Elections

A roadmap to a revitalized, empowered Chemainus

Chemainus already has many of the features of a resilient and sustainable community:

• Compact and attractive downtown

• Gorgeous oceanfront setting

• Forested areas close by

• Real sense of “community”

There are many things we can do while the revitalization plan is being presented and

considered:

• Open a municipal office downtown

• Create incentives to attract useful stores so that locals can buy locally

• Encourage local producers to sell wine, cheese, local fruit and veg etc. to Chemainiacs and tourists alike

• Work with developers to get rid of the “Ugly Blue Building”

• Make the community “bicycle friendly”

• Get on with the skateboard park!

Let’s Empower the Chemainus Advisory Committee

The Chemainus Advisory Committee can become a model that other communities in North Cowichan can follow:

• Make it responsible and accountable rather than just advisory

• Give it a budget to off-load some of the smaller decisions from Council

• Set up processes to ensure that it is able to listen to and address concerns of

Chemainiacs

• Set up direct communication with the Economic Development Commission to get moving on some of the issues facing Chemainus!

Let’s Get Chemainus Clean Water

We should be working with our neighbours rather than spending tax dollars on lengthy and expensive legal battles:

• Work with CVRD and Halalt to develop a management plan for the Chemainus

Watershed

• Examine the fundamental question of how to protect the Banon Creek Reservoir from logging and other contaminants

• Properly investigate the costs of enlarging the reservoir

• Make rainwater storage and recycling part of any new developments!

Letʼs Save Echo Heights

The Comprehensive Development Plan for Echo

Heights makes no business sense and would destroy an ecological and First Nationsʼ treasure.

• Save the $2.5-million earmarked for Phase 1 alone

• Plan for affordable housing within walking distance from downtown

• Put an immediate conservation covenant on all areas identified for protection

• Rezone all 54 acres as parkland

• Leverage Echo Heightsʼ ecological and tourist potential as part of the revitalization strategy!

Let’s Generate Other Sources of Revenue

When water and sewer user fees and other taxes are included, North Cowichan residential taxes are already more expensive than 64 other communities in B.C. and rising rapidly.

• Increases in residential property taxes are unsustainable

• Current debt is nearly $23-million without the recent borrowing bylaws

• Debt servicing costs $2.5-million per year

• Alternative sources of revenue are urgently needed

• New businesses can help the revitalization and generate more sources of municipal revenue

• Other communities are already being successful!

Don’t let anyone tell you it can’t be done!

— submitted by Rob Douglas and Roger Hart, candidates for North Cowichan council.

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Community Events, August 2014

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