In normal years, much of what I write today, would be in an oral presentation supported by a power point at our AGM. But these are unusual times.
As you know we have been required to postpone our AGM at the direction of the provincial government. Please accept this newsletter and information reports on the 2020 AGM tab on our web site as our attempt to keep you informed and involved in your estate company activities. Hopefully we will be able to hold an AGM using the attached material in the near future.
The following officers were appointed by the board in keeping with our Trust Indenture after our 2019 AGM.
- President – Gary Young
- Vice President – Chris Malthaner
- Secretary – Kim Wong
- Treasurer – Robie Thorn
- Gate 1: Arvid Isaac, Erich Klassen
- Gate 2 Upper: Kim Wong, Sid Wong
- Gate 2 Lower: Chris Malthaner, Daniel Jensen
- Gate 4: Robie Thorn, Gary Young
- Gate 5,7 – 10: Jo Hoffman, Bill Hamilton
- Gate 6: Heather Baker, Lydia Bradshaw
We held a Zoom board meeting on April 16th. All of these persons have agreed to continue to serve until such time as we can hold elections at an AGM.
Arvid Isaac led this major project. He was supported by Erich Klassen, Paul Palmer and a number of volunteers in installing three self-locking gates for gates 1, 2, and 4 in keeping with the approved budget. This was a major task. The gates are all functioning. It was disappointing that Gate 2 was damaged by a vandal. It has been repaired but it was a needless expense. Otherwise the properties in those three gates can now feel a greater level of security. Initially, we were going to issue everyone separate codes but, based on the experience in other communities, we saved a lot of work and issued a universal code 5757#
If you have guests coming, you can give them the code but keep in mind that the whole purpose of secure gates is to create greater security. If the code gets distributed freely, the purpose of the secure gates is lost. If we note any abuse we will change the codes and inform you . We have had delivery drivers leave without dropping loads e.g. propane, building supplies etc. because they couldn’t access the gates so don’t forget to add the access code for these drivers.
In keeping with the approval given for the gate program, the 2020 budget will see more gates installed this year to make our community more secure. Many people have chosen to purchase a universal fob to make gate opening easier. Additional orders will be accepted soon.
0n November 9th and 10th 2019, 14 volunteers participated in a 2 day Wilderness Fire Fighting Course. The course helped prepare us to deal with forest fires that could threaten LLE.
As well the SLRD provided us with a grant of $5000 for fire protection . With these funds and money from our budget, we have purchased, pumps, backpacks, foam applicators, and new hoses to support our community. Hopefully, we can continue to upgrade our firefighting equipment.
Paul also hosted a 2 hours training session last July which was well attended by about 50 residents. Stand by for an announcement about a repeat session as soon as we are allowed to congregate in groups again.
The first line of defense is still you. Please fireproof your lot in keeping with the fire manual which is posted on our website. If fire has no fuel i.e. low branches, shrubs and dead material to conduct it on the ground, it is far less likely to spread. Also add home fire extinguishers and other equipment as recommended in the fire prevention manual.
Labour Day Picnic
Heather Baker and a volunteer team hosted a wonderful Labour Day Picnic attended by almost 100 people at the gate 4 common lot. The setting, food and music all contributed to a great event. Hopefully this was the first annual and we can all gather again – same place, same time.
Gate 1 Common Lot
In 2019 Paul and a group of volunteers continued the work initiated in 2018 to create better access, more parking, a fire pit, and an improved picnic area in gate 1. Thanks to all who have been involved.
Robie Thorn has coordinated a new signage program intended to better inform both residents and visitors of locations and rules in and around LLE. The signs have arrived and many are now posted and others will be put in place this spring.
