MCFC holds annual general meeting

Allan Frederick
Allan Frederick photo
Allan Frederick photo

On Thursday, Oct. 26 at 7 p.m. the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the McBride Community Forest Corporation was held at the Robson Valley Community Centre. The formal meeting began at 7:30 with a call to order.

In attendance were the Board of Directors of MCFC, Chair Joseph Rich, Kevin Taphorn, Leonard (Dutch) Molendyk, Warren McLennan and Harold Edwards, who serves on the Board as the Village Council Representative. Also on hand were Interim General Manager Jeff McWilliams, Administrative Assistant Tovi Thiel, Operation Supervisor Bob Elliott and newly appointed General Manager Eugene (Gene) Runtz. Village Council attendees were Mayor Loranne Martin, Coun. Lucille Green and Coun. Rosemary Hruby, with Coun. Rick Thompson attending by telephone. The audience consisted of two members of the press and eight members of the public.

Reports were given by the Chair Joseph Rich and the Interim GM Jeff McWilliams on the operations and progress of the organization over the last year plus. As well, newly appointed GM Gene Runtz provided a talk on the plans that are being worked on and ideas for the corporation moving forward. All were very positive and optimistic for the future of the corporation in the coming years.

The presentation by Interim GM McWilliams started out with “MCFC turning the corner”. Highlights within his presentation included that the harvest plan for 2016 was about 42,600 cubic meters while the total was about 38,200 for 2016. An exemption for Grade 4 cedar which had been granted over many of the previous years was denied by government for the 2016 application by MCFC.

As at the end of September 2017, MCFC has harvested about 36,500 cubic meters, which was about the estimated target. The Grade 4 cedar volume in 2017 was about 5,900 cubic meters scaled back due to the BKB Cedar Mill fire. No additional harvesting is anticipated until the start of winter.

In 2016 approximately 250,000 spruce seedlings were planted, and for 2017 about 116,000 spruce seedlings were planted. There were no safety issues noted in either 2016 or to date in 2017. There were no compliance and enforcement violations noted in 2016 and MCFC is unaware of any new compliance and enforcement incidents. The pending C&E investigation of the harvest that occurred within a Riparian Reserve Zone of a default S3 stream adjacent to Block 28 in 2015 has not been heard on to date.

In 2017 as in 2016, MCFC continued to maintain the Lasalle Lake, Beaver and Halfway Lookout Recreation Sites as well as the plowing of Bell Mountain Road. MCFC in 2016 continued the phasing out of the awarding of non-competitive harvesting and small market logger agreements. New contract templates were developed for harvesting, all contractors are required to carry third party liability insurance including coverage for forest fire fighting. As well MCFC obtained its own independent third-party liability insurance including forest fire fighting costs and obtained liability insurance covering all volunteer Board members. In 2017 MCFC developed a new website.

To the end of September 2017, the MCFC estimates a profit of $208,000 but the year end projection is for a break even or small profit.

Motions for the appointment of the Auditors as KMPG and reappointment confirmation of the members to the Board of Directors were part of the business of the meeting.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:50 p.m. and questions from the audience were answered.