, here we have a problem, maybe some confusion.  Some say the F&A Cmte was terminated the end of December; others that it wd continue but new mbrs.  New mbrs have not yet been appointed and no date for a mtg given.}

DMcT {quizzical}
Mayor (looking at his letter): logs on seawall; Cmnty ctr? garage?
unless on budget, rest can discuss with staff tomorrow; we're in a budget workshop right now
DMcT: re status of the civic ctr
the last time I heard ready and occupiable by June; and tonight thought I heard someone say Sept
from an old construction guy; don't know how someone can lose that number of months
KP: I think what I said was done this summer with our first full program in Sept
dealing with a whole variety of issues, a lot of rain, no doubt we've fallen behind with our schedule
can talk some more about that and wd be happy to
certainly have not gone much more backward
DMcT: ...  slowest job I've ever seen in my life, and I've been in this for 60 years
Mayor: was April and extended to June b/c cost
we're behind b/c of the roof; that perhaps will shift the June
DMcT: we have Scott Construction, Basil Davis, and John Anderson
KP: correct
Mayor: happy to meet with you tomorrow with your FOI requests
Don:  how contact?
Mayor: MClrk's office
Don: tyvm
Mayor: Mr Roach. v late
DRoach: every time I come up it's "don't speak or speak quickly"
pertains to cmnty ctr across way, to commitment of prev Cclr, Durman
stated at time that Vancouver Coastal Health Auth wd not cast a burden on WV taxpayer
my understanding, and only through jungle network
in point of fact, the first half of the 30-year lease, residents will be carrying a portion of the service
Mayor: of the service?
DR: that's my understanding
first: will staff release the agreement between DWV and VCA before finally entered into, before adopting a budget for this year?
secondly, we shd hv an idea of the fiscal impact of that agreement, esp in this year when facing the budget challenges identified by Fire and Police
KP: can provide to Mr Roach
DR: No, I'd like it to come to this Ccl
MS: I'd like to see it too!
Mayor: we've all seen it in camera
KP: not paying for any facilities; paying through a payback/lease arrangement
Mayor: for part of the bldg District; thank you for decorum
5.   ADJOURNMENT 10:45

===   CCL AGENDA Jan 21st &nb= sp; ===
2.  ADOPTION OF MINUTES:  January 7, 2008 Regular Council Meeting.
3.  PRESENTATION:  Mayor's Annual Report on the State of the District
            Presentation to be provided by Mayor Goldsmith-Jones.
4.  DELEGATION:  R. Black regarding Strategy for Dogs in West Vancouver Parks
5.         Government Finance Officers Association - Canadian Award for Financial Reporting Achievement  --   presentation by R. Laing, Director of Finance
6.  Metro Vancouver Growth Management Strategy - Choosing a Sustainable Future for Metro Vancouver
7.         Environmental Strategy Implementation Working Group - 2007 Progress Report
   1.  The progress update from the Environmental Strategy Implementation Working Group including Appendices A, B, and C to the report, completed by the Working Group and Foreshore Technologies, be posted on the West Vancouver website for public review.
   2.   The recipients of the inaugural Environmental Awards as outlined in Appendix D be congratulated.
   3.   The funding requests as detailed in the "Financial Implications" section, in the amount of $32,700 be considered as part of the 2008 budget process.
8.  Community Dialogue on Neighbourhood Character & Housing Working Group - Horseshoe Bay Fire Hall Site
RECOMMENDED: THAT the memorandum dated January 10, 2008 from C. Banham, Chair of the Working Group be received for information and that Staff be directed to hold a [neighbourhood] meeting to consider various options for the property and to include the Working Group in such consultations.
9.         3785 Bayridge Avenue - Excess Rock Removal/Replacement
RECOMMENDED: THAT the enforcement measures in regards to remediation and penalties described in the January 11, 2008 report for 3785 Bayridge Avenue be received for information.
10.       4012 Marine Drive - Rock Removal for Swimming Pool
RECOMMENDED: THAT Staff be authorized to issue a Blasting Permit to remove approximately 3.0 cubic meters of rock  for the purpose of installing an inground swimming pool.
11.       Appointments of Council Liaisons for 2008
=B7   West Vancouver Memorial Library Board = Council Liaison: Councillor Day
=B7   North Shore Advisory Committee on Disability Issues = Council Liaison: Councillor Ferguson
=B7   North Shore Family Court and Youth Justice Committee = Council Liaison: Councillor Day
=B7   North Shore Spirit of BC (2010) Committee = Council Liaison: Mayor Goldsmith-Jones
=B7   North Shore Substance Abuse Task Force = Council Liaison: Mayor Goldsmith-Jones
=B7   Joint School Traffic Safety Committee = Council Liaison: Councillor Clark
=B7   West Vancouver Chamber of Commerce = Council Liaison: Councillor Vaughan
=B7   [Seniors'] Centre Board = Council Liaison: Councillor Smith.
12.      Re-appointment to the North Shore Advisory Committee on Disability Issues (ACDI)
RECOMMENDED:  Ms. Judith Power for the term January 1, 2008 to December 31, 2009.
13.      Consent Agenda Item - Reports
14.       Development Variance Permit Application No. 07-048 (5340 Seaside Place)
RECOMMENDED: the report dated January 11 be received for consideration on Monday, February 4, 2008.
15. Non-Agenda Correspondence Requested for Comment by Council: Items as may be requested by Council.
COLOUR ME DARK DISILLUSION........ hoping it's a passing cloud and changed/improved by Monday night, Jan 21st.........

