Pro-Shames rally planned

BACKERS OF a bid to buy Shames Mountain are planning a rally at city hall next week to convince city council to make a financial contribution.

The rally is set to begin at 6 pm Aug. 22 in the city hall parking lot right before the council begins a regularly scheduled meeting.

  • Aug. 18, 2011 1:00 p.m.

BACKERS OF a bid to buy Shames Mountain are planning a rally at city hall next week to convince city council to make a financial contribution.

The rally is set to begin at 6 pm Aug. 22 in the city hall parking lot right before the council begins a regularly scheduled meeting.

A first attempt by councillor Bruce Martindale two weeks ago to give My Mountain Co-op $200,000 made up of surplus city dollars and a loan that would be taken out by the city failed in a close 4-3 vote.

He’s now planning a new motion, this time restricting financial help to money the city has on hand.

That could work out to as much as $91,000 which would be left from a $375,000 grant received from the provincial government. The majority of the money is to be spent demolishing the city-owned former Terrace Co-op complex on Greig Ave.

My Mountain Co-op has raised approximately $375,000 so far, well short of its $2 million goal.

Terrace is the second municipality to turn down a co-op request for $200,000. Prince Rupert was the first and decisions by Kitimat council and the Kitimat-Stikine regional district are pending.

My Mountain Co-op does have a sales agreement with the mountain’s current owners, the Shames Mountain Ski Corporation, but is running out of time to raise the money it needs.

The ski corporation has been in a financial struggle for years and its owners have said they won’t be opening the ski facility this year.

Although backers of the Shames Mountain purchase bid point to the quality of life offered through downhill skiing and say it will help attract people to the area, the mountain has had trouble attracting enough customers to meet its expenses. As a result, owners of the corporation have been putting their own money into the venture to keep it going.

The rally is not only intended to show support for the purchase but to remind councillors there’s a municipal election this November.

Attempts by My Mountain Co-op to raise money from large corporations either already in the area or ones just moving into the area have not yet been successful.