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General · 8th August 2014
Jim Abram
Happy August, everyone! The heat continues for now, but I am sure will turn at some point, just in time for us to complain about the lack of sun! We humans are a funny bunch!

Sewer referendum
Well, it only took a few years and countless hours by staff to deal with all of the details and the public input, but the sewer referendum finally happened on July 26th at the school. There was also an advance voting day on the 16th at the SRD office and mail-in balloting available. The unofficial results were posted that night on the SRD website and they were: Eighteen “yes” votes, fifteen “no” votes and two spoiled ballots. There were 34 properties being considered for inclusion in the sewer district boundaries. So, the referendum carried and the next steps are underway with construction to be completed by the spring of 2015. Seems like a long time but with the way time flies, I am sure it will seem like no time at all. The decision to move forward was made by the people of the area to be added. No one else was entitled to vote. I know that there are a number of very happy people out there due to the results of the vote and I also know that there are a number of unhappy people out there also. Although this will have an impact on specific individuals, I hope that everyone will eventually see the benefit to the community generally. The SRD did the grunt work and the people made a decision. It is now time to move on. If you hear rumours in the community, I would appreciate it if you would call me or the SRD staff to get the factual information rather than believe the speculation, etc.

SRD staffing
We are in the middle of major changes at the SRD due to one of our most key people retiring on July 31st. We have lost one of the most patient, knowledgeable and efficient people whom I have ever worked with to retirement! I wish her all of the best in her new endeavours, but Beth Rees will be missed enormously. In the meantime we are trying to fill two other major positions in the corporate end of the organization. As good as our Chief Administrative Officer is, he cannot be expected to do it all. When these positions are filled, the Electoral Area Directors will have a person that we can go to for all of our needs. Right now, things need to be done off the side of someone’s desk, when they can get around to it. This will help immensely in our area where we have so much going on. Our GIS mapping work has been brought in-house making it far cheaper, faster and more efficient. One of these new people will also be handling our communications and website work, which is greatly needed in order to keep you informed. One "glitch" of sorts. Happily, our CAO, Russ Hotsenpller and his wife are about to have a baby any day now. So that will mean a couple of weeks of paternity leave and some things will slow down due to this… but we will manage and the “show will go on”!

Wharves Divestiture

I mentioned in the last report that we would be signing the documents for the transfer of the three wharves at Surge Narrows, Owen Bay and Port Neville. (see last report) At the 11th hour the federal reps. let us know that they could not make it that day! So we are now scheduled to execute the documents on August 13th and put it to the Board that same day. This will bring those wharves under our control and we will have lots of community help in making them work for all of our needs. As much as I hate federal or provincial downloading, there are some things that we do better locally.

A new member of our community
I had the pleasure of having a coffee meeting with our new RCMP Corporal. His name is Kevin Christensen and he is replacing Shane Worth. I thoroughly enjoyed our discussion and I believe he is a perfect fit for Quadra and the outer islands. He comes to us from the town of Midway (near Grand Forks), so he is familiar with rural lifestyles. If you see him, introduce yourselves. He seems to want to get involved in the community (another volunteer!).

And that is it for this issue… short and sweet… 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… or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/JimAbram…. If it is important, my cell is 250-830-8005… Lots of choices.

Please do not use my residential phone number for SRD calls. All business calls should be on 285-3355. Many thanks!

Respectfully submitted,

Jim Abram

Director, Discovery Islands - Mainland Inlets (Area C), SRD