April 19 2021

BAMFIELD COMMUNITY AFFAIRS SOCIETY General Meeting Unofficial Minutes

19-04-2021 at 6.30 pm
via Zoom - hosted by Jamie Willock (Chair)

Attendees (40): Jamie Willock (Chair),  Bob Beckett, Wayne and Lyn Markel, Rae Hopkins, Louis Druehl, Jane Morrison,  Jan Teversham, John Mass, Sheryl Mass, Julie Bradley, Sally Mole,  Jared Higgins, Doug Greer, Charlie Clappis, Ben and Margo West, Bernie and Keith Wyton, Barry  and Mrs. Sills, Mandy Ross, Glenn (Wood’s End) , Anne Stewart, Susan Derasp, Alison and Paul Bird. Nancy Hendry, Marnie McAughtrie, Stefan Ochman, Jaleen Rousseau, Jeanne and Frank Novak, Amy Hollings, Bonnie McKay, Lisa Bye, Sean Rogers, David Alexander, Oliver Evans, Jane Trussler

Guest: Josie Osborne. Minister of Municipal Affairs and MLA for Mid Island-Pacific Rim

Acknowledgement of Indigenous Lands: The BCAS acknowledges that the land on which we meet is within the Traditional territory of the Huu-ay-aht First Nations where indigenous peoples have lived since time immemorial.

Statement of Inclusivity: The BCAS is responsible for fostering a public forum within its community to facilitate communications and services that diverse groups identify as respectful, inclusive and accessible.

The meeting was called to order at 6.32pm.

Adoption of Agenda: m/JBradley s/BSills  Unanimous

Adoption of Minutes of 15 March 2021 Community Affairs Meeting. m/JMass s/JBradley Unanimous.

DISCUSSION ON TOFINO’S GROWTH - Josie Osborne

Josie was mayor of Tofino from 2013-2020, and she has lived there since 1998. Josie spent a few minutes highlighting the main points to consider for the future of Bamfield/Anacla drawing on her experience related to the growth of Tofino. I summarize them here in point form.

1. Long-time (settler) residents of Tofino have reflected to Josie that in their opinion the most significant change to affect the growth of Tofino was the road from Port Alberni. A dirt road reached Tofino in 1961 and this was finally fully paved in 1972.

2. The west coast has been a tourism destination since the time ships (e.g., CP-owned SS Maquinna) brought visitors in the early 1900s. This was based on the opportunity to visit the beaches, forests and indigenous culture. Josie thinks that the relationship that Bamfield and the Huu-ay -aht  (the Treaty nation of  neighboring Anacla) have  sets us up for success. She commented that Tofino and the nearby First Nations communities did not have the same kind of collaboration at the outset of the tourism industry that we are lucky enough to have here. The joint cooperation between indigenous peoples and more recent residents is integral to successful growth.

3. Josie posed that an important questions is “how does a community take advantage of economic growth opportunities without losing ourselves?” It is very important that growth fits our values. We must remain true to what and who we are.

4. Remember that when communities market themselves to tourists, they are marketing to their future residents. Visitors come to the West Coast , love it, and then move here to become part of the community. But in Tofino about one third of the community changes every five years. Business leadership changes, and values can then change. There is a big advantage for Bamfield as there is the stability of Anacla.

5. Tourism is not a well-paid sector for front line workers. Communities should value them and address such issues as housing to assist the sector. Who owns businesses matters in small communities but we can’t control who buys the businesses. Local ownership matters.

6. In Tofino there has been tension between the full-time residents and the seasonal people. It is important to recognise that seasonal property owners bring money and sometimes expertise, philanthropy, and volunteerism into the community. Josie does not sense the same degree of tension here in Bamfield but it is important to foster good relationships and have dialogue with second-home owners.

7. In summary, Josie stressed that we must know who we are. Does our OCP represent us? Are our values embedded in it? Is the infrastructure we have integral to the growth rates? In Tofino the logging road reached them in the 1950s and the paved road in the 70s. Now in the 2020s is Tofino what people would have wanted or envisaged in the 70s?

