OCP has roots in Area E

Area E will not pay any more in taxation due to having a community plan

In answer to Mr. Zeeman’s letter to the editor “No clear OCP mandate” and the Hugs & Slugs comment on May 11 in the Nelson Star.

Taxation

The Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) has some services that are mandated by the provincial government and all electoral areas and municipalities must contribute through taxation. At the RDCK, land use planners work in the Development Services Department which is a mandated service. Area E has contributed to the service for many years and while all other rural areas of the RDCK have received planning services, Area E has not despite its healthy contribution to the service. The development services department has other functions such as building permits, customer service, etc. Area E will not pay any more in taxation due to having a community plan. The department exists whether we have a plan or not. The money used to prepare the plan thus far would simply have stayed in the department and been used on other areas.

 

Support for the Community Plan

In 2010 a survey was sent by address mail to 2,100 addresses in Area E and absentee owners. A 40 per cent return received on the survey is a very good response rate and exceeds the number of people that come out to vote at elections. The survey contained 63 questions focused on land use and people’s values about the land. For example 93 per cent of the respondents believed lakeshore development should be conducted in an environmentally sensitive fashion. Seventy-seven per cent of respondents thought the RDCK should manage the location of commercial and industrial growth.

In Balfour, where Mr. Zeeman lives, the response to the survey was vigorous with 180 households answering the survey and the response was decisive with there being more surveys favouring a community plan than the combination of undecided and negative responses.

The request for community planning was brought forth by the former director for the area at the request of Harrop-Procter residents. It was on the RDCK list of priorities when I became a director specific to Harrop-Procter. The leadership of the Balfour Chamber of Commerce, at the time, expressed interest in the concept at my initial meeting with them. On this basis the development services department and I decided to test the idea of planning in all of Area E in 2009. Since that time we have sent out two newsletters, a survey, held three public meetings at different times in all four communities of Area E, taken out a full page newspaper ad, sent unaddressed mail notices of meetings, placed notices in the Nelson Star and Pennywise, posted the survey and meeting notices on my blog and sent our community emails where we have email addresses.

This is a community process meant to plan for amenities the community wants, define Area E to government ministries, new residents, commercial ventures and land developers so that the community retains its rural nature. Most of the draft community plan is not regulatory and does not impose restrictions on landowners. It is not zoning. Zoning would require a separate process at the request of a community. Some areas wish they had zoning now given the invasive and undesirable land uses that are taking place in their neighbourhoods but such requests are community driven: not imposed randomly by the RDCK.

Ramona Faust

Area E Director

Regional District of

Central Kootenay

Just Posted

TELUS to install fibre in Nelson

New cable will be in place this year

Vancouver choir with Nelson roots ‘will fill your heart’

Group directed by three Corazón alumni performs this week in Nelson

Nelson author launches Grocery Story April 7

New book about consumer-owned grocery stores pulls back the curtain on the grocery giants

Cottonwood Lake group applauds RDCK purchase but wants to buy more

Purchased forest covers 33 per cent of land to be logged

Slocan Valley to be ‘lit up’ with high-speed internet in 12 months

125 kilometres of fibre-optic cable to be laid from Nakusp to Playmor Junction

Edmonton judge rules Omar Khadr’s sentence has expired

Eight-year sentence imposed in 2010 would have ended last October had Khadr remained in custody

Sources say Trudeau rejected Wilson-Raybould’s conservative pick for high court

Wilson-Raybould said Monday “there was no conflict between the PM and myself”

First Nations public art piece stolen in Nanaimo

Spindle Whorl went missing over the weekend, according to Nanaimo RCMP

Father-son duo at B.C. Children’s Hospital helps new dads fight depression

The pair teamed up to introduce the only known research-based mindfulness workshop for new dads

Mexican restaurant in B.C. told to take down Mexican flag

General manager of Primo’s Mexican Grill in White Rock: ‘I’ve never heard of anything like this’

B.C. NDP moves to provide tax credits, tax cut for LNG Canada

Provincial sales tax break of $596 million repayable after construction

COLUMN: Smart phone too powerful a tool to yank from students’ hands

Rather than ban them from schools, let’s teach kids to harness their phone’s power and use it properly

B.C. river cleanup crew finds bag of discarded sex toys

Chilliwack volunteers stumble on unexpected find while removing 600 lbs of trash from riverway

Trudeau sells housing plan in visit to hot real estate market in B.C.

Trudeau said the budget contains measures to help first-time buyers

Most Read