=== What is the lesson to be learned from the Holocaust? ===
                An interview with Hedy Epstein by Silvia Cattori
11/01/08 "ICH " -- - Hedy Epstein, is a German Jewish Holocaust survivor, born in 1924, whose parents were sent to Auschwitz in 1942, where they perished. In 1948, Hedy Epstein went to live in United States. In 2003, she decided to make a trip to Palestine. Shocked by the oppression that the Israeli government is imposing on the Palestinians, she is, since then, devoting herself to make it known to the world. In the interview she gave to the Swiss journalist Silvia Cattori, Hedy Epstein speaks, with her gentle and mild voice, about her last travel to Palestine after a moving visit to one of several concentration camps to which her parents were deported. And she said: "I would like to dedicate this interview to the children of Gaza, whose parents cannot protect them or send them away to safety as my parents did when they sent me to England in May 1939 on a Kindertransport" (1)
Silvia Cattori: In 2004, after the humiliating and dehumanizing abuse you had to undergo at Tel Aviv airport, where you had to get undressed and were internally searched as you explained it to me in our first conversation (2), you were very upset and you declared: "I will never return to Israel". But since then you have been back four more times. Last summer you were there again. How was it possible?
Hedy Epstein: I have never felt such anger after what happened to me and the friend travelling with me at the Ben Gurion airport in January 2004.
While on the plane, still full of rage, I wrote on every page in the magazines provided by the airline "I am a Holocaust survivor and I will 'never again' return to Israel." I sometimes pressed so hard on the paper with my pen, that I tore the page. It was one small way to vent some of my anger.
After I returned home, still very angry, traumatized, I decided to get some counselling, which helped me to work through my anger and allowed me to plan my next trip back to the West Bank just a few months later, in the summer of 2004. I have been back every year since then, a total of five times since 2003. I have gone back because it is the right thing for me to do; to witness and to let the Palestinians know there are some people who care enough to come back and stand with them in their struggle against Israel's occupation. Palestinians have asked me upon my return home, to tell the American people what I have seen and experienced, because the American people don't know what is happening, because the media does not inform them. I made a commitment to do so and have taken every opportunity to honour this commitment.
Silvia Cattori: What was your interpretation of the fact that the Israeli officers treated you in such a brutal way?
Hedy Epstein: They tried to intimidate me, to silence me, hoping I would never come back. Though momentarily they may have succeeded, ultimately they did not. To quote General McArthur, an American army general, who said "I shall return", I have returned four times since the January 2004, event at the Tel Aviv airport, on my way back from Israeli occupied territory, and will continue to return. They will not be able to stop me. And, so, I plan to aboard ship to Gaza in a few months.
Silvia Cattori: Was it not too traumatic for a sensitive person like you to go back to the West Bank and see the Israeli soldiers humiliating, threatening, killing, and destroying Palestinians lives and properties?
Hedy Epstein: As an American I am a privileged person. I am very much aware of this and feel uncomfortable wearing this cloak, especially when I am in Palestine, conscious of the fact that I can come and go any time I want to, a privilege denied the Palestinians, who have great difficulty in moving from one place to another, restricted by road blocks, check points, the imprisoning 25 foot high wall, by young Israeli soldiers who can decide who can pass and who cannot, who can go to school, to the hospital, to work, to visit family and friends.
I have seen the long lines of Palestinians at the Bethlehem checkpoint. I spoke to a 41-year-old man, who told me he works three days a week; in order to get to work on time, he gets up at 2:30am and arrives at the checkpoint at 3:15am to wait in line, a long line, with others, for the checkpoint to open around 5:30am. He has to come this early because many people line up. Sometimes the Israeli soldiers allow no one to go through. He would like to work full time, but there are no jobs in Bethlehem.
During each of my five visits I have spent some time in Jerusalem. I have been painfully aware how increasingly its current size and boundaries share very little with the city's historic parameters, Israeli-only settlements, such as Har Homa and Gilo are referred to as Jerusalem neighbourhoods. East Jerusalem is dotted with Israeli flags flying from homes from which Palestinians were "removed", thus judaizing the area more and more.
