Falher council offers loan to operate hall

Richard Froese
South Peace News

A Falher organization struggling to operate a community hall during the COVID-19 pandemic may get a helping hand from the Town of Falher.
At its regular meeting Oct. 12, council directed administration to draft a borrowing bylaw for a loan to the Société du Centre Communautaire Rivière – la – Paix that owns and operates the Centre Chevaliers.
Council heard from society president Darren Cote at its regular meeting Sept. 22 that the organization was restricted to raise funds during the COVID-19 that have limited large gatherings and events.
For the short term, the society says a new boiler is needed soon in order to heat the building as winter approaches.
Mayor Donna Buchinski says council is willing to help the society.
“With a boiler, we can help them function,” Buchinski says.
Figures for the loan would be presented in first reading of the bylaw at the next council meeting Nov. 10, she says.
Buchinski and CAO James Bell met with the society board as directed by council at the September council meeting.
“Replacing the boiler is urgent,” Buchinski says.
“We don’t know the price of the boiler.”
The society was still getting quotes for a boiler.
She says the society would also approach the M.D. of Smoky River for support.
“It’s a regional facility and I hope they support it,” Buchinski says.
Cote told council a boiler is needed to keep the building warm or freezing temperatures would damage the infrastructure and create more costs.
Bell says the Municipal Government Act allows municipalities to borrow money to non-profit organizations, which requires a bylaw.
Buchinski says the society hopes COVID-19 restriction will be relaxed in the coming few months to all larger gatherings and events.
“They do have plans for fundraising,” Buchinski says.
The society is also scheduled to earn funds by holding a casino in the coming months, she adds.

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