Parksville Mayor Ed Mayne. (PQB News file photo)

Parksville Mayor Ed Mayne. (PQB News file photo)

Mayor Ed Mayne writes to Parksville residents, addressing contentious community centre issue

Council believes shift will be better for community

Mayor Ed Mayne has penned a letter to the residents of Parksville, dated March 17, concerning the Parksville Community Centre (PCC).

In his letter, he wrote the PCC will continue to service the community for many years to come, that city council recognizes the changes in use from a rental facility is a shift for residents, but that council truly believes the shift will be better for the community.

Council’s decision was based on the direction of the community, guidance from the Mayor’s Roundtable discussion, and from the survey conducted which directly asked residents what they wanted.

The decision was also made according to five objectives: economic development, community safety, affordable housing, recreation and health care.

“One of the key elements that weaves itself through these objectives is the necessity to attract young families to the community,” wrote Mayne.

READ MORE: City of Parksville offers update on closure of community centre

“This was the premise of our decision. The PCC was built at the turn of this century and created under a model that did not, in itself, provide community programs. Instead, the PCC operated as a rental facility, no different than other landlords in our community which provide short-term rental space. After 20 years, this model has not kept up with the growing needs of our ever-changing and evolving community. The costs continued to escalate, and the reality is that the taxpayers of Parksville were subsidizing the rents of organizations, in many instances, visitors to the City of Parksville. This gave the PCC an unfair advantage over other rental facilities with the annual subsidy amounting to about 1.7 per cent of the city’s total tax revenue.”

Mayne stated that, as a growing community, it has been suggested that Parksville requires a community centre.

While he and council agree with the notion, they question what is a community centre. His letter states that such a facility should provide ongoing programs for residents of all ages, provide daycare services to young families and provide a safe and secure environment for youth to enjoy.

Mayne’s full letter can be found at the city website: parksville.ca

He asks residents to not hesitate contacting him directly if they have further questions or concerns. Phone: 250-954-4661 or email mayor@parksville.ca.

— NEWS Staff, submitted

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