Regional Director’s Report April 2014

Nanaimo Harbour Lights seen from Gabriola Ferr...
Nanaimo Harbour Lights seen from Gabriola Ferry Dock – Nikon D70 – 1/6 (Photo credit: Stoic Meditation)

Well lots to talk about this time around. The nominations committee for the Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation (NEDC) met to choose new members to serve on the board. Gabriola now has one member on the NEDC board – Gloria Hatfield. She has tons of experience and is a welcome addition to the board. 

On March11, a GERTIE bus full of Gabriolans went off to Victoria to protest about ferry cuts. Fun was had by all, with lots of singing on the way back. Personally I think the singing was helped out by that big bag of cookies.

The new ferry schedule is out. It will not be as bad as was first thought, but only because of our not-so-secret weapon John Hodgkins. John, Steve Earle and others were very instrumental in getting BC Ferries to make changes to the first schedule and we thank you for your efforts.

The next one up was the Let’s Send Sheila Malcolmson to Ottawa announcement. Sheila has given Gabriola stable government for 12 years. She now needs our help to make the transition to federal politics. So if you’re so inclined she can be reached at Sheila@island.net. Now we need people to step up and run for Islands Trust. Could that be you? And why not? Local government can be interesting.

The Village trail and the Huxley park master plan are coming along. After the public consultation we will be making some changes based on the input we received. Having large community consultations like this really helps nail down things, like what trail surfaces to use, that people want to move the trail off the road, and other, mostly positive, comments. We had two plans for Huxley park and after you had your say we are back at the drawing board to make one better plan reflecting your input.

The Association of Vancouver Island Costal Communities(AVICC) met the weekend of 11-13th. There is always lively debate around the proposed resolutions. Some pass and are move up to be debated at the Union of BC Municipalities convention in September. One of the more interesting discussions was a policy paper on the socio-economic impacts of BC Ferries service reduction.

One would have thought that BC Ferries would have done this before cutting service. But “no”, would be the answer there, So AVICC is stepping up and working on this report.

Dogs at large are becoming a problem in the 707 park. When someone is out running or biking and you are unable to call your dog to you immediately, you need to leash your dog and work on your training. Our Parks Bylaw No.1399 Section 5.9 states that dogs must be under control at all times (either on a leash or by having the animal respond and return immediately when called).  Here is a link to the bylaw:  http://www.rdn.bc.ca/cms/wpattachments/wpID657atID4518.pdf.

Thanks for your cooperation.

I would like to thank all the volunteers who work so hard to make Gabriola what it is. A special thank-you to the Gabriola Emergency Social Services (GESS) and the fire department. These two groups train for something we hope will not happen and we are so grateful to them when we need them the most.

The City of Nanaimo got off the fence in a big way last Monday with a very strong motion against any incinerator anywhere in that city. The Province, Metro Vancouver and the proponents all have heard “NO!”, but the property is zone for industrial use and Duke Point is still on Metro Vancouver list for a incinerator.

Still having fun,
Howard Houle
Regional District Director,
Area B.

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