Bowen Island Undercurrent April 3 2015

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Bowen Island Undercurrent April 3 2015

Text of Bowen Island Undercurrent April 3 2015

  • NOWOPEN(at the Bowen Island Golf Course)

    Spring Hours of Operation as followsApril - Thursday to Sunday from 11am-4pmMay - Wednesday to Sunday from 11am-7pm

    June - Open 7 days a week!


    The Cup Cutter

    om 11am-7pm

    At the Bowen Island Golf Course 604-947-4366

    $1 includingGSTWatch for more online at:


    FRIDAYAPRIL 3, 2015VOL . 4 2 , NO . 1 1

    Little buildersPhotos from the latest fun at the IRLY

    Bowen poetryJude Neales success... and Woodallspoets dilemma

    Howe Sounds tube wormYou have more in common with thiscritter than you think

    April 12 - 18 is National Volunteer Week. At The Undercurrent, we are making April Volunteer month and will featureBowen Island volunteers each week. Above are just a few of the volunteer drivers for Caring Circle. In 2014 thesevolunteers helped 36 fellow Bowen Islanders get to medical appointments in town.Meribeth Deen, photo


    In a press release sent out by the City of Burnaby, the mayorsof Burnaby, Vancouver, New Westminster, North Vancouver,Squamish and Bowen Island co-signed a statement of non-confi-dence in the existing National Energy Board (NEB) public hearingprocess.The Mayors Declaration on Kinder Morgan Energy Process

    states that: It has become apparent that the NEB process does notconstitute a public hearing and is completely inadequate to assess

    the health and safety risks of a proposed pipeline through majormetropolitan areas, and the potential risks of shipping bitumen oilto Burnaby and through the Burrard Inlet, the Salish Sea and alongthe coastline of British Columbia.Kinder Morgan is proposing a $5.4 billion expansion to the

    Trans Mountain pipeline, the only line that runs oil from Albertato B.C.s West Coast. The proposal includes expanding the BurnabyMountain tank farm and the Westridge Marine Terminal in theBurrard Inlet, where tankers fill up on crude. If it goes through, theexpanded pipeline will bring 890,000 barrels of crude oil per day tobe shipped to the open ocean.

    Mayor Skeels stands with Burnabys Derek Corrigan againstNational Energy Board (NEB) and Kinder Morgan proposal


    Looking at a chart tracking the sale of BowenIsland homes, month by month, between 2003 andthe present, realtor Dee Elliot is hesitant to saythat the islands real estate market has recovered.However, Elliott does say, she has a long list of poten-tial home-buyers looking on Bowen Island, many ofwhom are disappointed with the number of homescurrently on the market here.Ive noticed that a lot of people are coming here

    for trial periods living on Bowen, to see if they canhandle the commute and that sort of thing, saysElliot. Thats a new thing for sure.She points to the numbers to tell the story: by the

    end of March, 2014, realtors on Bowen had only soldfive homes. This year, theyve made 17 homes salesthrough MLS.Elliott adds that with only 44 homes currently on

    the market, buyers are complaining.People expect more availability, she says. We

    may see more come on the market in the next fewmonths. Last year, by the end of spring there weremore than 80 properties listed.Elliott says she also gets almost daily inquiries

    from people looking for places to rent on Bowen, butthere is little availability, and she doesnt have time tomanage these calls anyhow.I am too busy dealing with buyers right now, says

    Elliott.With regards to the sellers, Elliott emphasizes that

    people cant expect their home to sell for what itmight have been worth in 2007, or for a price com-parable homes for sale in Vancouver.What makes Bowen attractive is the fact that we

    are cheaper than Vancouver. If prices go up thatsover, she says. Aside from that, there is no obvi-ous reason why homes on Bowen are selling. Interestrates are low, but theyve been low for a long time.But theres also the other thing I heard someone sayrecently: I came to Bowen because it was the onlyplace I could afford, now I couldnt imagine livinganywhere else. Maybe that is the reason we see thesituation we have here, now.

    For more statistics on Bowen Island realestate, see page 10.

