Citizens for a Livable Cranbrook Society provides grassroots leadership and an inclusive process, with a voice for all community members, to ensure that our community grows and develops in a way that incorporates an environmental ethic, offers a range of housing and transportation choices, encourages a vibrant and cultural life and supports sustainable, meaningful employment and business opportunities.

Friday, November 30, 2012

It's the Winter Market Weekend

....and the Jumbo Rally(today Noon from The Ktunaxa Building to Rotary Park) and the Santa Parade!

It’s time the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce explained itself

Perceptions by Gerry Warner

Let’s begin at the beginning. There’s a word in this community that’s being misused. It’s not fair and it’s got to stop. It benefits no one to have this word constantly misused. Cranbrook is a fine community and it deserves better.
 The word I’m referring to is “nonpartisan.” In my Webster’s dictionary, nonpartisan is defined as follows: “not partisan; esp. not controlled or influenced by, or supporting any single political party.” That sounds pretty clear and straight forward to me.
At a Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce meeting Nov. 23, Chamber President Lana Kirk laid down the Chamber board’s definition of “nonpartisan.” She said she was doing this in response to my question at the previous Chamber meeting asking whether opposition candidates would get a chance to speak to Chamber members prior to the upcoming provincial election in May.
In response, Kirk said: “The Chamber of Commerce is not a political organization. As such, we shall not take part in partisan politics even though we deal with political issues.” As a result, she said the only politicians that would be invited to speak to the Chamber would be “leaders and cabinet ministers,” but added the official opposition would be accommodated “wherever possible.” As for local candidates running against the incumbent MLA, “they in general shall not be given an individual speaking opportunity,” Kirk said, adding forums or panels will be organized for them “wherever possible.” She went on to say that when speakers address the Chamber on issues of interest to the business community, the Chamber will do its utmost to insure that they do it “in a way as apolitical as possible.”
A few minutes after Kirk laid down the rules, Chamber members and guests got a chance to hear how the rules are applied when Kootenay East MLA Bill Bennett rose to speak. In a 44 minute address, Bennett explained why he got into politics, defended his government’s policies over the years and pointed out that the Chamber’s constitution says, “the Chamber’s obligation is not to be politically partisan and it’s not.” However in the same speech, he also described Norma Blissett, his NDP opponent in the upcoming election as “an activist organizer” for the Citizens for a Livable Cranbrook  and the CLC itself as “the ultimate political machine that has morphed into an NDP organization.” Now there may be a lot of truth in what Bennett said, or not much depending on your opinion, but would any reasonable person, regardless of their politics, describe Bennett’s comments as “nonpartisan or apolitical?” 
I think the answer is obvious. So how can this be reconciled with Bennett and Kirk’s earlier comments that the Chamber’s role is to be “nonpartisan” and “apolitical?”
Time to get real here. Anyone, who has lived in this town long enough to see the snow come and go on Fisher a few seasons, will remember that it was a former Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce president that took a leave of absence from his Chamber duties to co-chair the “Say Yes to Opportunity Committee” in the East Hill referendum campaign, one of the most divisive issues in Cranbrook political history. In the last municipal election campaign four former Cranbrook Chamber presidents ran as candidates. MLA Bennett himself is a former Cranbrook Chamber President. You don’t need to have a political science degree to know that the Chamber of Commerce along with other organizations in town like the School Board, the Labour Council and City Council itself are used as convenient stepping stones for political careers.
But the Chamber is in a unique position because it receives money – taxpayers’ money – from the City to perform services including operating the tourist information booths, taking care of the City float and marketing the City. In the 2012 fiscal year, the Chamber received $86,800 in fees and grants from the City and I think everyone would agree it was money well spent. We have one of the best chambers in the province.
But on the political front, the Chamber is not behaving nearly so admirably. Let me give you an example. Less than a month ago, the Chamber was approached about having Opposition Leader Adrian Dix speak to it on his party’s business platform. Dix was told there was not enough time to arrange this yet before the month was over the Chamber found time to schedule two special meetings at which Community Minister Bennett and Finance Minister Mike deJong  spoke.
Is this fair? Is this nonpartisan? Is this apolitical? Is this respecting the taxpayers of Cranbrook that provide the Chamber’s budget? Is this respecting the Chamber’s membership, who are perfectly capable of forming their own political opinions? Is this fair to the man that could potentially be the next premier of B.C.?
You be the judge.

Gerry Warner is a retired journalist and Cranbrook City Councillor. His opinions are his own.os op

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Effect of Treated Effluent on Fish

In the last couple of years Cranbrook has substantially upgraded its waste water treatment system.  However still lingering in the minds of many, are the effects of the residual pharmaceuticals which at this time are still not removed from the effluent.

An interview about an Okanagan study can be heard here:

What's Happening...

