FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – After negotiations with the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, the city has submitted the formal boundary extension to the province.
At an August 26th closed Council meeting, Council provided final approval of the application.
The application reflects rural property owners and their responses as well as objectives of the city that include: remaining a growing community, ensuring room for growth, providing service to industry, delivering services in an efficient manner and promoting equity and fairness.
The boundary extension project saw many steps take place before the final approval. They were as follows:
1) Identification of the need
2) Development of a proposal
3) Council approval of the proposal
4) Consultation with the owners of the proposed properties
5) Revisions to the proposal
6) Council approval
7) Negotiations with the province
8) Consultation with other stakeholders such as the PRRD and First Nations
9) Development of a final proposal
10) Council approval to submit that proposal to the Province.
11) Provincial approval of the application
12) Consultation with the Citizens of the City
13) Council approval to complete the boundary extension
The City is expecting a response from the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development about the application during the week of September 6th.
If the Province does go ahead and authorize it to proceed to the next stage, the City will conduct consultations with the people of Fort St. John using a 30 day alternative approval process to receive comments from City residents.
Mayor Lori Ackerman says these expansions are vital to the City.
“These boundary extensions are vital to the growth of our city and the region. We have the largest population in the region but a very small landmass. With city services, a higher density is available to residents and businesses. This prevents sprawl and loss of valuable agricultural land.”