Changes to the Trust Indenture
Every few years the board proposes amendments to the TI to help us better manage and operate LLE. The following are some proposed changes for this year:
- That the following buyer guidelines for non LLE shareholders will be added to the TI and posted on the LLE web site
“REAL ESTATE AGENTS/BUYERS AND SELLER’S: PROPERTIES AT LILLOOET LAKE ESTATES (LLE)
CHECKLIST OF DOCUMENTS FOR POTENTIAL BUYERS:
(Offer to purchase should be made subject to the Buyer receiving, reviewing and approval of the following)
*Trust Indenture / Regulations
*Articles of Incorporation
*Designated Common Lot
*Land Use Contract
*Most Recent Financial Statements
*Most recent AGM Minutes
*Public Director Meeting Minutes For The Last Two Years
*Share Transfer Checklist
*Map of Lillooet Lake Estates
*Building Process Package
BUYER TO PROVIDE:
*Contact Information – Copy of Driver’s License or BC ID
*Equifax Credit Report For Directors Approval
*Criminal Check For Directors Approval
(Offers should be subject to the Buyer being approved the Directors of LLE
Received By Real Estate Agent: ____________________________________
Received By Buyer: _______________________________
Please return a copy of this completed form along with the requested documentation (Buyer To Provide) and a non-refundable fee of $100 (e-transfer) to firstname.lastname@example.org . Once received the Checklist Of Documents will be forwarded to the Agent or Buyer. Note: All offers to purchase should include subject conditions for the Buyer to approve all Checklist Documents and for the Buyer to be approved by the Directors of LLE.”
- Amend (in bold italics) to section 4.26 as follows:
4.26 If any assessment, fine or any money owed greater than $1000 pursuant to this Trust Indenture or its Regulations remains unpaid for one (1) year or longer after a Notice of Assessment or Notice of Fine has been given as provided by the Regulations, the Administrator may give notice to the Beneficial Owner that unless the assessment or fine is paid in full within 30 days of the date of receipt of the notice, as defined in the Regulations,
(a) the exclusive right of such Beneficial Owner to the use and possession of the Site shall cease and the Administrator shall be empowered to enter upon and sell the interest of the Beneficial Owner in the Site and to pay the proceeds of such sale in satisfaction of the outstanding assessments and charges. The balance of such proceeds, after expenses have been deducted, shall be paid to the defaulting Beneficial Owner. The Administrator shall register a transfer of such beneficial ownership to a purchaser certified by the Administrator to be entitled to beneficial ownership of the Site and the shareholding of the defaulting Beneficial Owner in the Administrator shall be transferred to the purchaser, each Beneficial Owner of a Site hereby appointing the Administrator its attorney for the purpose of effecting the transfer of such shareholdings.
and / or
- b) give notice that voting rights at AGM’s is suspended until the Beneficial Owner pays the full assessment or fines
Chris Malthaner oversees a special committee that is reviewing trees on common properties, including roads, that could be a fire hazard or create a danger to persons or property. These trees are being marked and removed. Those trees will be made available to all for firewood but not for commercial uses. Inquiries should be made to Paul of Chris.
LLE purchased Lot 30 from a shareholder who was in debt to the company. We sold the items on this lot which covered the cost of cleaning the lot. We then traded lot 30 for lot 29 as it will be required in the Cataline excavation project.
The SLRD has issued LLE with 2 addresses-
- For gates 2-10 you can use: gate __ ,lot __ , 6500 In-shuck-ch Forest Service Road. Mt Currie BC V0N2K0
- Gate 1 you can use gate 1 lot__ , 6400 In-shuck-ch Forest Service Road. Mt Currie BC V0N2K0
These are NOT a postal address but rather legal addresses.
If you want to receive mail you still require a post office box either in Mt. Currie or Pemberton
Lillooet Lake Estates mailing address has not changed although you can add the legal address:
6500 In-shuck-ch Forest Service Road
P.O. Box 845
Pemberton BC V0N 2L0
Community Emergency Plan
A community committee led by Kathryn Wesley, supported by the SLRD, has produced a very comprehensive Community Emergency Plan / brochure. These brochures provide essential information: things to do around your place, what and how to deal with emergencies, rallying stations etc. The brochures have been delivered to each lot that has a livable building structure. The plan is also available on our web site.