Questions:

a. Louis Druehl asked if Tofino had any special arrangements to accommodate non-resident property owners. No. He asked how to get them involved in the community and Josie responded that they have donated time and money, and some really support community events and local non-profits.

b. Stefan Ochman asked whether there was a time when Tofino experienced a bottleneck because too many tourists arrived and the infrastructure couldn’t support them. Josie differentiated between physical carrying capacity and social carrying capacity. She said there had been issues of water, wastewater, and parking in the last 20 years. Other issues were line-ups at restaurants, parking, crowded beaches, impacts on the local hospital, availability of child care for hospitality workers and appropriate land use designations. She stressed the importance of data. With traffic and hotel data they discovered that 1 in 7 guests are day trippers there and the remaining 6 out of 7 came for 2 to 3 day stays. This data is essential for planning.

c. Jaleen Rousseau asked whether it was better to delay increasing infrastructure or to have it ready for the growth? Josie responded that in her opinion social carrying capacity was the most important. How much change do we want? All communities change but what levels of densities are tolerable for us? What pressures are acceptable? Growing in a modular way with strong feedback mechanism is advised.

d. Keith Wyton asked whether it was possible for unincorporated areas could develop transitional functions so as to be more in charge of our own destiny? In reality the ACRD is absent in our day-to-day functioning. Josie said that we can explore the move towards incorporating Bamfield with provincial assistance if we want the added responsibility and taxation. This should be brought up to ACRD through the regional director if that’s what we choose to do. Josie gave the example of Okanagan Falls in the interior which is seriously studying the move towards becoming a municipality. There is no minimum population requirement. It’s a multi-year process. She thought there might be special considerations we wish to undertake because we are neighbours with the Huu-ay-aht as a Treaty nation.

e. Sally Mole asked about the big changes that happened when vacation rentals went out of control. She gave the example of Chesterman Beach that had been a quiet neighbourhood for resident families and it had changed over time to short term tourist accommodation.

In Josie’s opinion, in the early years of short-term rentals Tofino failed to understand just how popular they would become and how much they could change neighbourhoods. Then when Air BnB came on board it all exploded. Air BnB is now the largest “hotel” in the municipality. It hasn’t destroyed neighbourhoods but it has certainly changed them. Josie wishes now that Tofino had prohibited them altogether it in some neighbourhoods. ACRD could have licensing powers to control it but then there would have to be the ability to enforce it (which costs). Consider banning short term rentals in certain neighbourhoods. Real estate value of homes can increases by 20 to 30% if there is short term rental capacity – this is good for the current homeowener, but not for new entrants to the housing market.

Josie said she would be very willing to come back again to further discuss issues with us. Many people expressed their thanks to her for her input  and knowledge .

Josie.osborne.mla@leg.bc.ca

 

TREASURER’S REPORT - Jane Morrison

As of 30 March 2021:

Chequing Account: $15,924.20

Savings Account: $12,424.29

 Shares: $5.21

ACRD Director’s Report- Bob Beckett

The ACRD staff is hosting a zoom meeting on April 28th with representatives from MOTI, Huu-ay-aht, John Mass, Bob Baden, Bob Beckett and senior ACRD planning staff. The goal is to consider current and future demands, identifying appropriate zoning locations/opportunities, potential partnerships, governance issues, revenue potential etc.

Thanks to Bob Baden and John Mass for their time and efforts in this extremely important project.

Access to attend the meeting was requested by some attendees.

COMMITTEE REPORTS

  1. Huu-ay-aht- Charlie Clappis

Charlie  said they are very busy at the moment with new positions and new hires and new activities such as the extension of the campground.

He mentioned the hope that there would be new hook-ups from East Bamfield into the waste water system. He looks forward to working together with the Bamfield community in such issues as parking and child care and any other programmes as we develop them.

The AGM of the People’s Assembly took place last weekend. One outcome is that the Huu-ay-aht are buying into more of TFL44 so that they will have 44%- a major increase from the current 7%. . After 2 years this will increase to 51% of WFP. This was voted for by 88% of the assembly.

  1. BMSC- Sean Rogers

Sean had time to look at the Community Forest and the progress on the Waste Water Facility when he was last in Bamfield.

There will be no summer programme for students as previously planned but he is hoping for a full re-opening in the fall.

There has been a resurgence in studying at BMSC. Many are looking for local- and accessible- locations so there are a lot of bookings for researchers over the summer including kelp.

The UVic Implementation Committee re the bus tragedy has to report by the end of June. It has been recommended that the committee will visit the site on June 18 and Chief Dennis will meet with the committee then.

Rocks have been poured at km 37 where the accident took place but barriers are needed for  more permanent solution.

  1.  BCSA - Sally Mole

There are plans to maintain the new pre-school programme.

  1. Community Hall- Louis Druehl

Raffle tickets are still on sale at both stores.

