Democracy working

It is difficult to support letter writer John Fox’s request that QB’s mayor and council take back control of the democratic process

It is difficult to support letter writer John Fox’s request (‘QB Democracy’, The NEWS, Aug. 28) that Qualicum Beach’s mayor and council take back control of the democratic process and consider petitioning the B.C. Supreme Court to reverse the RDN vote regarding the boundary change issue.

Given the important and informed public debate held on the matter of local and regional land use and governance, during Fox’s absence from the country, it is clear that the democratic process unfolded as it should and was in good hands.

The fact is that those residents who were concerned about the town’s decision to advance the boundary change proposal as a minor amendment and not, as it should have been, as a regular amendment as required by municipal law and the RDN’s Regional Growth Strategy, had every right to bring their concerns, first, before the town council and then the RDN Board to whom it had been referred.

The right and opportunity to appear as delegates before the councils of these two levels of municipal government is provided as due process to all residents/electors at each and every open council or RDN board meeting. It is a vital component of the democratic process. Those requesting that the RDN directors give this matter sober second thought were applauded for their informed presentations. Those who supported the minor amendment also spoke and/or sent letters communicating their views.

Having respected the process which governs the deliberation of land use issues under the Regional Growth Strategy, to which the Town of Qualicum Beach is a full municipal partner, the RDN directors duly considered the matter and referred the proposal back to the town.

Surely this was an encouraging sign that the democratic process is alive and well.

Graham Riches

Qualicum Beach

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