During my last visit, in August 2007, I only had time for a brief visit with my dear Palestinian friend, and her husband in Ramallah. During prior visits, I and some of my American travel companions were their houseguests for several days, basking in their hospitality, typical Palestinian hospitality, which is unlike any other I have ever experienced anywhere. The wife, ever cheerful in the past, seemed downcast, though she did not complain, simply stating "Life is more difficult since my husband is no longer working." In a conversation later, alone with her husband, he stated that he left his job in order to go to school and study. There is truth in both statements, but the husband's comments reflect an effort to salvage and maintain some of his dignity.
I also visited and stayed overnight with my Palestinian's friends and their children in Bethlehem. The TV, which is always on, at one point caught our attention. There was a story about Jews from all over the world, immigrating to Israel. There were many small Israeli flags waving and welcoming the new citizens of Israel arriving at the Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv. A big banner in the background spelled out in English and Hebrew "Welcome Home".
As the story continued, we all stared at the TV, silently. Then one of us, I don't remember who, broke the heavy silence, asking no one in particular "What about the return of the Palestinians?"
At the regular weekly non-violent demonstration in Bi'lin, as the teargas tossed at us by young Israeli soldiers, choking us, as we all ran to get away from it, I overheard a conversation between two Palestinian boys, one saying to the other "I don't want to die" "Nor do I" said the other. Their fear has stayed with me. What will happen to them? What is their future?
And yet, despite the almost hopelessness of the situation that might never change, Palestinian people are amazingly strong. Even though the Israeli oppression goes on, and gets worse, with new types of military oppression, the Palestinians have not given up; they are going on living there.
They are an amazing, resilient people. They will never give up. The Israeli may kill many of them, destroy their homes, destroy their lives, but they will never be able to destroy their hope for a different way of existence, for a better way of living together.
No matter what the Israelis do, they cannot take away the hope and the dignity of the Palestinian people. The Israelis have the power, the Palestinian people have dignity and despite all odds, still have hope. The Israelis have the airplanes from which they drop bombs in Gaza, they have bulldozers made here in the United States, not far from my home, they can do all those things, but despite this imbalance of power, the Israelis will never be able to destroy Palestinians' hope and dignity.
Silvia Cattori: For the Palestinians in Hebron or Nablus, to see a Holocaust survivor travelling in such precarious conditions to express to them her love and solidarity, is it not something very unusual and touching?
Hedy Epstein: I feel it is important for the Palestinians who are not allowed to leave Palestine, who are living under the Israelis military occupation, in such horrendous conditions, to know that there are people in other parts of the world who condemn the Israeli oppression, who care enough to come there, and to share their difficulties and sufferings, even if it is for a very short time.
I am impressed again and again to discover that Palestinians know so much more about what is going on in the world. They are better informed than the American people.
Most Palestinians I have met have asked me to tell the American people what I have seen and experienced, because the American people do not know, because the media does not inform them. I have made a commitment to do that. I have given talks at high schools, universities, churches, community groups, in the United States, as well as in Germany (in German). I urge people to go to Palestine to see and experience life there. It is a life changing experience. They will come back a different person, more aware, more sensitive and hopefully challenged to make a difference.
Though I am not a religious Jew (I consider myself a secular humanist), I know a little bit about Jewish tradition, which teaches that: "We're permitted neither to give up hope, nor to abandon the work we've started, even if we cannot complete the task ourselves".
And so, the situation, especially in Gaza, is so awful, I feel I must continue to be a moral voice, must continue to have the courage to take a public stand against Israel's crimes against humanity and the misinterpretations provided by the media. Israel would not be able to carry out its crimes against humanity without the United States, the world, permitting it to do so and the mass media, which, with few exceptions, dehumanizes Palestinians and instills fear, ignorance and loathing of them and their culture.
Having met Palestinians, experienced their hospitality, warmth, dignity and even humor, it is incumbent upon me to bring their voices, their experiences to anyone who will listen to me, to bear witness about the Wall, the land confiscations, the demolished homes, the violation of water rights, the restrictions of freedom of movement. The future of peace cannot be awaited passively, but rather from commitments and struggles for justice. There is no peace without justice.
