Co-op fate in hands of task force

The task force will have roughly one year to collect information and make a recommendation to council.

  • Jan. 17, 2012 3:00 p.m.

The City of Terrace is setting up a committee to deal with the fate of the Greig Ave. Co-op property.

The Co-op Property Development Task Force was created at a Jan. 3 committee of the whole meeting through Terrace mayor Dave Pernarowski who then appointed two city councillors.

The appointments of James Cordeiro and Brian Downie were then ratified by council Jan. 9. Other members will be named in a few weeks.

“It’s a task force that I talked about during the election campaign,” said Pernarowski. “I felt it was important that we create a task force to come up with a specific action plan for council inside a specific timeline.”

The task force will have roughly one year to collect information and make a recommendation to council, he said.

“We’ll look at some of the opportunities that could come through private development,” said Pernarowski, “or partnerships with the city to do a combination of private development through community space concepts.”

Pernarowski has long urged for a sale of the property but hasn’t yet been able to convince council of the move.

The exact workings of the task force, including who else will be involved, will be established in weeks to come.

A recommendation for membership will go before council for final approval, as will a draft policy with recommended terms of reference, said city officials.

The old Terrace Co-op shopping centre location’s fate was one of many issues raised during the 2011 municipal elections.

It was bought by the city in 2005 and the city is still paying for the purchase.

Cordeiro has said the property should generate revenue for the city in some capacity, an opinion echoing his stance during the elections.

“I think the thing is we’re basically losing $50,000 a year by not generating anything,” he said of foregone property taxes.

But, Cordeiro said that he would like to see a diverse mix of opinions selected for the task force.

“Ultimately my personal view on what should go on with the task force really wouldn’t factor in to how I assemble (it),” he said. “I don’t think its to anybody’s benefit to form this group with an agenda already in place.”

Downie stressed, during the election, the need to collect ideas on future use.

 

“During the election and before various people had ideas on what we should do,” he said. “It seems to me we need to bring together the ideas that have been developed in the community and

figure out what some options are for that property.”

 

“Until we actually get the terms of reference it’s kind of premature to anticipate much more than that,” he said.

 

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