NOTICE OF ALTERNATIVE APPROVAL PROCESS

February 2, 2022 to March 18, 2022

NOTICE OF ALTERNATIVE APPROVAL PROCESS

Proposed adoption of Bylaw No. 676, 2021 – Regional Broadband Contribution Service Establishing Bylaw

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT the Board of the North Coast Regional District (NCRD) proposes to adopt “Bylaw No. 676, 2021 – Regional Broadband Contribution Service,” a bylaw to establish a regional broadband contribution service. The proposed service would provide for the NCRD to make a contribution of Gas Tax (grant) funds toward broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved communities in the NCRD under an agreement with City West Cable. Revenues earned under agreement will be used to undertake community projects within the service area that generate improved and broadly shared economic well-being and quality of life for residents within the NCRD.

The maximum amount that may be requisitioned annually for the service is the equivalent of $0.01 per $1,000 of the net taxable value of land and improvements in the service area. Considering an average residential value of $294,270 in the NCRD, the annual cost of this service to the average residential home will be $2.94.

FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT the Board of the NCRD may approve “Bylaw No. 676, 2021 – Regional Broadband Contribution Service” if, after the deadline, elector response forms are certified by the Corporate Officer as having been signed by less than 10% (calculated to be 1,198) of the eligible electors in the boundary of the proposed service area which is the whole of the Villages of Masset, Port Clements, Queen Charlotte, City of Prince Rupert, District of Port Edward, and NCRD Electoral Areas “A”, “C”, “D” and “E”. If, after the deadline, elector response forms are certified by the Corporate Officer as having been signed by at least 10% of the eligible electors in the entire service area, the Board may not proceed with the adoption of “Bylaw No. 676, 2021 – Regional Broadband Contribution Service” and may not proceed with the process unless the matter receives assent of the electors in a voting proceeding (referendum). 

Elector Response forms 
The response of the electors must be in the form established by the NCRD. Forms are available at the NCRD office (14-342 3rd Avenue West, Prince Rupert). Blank forms can be mailed, faxed, or e-mailed, upon request, or are available for download here. An accurate copy of the elector response form may be utilized, provided that it is made of the form prior to any electors signing such form, so that only elector response forms with original signatures are submitted. For an elector response to be accepted it must meet the following conditions: 
•     only eligible electors of the NCRD are entitled to sign an elector response form; 
•     the full name of the elector must be stated; 
•     the residential address of the elector must be stated; 
•     the elector must sign the elector response form; 
•     if applicable, the address of the property in relation to which the person is entitled to vote as a non-resident property elector must be stated; and, 
•     the elector response form must be submitted to the Corporate Officer before the deadline.

Forms may be submitted in person or by mail to be received by the Corporate Officer at the NCRD office located at 14-342 3rd Avenue West, Prince Rupert, BC V8J 1L5 NO LATER THAN 4:30 P.M. on Friday, March 18, 2022. Elector response forms must be in the possession of the Corporate Officer by this time, as postmarks WILL NOT be accepted as date of submission. FORMS MAY NOT BE RETURNED BY FAX.

Eligible Elector 
An eligible elector for the purpose of this Alternative Approval Process is a person entitled to be registered as elector and who meets the following criteria: 
•    is age eighteen or older; 
•     is a Canadian citizen; 
•     has been a resident of British Columbia for at least six months; 
•     has been a resident of within the NCRD for at least thirty days; and, 
•     is not disqualified from voting by the Local Government Act or any other act. 

 A non-resident property elector who meets the following criteria is also an eligible elector: 
•     is not entitled to register as a resident elector for the Regional District; 
•     is age eighteen or older; 
•     is a Canadian citizen; 
•     has been a resident of British Columbia for at least six months; 
•     has been a registered owner of the real property within the Village of Masset, Village of Port Clements, Village of Queen Charlotte, City of Prince Rupert, District of Port Edward, NCRD Electoral Area “A”, NCRD Electoral Area “C”, NCRD Electoral Area “D” or NCRD Electoral Area “E” for at least thirty days; and, 
•     is not disqualified from voting by the Local Government Act or any other act. 

Note:  Corporations or land held in a corporate name are not entitled to vote. In the case of multiple owners of a parcel, only one person (with the consent of the majority of owners) may vote as a non-resident property elector. 

What is an Alternative Approval Process? 
On January 1st, 2004 the Community Charter came into force and prescribes two methods by which a local government may seek approval of the electors. These are Assent of the Electors (which is approval by voting) or Alternative Approval Process which allows a Board to proceed with an action unless at least 10% of the eligible electors state their opposition within a prescribed period. In this case, the Board has opted for the latter process. If at least 10% of the eligible electors state their opposition to the proposed action, the matter requires the Assent of the Electors if the Board wishes to proceed. The Alternative Approval Process under the Community Charter replaces the Counter Petition Opportunity under the Local Government Act that some may have been familiar with. 

More information may be obtained by contacting Howard Tsang, Corporate Officer at the North Coast Regional District office at 14-342 3rd Avenue West, Prince Rupert, BC or by telephone at 250-624-2002, ext. 2.

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