Thursday, November 29

Mount Baker Wild Theatre will perform
"You Can't Take It With You" at the
Key City Theatre tonight and tomorrow night at
7:30pm and on Sat. Dec. 1 at 2 pm.
Tickets are $15 adults, $12 seniors and students.
Tickets available at KCT Box Office.

Pinewood Elementary School Holiday Shopping Extravaganza
From 5pm-9pm there will be a large selection of vendors.
Table rental proceeds go to supporting the Pinewood Pac.

Friday, November 30

JUMBO WILD - Qat'muk Jumbo Rally
Meet at the Ktunaxa Govenment Building (the old Tembec Building)
11:00 am to make signs
220 Cranbrook St. N.
At noon there will be a march to Rotary Park

Crafting a Gift
The final blacksmithing workshop at Fort Steele Heritage Town
is on crafting a gift. The fee is $225 plus cost of materials.
For more information please call Henry at 250-420-7191

Santa Parade
7:00pm Downtown Cranbrook

Winter Market
Cranbrook Farmers Market will hold its annual
Winter Market from 5pm-9pm. and Saturday from 10am to 3pm
Market is located at 1114 Baker St.

Saturday, December 1

Girl Guide Spaghetti Fundraiser
4:30-6:30pm at the Eagles Hall
717 Kootenay St. N. Call 250-489-3155 for tickets

United Church Christmas Fair
9am-2pm #2-12th Ave. South
Free admission, silent auction, & refreshments

Sunday, December 2

Meaghan Smith plays Key City Theatre
Supporting her latest release "It Snowed" a collection
of season holiday songs.
Tickets are $25 plus HST and are available at KCT Box Office

Wednesday, December 5

Seniors Citizens' Dinner
Held at the Colombo Lodge this evening.
Cocktails at 5pm, dinner at 5:30 and dancing to follow
Admission is just $5 and tickets are available at the Heritage Inn
Sponsored by Cranbrook Rotary Club and the Colombo Lodge

Canadian Country Christmas
9th Annual show will be performed this evening at 8pm
in the Wildhorse Theatre at Fort Steele Heritage Town.
Tickets are $30 adults, $25 for seniors and children
Tickets are available from Cranbrook Dodge, Kootenay Child Development
Centre and the radio station.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

T.M. Roberts School is 50 Years Old

Cranbrook Courier August 5th 1943

Cranbrook Courier Dec 5 1962

Staff 1963

Materials supplied courtesy of  "The Cranbrook Historical Archives at the Canadian Museum of Rail Travel" and Jack Sandberg

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

State of Infrastructure Finally Revealed

Four years after an initial investigation, through the infamous half million dollar Growth Management Study into potential for Cranbrook’s growth, much more information about the state of Cranbrook's infrastructure has now been publicly revealed.  Those who studied the GMS knew the information would be dire.

However, for the whole community to know the true state of affairs, provides some relief and opportunity for collaboration and planning in how to solve the problems. Knowing the truth about a condition is often half the battle in curing it.

The whole report is available on the City’s website at:

For those who did not attend the Council Meeting of November 19th, where City staff gave their report on the state of Cranbrook’s infrastructure, the meeting can be watched at:

For those who would like a quick look at the infrastructure report cards they can be found under the tab at the top of this page.

Monday, November 26, 2012

The Whole Story

“The Chamber of Commerce is an apolitical organization,” said Lana Kirk, both in the supplement to the Townsman on November 15th and at the Chamber breakfast on Friday November 24thth, prior to MLA Bennett’s election driven speech. In reference to speakers for the Chamber, she went on to say, “ Leaders and or cabinet ministers of the Government of the day or the official opposition elected officials shall be accommodated whenever possible.”

However, when it was known three weeks prior, that Adrian Dix, leader of the Provincial opposition was to visit Cranbrook,  November 9th and 10th, he was not accommodated.  Mike de Jong, nevertheless, on very short notice was accommodated and the meeting time and date for the latest regular Chamber meeting was changed to accommodate MLA Bennett.

When members of the Chamber are denied the opportunity to hear the leader of the provincial opposition, myths such as the opposition being ‘not for business’ are perpetuated.  Without balance and the opportunity for all political parties to be heard, how can the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce claim to be ‘apolitical’?  The City of Cranbrook provides the Chamber of Commerce with an annual $86800.00 grant and one might think, this no doubt valuable organisation, might try to reflect all taxpayers in their political representation if they wish to be regarded as 'apolitical.'

In other local news media, on November 15th there was a full page article combined advertisement under the mistaken title of, ‘Features’.  With a half page, paid advertisement for the BC Jobs Plan and a paid article promoting the same, it is questionable as to whether all readers would question why the feature article needed to be paid for or even knew it was paid for.

It is not always easy to spot spin and exclusion but going into our own election year it will be necessary to read carefully to find the whole story.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Doin' the Rotary Walk

Bob Whetham caught the Mallard clan out for early morning foraging recently on Rotary Way.  It  is a shame, some have chosen to disfigure the work of this service group, which provides so many assets to our community. 

