Castlegar Council Responds to Cooling Centre Concerns
Castlegar City Council hopes to boost the City's response to upcoming heat-waves following some letters recently received from community members.
Letters were penned to council by a 75-year old senior living alone in a mobile home, as well as another individual who rented a motel room to escape the over-40-degree weather; both letters were covered through correspondence at Castlegar’s July 19th Regular Meeting.
While some churches in Castlegar offered Cooling Centres for people to escape the heat during the recent heat-wave, the City was questioned about not playing a larger role or communicating Cooling Centre locations or wildfire activity for those not online.
Councillor Sue-Heaton Sherstobitoff suggested the City develop both short term and long terms plans to operate Cooling Centres, stating that council needs to be seen as leading the community and not doing anything is not the right way to go.
The question “if it’s not broken, why fix it?” was raised when Councillor Cherryl MacLeod suggested boosting services already in place for the time being.
Councillor MacLeod says the City still has COVID-19 Recovery Grant funding handy so churches could potentially be compensated for operating Cooling Centres this year, while a long-term strategy is still developed for years ahead.
In the end that’s exactly where Castlegar City Council landed: The City will support a partnership with Cooling Centres already operated by local churches through the remainder of this year and a more long-term strategy is still on the table.