Rossland city council plans Washington St. task force

Rossland city council met to discuss the Washington St. Advisory Task Force at a special council meeting held Friday afternoon.

Rossland city council agreed on the terms of reference for the Washington St. Advisory Task Force at a special council meeting held Friday afternoon.

The purpose of the task force is to act in an advisory capacity to the owner’s rep on the Washington Street Infrastructure Renewal Project.

Its members “shall consist of owner’s rep, one member of council, up to four citizens with engineering qualifications, and/or experience in managing major construction projects and one staff member as needed.”

Councillor Marten Kruysse suggested that council may want to specify what type of engineer they are looking for.

“There are so many different kinds of engineers and really what we want is a civil engineer or a civil technician, and in fact a civil technician would be far superior than having a chemical engineer,” he explained.

But later when Mayor Kathy Moore asked Kruysse if he’d like to call a motion on specifying the type of engineer, he declined, saying he was fine with the wording as long as the intent was clear.

Originally the staff member was not on the task force “as needed,” but as a full-time member and Kruysse also questioned having a staff member on the task force, given that the owners’ rep is already a staff member.

“I don’t see the point in taking our absolute, scarce staff resources and having two staff people attend these meetings,” he said.

Councillor Andy Morel agreed.

“Our resources are limited, so I would suggest that if it’s an issue about keeping proper minutes, etc. someone else on the committee can be stuck with that,” he said.

Councillor Lloyd McLellan felt it was important to have a staff member on the task force to offer advice on policy, bylaws and the community charter.

Council ultimately decided to append the “as needed” so that the extra staff member wouldn’t necessarily attend every meeting but would still be available to the task force.

All members of the task force will be appointed by the mayor and council, and the chair will be chosen among the task force members. Meetings will be scheduled either by the chair, the owner’s rep or by request of the majority of the task force.

The task force’s duties include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • The task force will, in a an advisory capacity, review the tender package and accepted bids, the contract process, the overall engineering, construction, schedules, reporting and necessary change orders with the owner’s rep.
  • The staff person will be responsible for taking minutes and providing policy advice and background information.
  • The council rep will act as a liaison to council.
  • The owner’s rep will be the sole member reporting to council and will be the sole member dealing with the project manager, engineering firm, contractors, and consultants working on the project.

The “accepted bids” referred to in the first point would be any bids that aren’t rejected because they don’t meet the guidelines. The task force will look at them before a successful bid is selected.

City council will determine the term of the task force and a member’s appointment can be revoked by a motion from mayor and council.

Once council had approved the terms of reference they recessed to an in-camera meeting to discuss which individuals should be part of the task force.