Leading by Example

Yasodhara Ashram Lightens its Ecological Footprint

Kootenay Bay, BC - Yasodhara Ashram is now officially Carbon Neutral —the successful culmination of their 5-year program to address the global warming crisis.

The Ashram has demonstrated that reducing green house gas emissions is possible in a small BC community and it can be done in a way that has inspiring economic and quality of life benefits.

Dr. William Rees, professor emeritus of the University of British Columbia, an internationally acclaimed ecological economist and winner of a 2012 Blue Planet Prize, said of the Ashram achievement, “By striving for carbon neutrality, Yasodhara Ashram shows that communities can take significant steps to address global warming that are neither arduous nor a threat to their economies and lifestyles.  Other communities should follow this example as if their lives depended on it – because ultimately they do!”

Starting in 2007, the Ashram began to develop a strategy to be carbon neutral by 2013, their 50th anniversary.

The Ashram’s Carbon Neutral program – which included a shift in local food sourcing and menu planning, converting to an integrated geothermal/solar heating and domestic hot water system and shifting to more fuel-efficient vehicles – has led to an 83% reduction in direct emissions. The outstanding emissions are being handled through the purchase of carbon offsets from Pacific Carbon Trust’s portfolio of BC-based greenhouse gas reduction projects. 

“The Ashram’s achievement of carbon neutrality sets a great example of how steady commitment to a comprehensive plan can significantly reduce our impact on the environment,” says Pacific Carbon Trust CEO Scott MacDonald.  “By purchasing BC-based offsets from Pacific Carbon Trust, the Ashram is helping support the low-carbon economy – proving that environmental progress and a strong economy can go hand-in-hand.”

At each stage of the program it became apparent that financial benefits were emerging. Arlene Trustham, a volunteer who led the final phases of the program, cited an example, saying “Refocusing the menus to local and seasonal items not only decreased costs, it also better focused the use of the Ashram’s garden and began to support a complimentary network of local farmers.”

Paris Marshall Smith, a Director of Ashram Society says, “We embrace the ‘learn by doing’ and ‘lead by example’ concepts.” Both, she added, have personal as well as institutional application. “It is also a practice of satya, which means living truthfully, in ourselves, in our community and on this planet. We simply must lighten our environmental footprint. What we are doing together here at the Ashram is one way that works.”

Michelle Mungall, MLA Nelson-Creston agrees. "The work Yasodhara Ashram has done to become carbon neutral is commendable, and goes to show that these positive steps are possible in rural areas of BC."

Yasodhara Ashram has also been recognized by FortisBC’s 2008 PowerSense Conservation Award, and by Tourism British Columbia with its prestigious Environmentally Responsible Tourism Award in 2009. Reader’s Digest named the Ashram as Canada’s best yoga retreat.

About Yasodhara Ashram
Yasodhara Ashram ( is a Yoga Retreat and Study Centre founded in 1963 by Swami Sivananda Radha. Today, 50 years after it began, the Ashram remains a vibrant community welcoming people of all ages and backgrounds to discover the transformative power of yoga.

 The Ashram is like a small village with 115 acres on the east-shore of Kootenay Lake in the mountains of southeastern BC. The year-round population averages 50 to 55 people, with seasonal peaks of 100 to 110.

Yasodhara Ashram is a Canadian charity and a registered educational institution. It is operated by volunteers in the tradition of charity and service embodied in its constitution.

About Pacific Carbon Trust
Pacific Carbon Trust ( is a Crown corporation established in 2008 to deliver BC-based greenhouse gas offsets, to help clients meet their carbon reduction goals and to support the growth of BC’s low-carbon economy.

For further information:

Swami Sivananda                    250-227-9224
Paris Marshall Smith                250-227-9224

Friday, November 23, 2012

Local Artist, Joseph Cross Appointed to the BC Arts Council

 Joseph Cross at Mt. Assiniboine
Cranbrook artist Joseph Cross is being appointed to the BC Arts Council. A self-taught artist, Joseph Cross is an active member of the Cranbrook community and has taught art locally. He is known for blending cultural heritage and natural wonder in his works, which include oil paintings, pastels, and pen-and-ink drawings.

Born in Saskatchewan, Cross moved to Cranbrook in 1974 and began his career in the arts four years later. He has received numerous international recognitions throughout his career, and was chosen as ‘Artist of the Year’ by Trout Unlimited Canada in 2007. He has been commissioned to produce portraits, paintings, and presentations by various individuals, organizations, and corporations, including the Ktunaxa Tribal Council.
As a member of the BC Arts Council, Cross will work towards fulfilling the Council’s mandate of supporting the arts and cultural community.
“Joseph Cross is a well-respected artist with a keen sense of community and regional identity. His long history as a resident of Cranbrook and the East Kootenay region give him a great perspective on the role played by the arts in B.C.’s smaller and rural communities. I welcome him to the service of arts and culture in British Columbia,” said BC Arts Council Chair Stan Hamilton.
Quick Facts:
·         The mission of the BC Arts Council is to engage all British Columbians in a healthy arts and cultural community that is recognized for excellence.
·         The Council consults with artists, arts and cultural organizations, governments, and other interested communities.
·         The BC Arts Council’s $16.831-million 2012-13 budget consists of $7.931 million from the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, $2.150 million from the BC150 Cultural Fund (a $150-million interest-generating endowment fund) and $6.75 million from the 2010 Sport and Arts Legacy.
Learn More:

