Summary of the November regular meeting of the board:
The board agreed to explore the development of a comprehensive fundraising program for BVRH further under the guiding principle that we cannot be great without philanthropy. Next steps include: development of an initial budget to fund early program exploration and; hold a fundraising workshop with KEA Canada and the BVRH board.
The board agreed to hire LA Taylor to manage the RGI communications strategy. The guiding principles of this initiative are: affordability, fairness and sustainability.
Levels of supportive living (very basically stated):
- Functionally independent with or without the help of community resources. Able to function with regularly scheduled assistance. Able to make own decisions and know when needs are not being met.
- Require some unscheduled assistance, requires 24 hour access to home care type workers with an LPN on call. Able to make some decisions and usually know when needs are not being met.
- Require frequent unscheduled assistance, perhaps modified diet and foods, requires 24 hour access to LPN with RN on call. Unable to make most decisions and typically won’t know if needs are not being met.
The board learned that administration is making progress with the development of a budget proposal for the consideration of the board. The board was provided with key assumption information. Our operating budgets are prepared each year and are forecasts of expected annual revenues and planned expenditures that support the Lodge Programs supportive living operations.
The board learned that ASHC has approved a $160,000 upgrade project to the elevator at Mount Edith House in Banff. Administration will look at strategies to help residents on the upper floors during the project when the elevator is out of service.
The board discussed public comments about the appearance of Woodlands and the behaviour of some residents. CAO presented the 2015 maintenance plan.
The board learned that Alberta Housing had recently sent all HMB’s a detailed survey to catalog existing fire mitigation systems and policies in all provincial seniors housing. CAO submitted our completed survey ahead of the December 1 deadline.
The board reviewed and approved the proposed BVRH 2015-2017 Business Plan. Strategic Goals will be refreshed in 2015.
Project occupancy rates and tenant selection:
Current occupancy rates in our accommodation programs:
Bow River Lodge 97% occupancy
Cascade House 100% occupancy
Bow River Homes 100% occupancy
Mount Edith House 100% occupancy
Community Housing 100% occupancy
Rent Supplement 100% subscription
Major project status updates:
Temporary Flood relief housing:
BVRH continues to assist the Government of Alberta with their efforts to house local victims of the southern flooding. The units are in place and while many are occupied, many of our short-term tenants have transitioned to longer-term solutions. BVRH is responsible for most of the routine maintenance and tenant administration.
Bow River Lodge Redevelopment: “This is Home”
Land update: The land is now owned by ASHC, meaning it is ours to develop.
Schedule: The anticipated start date is early 2015. Development Permit application has been submitted to the Town of Canmore. The tender package is just about ready to be posted to the Alberta Purchasing Connection website for public tender. CAO expects a contractor to be selected in December or January.
Design: The design includes 63 new residential lodge units, replacing 43 aging units and giving us 20 more, maximizing the available space in anticipation of the looming needs of our aging population in the region. This design means that all of our seniors will be housed in safe, new and fully functional spaces instead of some that are retro-fitted, ensuring more effective and efficient accommodation along with much improved ability to increase care services in the future. Aside from the better facility afforded by this design it is important to also highlight the creation of a valuable and substantial piece of property to be used to meet regional needs in the future. The area currently taken up by the old parts of the original lodge will be used to bring higher levels of supportive living to the region for true aging in place.
Economics: The current overall capital cost estimate if $15.7 million. ASHC representatives have tentatively committed to paying the total project fees upfront, with an agreement by BVRH to repay 20% of the capital costs over time. BVRH will develop a fundraising program that will help fund equipment and furniture purchases for the new building.
Communications: A communications plan is in place. Efforts to date include written updates to our member’s municipal councils, our residents, our immediate neighbours and, our employees and a series of open-house type information sessions for these audiences. We will also present to our member’s municipal councils.
Next steps: Phase 2: BVRH is currently developing an application to the recently announced ASLI grant program. Under this program projects receive 50% capital funding from the Province, as well as an operating agreement with AHS for designated levels of supportive living. We have been encouraged to apply in light of the fact that the Province is eager to build more beds, and our region has been identified as a target for some of them. Given timing surrounding Phase 1, it is possible that we will be more likely to secure ASLI funding during the 2015 round, but we’ll apply this year and if necessary apply again next year. Phase 2 would create between 54 and 75 SL3/4/D units on the footprint currently occupied by the original lodge, bringing again in place to our region. It would also have positive economic effects, hopefully taking Bow River Lodge to cost neutrality!