The story that follows contains perspectives not necessarily shared by the Cortes Radio Society, its board, staff, volunteers or membership.
On Monday, November 25, 2019, the forest management company Mosaic began shutting down its Vancouver Island harvesting operations because of “very challenging pricing and market conditions.” Approximately 2,000 people – contractors, union and non union workers, are being dismissed “ahead of the usual winter shutdown.” Mosaic plans to “resume harvesting when the market outlook improves,” but some see this as symptomatic of a much larger industry problem. Sierra Club BC and the Wilderness Committee had planned to hold an event in Campbell River’s downtown Community Centre that same day. Two hours before this was to begin, the city of Campbell River cancelled it because of “the number of people anticipated, the strong potential for highly-charged emotion, and lack of time to establish a security plan for this booking.” This morning’s program is about the crises in our forests.
Rapid urbanization in the 1950’s caused development in rural areas, with residents commuting to urban centres for work. Development in the rural areas increased demand for services such as water, sewage and zoning. By 1965, the Province amended the Municipal Act to enable the creation of regional districts. Originally, the powers and services of the regional districts were quite limited; however, as regional districts became more established they were granted more power by the B.C. government. Today regional districts help achieve regional economies of scale, and provide flexible service arrangements in which residents only pay for the services they receive. – BC Government Website
Directors are only entitled to vote on matters for which the area they represent has a vested interest. Typically this will include general corporate matters as well as services for which the area contributes financially. – SRD Website
It is only when they go wrong that machines remind you how powerful they are. – Clive James
[EDITORIAL] When things work, at least well enough for our comfort, we don’t have to pay much attention to them. This is how I’ve felt about local government for most of my lifetime. In the course of the last couple of years, however, I’ve been forced to think a lot about how local government works — specifically, the relationship between small rural Areas like Cortes Island, and Regional Districts like SRD.
Should the Comox Strathcona Regional Hospital District advocate for health care services on behalf of its constituents? Or is the district’s role limited to funding 40 percent of selected capital projects proposed by the Vancouver Island Health Authority and levying appropriate taxes?