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General News · 9th March 2012
Noba Anderson
COMMUNITY REGIONAL DISTRICT BUDGET MEETING
For the second year in a row at my request, Strathcona Regional District staff will give a community presentation of the SRD 2012-2016 Financial Plan, Thursday, March 15, Manson’s Hall, 7 pm, and I will be there to seek your input. These are your property tax dollars and the budget should be our service priorities in action. How do you want your $500,000 spent? What should be our annual contributions to parks acquisition? Do you want to fund bylaw enforcement? What are your future planning priorities? Discussions will centre on servicing levels (parks, planning, emergency program, grants in aid, general government, etc) and their related costs. The Financial Plan, which is available for viewing online at www.strathconard.ca will be presented for adoption by the Board of Directors at its March 22, 2012 meeting.

SQUIRREL COVE MARINA PROPOSAL
The SRD has been referred by the Province on an application made by Klahoose Resort Limited Partnership for a commercial marina in the inner Squirrel Cove, adjacent to the Klahoose reserve and community. This is a revised and scaled down version of an application made last year. Once the SRD is in receipt of a revised rezoning proposal, it will go through the formal SRD process including a public hearing. I have spoken extensively with senior staff in the Province about the need for good information to be made available and for good public process on applications like this. We have a commitment from the Province to hold a community information session on this application in conjunction with other agencies including the Regional District. Details and dates have yet to be worked out. I have also written to Chief James Delorme asking how we might best coordinate efforts to seek input from our community on this application. In the interim, Cameron Bezanson is the main contact on this file at the Province and can be reached at 250-751-7278 or AuthorizingAgency.Nanaimogov.bc.ca. To view the basic map, visit http://www.arfd.gov.bc.ca/ApplicationPosting/viewpost.jsp?PostID=27405. A more detailed package can be obtained upon request from Cameron. Please reference file: 1413569.

MEETING OF NON-PROFIT COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS
For the second year, I am inviting representatives from all Cortes community non-profit organizations to come discuss areas of mutual interest and possible collaboration as well as identify some island priorities for joint attention and Grant-In-Aid funding. If we were to put our attention and funds toward a couple of community priorities in 2012, what would they be? I request that each organization send two delegates to join this discussion Tuesday March 27th 1:00 pm, Manson’s Hall. Child care will be provided upon request.

MEETING OF CORTES TOURISM OPERATORS
The Strathcona Regional District has set tourism as its top regional priority this year. What might that mean in the long term for Cortes? Does Cortes’ tourism sector want any kind of organized support across the island or throughout the region? How do we envision Cortes’ future tourism? Is there a role for government in support of this sector locally or not? If you are directly involved in the tourism sector, please join me for an introductory conversation Tuesday March 27th 10 am, T'ai Li Lodge.

GRANT-IN-AID
Grant-In-Aid funds are part of the overall Cortes SRD budget and are awarded each year to local organizations that comprise the local governance backbone of Cortes and provide services for the public good. This year’s spring general intake deadline for grant application submissions is April 2nd. Please mail or email your submissions to me for May fund disbursements. Forms are attached to this article, or by request. At the meeting of non-profits on March 27th mentioned above, we will discuss the option of larger funding for priority projects or inter-organizational initiatives. The grant intake deadline for these can be set for a later date.

MEETING WITH MINISTERS THOMSON AND LAKE
I have secured a meeting with our MLA Claire Trevena and the Provincial Minister of the Environment - Terry Lake, and the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations – Steve Thomson on March 29th to discuss matters of forestry on Cortes Island. I will report out after the fact. All input welcome.

REGIONAL SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT PLAN
For two years at the Comox Strathcona Waste Management Service, we have been updating our Regional Solid Waste Management Plan. We are now reaching out to you and seeking your input. How do you want your waste handled? How can we improve reduction? To view the plan, visit www.cswm.ca/plan. Dova, our Cortes midden keeper, will be also joining the presentation to make the local link to our Cortes situation. Come talk trash (not trash talk) April 12th, 7 pm at the Gorge Hall.

RADIO SHOW
I am hosting a radio show ‘People’s Place in Politics’ aired live alternate Tuesdays at 11 am and repeated Saturdays at 2 pm. Each show has two main components, an update of regional district issues and a feature chat with a guest that represents some facet of Cortes political life. Chris Dragseth will join me March 13th for a conversation about Cortes’ Emergency Services program. Tune in.

PHONE SERVICE UPDATE
On the issue of loosing phone service when the power is out, Rob Hazlett from Telus recently wrote to tell me that the batteries in the one phone switch that is still consistently failing in Smelt Bay will be replaced very shortly. He writes, “While we are still making sure we haven’t overlooked any underlying issues, one thing to keep in mind is that rechargeable batteries might be designed to last 5-7 years but that life is greatly reduced with frequent power cycles. I have been told that many parts of Cortes experience in excess of 60 power outages per year, some of these close together which does not even allow the batteries to fully recharge before the next outage.” He also said that using the phone during power outages can decrease the battery life - more so receiving calls as the ringing that goes out on the line is similar to the voltage in your house.

Feel free to contact me about any of the above issues or anything else.

250-935-0320, directorcortesisland.com

In Gratitude, Noba Anderson