The Regional District of Nanaimo board has approved the formation of an Oceanside Services Recreation Grant Subcommittee.
The committee will be tasked with reviewing recreation grant applications and provide recommendations to the Oceanside Services Committee. Three directors will be appointed to the sub-committee.
Electoral Area F (Coombs, Hilliers, Errington, Whiskey Creek, Meadowood)alternate Julian Fell called the creation of the subcommittee “interesting.”
“In 2019 we abolished all these committees and replaced them with the Oceanside Services Committee,” said Fell. “We’re now putting all those committees back again because they had very specific functions. In this case this was a committee that came through the recreation advisory group.”
The board’s approval was needed as there are two intake deadlines currently set as the last Friday of April and September.
In April 2019, the board agreed to eliminate the District 69 Recreation Commission, whose role was to assist the RDN in determining the recreational needs of District 69 as well as reviewing recreation grant applicants for recommendation to the board for approval.
It was replaced by the Oceanside Services Committee, which Electoral Area F director Bob Rogers stated at the time that “it will give improved governance but at the same time maintain our core values of being open to the public, inviting people to comment, recommendations and suggestions.”
When the commission was eliminated, the RDN recreation services staff took over the responsibility of gauging the eligibility of all recreational grant applications and recommend them to the OSC for endorsement.
But last December, Parksville director Adam Fras felt that the review of applicants was not thorough enough and recommended a subcommittee be formed.
“I do think there is value in having us go through the grant applications before we approve them,” said Fras at the time. “While staff administers them and submit them to us, they give suggestions towards eligibility requirements but I don’t think really they gone through them with a fine-tooth comb.”
The Oceanside Services Recreation Grant has $75,000 that District 69 groups and organizations can apply for recreation programs, special events or project which would benefit specific communities or the district as a whole. The maximum amount of $2,5000 can be allocated to programs or projects that fall under the youth or community categories.