General News · 10th October 2018
Please find attached below a short newsletter (the text contents of which are pasted below) which will be in Cortes mailboxes on Friday.
Zoning Bylaw Sent Back for Review
At my direction, the Regional District Board has sent the proposed revised Cortes Zoning Bylaw back to staff for further review and community engagement. It will not proceed as presented but rather come back to you again. Thank-you to all who gave input! It was just what was needed (and indeed what I banked on) to get more staff time to complete this review in a way that will work for the long-term interests of Cortes. Both staff and politicians heard you loud and clear!
Based on what I heard from you, I do not want to support the bylaw until it incorporates:
- Cannabis regulations that are no more restrictive than senior government licenses,
- Legalization of short-term vacation rentals,
- Small-scale retail re-sale on residential lots,
- More flexibility for home based businesses,
- No up-zoning of land or water lots (ie Coulter Bay) that have failed re-zonings,
- Further rigor on marine park zones,
- Full moorage rights in water zones, and
- Fixes to outright errors.
Further, I will request that the Agriculture Land Commission do a review of Cortes ALR lands.
The Cortes Transportation Committee and the Strathcona Community Health Network co-hosted a Transportation discussion with the Minister of Transportation, largely to present the idea of a cross-Quadra shuttle between ferries. I have a commitment from BC Ferries senior executives and the Minister to work with us on this effort. We will submit a proposal to them within the next few days.
Connected Coast Corporation Formed
The Strathcona Regional District (SRD) has launched a new regional broadband service and its first corporation to bring improved broadband infrastructure to the region. The Strathcona Connected Coast Network Corporation (SCCNC) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the SRD and will be responsible for rolling out the $45.4M Connected Coast project announced earlier this.
This project will bring new or improved high-speed internet accessibility by constructing a new subsea fibre optic cable and landing sites in 154 rural and remote coastal communities. Funding for the Connected Coast project is being provided in full through Provincial and Federal grants. Community consultations are coming. Further information on the project is available at: connectedcoast.ca
Home away from Home
I have been part of a group working toward establishing a ‘Home-Away-From-Home” and “Hospital Hostel” on the Campbell River hospital grounds. There are two parts to this vision. First is a hostel where patients can stay when discharged late from the hospital. Second is a ‘Home-Away-From-Home’ where families can stay when their children are in hospital or when expectant mothers are awaiting the birth of their baby.
Funders with deep enough pockets to build the facility are very interested! The obstacle has been the lack of seed funds to develop a business case. The SRD has donated $15,000 to the Children's Health Foundation so they can do this financial modeling work. I am excited by this effort and committed to this excellent regional project.
Cortes Health Projects
Mental Health & Substance Use - I am part of a Cortes group who is collaborating with other island communities on a Mental Health and Substance Use project. We want to help make it easier for people to find local support resources by compiling an easily accessible central list. We also want to help decrease mental health stigma on Cortes through free mental health first aid training. So many people we know and love really struggle.
Cortes Women’s Centre - I have recently been compelled to support a vision presented to me to create a Cortes women’s center, especially to support women in unsafe or disabling situations. I believe that having a resource center on island would greatly impact the well being physically, financially and psychologically for women and families on Cortes.
Seniors Health Action Team - The Strathcona Community Health Network, that I co-chair, met on Cortes last month. Before presenting publicly about the network and our regional housing work, we hosted Cortes community leaders in the health field to share with us and each other their projects. We heard from the Housing Committee, the Seniors Health Action group and the Health Association regarding their Augmented Home Support program.
In Gratitude, Noba Anderson
Regional Director for Cortes to the Strathcona Regional District
Not fully funded !
Comment by Rod Lee on 11th October 2018
Noba, I think it is misleading to everyone when you indicate this project is "fully funded" by Provincial and Federal governments when we all know that we will be paying a tax before this service will be available!
I love the idea of a women's center!
Comment by Ashley on 11th October 2018
This would be so great to have on this island! It seems more than necessary.
Thank you Noba for working on this and for all the hard work you put into this community.
Banking on wasted SRD Resources?
Comment by Carol Lewis on 11th October 2018
So, you were banking on the SRD spending thousands of dollars in staff time, travel expenses, hall rental fees and advertising to hold a formal public hearing (never mind the costs of the bylaw being drafted and having its 1st and 2nd reading), PRIOR to receiving community input? REALLY? Banking on it ... well put.