General · 13th September 2012
It might not officially be fall for another eleven days, but it sure feels like it outside. The air and the light seem to change and our bodies seem to sense the change. Thoughts of firewood, gutter cleaning and anti-freeze in my truck seem to prevail. Oh well, it was a great summer, once it got going in July! So here we go again into "meeting season"! It was busy during the summer but now it gets crazy, with most days booked at one meeting or another. I have to admit, I love it because it means I can get things done for our area. No more frustration of calling government officials and hearing that they are on holiday and having to put off getting something finished for our area. Most people are coming back to work in the next week or so and we will be back at it full throttle.
I would like to congratulate the more than 200 volunteers, the organizers, the vendors, the performers and the public for making this second annual event so incredibly wonderful! We were so lucky to have the rain hold off until the last minutes of the fair. Everyone seemed to be having such a good time and there was something for everyone. We have such a variety of talent of all sorts on the island and the fair was a good place to show it off. It was wonderful to be there with my kids and grandkids. I am sure preparations are already underway for next year's event! Once again a special thanks to the organizers!
I am extremely pleased that the "younger crowd" on the island pulled together an amazing two day event of music and festivities. It seemed like it came together quite quickly and gathered momentum at an amazing pace. These are the kinds of events that need to happen to help keep younger people on the islands and participating in our community. It was a family event and provided a venue for the so many talented musicians and performers to show what they can do. A good time was had by all and plans are underway for another event which will take place next year as I understand. Congratulations to all of the dedicated organizers and performers.
Golf Course Grand Opening
What an incredible new asset we now have on Quadra! I attended the grand opening on Sept. 1st and had a chance to have a look around and witness the ribbon cutting. An incredibly professional job has been done by a dedicated and tenacious group of volunteers and trades people. It is hard to believe that they pulled this off. It took many years of hard work and fundraising and it has paid off. Once again congratulations are in order to the generous people who put so much of their time and effort and money into this endeavour. This course will undoubtedly add recreational opportunities to the island, create jobs, attract tourism dollars and provide spin off dollars to other businesses. I know that there were a lot of fears about how this golf course idea would negatively impact the island in the beginning, but I am hopeful that those fears have been allayed now that everyone can see what is actually on the ground.
Meeting with the Ministry of Highways
I asked for (and received) a meeting with the Area Supervisor of Highways to discuss the issues that have been brought to my attention over the past months. We had a very good meeting over coffee at the HBI a couple of weeks ago. We went over topics such as the bike path that people on the island have been asking for and discussed the most important areas to get working on this. While West Road would be the easiest to deal with, Heriot Bay Road from around Rebecca Spit Rd. to Heriot Bay seems like the more dangerous stretch and will be looked at for feasibility. The schedule of paving and pot hole repair was talked about at length and our needs were conveyed to her for all areas of the island. We need a lot of work done and she is now very aware of the worst sections. For the outer islanders, we have agreed to have a meeting with the top officials at Highways and community representatives at the end of Surge Narrows Road in the very near future, to discuss improvements to the last portion of the road to improve access and make it safer. We also agreed to re-open the discussion on Kanish View Drive and its long history of neglect and how we might resolve it. We also discussed dust control on Valdes Road for the present and future. Lastly, we discussed the issue of snow removal in the winter and the provision of more sand and salt on the roads at crucial times. We now have a very responsive Area Manager and this is a real treat for me, since she is actually interested in our area and will do what she can to help us improve the situation for the island. (I shouldn't say that too loudly.. they might take her away since she is doing too good of a job!.. the cynic in me!)
Quathiaski Cove Sewer
There was a letter to the editor placed in our local media with some information that needs correcting and clarifying. I am not going to get into a back-and-forth with the author. I have asked our senior staff to respond to the letter and do it publicly in the local media. So, look for their response, either elsewhere in this edition or in the next one.
We have our Committee meetings this week, Board meeting next week along with the Solid Waste Board meeting next week and the Hospital Board meeting next week as well. I will then be attending the annual Union of BC Municipalities meeting in Victoria, from Sept. 23rd through Sept. 29th. That will be a long and busy week. I will be meeting with the BC Ferries Commissioner along with 13 other chairs of regional districts and the Islands Trust, on Monday the 24th from 11am until 4pm ( a one hour pre-meeting and one hour post-meeting are included in that). So that is about it for now. I hope to bring you news on Telus issues, wharf divestiture by the Feds in the outer islands and our Local Area Plan for Quathiaski Cove (we are very close!) in my next report.
Feel free to call me between the hours of 8:30 am and 7:00 pm, Monday through Friday (please, not on weekends, folks!) at 285-3355, or you can fax me at 285-3533 or you can email me anytime at jimabramxplornet.ca , or by mail at Box 278 in the Cove, V0P 1N0... Lots of choices.
Please do not use my residential phone number for SRD calls. All business calls should be on 285-3355. Many thanks!
Director, Discovery Islands - Mainland Inlets (Area C), SRD