Island News & Views
Go to Site Index See "Island News & Views" main page
General · 26th July 2013
susan westren
End of July Update

In this case, no news is NOT good news though we are trying to be optimistic. As of July 23, the funding required to complete the acquisition of the land lying between Small Inlet and Octopus Islands Marine Parks is still not forthcoming. The BC Marine Parks Forever Society has doubled their contribution from $100,000 to $200,000 but $2.2 million is still needed.

Mary Polak, the new BC Environment Minister has made a commitment to "making the deal work" but has found no money in government coffers to fulfill this commitment. She has met with Claire Trevena and with Sarah Cox of the Sierra Club and spoke
of finding a "creative solution." Thanks to these meetings and others requested by both Jim Abram and Spirit of the West as well as the over 600 letters and emails sent her way, Minister Polak is fully aware of the situation and the urgency. Now we need her to act.

Jim has had discussions with the Deputy Minister and the assistant Deputy Minister for Parks and the Regional District has requested a 30 day extension on the August 1st dealine from Merrill & Ring, the owners of the land. Parks continues to work to
find a positive outcome but another funding possibility has just fallen through.

The best we can do now is to continue to write letters and emails. The government has not moved on this acquisition in the 13 years since the first negotiations broke off and they must do so now. If you haven't added your voice, please do so right away either
through or directly by email to Mary Polak at with a copy to Claire at

We know there have been offers made on the property which has been on the market for a few months now so send up some prayers, keep your fingers crossed, and let's hope for a very last minute reprieve.