    Realtor points tothe numbers: Itsa sellers market

    continued PAGE 2



    RCMP Cpl. Paulo Arreaga, transferred from NorthVancouver, has been living and working on BowenIsland for three weeks now, and with several visits tothe pub under his belt, hes started getting in to knowthe local community.Cpl. Arreaga grew up in North Vancouver and

    his first posting with the RCMP was in NorthVancouver. However, he says he asked for a post-ing in a remote community because he wanted totry something that was out of his comfort zone. Bythe time Arreagas wish was fulfilled (with a transfer

    to Boston Bar, north of Hope) he had already methis future wife (Lucia) in North Vancouver. He saysthat because of her, he returned to North Vancouverwhere he was promoted to Corporal in charge of theyouth division.Fortunately, Lucia shares her husbands taste for

    adventure so once married, Cpl. Arreaga asked foranother transfer to a small community.In a small community, policing is all about being

    connected with people, sometimes that means youare connected with them at the hardest possibletimes, but I hope to connect with people beforesomething happens, says Arreaga. That tends tomake things a little easier when theres an emergency.

    Bowen Island welcomesnew RCMP corporal

    Corporal Paulo Arreaga with his wife Lucia and daughter Maya.Meribeth Deen, photo


    With summer just around the cor-ner many Bowen businesses are onthe hunt for new employees. Whilemany restaurant owners say they arejust getting ready for the busy-seasonand willing to wait until universityand high school students wrap up theschool years, other businesses are find-ing themselves more pressed for time.Oydis Nickle is looking for staff

    both at the Union Steamship Marinaand at Doc Morgans. Since posting onFacebook about Docs re-opening andneed for staff about two weeks ago,Nickle says that shes found a chef anda few line-cooks, but still needs muchmore staff.I think our timing was good in

    terms of getting word out that werelooking for people, says Nickle.Responses to our posting have sloweddown, but Im sure when studentsstart to look for work in a few weekstime they will pick up again. As forthe marina jobs, were looking for twopeople, and Im confident well be ableto fill those positions.Cline Boyer at Caf Rustique

    recently advertised for a dishwasher,and says she has not found someone tofill the position yet, but is not worried.You do have to start preparing for

    summer ahead of time, you cant waituntil the end of May to start look-ing for people, she says. Usually, it isnot a problem to get students to workentry-level positions. Finding quali-fied and experienced staff, thats wherethe real challenge is. Were fortunate tohave those positions covered.Shika restaurant on the Pier is plan-

    ning to re-open in May.Owner Mitsumi Kawai says she is

    actively looking for cooks and counter

    servers to join her team.Id say our needs are on the urgent

    side of things, says Kawai. So far Iveheard mostly from high school stu-dents - which doesnt really help mefind someone who can work full-timeas a cook starting in May.Landscaping businesses are even

    more hard-pressed to find labour.We need to people to work now,

    says Rosie Montgomery with HomeFarm Gardens.Montgomery says that with a start-

    ing wage of $15 an hour, she is prettysure the pay for landscaping is betteron Bowen than in the city, but shesfound it increasingly challenging tofind employees over the past few years.Im not sure what the reason for it

    is, says Montgomery. I increasinglysee young people are living with theirparents out of economic necessity,so I dont think its a housing issue.That said, we might be hiring some-one we met at a conference in NewWestminster, and part of the reasonthat is feasible is because we can pro-vide housing at the farm [Endswell].Jen McIntyre, owner of Island Girls

    Garden and Design says that she wouldlike to hire two full-time employees,and one part time employee, but hasbeen so busy working herself she hasnthad time to advertise.Im relying on word of mouth at

    this point, says McIntyre. Spring ismy really busy time, so university stu-dents dont really work for me. Also,you have to train them then they leaveat the end of the summer. I did hirestudents last summer, but it just doesntseem like they really need to work. Ineed someone with some maturity. Ipay $15 an hour to start, and will goas high as $20 but it is really hard tofind the right people.

    Help wanted on Bowen Island

    Mayors express lack of confidence in the NEB process relating to Kinder Morgans Trans Mountain proposalfrom PAGE 1

    The letter from the mayors also questionswhether the NEB panel is independent fromthe oil industry proponents. It criticizes theprocess for the fact that the evidence present-ed never ends up being cross-examined, andalso states that the proponent has failed toanswer a majority of questions submitted bymunicipalities and other intervenors.Ultimately, the mayors ask for the current

    NEB process to be put on hold and for a newone, created in consultation with local govern-ment, First Nations, and citizens, to replace it.No one at the NEB was available for com-

    ment on the Mayors statements, but in a let-ter to the Burnaby NOW, NEB spokespersonTara O Donovan said the board is commit-ted to a thorough and fair environmentalassessment and regulatory review of the TransMountain Expansion project.Our process