To learn more about Joseph Cross and his work, please visit: 

To learn more about the BC Arts Council, please visit

Jumbo won’t fly, but not for the reasons you think

Perceptions by Gerry Warner

“If you build it they will come.”  That seems to be the belief of the B.C. government with its shocking announcement Wednesday appointing a mayor and council for a community that doesn’t exist – and given the perilous state of the world’s economy – is unlikely to ever exist. 
But the impossible is always a possibility in B.C. politics, especially when you have a government facing electoral defeat and looking for a dramatic game changer to reverse the tide. Unfortunately a mega-ski resort in a market saturated with mega-ski resorts is likely to be a Jumbo-sized disaster.
And that won’t do anybody any good.
Consider a few points. Growth of the ski industry, both in B.C. and abroad, is slowing down as society ages and there are fewer younger skiers. Skiing is a discretionary activity, and when it easily costs close to $500-a-day for a family of four to go skiing, people start looking for other things to do. And as everybody knows, or should know, mega ski resorts are more than anything else real estate plays. Would you buy a condo at the end of a 55 km dirt road passing through dozens of avalanche tracks with no avalanche sheds at an elevation of 6,000 feet where snow would be on your roof eight months of the year and summer too short to swim or golf? Would you want to be wearing your ski togs 12 months of the year?
 I doubt it.
And this really is the essential argument about Jumbo – economics. Almost anyone who does their due diligence and keeps their hand on their wallet would be unlikely to risk their money buying real estate in Jumbo. There’s far better deals around. And if an ordinary Joe won’t buy a condo would big investors invest in such a risky scheme?
I don’t think so and frankly I think this fact alone dooms the proposed half-a-billion dollar resort. Nobody is throwing money around like that anymore. Money doesn’t grow on trees. Nor does it grow on shrinking glaciers.
Economics aside, there are several other aspects of the Jumbo debacle that don’t speak well of almost everyone involved in the contentious project. First the environmentalists, who have constantly pitched the area as “pristine” and “wilderness.” Jumbo is neither. There has been a road to Jumbo Creek for almost 75 years as well as a mine and a tailings dump and extensive clear-cut logging in more recent years. That said, Jumbo is still an outstanding scenic area of semi-wilderness and most of the mining and logging scars have long since healed. Many critics of the Jumbo project also contend that with global warming proceeding apace, there soon won’t be any glaciers left to ski on. Nonsense! Jumbo’s glaciers are receding fast, but they are huge glaciers and they won’t disappear in the lifetimes of anyone reading this and they will offer year-round skiing for a long time to come. But as I said earlier, who wants to ski 12 months a year? I’ve skied for 40 years, but come summer time I’ve got other things to do and I think that stands true for the majority of skiers. Professional ski racers may want to ski year-round, but how many of them are there? Not enough to make a $500 million resort viable, I’m willing to bet. As for the argument that Jumbo will “devastate” the grizzly bear population, I don’t give that much credence either. There are at best a handful of grizzlies in the Jumbo valley, but the valley itself is located next door to the Purcell Wilderness Conservancy Park, a true roadless wilderness where grizzlies thrive in an environment almost completely undisturbed by man and so it should be.
As for the bizarre process that sees a mayor and council appointed to a backcountry chunk of land uninhabited by people where only mountain goats and grizzlies roam, politics indeed results in strange doings, but few as strange as this. And as an elected official myself, I have to take umbrage with alleged “insiders” being appointed to public office and put on the government dole while the rest of us have had to compete and pay out of our own pockets for that exalted status.
No Virginia, I don’t think there will ever be a glitzy, jet-setters resort in the heart of Jumbo Pass – and all things considered – I think that’s a good thing.

Gerry Warner is a retired journalist and Cranbrook City Councillor. His opinions are his own.