‘Permanently’ Parked Vehicles
We have a number of vehicles, campers and trailers around the estate that, for one reason or another, appear to be here forever. They are unsightly, a fire hazard , and potentially dangerous in the event of natural disasters such as debris flows. LLE has a bylaw that requires each and every vehicle parked at LLE to have either current or storage insurance. For those of you that have neither please make arrangements to remove such vehicles / trailers as soon as possible. These vehicles are a personal liability.
Paul Palmer continues to manage our ongoing maintenance program.
The dust abatement program worked well in 2019. The added bonus of the program is that the roads continue to become firmer and require a less annual work.
The new solar pump approved in the 2019 budget was installed and is working well. This new pump lessens the work of the main generator which reduces fuel consumption and wear on the motor.
The water system is functioning well and is meeting all public health tests. While LLE attempts to assist members by turning off curb side valves each fall, shareholders are in fact responsible for their systems. You are requested to inspect your system on a regular basis for leaks especially when you activate your water in the spring. It is always a good idea to turn off your water valve when you are not at LLE.
Beginning in 2020 we accepted a contract to maintain the HJP water system as well. We have the trained staff and it does provide more work for Paul. LLE will realize a net revenue from this contract.
Road Work – Head of the Lake
The main portion of the FSR road work was completed in the fall of 2019 before the first snow. The FSR was opened in October. There is additional work planned for 2020 which will require another road closure this summer.
The bypass detour will be reactivated. Please note that vehicles driving up the cut have the right of way. Drive slowly and safely.
Not surprisingly, our governance documents did not contemplate an AGM being cancelled to conform to a decree of our Medical Health Officer.
Since we need to keep our community moving forward the board has adopted a 2020 budget that shows no increase from 2019.
Projects continue following general plans as shared with previous AGM’s. This will include ongoing water and road maintenance, gate installations, common lot improvements etc. However, we did defer some activities in order to hold the budget at last year’s level.
Invoices will be sent out that will match last year’s costs assessment. As well, the invoice will include each shareholders portion of the taxes – land and improvements ( buildings) where appropriate. We have not yet received the tax notices however we are anticipating a 5% increase so this will be reflected in your invoice. When the tax notices for our collective land and your buildings is received credits or debits will be put against your account. Reminder, that you now pay all taxes through LLE. Do not pay anything directly to the government.
As soon as we can hold an AGM we will do so either in North Vancouver or at the Lake.
Catiline Excavation Project Update
This status report was originally prepared to be sent to the shareholders prior to the AGM, for the purpose of soliciting support for a loan through the SLRD. Several breaking pieces of news have impacted the project in the last few weeks:
- Unfortunately the grant request was turned down. After chatting with a few knowledgeable people we can assume two things: 1) the size of the grant request is judged relative to the overall value of the land it will protect, and 2) the provincial government is very reluctant to play a significant role in funding, or being involved, in debris torrent projects because of the related The government is risk adverse whenever possible.
- The SLRD has lost their CAO and the senior staff are overwhelmed with the Covid-19 pandemic and the remaining regional government work. As a result they are not able to contemplate doing the work that would be required to process a loan to LLE this year. The new SLRD board will also need to review the LLE file. Such an orientation is not practical over the next several months with the massive changes facing regional government that the SLRD must deal with as a result of the dramatic changes to the economy and related provincial government programs.
- Due to the ruling of the Provincial Medical Officer the LLE AGM must be deferred until the rules limiting assembly are lifted.
- The Federal Government may soon announce a new grant program that we could apply for. We are in contact with our MP Patrick Weiler who has been briefed and is working on our behalf.
Lillooet Lake Estates (LLE) is a 152-lot subdivision on the northeast side of Lillooet Lake in the Pemberton Valley of British Columbia. Lillooet Lake Estates is about seven kilometers south of Highway 99 on the In-SHUCK-ch Forest Service Road and is situated in the Líl’wat Traditional Territory.
A Provincial Government Order in Council authorized the Squamish Lillooet Regional District (SLRD) to enter into a contract with the developer to create what is now LLE in 1977. The form of ownership chosen by the government was under a Land Use Contract. The decision to establish the community in this location was approved based on the finding of a geotech report (Dr. Piteau) prepared in 1976. This report said that this site was acceptable if some minor works were completed in the creek bed. To the best of our knowledge some or all of this work was completed in 2 stages.
