Five groups awarded grants by Parksville city council

Also, another feature film may be coming to shoot in Parksville

Parksville city council has approved grants-in-aid totalling $2,500 for five community organizations.

The grants-in-aid process has not been without controversy in recent years, but Coun. Al Greir said last week this year’s decisions were made “in about five minutes.”

Council has budgeted for a total of $2,500 twice a year to chosen applicants. It does not have to use the entire $2,500. Six submissions for grants came to the city for this round of funding. Only one, Vancouver Island Opera, was denied.

Those approved for grants were: Ballenas Secondary School dry grad committee ($700), Friends of Foster Park ($500), Oceanside Stroke Recovery Society ($500), Parksville and District Musical Association ($500) and Broombusters Invasive Plant Society ($300).

In other news from council’s meeting last week:

• Leo Boon of the Greater Nanaimo Cycling Coalition provided a presentation about that group’s initiatives in the region.

• With no correspondence or anyone at the meeting to provide opposition, the owner of the property at 649 Soriel Rd. was approved for a variance permit to subdivide into two lots, slightly more narrow than the city standard.

• Council gave three readings to seven different bylaws that were reviewed and updated by staff, including those related to outdoor burning and animal control and the fine structure for all bylaws.

A motion from Greir to review bylaw enforcement policies — he wants officers to be more proactive — was defeated.

• The mayor made reference to meetings with the Vancouver Island North Film Commission about another film that may start shooting in Parksville soon. Details were scarce — check future editions of The NEWS for more on this story. A 65-person film crew, mostly from Vancouver and Victoria, was in Parksville in December of 2015 producing a Hallmark-style movie titled The Game of Love starring Heather Locklear.