More discussions to be held on Hooterville evictions

  • Jan. 9, 2009 12:00 p.m.

The Hooterville issue came up at Queen Charlotte council again this week and more discussion will take place between council, the provincial government and the Council of the Haida Nation in the new year. At the Jan. 5 meeting, councillors discussed a letter from Integrated Land and Management Board’s regional executive director Heather MacKnight outlining previous actions taken in the fall. Ms MacKnight wrote that trespass notices specified Nov. 15 as the deadline for removing cabins and cleaning up the waterfront sites on the western edge of Queen Charlotte. She went on to say that efforts are being made to make the move as easy as possible for occupants. She also said “ILMB’s actions and instructions to the occupants of the unauthorized cabins have been consistent with the Oct. 18, 2006 letter sent from the CHN to the Village of Queen Charlotte.” Queen Charlotte’s newest councillor, Leslie Johnson, said she is concerned about ILMB’s interpretation of the CHN letter, especially around the statement that the archaeological site is part of the reason for the eviction. “There is confusion around the interpretation of the letter,” she said. “Should we meet with the CHN to get clarification?” Ms MacKnight’s letter says “part of the reason for our actions is the area is a well known Haida village site, with archaeological evidence that must be respected and left undisturbed.” Mayor Carol Kulesha said ILMB and the CHN have had two or three meetings already on the topic. “I would like them to get together and straighten this out,” she said. Ms MacKnight’s letter states that ILMB is planning to come up early in 2009 to meet with the Village of Queen Charlotte and with the CHN on matters of crown land sales and tenure applications. The Village of Queen Charlotte is also hoping to discuss crown land identified within the municipal boundaries that can be used for community development and industrial purposes. According to Ms MacKnight, ILMB must consult with the CHN on these parcels was well. The letter also notes that the absence of building code bylaws create risks in enforcing residential development plans on Crown Land turned over to meet housing requirements. Ms Johnson said she hopes all issues related to crown land and the Hooterville/Frog Flats area can be discussed among all parties at the same meeting.