LLE encircles a smaller community, namely Heather Jean Properties (HJP). The current Land Use Contract identifies the entire estate (LLE – 152 lots & HJP – 18 lots) as owned through a jointly managed holding company known as DL4901.
The community is built in the ‘shadow’ of Goat Mountain on an alluvial fan, centered around Catiline Creek. Over many centuries, rocks, vegetation, and sediment from the cliffs and slopes above LLE, have washed down towards the lakeshore. Much of the debris settled out on the lower slopes before reaching the lake. Vegetation and trees eventually covered the lower slopes. Some debris was carried down Cataline Creek to Lillooet Lake.
In recent years, the total amount of debris carried downstream has occasionally been too great for the size of the creek/channel. Fortunately, the flow of soil, vegetation, rocks etc. stayed mostly in Catiline Creek basin. Damage to date from these occasional larger events, has been limited to the catchment basin, the Forest Service Road/bridge, some properties near the Creek, below the road, and the LLE Common Lot/park space.
Realistically, it must be expected that some future slide will be large enough to overwhelm the capacity of the creek basin.. The debris will “jump the banks” and spill into built-up areas – resulting in personal and/or property damage.
The proposed Debris Flow Mitigation Project is intended to reduce risk from any debris flow to an acceptable, internationally recognized ‘safe’ level.
2. LLE Risk Assessment – Unsafe
After the 2013 debris torrent, with support from Emergency Management BC (EMBC), the engineering firm of BGC was hired to complete a risk assessment and flood map.
The findings included the following:
- Annual probability of life loss for a particular individual “Probability of Death of an Individual (PDI)”
- Age-standardized, all causes: PDI = 1:175
- Accidental causes: PDI = 1:2,500
- Driving: PDI = 1:12,500
- Estimated annual risk of death in LLE is 1:70
- 99 of the 152 lots have an unacceptable high risk
- 76 lots – Individual risk exceeded 1:10,000 risk of fatality /year
- 18 lots exceeded 1:1000 annual risk of fatality
- Estimated group safety risk also fell entirely into the “Unacceptable” range
3. Notice on Title
Based on that risk evaluation, SLRD posted a Public Notice apprising lot owners (and visitors) of the personal risk to anyone on LLE property, based on lot location. Further the SLRD placed a Notice on Title that restricts the issuing of any building permits to the 99 lots in the potential slide zone.
As a consequence, unless this known risk is addressed , individuals and buildings will continue to be at risk, and property values and future sales will be severely impacted.
Experience and modeling indicate that it is probable that the community will experience another debris torrent in the near future. In fact, for the last few decades we have experienced a debris torrent on average every 6 years.
4. Choosing the Right Option
In 2016, LLE and SLRD jointly retained Kerr Wood Leidal (KWL) Engineers at a shared cost of $200,000 to develop protection options and to provide cost estimates, based on preliminary design, for the most feasible approach. The primary options were either to (1) construct a “retention dam” high up above LLE, or (2) build angled “berms” at that elevation so as to force future debris flows into a substantially deepened, widened and straightened Catiline Creek channel.
On evaluation, Option (2) proved to be the preferred choice. For any future-slide that is likely to occur once in a 1000-year period, the proposed mitigation works will reduce risk to an internationally accepted level of safety. Once constructed, the works will allow:
- full time residents to feel safe and escape the fear that comes with living in the path of a potential debris torrent;
- part time residents to feel safe visiting their property in sunshine or heavy downpours which can trigger debris torrents;
- owners to be able to invite guests without the concern of having to warn visitors of the risk of potential landslides and their safety;
- neighbouring communities and industry who regularly travel over Catiline Creek to not feel threatened with unsafe roads and for the general public, who most likely have no idea of the potential danger in passing Catiline Creek, to travel with a normalized level of safety.
- ensure that essential services such as medical, utilities, and policing can serve the communities and industries further down the In-SHUCK-ch Forest Service Road.