Thursday, November 22, 2012

What's Happening


'The Perfect Present'
Cranbrook and District Arts Council November Exhibition and Sale
Open Saturdays 11:00am - 2:00pm Tuesday to Friday, 11:00am to 5:00pm

Wednesday November 21st - 22nd, 23rd 24th and November 28th - Dec 1st

Cranbrook Community Theatre
Steel Magnolias
Stage Door Theatre
Tickets Lotus Books $ 13 members and $15 non CCT members

Thursday November 22nd

Economics of Happiness
College of the Rockies Lecture Theatre
Admission by donation

Friday November 23rd

Fort Steele Heritage Town
Blacksmithing Techniques

Fort Steele Heritage Town
Theatre Camp
6 - 12yrs
9:30 - 3:30pm

Friday Nov. 23rd - Sat. Nov 24th
Artisan Sale
Key City Theatre

Oostlander Exhibition
Friday 5:00- 9:00pm and Saturday 9:30am - 8:00pm
Sunday 10:00am - 4:00pm
Days Inn

Monday November 26th
Cranbrook Writers Group
7 -9:00pm
Cranbrook and District Arts Council
135-10th Av. S.
Norma 250-426-9096

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Bike Club holds Trail Construction Workshop

submitted by
Gord Haine 
Wildhorse Cycling Club

On the weekend of  November 16th to November 18th, Wildhorse Cycling Club hosted the International Mountain Bike Associations Trail Crew. 

The Trail Crew is a team of two instructors who travel across Canada teaching how to build sustainable multi-use trails. On Friday night they presented a workshop on how so run a successful club. The course information was very relevant and will help the club in the future. 

Saturday there was a three hour classroom session on the theory of building natural surface trail. The club obtained a huge amount of information. Topics ranged from permission from property managers to trail flow and assessment. Identifying user groups and construction methods. The course information will be very useful to the club. The afternoon was spent in the Community Forest working on a section of trail that benefited from techniques learned in the morning. 

On Sunday the club went for a group ride to test out the work on the section of trail that had been worked on. All the riders were thrilled with the previous days work. The club also took the trail crew for a tour of the Eager Hills section of the Community Forest. They where amazed at what a treasure we have here. In total there were nineteen people on Friday, 23 out for Saturdays session and 13 people made it out for the ride on a gorgeous Sunday morning.

The Club would like to give special thanks to the Community Forest Society for allowing the club a chance to do approved work on a trail in the Community Forest. The club would also like to thank the Recreation Sites and Trails BC for providing an archaeological assessment of the trail to make sure the club did not disturb any archaeological values in the area. The Club is looking forward to see where we will be able to use this knowledge in the future. Wildhorse Cycling Club’s mandate is to “Improve the collective cycling community in the Cranbrook area”. 

For more information on the club find us on Facebook or

Lindsey Stirling

On Monday November 19th, the Cranbrook Violin Club  under the direction of Kim Lutz and Aspire Dance Academy, hosted Lindsey Stirling in Cranbrook.

She gave a presentation to students and invited guests at Kootenay Orchards Elementary in the afternoon and followed with a high energy performance at Key City Theatre in the evening.  The Violin Club opened the show and Aspire Dance Academy helped to conclude the evening with a hip hop style dance performance.

For more on Lindsey Stirling go to:

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Liberal government forcing Jumbo resort on Kootenay residents

VICTORIA – The decision to appoint an unelected council to oversee an unpopulated resort municipality at Jumbo Glacier is just the latest step by the Liberal government to force the resort onto Kootenay residents, say the New Democrats.
Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development Bill Bennett announced the new council Tuesday, marking the latest step in the actions of the government that are both profoundly undemocratic and disrespectful to the Ktunaxa Nation, the Union of B.C. Municipalities and to local residents, who have all spoken out against the development.
“I’ve not spoken to anyone outside the B.C. Liberal party who thinks that this legislation makes sense,” said Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Norm Macdonald.  “To create a town where there are no residents, to appoint a council that may never face election, and do this with no real possibility that a resort will be built is ridiculous.  But a small group of Jumbo supporters are getting their way on this one: transferring control of public lands into private hands.”
Minister Bennett announced a three-member, unelected council and a chief administrator. He also announced $200,000 in government funding.
“Every public opinion survey and public consultation process has shown strong opposition to this proposal, and Minister Bennett seems to be one of the few Kootenay residents in favour,” said Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall. “People in the Kootenays have long been in favour of sustainable resource development, and the fact that they are so strongly against this project should speak volumes.
“The Liberal government refuses to listen. They are completely out of touch with the needs and wishes of residents of the Kootenays.”
Macdonald said the timing of the announcement is also suspect. Even as the Ktunaxa are continuing to fight the resort in court, the Liberals are trying to ram the development through by early 2013. Late last spring, as part of their final crush of bills, the Liberals gave themselves the power to arbitrarily create a mountain resort municipality without residents.
“It’s a shocking mismanagement of the powers that have been vested in this government, and is indicative of just how far this government has strayed,” said Macdonald. “There is no one that can say this move today is in the public interest.”
Adrian Dix and B.C.’s New Democrats believe in land use decisions that reflect the interests of local residents, that respect First Nations rights and are in keeping with sound environmental practices.

Bill Bennett's Ministry gives $260000.00 to start Jumbo Municipality

from the Tyee:

British Columbia's cabinet has approved the incorporation of a mountain resort municipality in the Jumbo Valley in the East Kootenays, despite much opposition from local first nations and other residents.

