Town of Virden - March 13, 2015

Town of Virden Council met on February 17, with four councillors, Tara Cowan, Lomer Girardin, Tina Williams and Brock Koop in attendance, Mayor McConnell presiding.

RCMP transfers Corporal Ed Riglin reported to Council. He spoke of changes in their human resources, due to the transfer cycle. David Trudeau, an officer brand new out of Depot, the RCMP Training Academy in Regina, has purchased a home in the community.

Trudeau was sent from Depot to Ottawa as part of the RCMP contingent to normalize security following the October shooting. The Virden detachment is also expecting two members who are transferring from Gypsumville and God's Lake Narrows, respectively. Riglin also reports on the need for a supervisor for Melita and Reston.

“We are waiting for one more finalization – my counterpart - Deb Church takes care of Melita and Reston. She was moved to the Winnipeg airport.”

RCMP is replacing Winnipeg City Police at Richardson International Airport. Every three or four years detachments are subject to an internal audit. Corporal Riglin reports the Westman
Detachment passed the review and he says,

“The management team had no concerns.” Regarding staffing, he says, “You’ll see a real turnover here among our front line members...from here right through to Reston and Melita.”

Constable Grant Campbell has been promoted to Corporal. Promotion in the ranks of RCMP officers is “a long, arduous process,” and Riglin says,

“We’re happy for them (the Campbell family).” Constable Les Robillard is expecting to transfer to a post in the North. Riglin adds, “But thankfully we are getting replacements.”

Corporal Riglin also spent time away from his Virden post. He was released to go to Moncton last summer after three officers were killed there by a gunman. “I served there in the summer and didn’t get back until the fall,” he explained.

Zoning and other business

For third reading of zoning By-law No. 2730, Mayor Jeff McConnell left the room, declaring a conflict of interest.

Councillors present asked Councillor Brock Koop to take the chair. In an email exchange, CAO Steward explained, “The by-law was no longer required as the applicant had found a use for their building that complied with the existing zoning by-law. A by-law can’t be left sitting with only two readings on it, so it was necessary to either pass it or defeat it to get it off the

Therefore, council chose to defeat it...” In the recorded vote, third reading was opposed 4-0.

The 2012 audit report has been received and CAO Rhonda Stewart is pleased to report that auditors found no problems in the Town’s book keeping.

Tourism Westman Gala will be held outside of Brandon, a first! Tundra Oil & Gas Place won the privilege of holding the May event. Nomination forms will be available soon. Last year Humphrie's
business, Westwood Ranch Garden Centre in the R.M. of Wallace won an award.

Regarding Dutch Elm disease, Council discussed changes in the program and funding to help communities deal with disease management.

There is concern that the program which allots $180 per tree will not cover the actual cost of removing damaged elm trees, which can mount up to $800 for a large specimen.

Council set non-primetime ice rental at $90 per hour. They voted to accept the sole quote of $2,906 from Westwood Ranch Garden Centre to plant and deliver potted fl owers
for the Town.

Two staff and two councillors will be sent to the 2015 Flood preparedness seminar in Brandon on March 10, where the Assiniboine River and the surrounding waterways will be discussed.
In committee reports Mayor Jeff McConnell reported that the Canadian government agreed to continue a program that saw the Town of Virden become involved with municipal leaders from
the Ukraine in 2011.

The program involved other municipalities in Canada as well, but Virden made a hit as the Ukraine visitors enjoyed the rodeo. Now the program will focus on transparency of democracy in the Ukraine.

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