- support the industries including mining, logging and tourism that rely on this FSR
Without this mitigation work being completed, all persons who dwell near, visit or pass over Cataline Creek are at real risk of loss of life and or property damage.
5. The Solution
The preliminary design was completed by KWL/BGC engineering groups in October 2016 and features the following:
- Excavating and stabilizing a larger creek channel through the community to convey debris flow along existing channel alignment from fan apex to Lillooet Lake
- Supplementing creek excavation with berms to increase conveyance capacity
- Constructing upper fan training berms above community to reduce risk of lower works being outflanked
- Extending upstream berms to high-ground to avoid being outflanked
- Replacing/modifying existing FSR Bridge to accommodate wider creek channel and/or debris flow events
- Constructing lake side training berms to limit material deposition near Lillooet Lake
- Incorporating design features to balance environmental and recreation resource uses
- Providing construction and maintenance access points
- Approximately 188,000 m³ of material would be excavated.
- About 35% can be used in the construction and the community – 65% will require off-site disposal along FSR
Post project, it is expected that most material carried by a debris flow would be transported into the lake or contained in the new, much larger channel, which would then be removed in keeping with an engineer-prepared maintenance manual. The detailed design and construction project would be staged over 2 years.
The proposed plan was reviewed by BGC and found to meet all stated project goals (i.e. every lot would be reclassified into a zone that meets international standards of safety).
The plan was approved by the LLE board of Directors on September 17, 2016 and the full LLE community in March of 2017.
The SLRD Board on July 26, 2017 passed the following motion:
- THAT the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (“SLRD”) own and maintain the Catiline Creek debris flow mitigation structure(s) protecting the communities of Lillooet Lake Estates and Heather Jean Properties (the “Works”), initiate such ownership status by applying for all necessary tenures and provincial approvals for the Works, and establish itself as the diking authority in respect of the Works.
- THAT the SLRD undertake grant applications, as approved by the SLRD Board, such as future Gas Tax Strategic Priorities Fund, National Disaster Mitigation Program (“NDMP”) and other grant funding initiatives, in support of continuing planning for, and construction of, the Works. For clarity, any NDMP grant application to be made by the due date of August 25, 2017, will be prepared by Lillooet Lake Estates.
- THAT the SLRD support and assist LLE with the additional project-planning and creation of construction documents for the Works (potentially in preparation for submitting grant applications), but only if the SLRD is able to allocate such funding to the future service area (cost centre) to be established for the Works, and otherwise the SLRD will not provide funding to LLE for such additional project-planning and creation of construction documents.
- THAT, subject to receipt of a sufficient petition from the shareholders of LLE (and potentially Heather Jean Properties) whereby at least 75% of the shareholders of LLE approve the service establishment, the SLRD will establish a service area for the construction, maintenance and operations of the Works.
- THAT, subject to at least 75% of the shareholders of LLE approving the loan financing and subject to the registration of a mortgage on terms satisfactory to the SLRD over the parcels of land known as DL4901 and Parcel A, the SLRD will provide loan financing of up to $8,000,000 for the construction, maintenance and operation of the Works.
In summary, the past boards of LLE and the SLRD believed that the threat must be reduced to safer levels and that the KWL solution should be implemented as soon as possible.
It should be noted that the project would also benefit:
- Local First Nations Communities further ‘down’ the Lillooet Lake/river basin
- Commercial operators,
- Visitors driving on the In-SHUCK-ch Forest Service Road over the Catiline Creek crossing.
In the past, slides of up to 5 meters in height have deposited material on this FSR crossing, closing the road for several day and cutting off access to communities beyond the Catiline Creek Bridge. These closures have negatively impacted commercial operations, cut off normal contact for all ‘downstream’ communities and access by fire, health and safety vehicles.
6. Community Support
The preliminary design has been approved by the residents and has the support of the surrounding communities and organizations:
- Xa’xtsa Nation,
- Lil’Wat Nation,
- Samahquam Nation,
- In Shuck ch Resource Management,
- BC Hydro
This project would dramatically reduce the likelihood of further expenditures by locals, SLRD and the Province/ MFLNRORD as the channel is designed to convey the debris through the community to Lillooet Lake. As well, the design includes maintenance measures to further reduce potential future costs if material accumulates anywhere in the channel.
