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Port Moody considers expanding food cart program

Port Moody council is considering expanding the summer food cart program. - FILE PHOTO
Port Moody council is considering expanding the summer food cart program.
— image credit: FILE PHOTO

Port Moody council is considering whether to expand the city's food cart program next summer at Rocky Point Park.

The pilot project's success this past summer, when food cart vendors were invited to set up during the Sunday concert series, has generated suggestions to increase the business hours to evenings, entire weekends and statutory holidays.

Coun. Diana Dilworth, chair of the economic development committee, said the committee would like to see vendors pay a fee to the concert series.

Coun. Gerry Nuttall offered a similar suggestion, noting permanent food vendors in the park all pay rental and other fees to the city. He also said he would like some information from those establishments about how the food carts affected their business before council decides whether to expand the program.

Council agreed to defer the matter, with Dilworth voting against the motion.

Tuesday's special council meeting was scheduled when a vote to continue the previous meeting on Nov. 27, which had run long, failed.

Other Moody news:

TAX TALK

PoMo residents can have their say on the proposed 2013 budget at a town hall meeting on Jan. 31.

The current working budget suggests a potential tax increase of about 4.3%. The tax bill of $2,837 would be about $117 more than 2012 for an average home valued at $532,000.

Cost drivers include about $771,000 for salary and inflationary increases, $143,500 for the Inlet Centre Fire Hall debt levy and $551,000 for the police department. Investment and growth revenues are also declining.

Utility charges will stay the same as 2012. Mayor Mike Clay said the city was able to hold the line on sewer, water and garbage/recycling charges because of residents' success in reducing landfill waste.

"Port Moody leads the region, maybe the country, in our waste diversion and the great work we did in the past to put in the new systems and educate the residents...is paying off," he wrote in an email.

SOMETHING FISHY

Work on the new Inlet Centre Fire Hall will continue, with some minor scheduling changes due to pending changes to the federal Fisheries Act.

Because the site's layout encroaches on to nearby wetland, Port Moody applied for authorization under the act's Harmful Alteration, Disruption or Destruction (HADD) policy, which requires any altered areas be replaced with improved habitat.

But in April, the Conservative government introduced changes that, according to city staff, will likely remove the requirement to apply for HADD authorization.

Staff have made several attempts to contact the Fisheries and Oceans Canada to learn the status of the HADD application but have received no response. With fire hall construction reaching a critical milestone, staff advised council that work would have to continue with existing habitat remediation plans.

Council agreed to the recommendation (with Coun. Rick Glumac voting against) and will have staff contact fisheries on its behalf to seek a resolution on the matter.

spayne@tricitynews.com

 

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