"This will give our communities a chance to heal from this 22-year-old controversy and move on," said Bill Bennett, the minister of community, sport and cultural development.
The process started under a Social Credit government, had 10 years scrutiny from an NDP government and 12 years under the BC Liberals, said Bennett. When proponents go through a public process, they deserve a decision, he said. "They've got a 'yes' in this case and this project will be going forward."
The government appointed Greg Deck, Nancy Hugunin and Steve Ostrander as the first mayor and councillors for the resort municipality which is to be officially incorporated Feb. 19, 2013. Phil Taylor will serve as the interim corporate officer until the municipality's first meeting.
The ministry provided $260,000 to get the municipality started, Bennett said. At least a dozen times the province has incorporated resort or resource municipalities in places with no population, he said.

from BC Local News:
by Annalee Grant
The Jumbo Glacier Resort will be incorporated on February 19, 2013.
Minister for Community, Sport and Cultural Development Bill Bennett announced Tuesday morning that Greg Deck, Nancy Hugunin and Steve Ostrander will form council at the new resort municipality at the Jumbo Glacier Resort. Deck will be the mayor of the new municipality.
"The role of the council will be the same as any other elected council in the province," Bennett said.
NDP candidate for Kootenay East Norma Blissett said the resort municipality was established using a flawed piece of legislation and she has concerns about the lack of timeframe for the appointed council.
"I think it's an antagonistic move towards the residents of this valley," she said.

To help stop the Jumbo Mistake go to:

Qat'muk: Where the Grizzly Bears go to Dance from Ktunaxa Nation on Vimeo.

City Council Meeting Notes - November 19, 2012

City of Cranbrook Engineering Services will be presenting the ‘State of Infrastructure in the City’ to Mayor and Council and the public on Monday November 19, 2012 at City Hall.
The presentation, by Jamie Hodge, Director of Engineering Services, will provide an in-depth analysis of what the City owns, what condition it is in, the remaining average service life, current value and required costs to address the issue of bringing the infrastructure up to a reasonable condition.   Engineering Services will also be presenting a plan to help begin dealing with the issues.
The public is invited to attend Monday November 19, 2012 beginning at 6:00pm in Council Chambers at City Hall.

Chris Zettel provided an in depth report of the projects the City of Cranbrook have undertaken in the past year including road construction ( including new sewer lines, water lines and gutters), upgrades to our spray irrigation fields, a new outfall pump station, Wall of Recognition in Rotary Park, the Centennial Garden, the tennis courts at Mt. Baker High School (partnered with School District #5).

Jamie Hodge, Director of Engineering Services spoke to our infrastructure deficit. Presently we are underspending by over $12 million dollars a year just to maintain our present infrastructure. Much of our infrastructure is reaching its end life and the City will need to start a multi-year initiative to deal with  these issues. Mr. Hodge made several recommendations including;
- a cross department committee
- continued investment in maintenance to extend the service life
- start saving more in reserves
- strategically reduce services by obtaining community input. Some of the reductions might include no sidewalks or reducing public transit.

It is unlikely that the City will be able to obtain all of the funding for these upgrades through service cuts.  Increasing tax rates significantly would not be a feasible option. Many Mayors in BC are pressing for a change in the funding formula from which they receive money from the province. This, along with the suggestions made by Mr. Hodge mean we will prioritize our infrastructure shortcomings.
Unfortunately, it also means that the Citizens of Cranbrook will be driving on terrible roads for many years to come. There will be some difficult decisions to be made and we need to start deciding what services the City must provide to its citizens including services those that are no longer a priority. 

Regular Council Meeting


5.1       BC Transit – Tania Wegwitz of BC Transit, Victoria, will present Cranbook Transit Service Review Terms of Reference.  The Powerpoint to be presented can be viewed at:

Tania Wegwitz made a presentation regarding our public transit system. There will be a Service Review which will include public input which will improve efficiency and effectiveness, reduce the budget, and to build awareness and support for public transit.

Several Councillors expressed concerns over seeing empty buses and hoped that the review would look at using smaller buses. As well, other Councillors mentioned that perhaps Cranbrook needed an "on call system" for transit and to cut Sunday service.

5.2            Cranbrook Connected, Integrated Community Sustainability Plan, Chris Ayling
Quarterly update

Requested that any monies unspent in last years budget be forwarded to this year. The primary goal of the committee will be to establish the Community Builder of the Year Award. 

7.1              Administration Update
Kia Sign

The sign does meet the new by-law regulations

Idlewild park Riding Arena
Can be read at:

9.1 – 9.7            Correspondence
RDEK Highlights
Fire Protection, Fort Steele - the City is still waiting on the province to ensure that they will be compensated for providing Fire Protection to Fort Steele.  
EK party Program
Dogs and Idelewild - A local business has installed doggie bag dispensers but perhaps the City in partnership with other businesses could provide a solution to the problem of dog feces in City parks. 
EK Science Fair - Approved
Lions Light Up Tour - Approved
Adoption Awareness Month Proclamation - Approved 

Can be read beginning at:

11.1          Committee Recommendation Cranbrook in Motion
            Most importantly the City will be installing 30km signs in the school zones and this will be enforced by the RCMP.