The Forestry Services Bridge was also identified as a structure that has, in the past, acted as a plug thus directing material outside of the channel toward downstream buildings and properties. FLNRO has committed to funding the replacement of the bridge and alterations to the road in concert with this project (at a cost of approximately $1.6M). This commitment has been long standing but would need to be confirmed once again before the project is started.
7. Proposed Project Budget (in 2020 dollars)
The KWL Engineers have recommended that the project budget be increased by 10%.
Mitigation Work $ 4,585,900
Professional Services (Engineering/Design and project supervision) $ 907,500
Contingencies* (30%) $ 1,650,000
Construction Subtotal $ 7,143,400
MFLNRORD –Bridge and Road $ 1,577,840
Total Construction Budget $ 8,721,240
*30% contingency has intentionally been set ‘high’ so as to ensure the budget remains balanced throughout entire project duration. This portion of the budget was not inflated.
8. Dike Requirements
The project was reviewed by provincial staff and it was deemed that it would be subject to the Dike Maintenance Act (DMA).
As this project will include a series of berms intended to direct any debris torrent material back into the Catiline Creek channel, the province has determined that the berms must be classified as dikes even though they do not direct water or material except in the event of a debris torrent.
The post Catiline Creek mitigation project would be owned and operated by a newly established local Diking Authority. The SLRD Board has, by resolution, established itself as that Local Diking Authority for the Catiline Creek ‘Diking System’ for future debris flow mitigation structure. LLE currently owns the lands over which Catiline Creek flows . LLE will be required to give the SLRD the creek bed before the project commences.
9. Crown Land Acquisition
LLE has submitted an application to acquire the rights to Crown Land ‘above’ the estate on Crown Mountain, to permit the creation and maintenance of berms intended to direct materials back into the Catiline basin if necessary. It was intended that this right of way would be transferred to the SLRD as required by the dyke act. Recently the province ruled that the SLRD would need to initiate a new application rather than accept a transfer from LLE.
10. Post Mitigation Maintenance
The works, once completed, will require on-going inspection, monitoring, routine maintenance, periodic additional upgrades, and repair after any future debris events. We are committed to protecting this large capital investment and ensuring that the mitigation channel is ready to protect our community henceforth.
The SLRD and LLE retained KWL to prepare an Operations and Maintenance Manual The manual describes required actions and costing for: the inspection, routine maintenance, periodic larger scale maintenance, periodic works upgrading and post event dike restoration, in keeping with the requirements of the Dike Maintenance Act. The first draft is complete and will be updated after the project is completed.
LLE will be responsible to this Local Dyke Authority for all routine maintenance work, and after minor/periodic events, for debris removal/ restoration of works.
Further, the LLE / SLRD will create a Financing/Reserve/Contingency Fund financed by annual payments from Lot owners to ensure there is adequate funding to maintain the improvements. The Reserve/Contingency Fund Contribution for these items is estimated to range up to $32,000/year, which we would pay as part of our annual property taxes.
11. Communications with the Residents
This matter has been the subject of community discussions at the AGM of LLE every year since 2011. At the 2017 AGM the following resolution was adopted:
- “That the SLRD be requested to proceed with the creation of a Special Service Area for the purposes of securing a loan of up to $3,000,000 for the purposes of contributing to the Cataline Creek mitigation project.”
- “That the board of LLE be required to secure approval of the shareholders before activating part or all of the aforementioned loan”
As well, the SLRD / LLE held two community meetings in Pemberton and North Vancouver in December 2017 to update all residents and the shareholders on more detail of the proposed project.
The project status was reviewed again at the 2018 and 2019 AGM’s.
The board had committed to bringing an action plan to the 2020 AGM that would include borrowing sufficient funds through the SLRD to complete the project as soon as possible.
The 2020 AGM has been postponed indefinitely as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak and the subsequent orders of the Provincial Medical Health Order to not host gatherings until further notice.