  1. Parks- Sheryl Mass

A work bee at  Eileen Scott Park  worked on the rink. The Bradley children, Georgia and Finn,  were particularly helpful. New signage is being installed at the park too. Some alders have been felled and chipping has been done at West Park in preparation for the installation of the swing set.

  1. Health Clinic – Jane Trussler

There will be two nurses at the clinic from now until Thanksgiving. Amy Hollings has just started as the second permanent part time nurse to alternate with Heather Peterson.

A total of 235 people were vaccinated  with the initial first dose of the moderna vaccine for Covid 19 on April 7, 8 and 9. Anyone else who wants to be vaccinated should get on the list if they missed it the first time. Contact the health clinic as the doses come in multiples of 10. This is only for residents of Bamfield.

The Rural Coordination Centre of BC gets funding from doctors and the clinic has received an iPad for videoconferencing via a secure site. If there is an immediate need from a client for a specialist – pediatrician, dermatologist  or intensivist or a doctor then rural physicians are available to assist online. It had already been used in the previous 72 hours before the meeting! It is a great addition to the services available and is more flexible than the health authority services.

7.Community Forest- Charlie Clappis

The school will be planting trees on Earth Day April 22nd. Anyone else can come out too.

The AGM is also on April 22 at 6.30pm. The zoom link is on the Community Forest Facebook page. The name of the new trail will be chosen at the AGM.

Firewood is still available.

The 2004 logging area will be observed by fa drone lying over it to see the state of regeneration.

  1. Harbour Authority- Rae Hopkins

Nothing to report.

  1. School- Julie Bradley

It’s running as covid normal. The intermediate class students have all received  their Food Safe Certificate and are now handling the school lunches themselves.

Friday will be a beach clean-up day on Pachena.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS

­­­1. GIA Application 1(Mandy Ross, WildSafeBC)

Mandy  Ross presented her proposal for GIA funding a second time.

The new proposal covers a three-year period to ensure consistent supply of equipment and signage. An amount of $3240 is requested for 2021.

If anyone is interested in being part of a Bear Hazard management plan that will require a few meetings up until September they should contact Mandy.

Email: amjross@shaw.ca

2. GIA Application 2-  Parking -Jamie Willock

Jamie presented the application to further extend parking slots on the East side as per the plan developed for the 2019 GIA parking project. It has not finally been decided which spots will be developed  but they will be along Frigate Road on the right-hand side (going towards Grappler). There is $4000 left from the previous project and a further $10,000 will be requested in the hope of creating 10 more parking spots.

Questions were asked about the parking at the Market. It is meant to be parallel parking  not angle parking because of the space available and the road width..

Sally wondered why MoT had to be involved if they don’t maintain the roads and John Mass responded that they own the road allowance and so have to give permission.

Josie added that they are NOT creating any more parking in Tofino but have increased bike paths and introduced a shuttle bus for moving tourists into town and out to the beaches. They have timed parking in certain areas and they are planning on bringing in pay parking. There is secure parking for the 1000+ people who live out on the islands. She reiterated the need to get some good planning happening now to get people used to the idea of paid parking from the beginning and starting with the idea that cheap paid parking is good at first. John Mass asked for any comments and ideas related to the big picture of parking that he can take to the upcoming meeting if appropriate.

3. Brady’s Beach Barricade- Jamie Willock/Doug Greer

Jamie presented the possible vehicle prevention measure for Brady’s Beach- a metal bollard to set in the ground that can be removed in case of the necessity for vehicular access to the beach. Various questions / comments were posed/made related to visibility at night,( yes reflective decals)  flexibility, material of construction (aluminum or steel), price ( not known yet), need for 2 posts, status of land (road allowance) and who should vote on the final decision (directors). Both land owners adjacent to the road allowance have been contacted about the issue and approved the action. The motion to place a barrier  was then moved by Doug and seconded by Bernie. The community  voted . There were none opposed and 3 abstentions and hence the motion passed.

The Board will now look into  getting permission from the MOT , pricing the options and making a general notification on the corkboard once a final decision is made by the Board.

4. Bamfield 2030 Presentation Jamie Willock.

Jamie gave a power point presentation to summarise the information gathering that the Board had completed earlier in the year and the slides are attached in a separate document.

The next meeting (via Zoom) is on Monday 17 May 2021at 6.30pm. and will include the AGM.

Meeting Adjourned at 8.30pm approximately  m SOchman/s KWyton Totally  Unanimous