Parksville Downtown Business Association members

Parksville Downtown Business Association board defends budget decisions

Craig Street group's leader continued to question board decisions at AGM on Tuesday night; new directors elected

The Parksville Downtown Business Association plans to spend $22,000 sprucing up the streets of the city in 2015, members learned at the group’s annual general meeting on Tuesday.

About 75 people packed a small room at the Parksville Community and Conference Centre for the meeting, an attendance figure not lost on past president Michelle Jones, who marshalled members through the agenda.

“This is the most people we’ve had at an AGM,” said Jones. “The more people who get involved, the more we can get done. We realized through the summer and into the spring that people were getting more interested in downtown and what we do.”

Jones may have been addressing not only renewed interest in the downtown, but some dissent among members that became apparent when a group of Craig Street merchants appeared before city council last year unhappy with what they perceived as a lack of attention to their shopping district from the PDBA. One of the leaders of that Craig Street group, Barry Evans, asked some pointed questions at the AGM on Tuesday night about the need for a salaried employee.

About one-third of the association’s $155,000 budget is spent on the salary of the executive director.

“You don’t get things done when everyone is doing it as volunteers,” said Jones. “If we have big hopes of moving things forward, we need staff to do it.”

Evans pressed the issue, saying the city bylaw establishing and setting rules for the PDBA does not include provisions for the hiring of staff.

“The bylaw doesn’t exclude us from paying a salary,” Jones countered. “I don’t read the bylaw the same way you do.”

Evans, and others, also wanted board members to explain expenditures related to a study examining the feasibility of a funicular (cable railway) to link Community Park with the downtown core. The association will end up spending about $12,000 on this study, $8,000 in 2015.

“You just went ahead and spent it without asking the membership,” said Evans. “Don’t you think you should have went to the membership?”

PDBA member Penny Shantz entered the conversation, saying the board is elected by the membership and entrusted to do the association’s business.

“Any non-profit society depends on their board,” said Shantz. “A lot of people in this room believe they (the board) are doing a good job.”

The PDBA’s 2015 budget suggests project spending of $87,450 (up from $61,550 in 2014) and administration costs of $80,240 (about $500 more than 2014). Jones said that while projects, including streetscaping and a Christmas program, have specific budget figures assigned to them now, it’s up to the new board to shuffle priorities, and money, as it sees fit.

Members elected seven new board members Tuesday night from a list of 11 names. President Craig Carmichael (Island Exposures Art Gallery) decided not to run for re-election. The new board members are: Melisa Beatty (Coastal Community Credit Union), Cindy Craig (Oceanside Stylist and Barber Shoppe), Randy Henson (Quality Foods), Sandy Herle (Close to You Ladies Fashion, Lingerie and Footwear), Kristy Lotzien (Soak Essentials), Tony MacAulay (McLane and MacAulay Notories Public) and Heather Taylor (Blossoms ’n Such Flowers, Botanicals, Artisan Works).

The five board members who will serve the second year of their two-year terms are: Judy Evans (Mercedes Lane), Michelle Jones (Timberlake-Jones Engineering), Carol Ormiston, (Parksville Home Hardware), Neil Watson (HollisWealth) and Arthur Wong (The Beach Club Resort).

Just Posted

Qualicum Beach Hemsworth Road Trailway Project begins

Trail closed until construction is complete in Septmeber

Downtown Youth Ambassadors back in Parksville lending helping hand

Jose Hope and Jared Walmark hit the streets five days a week to help tourists, residents

DayPass transit program gets passing grade

RDN review shows initiative reduced conflicts and increased revenues

Parksville senior donates money from condo sale to Brazil for school

Giancarlo Chitto donates close to $435,000 to help build educational facility

Heat warning issued for Vancouver Island

Temperatures expected to cool down later this week

VIDEO: Visual recap of Vancouver Island MusicFest

Walk Off The Earth, Passenger, Arlo Guthrie among highlights

Hawaii volcano boat tours continue after ‘lava bomb’ injuries

“An explosion occurred near the shoreline hurling hot lava rocks towards the boat and injuring several passengers.”

Trump returns from summit with Putin to forceful criticism

“Shameful,” ”disgraceful,” ”weak,” were a few of the comments. Makes the U.S. “look like a pushover,” said GOP Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee.

Obama to deliver Mandela address in likely rebuke to Trump

Former U.S. President Barack Obama Monday praised Kenya’s president and opposition leader for working together but said this East African country must do more to end corruption.

Trudeau asks transport minister to tackle Greyhound’s western pullout

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s asked Transport Minister Marc Garneau to find solutions in Greyhound Canada’s absence.

Missing B.C. Serval cat creates buzz online, pleas for help

Aquila, an African Serval, disappeared from a Fernie, B.C. backyard sometime on Friday, July 13.

Trudeau’s youth council divided over Trans Mountain pipeline purchase

A letter signed by 16 past and present members was made public today, asking the federal government to reverse course

Hulk Hogan reinstated into wrestling Hall of Fame

Hogan had used racial slurs caught on video when talking about his daughter sleeping with a black man

Island wide crime spree leads to multiple charges against Cowichan Valley resident

Social Media and citizens of the North Island played a big role in solving the case.

Most Read