Wednesday, July 10, 2019

July 8 Council Meeting: Reducing Theft from Auto, BAT Lanes Downtown, and Budget Updates

Today I will be continuing posting about Monday night’s Langley City council meeting. Please read my previous post about the meeting for information about development matters, and the two public delegations to council.

Langley City’s financial plans (budgets) are bylaws. This means that whenever there is a change made to a financial plan, it must be approved by council. Reasons for changes can be due to receiving an unexpected grant from the federal or provincial governments, or TransLink. It can also happen when funding is shifted from one budgeted item to another. Financial plans are also updated to reconcile the budget with actual revenue and expenditures.

Langley City applied for a grant for TransLink to contribute 75% of the funding to build protected bike lanes on a section of 208th Street and Glover Road. If successful, the City will transfer $476,000 from developer contribution reserves to fund 25% of the costs.

The City also received $15,484 from the Municipal Insurance Association to address “any risk management issues.” The City will be applying for $25,000 from the Fraser Valley Regional Library to install new accessible desks, computer kiosks, and renew furniture at our library branch.

The following items will be funded with additional casino proceeds totalling around $300,000:

  • Traffic Signal Updates at: 203/Industrial Avenue and 200/Logan Avenue
  • Fraser Highway One-Way Renewal Project
  • Roger’s Hometown Hockey – January 2019
  • Fire Hall Generator Replacement
  • City Hall Office Space Optimization

Langley City will be implementing Business Access and Transit (BAT) lanes as follows:

  • Northbound on 203 Street between Fraser Highway and Logan Avenue
  • Eastbound on Logan Avenue between 203 Street and Glover Road
  • Westbound on Fraser Highway between 203 Street and 200 Street

These BAT lanes will speed up the new B-Line like, rapid bus service that is coming to Langley City this fall. It will also speed up general traffic as well. Council gave the official approval for installing these BAT lanes at the Monday night meeting. It is expected that these lanes will be implemented this fall in time for the introduction of the new 503 B-Line like service along Fraser Highway from SkyTrain to Langley City, continuing as a regular bus to Aldergrove.

For more information about these BAT lanes, please read a previous post on the topic.

People stealing items from other people’s vehicles is one of the largest categories of crime in Langley City. Given that we share the regional town centre with the Township of Langley (which has a lot of surface parking spots), this isn’t surprising. What is surprising is that people still do not lock their vehicles doors, and leave items in sight. Right now, thieving is simply a matter of checking if a door is locked or not.

Langley City’s Crime Prevention Task Group asked council to pass the following set of motions.

THAT the Task Group recommends that Council direct staff to investigate signage and location options to educate the public to remove all belongings from vehicles and to lock vehicle doors in areas where there is high occurrences of theft from auto.

THAT the Task Group recommends that Council direct staff to incorporate “Theft from Auto” crime prevention tips into routine social media messaging.

THAT the Task Group recommends that Council direct the City’s communication staff to work with the RCMP’s communication staff to cross promote crime prevention initiatives related to ‘theft from auto’ crimes.

Council unanimously passed these motions. ICBC provides signage to promote locking vehicle doors and the RCMP has data on places that are hot-spots for theft from auto. The City’s role will be to facilitate the installation of these signs.

Tomorrow will be my last post about Monday’s meeting.

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