12.1          New Business - Solar BC, Memorandum of Understanding - Approved
12.2          New Business – Cranbrook Transit System Service Review - Approved
12.3          New Business RDEK Referral Zoning Bylaw2425

13.1          Bylaws – 3750 Zoning Amendment Airport Lands
Public Meeting Dec. 10 6pm Manual Training Centre.
13.2          Bylaws – Draft Sign Bylaw 2012, This 34 page document can be read at:
Pubic Meeting Dec. 5,  7pm-9pm Manual Training Centre. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Advance Notes for the Council Meeting of November 19th 2012 6:00pm

City of Cranbrook Engineering Services will be presenting the ‘State of Infrastructure in the City’ to Mayor and Council and the public on Monday November 19, 2012 at City Hall.
The presentation, by Jamie Hodge, Director of Engineering Services, will provide an in-depth analysis of what the City owns, what condition it is in, the remaining average service life, current value and required costs to address the issue of bringing the infrastructure up to a reasonable condition.   Engineering Services will also be presenting a plan to help begin dealing with the issues.
The public is invited to attend Monday November 19, 2012 beginning at 6:00pm in Council Chambers at City Hall.

Regular Council Meeting


5.1       BC Transit – Tania Wegwitz of BC Transit, Victoria, will present Cranbook Transit Service Review Terms of Reference.  The Powerpoint to be presented can be viewed at:

5.2            Cranbrook Connected, Integrated Community Sustainability Plan, Chris Ayling
Quarterly update

7.1              Administration Update
Kia Sign
Idlewild park Riding Arena
Can be read at:

9.1 – 9.7            Correspondence
RDEK Highlights
Fire Protection, Fort Steele
EK party Program
Dogs and Idelewild
EK Science Fair
Lions Light Up Tour
Adoption Awareness Month Proclamation

Can be read beginning at:

11.1          Committee Recommendation Cranbrook in Motion

12.1          New Business - Solar BC, Memorandum of Understanding
12.2          New Business – Cranbrook Transit System Service Review
12.3          New Business RDEK Referral Zoning Bylaw2425

13.1          Bylaws – 3750 Zoning Amendment Airport Lands
13.2          Bylaws – Draft Sign Bylaw 2012, This 34 page document can be read at:

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Winter Came to Cabin Lake

Wednesday November 7th

 November 11th

We are not sure of the real name for this little lake, if it has one.  It is on a logging road very close and to the east of Cranbrook, 

photos Jenny Humphrey and Stewart Wilson

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Metis Week Proclamation

Thank you to Stewart Wilson for all photos

 A special ceremony was held at City Hall on Friday November 16th,  for the proclamation and flag raising to celebrate Metis Week from Friday November 16th to November 23rd, in addition to Louis Riel Day on November 16th.

A declaration was signed by  Bruce Dumont, BC Metis Nation Chief and President. Welcoming remarks were also given by Kathyn Tenesse on behalf of the Ktunaxa Nation, Mayor Wayne Stetski and ?aq'am Chief and Representative Bonnie Harvey.

The Metis Nation anthem was sung and School District No.5 Metis jiggers performed two dances.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Why are jobs going begging when unemployment is still high?