12. Provincial Shift in Policy
The Province of BC assisted us with clean up after the last two debris flows in 2010 & 2013, at a cost of approximately $414,000.
As well, the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development (FLNRO) has faced clean-up costs on the road and bridge structure.
Can we continue to expect financial support in the future? That is a hard question to answer. The province has recently put out a discussion paper which is intended to update its approach to Emergency Management.
The new approach suggests putting greater emphasis on mitigation as a preventative tool.
The emphasis on mitigation rather than post event ‘clean up’ should be applauded if it is in fact funded. There is no mention of budgets for this purpose or the priorities for allocating funds but it could be expected that larger centres with greater population will be funded first.
Further, recent activities of the government are concerning at least where buy outs of homes after a disaster are considered. Insufficient help is being offered to relocations in Sechelt, Johnsons Landing and Grand Forks. In Grand Forks, which is the most recent disaster centre they are offering post flood valuations which are dramatically depressed from the pre flood values.
The discussion paper released by the province also seems to suggest a possible shifting of responsibility of funding from provincial to local governments. If this shift does occur, it will have the effect of shifting all the responsibility back to LLE because regional governments can only gather funds for projects from the impacted communities. It would be the same as taking out a loan.
LLE did submit a paper to the public input process of this paper. It is available on our web site under the Catiline heading. Hopefully our submission will help to shape a more positive policy as it pertains to LLE.
The Provincial Government has ordered the extinguishment of all land use contacts in BC by 2024.
A new plan must be filed by the SLRD not later than 2022. The province did not indicate what form of ownership should replace the LUC’s and are leaving this up the local/ regional governments. There are several thousand LUC’s of various sizes in the province. LLE is one of the largest.
If the mitigation project is completed by 2024 a new subdivision plan would be produced which will update the shape of any lots impacted by mitigation and other changes that the board considers to make the community more livable. Further, a 30M riparian zone setback, which would be a non-build zone on each side of the creek, must be identified in the plan. This zone should be sufficient to permit every lot to build a house.
The current notice on title would be replaced with a series of lot specific notices that identify structures that were built without building permits. These buildings would need to comply with current building codes.
This will become a point of discussion with the SLRD since, in some cases, past regional staff simply refused to inspect building projects, although no such motion had been adopted by the SLRD. These actions were possibly contrary to the act. As well, some lot owners simply didn’t bother to apply for permits. Both sides will need to negotiate some mutually acceptable solution to these matters. According to a local expert and former building inspector, these challenges have been solved in other jurisdictions.
After the mitigation is completed all lots will be deemed ‘safe’ i.e. they will all meet the North Van/ international standard of safety, which is the objective of the project. A Geotech report will be produced to that end.
Each lot in the SLRD are required to produce reports as part of a building permit process. It would be expected that each owner could use the project engineers final report as a base document.
There is no direct tie between the extinguishment of the LUCs and the Catiline mitigation work other than that both LLE and the SLRD, see the completion of the Catiline project as an opportunity to lift the current notice on title, and apply a revised rezoning/ replotting for all lots. If this does not occur, the LUC will be replaced by zoning similar to that in other parts of the SLRD. LLE will continue to own the 2 parcels under DL4901.
The extinguishment of the LUC does not require LLE to alter our form of ownership although strata or co-op have obvious benefits. HJP is currently applying for strata and are encountering challenges. We continue to monitor.
13. Board Initiatives to Date
In 2018, the Board of LLE identified the following seven options to keep the project moving forward:
Lobby directly to elected officials in Provincial and Federal.
This work is ongoing with regular meeting with the MP, MLA and Area C Director
Continue to apply for all grants that come available.
The following applications have been submitted:
National Disaster Mitigation Fund (3 submissions)
In the summer of 2017, a 3rd application was submitted to this program. EMBC staff were very helpful in previous debriefs and assistance in preparing this application.
It was very disappointing then to be rejected as we had amended the application in keeping with all previous suggestions /instructions.
In follow up correspondence dated May 7, 2018, it was noted that the Catiline project is deemed to be a geo hazard and not a flood mitigation hence it does not qualify under this fund. This was a disappointing piece of news and seems to rule out future applications to this fund.
