Mayor holds high hopes for Liberal promises

Oak Bay’s Nils Jensen equates the Liberal government with infrastructure grants

Like many a mayor across the country, Oak Bay’s Nils Jensen equates the Liberal government with infrastructure grants.

The Liberals campaigned on a promise to run deficits to help fund billions in infrastructure spending that could come in handy as Oak Bay slogs through the ongoing work to separate septic and storm water in the century-old system in Uplands.

“I’m very pleased with the policy promises made by the Liberals where they promised to provide infrastructure funding for local governments throughout Canada. We are about to embark on an Uplands sewer separation project. This infrastructure program will be perfectly timed to assist us,” he said.

Though they’ve yet to see any criteria on funding, the Uplands sewer separation project is well underway. Last year Oak Bay got a detailed a survey of that neighbourhood and earlier this year sought pre-designs to examine options for the area.

“I have every faith in the Liberal government will not be partisan when it comes to ensuring all communities in Canada who apply for infrastructure funding,” Jensen said. “One of the planks in the Liberals platform is to have a fair, equitable and open government. I think that bodes well for us here in Oak Bay and on the Island even though we do have different representation.”

That hope, he said, means they could realize the environmental benefits of separating the sewer system

A second hope for the new governing party is that they’ll find a way to fund a housing strategy.

“We haven’t had a national housing strategy and hopefully the Liberals will bring one in, along with funding opportunities,” Jensen said.

The Capital Regional District is currently studying a City of Victoria proposal for a $30 million regional plan to end homelessness that calls on other levels of government.

“It requires the federal government and the provincial government as partners and that’s probably true of any social housing to be successful in this day and age,” Jensen said.

 

“Even before we get into any detail analysis we’ve asked for a feasibility study which our staff will bring back to the CRD board in December.”