Work is ongoing for the 70 Mile House Community Hall upgrades.
Contractor Darren Hank says they have finished the under-slab drainage system and poured the skim coat in the crawlspace.
Ian Dalgleish, capital projects and facilities manager for the Thompson-Nicola Regional District, says the HVAC sub-trade is working on installing the ductwork in the crawlspace. He adds that work should be completed in the next week or so and the HVAC work and installing the skim coat of concrete will hopefully correct the musty smell issue.
Once the weather gets better, Dalgleish says, Hank’s crew will refinish the logs, and install a roof and gutters as well as new exit doors and windows, and put up siding to the gables and concrete pads at the doors.
SMAC open on
Seventy Mile Access Centre (SMAC) spokesperson Kathleen Judd says there has been a steady flow of traffic since opening the centre from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays.
“It’s going very well. There’s been a steady flow but it’s not busy, busy.”
Only 15 people are allowed in SMAC at any one time. Everyone has to wear masks, sign in and maintain COVID-19 physical distancing protocols.
Nobody is allowed to use the gym at this point because they are using it to sort donations, she explains.
“We have to hold some donations for two days [for COVID-19 safety]. If it’s paper, it’s 24 hours. If it’s plastic, it’s three days…. We hold onto it until it’s needed.”
Pickleball and church services also can’t be held in the gymnasium due to COVID gathering restrictions, while other rental bookings for the gym had to be cancelled.
Judd said not having the groups in means a loss of revenue “but we’re managing to keep our heads above water.
“SMAC is operating with a skeleton crew of volunteers because we’re only open on Saturdays. (All of the volunteers are welcome but there isn’t enough work to do).’”
Judd notes all of the volunteers are seniors, so it’s better to be “safe than sorry” when it comes to their health.
New society number
SMAC board members are taking a change in direction in their quest to get a government Society number.
The board was trying to get the old Society number reinstated, but couldn’t provide details of the financial items from the years prior to taking over the operation. As a result, it was determined the board should start the process again in an effort to get a new Society number. It will start with the records of the first year of the new board’s operation.
“The advice we got was to start all over again.”
Judd notes the board passed a motion to have a new account to put in left-over money, including donations, that can be used to fund facility items or repairs in the future.
SMAC is still renting the little house (where a school principal or teacher would stay). Interior repairs and upgrades to the teacherage were done last year and 2021 will see new siding and stairs installed on the building.
Judd says they are taking donations of furniture, working televisions, clothes, DVDs, fabric, tools and books.
The library is open again and the books are in alphabetized order.
SMAC also has a new price coding system.
“We labelled the goods with different coloured dots, representing a specific price. It’s easier at the till because “we know exactly what’s coming in and what’s going out.”
still on track
Judd says COVID 19 hasn’t disrupted SMAC’s five-year plan, which includes:
Year 1 to do the upgrades to the teacherage and that will be completed in 2021. Year 2 to repair the wood furnace. And Year 3 to work on the septic tank system.
Judd says they are still handing out hampers.
“We’re still handing out hampers to the ones we did at Christmas … replenishing some of those because we know they need them. We have a steady six or seven of [hampers] going out to those folks.”
For more information about dropping off donations or getting a hamper or dry goods from the Pantry, call the SMAC office (250-456-6061) on Saturdays between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
Fire department news
It’s pretty quiet at the 70 Mile House Fire Hall, according to 70 Mile House Firefighters Association president Dennis Huber.
The last callout was in November and Huber says there hasn’t been much activity since the current medical pandemic overseers clamped down on gatherings to help slow down of COVID-19 spread.
“I guess you could say we’re taking a COVID sabbatical.”
However, fire department members are trying to organize a practice for mid-March. The Association president says it will be good to have practices so the department’s two newest recruits will have an opportunity to train with other firefighters and officers.
Huber says they are always looking for new firefighters.
Meanwhile, he notes they have received and spent all of their grant money.
“We’ve been told more grants are coming, so we will be applying for them, too.”
Light bulb recycle
South Green Lake, Pressy Lake, North Green Lake, Watch Lake and 70 Mile House residents can now recycle Compact Fluorescent (CFLs), fluorescent tubes (all shapes), UV and Germicidal lamps, Incandescent bulbs, High-Intensity Discharge (HIDs), Light Emitting Diodes (LED) and halogen light bulbs on the concrete recycle pad at the 70 Mile Eco depot.