Whistlers council has set the Whistler. Its Our Future and the Comprehensive Sustainability Plan as one their top priorities during their term in office.
The recently elected council members set out their top priorities for their three years in office as public officials during a February workshop.
Topping the list was the completion of the CSP as well as dedicating the resources and energy to ensure the CSP is completed in a timely manner.
There was an understanding among council that once the CSP is complete in the next year, they would then revisit these priorities.
Also on the list of top priorities is affordability and affordable housing, with a proposed goal of creating 500 additional short-term beds within three years.
Financial sustainability was another priority. This involves supporting a legislative framework which includes looking for additional revenue sources to allow Whistler to manage its own priorities and finances.
Finally, council has pinpointed strengthening their provincial relationships as another key priority during their term in office.
This goal specifically targeted building on the relationship with Whistlers MLA, Ted Nebbeling, as well as finalizing the Lasting Legacies from the province and resolving the use of the day skier parking lots.
"Were definitely going to get things done once we get the budget in place," said Councillor Caroline Lamont.
The municipal budget is going before council at the May 5 meeting. There will then be a special meeting to adopt to budget before the May 15 deadline.
Creekside construction gets early start
Council has approved an early weekday start for construction work in Creekside.
Intrawest can now begin work one hour earlier on weekdays, with a 7 a.m. start. On the weekend, construction must begin at 8 a.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. on Sunday.
Work is allowed to continue until 10 p.m. each night.
The Christmas deadline for construction of the multi-level parkade and the Franzs Trail development is tight and Intrawest has been granted similar noise variances in the past.
Councillor Nick Davies said he remembered getting complaints about the noise variance when Intrawest was building First Tracks.
He said there was no rationale for an early morning start except that Intrawest wants to get more work done at the expense of the neighbourhood.
Both Davies and Councillor Caroline Lamont did not support the early morning start.
Council granted the noise variance on the condition that Intrawest adheres to neighbourhood issues.
Grants-in-aid for 2003
The 2003 draft municipal budget allowed council to grant $327,000 to various local organizations through Grant-In-Aid funding this month.
Not all the groups who applied for funding were granted money.
There were 26 applications this year which totalled over $700,000.
The $327,000, which is 1.5 per cent of property tax revenues, was divided between the following 22 groups in 2003:
Jennifer Jones Bear Foundation $15,000
Whistler Naturalist's Society $5,000
Dandelion Daycare - Spring Creek $2,500
Dandelion Daycare - Whistler Children's Centre $2,500
Sea to Sky Community Services Society $11,990
Whistler Health Care Foundation $3,000
Communities That Care Whistler $22,910
Zero Ceiling Society of Canada $10,000
Girl Guides of Canada $2,300
Whistler Animals Galore $40,000
Whistler Secondary School Scholarship $2,000
Whistler Scout Group $1,500
Whistler Fire Fighter Association $2,000
Whistler Youth Soccer $3,300
Whistler Skating Club $4,000
Whistler Off Road Cycling Association $11,200
Whistler Mountain Ski Club $7,500
Whistler Children's Chorus $2,000
Whistler Community Arts Council $95,500
Whistler Museum and Archives $65,000
Whistler Secondary School Drama $2,800
Last year council handed out roughly $280,000 in grants-in-aid from the general revenue source.
At Mondays meeting Councillor Gordon McKeever also asked staff to develop a more sustainable model for the grants-in-aid process. He would like staff to look at alternative sources besides general revenue for the grant process.