Strategic Priority (Gas Tax) Funding.
A full grant proposal was submitted with support from both the SLRD and LLE Boards.
Later that year, UBCM, who manages the program in BC, sent the following to the SLRD:
“As with previous intakes for pooled funding delivered through the Federal Gas Tax Fund, the 2017 SPF intake was oversubscribed. In total, 227 applications were made, with a funding request of over $575 million. Of these, 112 projects were approved for approximately $192 million. The projects selected reflect the technical ranking provided to the Management Committee for all projects.”
The selected projects reflect an average funded project value of approximately $1.7 million. The average funding request for all applications (based on the figures provided above) was approximately $2.5 million.
LLE was not on the funded list. No specific explanation was provided.
UBCM Structural Flood Mitigation Fund Grant
There is a UBCM structural flood mitigation fund. LLE suggested that perhaps some of the planning and initial mitigation work, perhaps below the FSR, could be funded from this fund. The maximum eligible funding is $750,000.
Unfortunately, only one application is accepted per regional district and the SLRD had another project that they put forward in 2019. This fund is now focused on flood projects only.
Investing in Canada Infrastructure Rural and Northern Communities Grant
The SLRD and LLE held consultations with both the MP and federal government staff about the project and the various funding sources going forward. It was agreed that the most appropriate grant would be to a new Federal Government Green Infrastructure Fund which had been allocated to the Province of BC to administer.
An application was prepared and submitted in January 2019 requesting $3M with a commitment from the community to raise the remaining funds, through a loan. This budget also anticipates the funds committed by FLNRO to replace the bridge and alterations to the road.
Sadly, again this grant request was denied in mid-March of this year.
Write the Ombudsman either as a group or as individuals.
Director Hamilton has opened a file with the Ombudsman.
Take out full loan for up to $8M for project.
In keeping with the SLRD motions, LLE would need to apply for a 30 year loan from the Municipal Finance Authority (MFI) through the SLRD. The BC Surveyor of Taxes would apply the designated mill rate to the 2 lots owned by LLE and issue a Tax Notice to LLE annually in June. In other words, there would be one annual payment by the LLE for the loan as part of our annual tax payment. Before putting the option forward for consideration the SLRD will need to reconfirm their previous motion to coordinate a loan through the province. We have been informed that the SLRD could not consider this request until 2021.
Lobby to acquire additional property from Crown to develop more land, possibly behind Strawberry Point with profits directed to the Catiline Project.
A general inquiry was made and the province indicated that they are not prepared to release any crown land for development at this time.
Conduct a full media campaign to try to gain public support.
While this may feel good to some members, it is unlikely that a community of our size will be capable of putting enough pressure on policy makers to provide the necessary funding short of a community catastrophe. The most recent example in Grand Forks and Sechelt of communities activating news stories actually led to a more intense ‘do not occupy orders’ rather than actions to assist with problem solving. Any story in the next few months will be lost in the Covid-19 virus and economic crash stories.
Purchase equipment and complete the project ourselves over a number of years.
The concept of either staging the work or simply doing all the work with LLE acquired equipment has some real benefits but will require a significant out front cost before the work can begin. This matter has been a topic of discussion at every board meeting. Numerous meetings have also been held with staff and elected officials at the local provincial and federal levels to try to overcome significant policies and regulations. It continues to be an option worthy of consideration
14. Changing Directions
The LLE board believes that it is essential for the safety of all residents and the future development of our community to move forward as quickly as is possible. There are four major compelling reasons to:
- Community Resident Safety (we have seen slides on average, every 6 years and the last slide was 2013)
- Ability to build (Building permit) currently denied on 99 lots because of the notice on title
- Depressed Property Values throughout the estate
- Costly clean up after slides (it is possible that LLE will not receive future government assistance hence we will need to build a significant reserves)
At the same time, it is impossible to predict, with any accuracy, what the state of this dramatic economic downturn will have on the ability of our shareholders to meet any additional loan costs at this time.
The board continues to make this project a major priority and are searching out every avenue to complete the project.