Get the right staff hired, and get the work done

Tuesday, March 3 2015

No one wants to see an increase in taxes, but there is work needing to be done at both the Regional District of Nanaimo level, as well as the Islands Trust.

First off - whether it’s a contract position, or permanent long-term position, it would be good to see the RDN look at creating a parks planner position specifically for Gabriola, Mudge and Decourcy. One look at the work plan for Gabriola Parks for the next five years shows that the biggest speedbump in getting the work down is we are sharing the Park Planner with other Electoral Areas. 

The current person in that job does an amazing job with the time she has, but she is one person. And having someone dedicated to Area B means her position could have more time for other areas.

Huxley Park, a fenced-in off-leash dog park, and a playground at Rollo McClay are just a few examples of great projects that need to get past the planning stage.

And the longer those projects are delayed, the more the materials and construction are going to cost taxpayers when things finally move forward.

Secondly - both the RDN and Islands Trust should be moving forward with creating First Nations Liasion staff positions. There is pushback within the Islands Trust area to the creation of such a position (cost to the Trust Area would be roughly $70,000 for such a position). But as the province requires more and more proof of referral and comment on applications from First Nations, the Trust would be well served to have someone ensuring all communication lines are open between the Local Trust Committees and their First Nation counterparts. For those wishing to put their thoughts forward on such a position, Trust Council is meeting on Gabriola March. 10 to 12, and this needs to be a discussion, not just on the agenda.

Too many people on the Islands Trust Council are afraid of putting forward any budget with more than a zero percent increase in taxes.

There is nothing wrong with making sure the work is not just done right, but also in a timely fashion.