Tuesday, February 9, 2021

February 8 Council Meeting: 2021 City Budget, Eastleigh Crescent Development, “Fraser River Revitalization,” and City Committees.

Langley City’s 2021-25 Financial Plan Bylaw has been working its way through the adoption process. I’ve posted about the proposed 2021 budget’s operating and capital projects components previously.

City staff hosted an open house about the financial plan last week. This open house was an opportunity for people to speak directly to senior staff about the budget, including expressing their opinions about the budget. All of council listened in. Two people expressed concern about borrowing $7.5 million for property acquisition to support extending the SkyTrain to Langley.

At yesterday afternoon’s council meeting held via Zoom, people could also speak to the proposed financial plan. No member of the public commented on the proposed financial plan. As such, council gave third reading to the 2021-25 Financial Plan Bylaw.

Even after council gives the financial plan final reading, the City must go through an Alternative Approval process to borrow $7.5 million for property acquisition to support SkyTrain. Through this process, if 10% of eligible voters elect, council must go to a full referendum to authorize the borrowing.

Council also gave third reading to update the current Official Community Plan and a zoning amendment bylaw to enable a 6-storey, 88-unit apartment development along Eastleigh Crescent. You can read more about this proposed development in a previous post.

Before giving third reading, staff confirmed that the developer would be required to provide off-street parking for construction crews. Staff also confirmed that there would be a full curb along the development to prevent people from parking on the sidewalk. The developer will post a number on-site for residents to call if there are concerns. The City will also be monitoring the project.

At the January 25th meeting, the Surrey Board of Trade was looking for Langley City to fund and participate in their “Fraser River Revitalization” project. I was concerned about this project as it might lead to converting our limited supply of industrial, agricultural, and conservation land to residential development. Langley City staff recommended against joining and funding the project at this time. Council supported this recommendation.

Council also appointed the following people to City committees, task groups and boards as noted:

Board of Variance, three-year term: Evan Williams
Environmental Task Group, one-year term: Lisa Stevens
Crime Prevention Task Group, one-year term: Nadia Gugubauer and Allen Yuarata
Arts & Culture Task Group, one-year term: Michael Paylor
Youth Advisory Committee, one-year year term: Mary-Anne Brodie and Avery Frew

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