EDITORIAL: Regional growth and governance

‘By legitimizing the regional growth strategy, the CRD is legitimizing our OCP,’ says Mike Hicks

As the Capital Regional District’s amended growth strategy wends its way through Greater Victoria municipal councils in hopes of approval, subtly hidden in its pages is the right for the Juan de Fuca electoral area to legitimize its voice.

The growth strategy plan deals with every aspect of future development – transportation, land use, ecosystem protection and economics.

RELATED: CRD growth strategy sent to municipalities for approval

Part of the new mediated growth plan settles a major disagreement by providing a process and criteria for addressing new water-services extensions, and identities in the Juan de Fuca Electoral Area communities where water extensions can occur.

Last fall, seven CRD communities – Saanich, Central Saanich, North Saanich, View Royal, Highlands, Colwood and Esquimalt – rejected a proposed regional growth strategy, because it allowed the extension of piped water into the Juan de Fuca.

The main reason for rejection was the assertion that piping water into the area could lead to urban sprawl

Juan de Fuca Electoral Area director Mike Hicks was so incensed by the decision he asked Premier John Horgan, the MLA for the area, to intervene, which led to mediation.

The municipalities that rejected the plan came on side and a process was agreed to for addressing new water-services extensions and identifies Juan de Fuca communities – Otter Point, East Sooke and Port Renfrew – where the extensions could occur.

But deal also legitimizes every official community plan within the electoral area, which sets the blueprint for each community.

To this point, the CRD board could overwrite any OCP document. Now residents have a legitimate say in community development.

“By legitimizing the regional growth strategy, the CRD is legitimizing our OCP. Now the whole picture is complete,” Hicks said.

But there’s something more far reaching here.

By giving the Juan de Fuca a legitimate say in its future, this helps people feel that local government will act in the community’s overall interest, regardless of differing opinions.

People are more likely to have confidence in their local government if decisions are made in transparent and accountable ways.

It also encourages local governments to remember that they are acting on behalf of their community and helps them understand the importance of having open and ethical processes which adhere to the law and stand up to scrutiny.



editor@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Death-penalty decision delayed for alleged cold-case killer

William Talbott is charged here in the 1987 slaying of a young Victoria-area couple

Island Fire soccer sends three players to BC Summer Games

Oak Bay’s Jake Robson and two teammates round out U15 roster

Emergency crews responding to incident in Goldstream Provincial Park

Delays in both directions on the Trans-Canada Highway in Langford

Project provides barrier to suicides at hospital parkade

VIHA budgets $650,000 for work at Royal Jubilee Hospital parkade

Scam arrives on Saanich senior’s doorstep

Pair of fraudulent officers threaten to arrest 90-year-old woman

BC Games: Opening Ceremony from Laketown Ranch

Hundreds of athletes and thousands of volunteers, coaches, parents and officials

B.C. city wants pot punted from farmland

Concerned about conversion from growing food to making marijuana

World’s translators push back on forcing Trump interpreter to testify

Democrats had asked translator to testify about Trump’s lengthy conversation with Putin in Helsinki

No decision on B.C. school stabbing suspect’s mental fitness for trial

The BC Review Board could not determine whether Gabriel Klein, 21, is fit to stand trial

FRESH IDEA: Victoria tech firm beneficiary of streamlined government system

Software developer FreshWorks awarded $1.5-million contract using new bid program

Canadian government threatens to retaliate if Trump imposes auto tariffs

U.S president had suggested that auto imports pose a national security risk to the U.S.

Wildfire evacuation order forces bride to search for new wedding venue

Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards is under an order due to the Mount Eneas wildfire south of Peachland

Recent online kitten abuse video raises serious social media questions

UBC and UFV profs weigh in on the subject of online sharing, shaming, and our digital landscape

Most Read