Council Clips: Plastic bags a no-no in compost bins

Shara JJ Cooper
By Shara JJ Cooper
April 19th, 2013

City of Grand Forks compost bins do not currently accept plastic bags and there is no sign of that changing in the near future.

Councillors discussed composting and composting bags at their regular April 15 meeting. While they didn’t have a motion on the table to change the way compost is collected, they did want to make sure residents were able to contain the compost using the easiest option.

“Are they going to be looking at these compostable plastic bags as an option for containing the waste?” asked Coun. Gary Smith. “Paper, frankly, in those containers gets pretty messy.”

Unfortunately for residents wanting to use plastic bags, the biodegradable bags don’t stand out from regular bags so garbage collectors can’t tell which ones they are picking.

However, city staff did share a tip with councillors. Many residents look in the garbage bag aisle for their paper bags, but if they checked the gardening aisle they would be able to find paper bags for half the price.

Councillors did unanimously approve the composting contract between the City of Grand Forks and the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary. The contract doesn’t change the existing program, it solidifies the cost sharing expenses.

Jogas Express patio

Coffee drinkers will have more room to enjoy their refreshments outside this year. Councillors unanimously approved the use of the parking stall in front of Jogas Express for the second year in a row.

“It worked out really well last year,” said Mayor Brian Taylor.

The other councillors agreed but Coun. Neil Krog had one concern.

“It was a success. It worked out well,” he said. “I’m just not sure, because it’s not showing anywhere, the indemnification for insurance purposes. You’re allowing people to use the city land, and if someone gets hurt on that patio – which we have no control over but technically we say its ok for them to do that – usually in other cities that would have that as part of their insurance rider.”

Chief administrative officer Doug Allin agreed that they did need to make sure they had sufficient insurance to cover the parking lot patio.

Boosting the aquatic centre’s financial ceiling

Councillors carried a motion that would increase the annual requisition for the Grand Forks and District Aquatic Centre from $500,000 to $625,000. This funding will not necessarily be spent on the Aquatic Centre. Instad, the numbers are used to increase the ceiling of potential funding for the centre. 

“The increase this year is a modest increase,” said Taylor. “In the past we had to go to referendum to raise that ceiling, which is a pretty tricky thing to pull off. But every five years you can raise that ceiling so what we are doing is raising that five year option.”

The motion passed unanimously. 

Categories: GeneralPolitics