Nadav Tamir, the Israeli Consul General in Boston, wrote in the Boston Globe newspaper in November 2007 "This is no longer an issue of being pro-Palestinian or pro-Israeli, but rather a confrontation between those who prefer peace and those who prefer bloodshed. It is time to choose sides."
Silvia Cattori: You said that you plan to be aboard ship to Gaza in a few months (3)?
Hedy Epstein: Oh yes, definitely. There is nothing which can stop me. I am determined to go and I am going to take swimming lessons, just in case. The "Free Gaza" boat could not go last summer for different reasons. I think it is important for all of the people who are invited on the boat, to take that chance to show to the world what Israel is really doing in Gaza and to express their intention to break the illegal siege.
The Media is so controlled - probably by Israel as well - that, whatever the power that be in United State or in Europe, they never convey what is really happening every day on the ground; how much suffering is caused by the extreme oppression, what is happening to the people, not only in Gaza, but to a lesser extent maybe to the people in the West Bank. The world needs to know, and if we can be that medium, to let the world finally know what is happening, then it is important for us to play that role.
Silvia Cattori: While most countries are isolating the Hamas authorities in the Gaza strip, and cutting them off from the most essential humanitarian aid, the Hamas takeover in Gaza does it not represent an obstacle for you to go there?
Hedy Epstein: No. Hamas was elected in a democratic way, there were neutral observers there and they did not find anything wrong with these elections. They have been democratically elected. As you know, Israel and the United States wanted this election but they where hoping for a different outcome. They did not like the fact that Hamas won the election. For that reason, they are attacking Hamas and do not want to recognize it and they are carrying out a sort of collective punishment against the 1.5 million people in Gaza. There is a huge humanitarian crisis. The Israeli army controls all the exit points from Gaza to Israel, to Jordan, to Egypt. In fact they control the air, the sea and the land.
Almost nothing is allowed to come in, and nothing is allowed to go out. Gaza is essentially an agricultural community. Farmers in Gaza, who grow flowers, strawberries, and tomatoes for instance, spend a lot of time and energy and money to grow these products and cannot sell them! And so the flowers wilt and the strawberries and tomatoes spoil.
The Israeli government pretends that it no longer occupies Gaza. But that is not true.
Silvia Cattori: For those people who do not know, or do not want to know, what the Israeli government is really doing, your voice is of utmost importance. Indeed, a person like you, who can give testimony about the Nazi oppression and about the present Zionist oppression, able to look at the facts with a very honest spirit, is very rare!
Hedy Epstein: I do not make comparisons between Nazi oppression and Zionist oppression; though, I have been accused of doing that. Instead I speak of the lessons learned from the Holocaust. I credit my experiences as a Holocaust survivor as the leading influence behind my efforts to promote human rights and social justice. For me "remembering is not enough", which is the title of my autobiography, published in German, in Germany in 1999, under the title "Erinnern ist nicht genug." (4) Remembering also has to have a present and a future perspective.
What is the lesson to be learned from the Holocaust? I know what it is to be oppressed. Nobody can do everything, but I feel that it is incumbent upon me to do as much as I can, to do the right thing, to, in this case, stand with the Palestinians in their struggle against Israeli oppression, under which they exist and suffer every day and night.
Footnotes and rest of interview at http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article19044.htm


Unfortunately it ended January 12th, but a theatre group from right here in WV put on Hecuba by Euripides at the VECC -- classical Greek theatre (tragedy, Troy/Greeks, greed, loss, revenge), an ambitious project, and well done.  Rave review by Peter Birnie in the VSun. More about Blackbird Theatre at:  http://www.blackbirdtheatre.ca/index.htm
and so
2008 Jan 19

                is punishment prevention?
                        is revenge justice?
                                can love conquer all?

===   QUOTATIONS   ===

There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle, or the mirror that reflects it.
                        -- Edith Wharton, American writer (1862 - 1937)
Lost causes are the only ones worth fighting for.
                        -- Clarence Darrow, American lawyer (1857 - 1938)
Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.
                        -- Benjamin Franklin, statesman, author, and inventor (1706 - 1790)
Forgiveness is an attribute of the strong.  The weak can never forgive.
                                -- Mohandas K. Gandhi
When we forgive, we set someone free -- ourselves.
                        -- Mardy Grothe (see www.drmardy.com)