Perceptions by Gerry Warner
A story in the news about two weeks ago was more than a double/double dose of trouble for a Dawson Creek Tim Hortons, which was subject to a complaint laid by the BC Public Interest Advocacy Centre on behalf of four Mexican employees that were hired under the federal government’s controversial temporary worker program.
The complaint alleges the four employees were subjected to overcrowded housing by the owner of the Tim Hortons franchise ortons Hortons and were victims of racist and discriminatory treatment. At this point, the complaints are just allegations and there’s no way of knowing whether or not they’re true. But there’s another aspect to the case which is important and for the most part received scant coverage. And that aspect is simply this: Why are so many Canadian companies having trouble finding employees?
In Dawson Creek it can be easily surmised that the Peace River community’s close proximity to the Alberta oil patch makes hiring workers at entry level wages a difficult task. Nevertheless, given the fact that many Tim Hortons employees are teenagers and teenagers for the most part are going to school and unavailable to work in the oil patch you wouldn’t think it would be that hard to find a few ambitious teens eager to work.
But apparently it is, and not just at Tim Hortons, but at many other businesses and employers in the province. What’s going on here?
One of the main factors appears to be wealth. Not wealth in the top one per cent sense, but relative wealth. You and I may not consider ourselves wealthy, but compared to the average level of wealth in Mexico or the Philippines, which supply many of our temporary foreign workers, we are wealthy and not too eager to work in low paid, entry level jobs that require little experience. But those same wages that we look down our noses at sound pretty good to workers from the Third World which is why they flock here. I found it quite interesting to note that the ages of the four Mexican workers involved in the Tim Hortons complaint ranged from 43 to 28. Trying to get similar-age Canadians to work for those wages is next to impossible, hence the influx from outside and the controversial temporary worker program.
According to a recent story in the Vancouver Sun, close to 50,000 were employed in the program in B.C. in 2011, almost double the amount working under it in 2005. But why should there be any “temporary” workers hired in the province when we have an unemployment rate of  6.7 per cent? Despite this, one mining company is currently trying to bring in more than 200 Chinese miners under the program.  It seems unfair when there are miners in this province out of work.
But it also seems unfair why companies like Tim Hortons have so much trouble finding young people willing to work in their iconic Canadian donut houses. Many other businesses have the same problem too. With the B.C. minimum wage now standing at a respectable $10.25-an-hour, the second highest in Canada, what’s with our youth? That’s a good wage for high school students living at home. It beats cutting grass, baby sitting or delivering papers. Are kids spoiled these days? Are their parents not encouraging them to work? Are they all waiting for the perfect job?
In the early 60’s when I was a teenager, kids were glad to have a paper route. Now you see adults delivering papers. When I got older, I fought forest fires or picked fruit in the Okanagan. Now most of the Okanagan fruit pickers are from Mexico.
Perhaps I’m becoming a curmudgeon before my time, unlike my good friend Peter Warland ,who’s earned his status honestly by age. Just the same, I do think there’s something wrong with a country whose citizens refuse to do menial work. Wasn’t that the situation in Rome before the Huns and the Visigoths rushed out of the forest and toppled the mighty Roman Empire?
Are we heading for the same fate? Who knows? But I can’t help but think the Canada of today will not be the Canada of tomorrow . There are millions in Asia and Africa willing to come here and work twice as hard for half as much and glad to do so. They may be “temporary” workers now but that will change.
And so will Canada. But for better or worse?  If we don’t get off our butts and rediscover our work ethic, I think the answer is obvious.

Gerry Warner is a retired journalist and Cranbrook City Councillor. His opinions are his own.


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Text Speak Dictionary FYI

From the Erase Bullying website comes this very useful dictionary of text abbreviations used by most teenagers and many adults.  If you want to know what your children are really saying to one another - check it out and print it off for reference.

What's Happening...

Friday, November 16

Blacksmithing Class
Learn about Blacksmithing at
Fort Steele Heritage Town.
Cost is $165. For more information
call Henry at 250-420-7197

The Magic of Christmas
Artisan Market takes place today and
Saturday at Bootleg Golf Clubhouse.
For more information call Elke at 250-427-3209

The Perfect Gift Exhibit
A public reception will be held tonight, Nov. 16th starting at 7pm
for the Cranbrook and District Arts Council's exhibit
"The Perfect Gift"at the Artrageous Gallery
135-10th Avenue South.
Open BLACK FRIDAY from 11:00am to 9:00pm

Steel Magnolias
Opening tonight at 8pm at the Stage Door Theatre.
Cranbrook Community Theatre will perform
"Steel Magnolias".
It continues Saturday night and Nov. 21 & 24 closing on Dec. 1
Tickets are $13 for CCT members/$15 for non members.
Tickets available at Lotus Books

Saturday, November 17

Tea, Bake and Craft Sale
Cranbrook United Church will host its tea from
2pm-4pm at the church on 12th Avenue. S.

Tea and Bake Sale
Mt. Zion Lutheran Church Ladies host their tea today.
From 11am-2pm at the church on the corner of 1 1st and 11th Ave.

Affordable Art 
Opening today with a public reception from Noon to 3pm
and continues until Dec. 20 at the Key City Gallery
Affordable art for sale in which all artwork is priced under $300

Seniors Social Dance
Social dance at the Cranbrook Senior's Hall
Old Spice will provide the music from 7-11pm.
Refreshments will be served and tickets are $10

Sunday, November 18

Alison Brown and her quartet play at the Key City Theatre
Concert begins at 7:30pm and tickets are $35 plus HST.
KCT Box Office or call 250-426-7006

Tuesday, November 20

Mongolia Travelogue
Gretchen Whetham presents the travelogue "Exploring Mongolia"
Presented by Friends of the Cranbrook Library this evening at 7pm
College of the Rockies Lecture Theatre
Admission by donation

Wednesday, November 21

Gorilla Trek
Allister and Denise Pederson present a travelogue
about their Gorilla Trek and Zambian Safari
7pm at College of the Rockies lecture theatre.
Admission by donation to the Cranbrook Go Go Grannies

Artists' Discussions
This evening and every 3rd Wednesday of the month from 7pm-9pm
at the Artrageous Gallery on 10th Avenue South the Cranbrook and
District Arts Council will host self guided discussions of common
issues facing artists.
Free to CDAC members/$5 for non-members