Parksville mayor gets support from council

City councillors were reacting to mayor’s fiery speech last week

City council has the mayor’s back.

Chris Burger received support from city councillors Monday night when he asked for responses to his speech last week calling for a mayor’s caucus to better represent Island interests in the halls of power in Victoria and Ottawa.

Speaking at a Parksville and District Chamber of Commerce meeting last week at The Beach Club, Burger said Islanders “need to assert ourselves. I’m just not feeling like we’re getting any attention. We don’t have an effective voice, someone to pull us together.”

Those who spoke Monday night at the council table seemed to agree with Burger’s assertion.

“We miss out on Vancouver Island and I don’t think it’s fair and it’s about time someone stood up and said hey, we are over here,” said Coun. Sue Powell.

“It’s about time we started working together as an Island,” said Coun. Carrie Powell-Davidson.

Much of Burger’s complaint centres around infrastructure money, or the lack thereof in his perception, coming to the Island. That includes the Island’s rail system, which Burger believes should be re-started with provincial and federal money to bring back industry.

Coun. Marc Levebvre agreed “our voices are not being heard” and he said he was fully behind getting the railway up to standard.

“Let’s get the rails up and running and let’s get the big trucks off the road,” he said.

In other council news from Monday night:

• Council gave the go-ahead to six different special event applications which centred around the need for approval of street closures, parade routes, park use, etc. The applications approved were from and related to: Ballenas Secondary School graduation prom parade, Coastal Community Credit Union Employee Family Beach Day, Summer by the Sea street market, Oceanside 10K Run and the ALS Walk, PGOSA summer events and the Friends of Foster Park Easter Egg Hunt and Halloween Pumpkin Walk.

• Jan Kretz of Adventures Sea Kayaking made a presentation to council and asked for some changes to her arrangement with the city to use the old hovercraft landing site in Community Park for her business. Last summer, despite an agreement with the city for the use of the site, the city effectively took away the site for the month of August when it painted a labyrinth on the hovercraft landing area. Council directed staff Monday to look into Kretz’ concerns — including signage —  and report back.

• Island Health medical health officer Dr. Paul Hasselback gave council a report on health at the local level. There weren’t many highlights, but Hasselback did point to the region’s lower-than-average birth rate and a higher-than-average death rate from motor vehicle accidents. Coun. Bill Neufeld asked questions about housing costs in the region and how they related to health. He said “housing is a grossly underrated concern when it comes to health issues” and Hasselback agreed.

• In the closest vote of the night (4-3), council passed a staff recommendation related to carriage houses, specifically related to changing the setback for these dwelling from the back property line to six metres from three metres for two-storey carriage houses. Councillors Neufeld, Powell-Davison and Al Greir were opposed.

• Council passed a motion to increase sewer user rates six per cent, with councillors Powell and Neufeld opposed.

• Council unanimously gave three readings to the water service system amendment bylaw.

•  Council adopted what were dubbed “strategic priority themes” put forward by Mayor Chris Burger, the culmination of what Powell-Davidson said were many discussions amongst council. Only Neufeld was opposed.

Just Posted

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased in Parksville

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

The Oceanside Minor Lacrosse Association will honour their many volunteers on June 26. (PQB News file photo)
Oceanside Minor Lacrosse to honour volunteers on June 26

Appreciation event set for Parksville Community Park

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

A blood drive in support of 1-year-old Rielynn Gormley of Agassiz is scheduled for Monday, June 28 at Tzeachten First Nation Community Hall in Chilliwack. Rielynn lives with type 3 von Willebrand disease, which makes it difficult for her to stop bleeding. (Screenshot/Canadian Blood Services)
Upcoming blood drive in honour of Fraser Valley toddler with rare blood condition

The Gormley family has organized a blood drive in Chilliwack on June 28

One Reconciliation Pole and two Welcome Figures were unveiled during a ceremony in honour of truth and reconciliation on National Peoples Indigenous Day at the Vancouver School District in Vancouver, B.C., on Friday, June 21, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Horgan marks Indigenous Peoples Day by urging recognition of systemic racism

National Indigenous Peoples Day has been marked in Canada since 1996

A man makes his way past signage to a mass COVID-19 vaccination centre at the University of Toronto’s Mississauga campus during the COVID-19 pandemic in Mississauga, Ont., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Canadians encouraged to see mRNA shots as interchangeable as more 2nd doses open up

Doctors urge people not to hesitate if offered Moderna after getting Pfizer for their first shot

Chief of Defence Staff Jonathan Vance sits in the front row during a news conference in Ottawa on June 26, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Defence committee rises without report on Vance allegations

Committee had been investigating the government’s handling of complaints against former defence chief

The Coquihalla Lakes washroom is getting upgrades. (Submitted)
Coquihalla to get upgrades to aging washrooms

The Ministry of Transportation is providing $1 million in funding to upgrade 3 rest areas

Most Read