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Motion to increase size of Qualicum Beach council by 2 members fails

Councillor moves to include question during municipal election
(PQB News file photo)

Qualicum Beach council has declined to endorse a staff recommendation to adopt a bylaw that would add a pair of extra town politicians.

Bylaw No. 770, 2022 already received three readings and was recommended for adoption at council’s regular meeting on April 6. Coun. Anne Skipsey moved the motion for adoption but it failed as it did not receive a seconder.

No discussion took place.

The bylaw, had it passed, would have allowed the town to increase council size from a mayor and four councillors to a mayor and six councillors.

READ MORE: Mayor: Increasing Qualicum Beach council size could cost town $100,000

At the last council meeting on March 16, the issue of remuneration was discussed with some members of council opposing a reduction in pay should they add two more councillors. Mayor Brian Wiese also expressed at the time his preference for the community to decide on the issue via a referendum.

Coun. Scott Harrison during the committee and liaison reports said he was surprised to see the motion fail. He went on to declare a notice of motion that staff present a draft wording for a question on the election ballot to increase council size to seven.

“I do think seven is better,” said Harrison. “I do think that having that in the ballot is the right way to do things. I don’t think we should just let this slide.”

Coun. Teunis Westbroek agreed with Harrison’s notice of motion as he intended to do the same. He indicated he would have seconded the motion to adopt inorder to debate and discuss it but missed the opportunity due to computer glitch. He did raise the issue of the stipend and his opposition to any reduction.

“I think it would be fair for us to have a committee or perhaps work with staff or a consultant to determine what pay would be if we went to six members of council so people would know that,” said Westbroek.

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Michael Briones

About the Author: Michael Briones

I rejoined the PQB News team in April 2017 from the Comox Valley Echo, having previously covered sports for The NEWS in 1997.
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