Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Gabriola Sounder
Regional District of Nanaimo-sponsored resolutions on housing, water supply, parking in rural areas and more were endorsed at the September Union of BC Municipalities convention.
The membership endorsed 162 resolutions in total. All six resolutions submitted by the RDN were endorsed as was the single resolution submitted by the Islands Trust. That resolution called for the B.C. government to co-develop new legislation wth First Nations on the protection of biodiversity, ecosystem health and species at risk.
The RDN’s resolution on B.C.’s Homes for People Action Plan requests that the province not implement aspects of the plan such as allowing up to four homes on a parcel where currently only one home is permitted until legislation is drafted in consultation with local governments and notes that “while very appropriate in many urban settings” it could be “in conflict with the ability to service an influx of residents” and ecological protection in other jurisdictions.
Regional Water Supply Strategies advocates for the Ministry of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship to lead the creation and management of consistent strategies following the watershed map of the province and divided by regional district in service to addressing sustainable drinking water supplies.
The RDN’s resolution on parking calls for the province to grant regional districts the authority under the B.C. Motor Vehicle Act to regulate and enforce vehicle parking on provincial roads and rights-of-way with the same authority as municipalities. The UBCM membership has submitted similar resolutions to the province in previous years.
In the child care space, the RDN sponsored a resolution that advocates for the current grant-based $10-a-day child care spaces application process for organizations to be replaced with multi-year funding to local and Indigenous governments and nonprofit organizations and says the current system is burdensome for applicants as they lack resources to navigate it. The resolution also says that universal child care expansion should uphold United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples obligations and support “the involvement of, but … not rely on, local and Indigenous governments and nonprofit organizations to coordinate design and implementation.”
Another resolution from the RDN calls for the Controlled Alien Species Regulation, which controls the possession, breeding, shipping and releasing of animals not native to B.C., to be amended to prohibit all Felids, including Servals, other than the domestic cat, and all Canids other than the domestic dog.
The sixth resolution sponsored by the RDN and endorsed by the UBCM membership advocates for an increase to the existing tax exemption for volunteer firefighters and search and rescue volunteers from $3,000 to $10,000.