Port McNeill council is gearing up to attend the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) Convention in September.
“There are a few items that council is considering for the UBCM,” said Port McNeill Mayor Shirley Ackland in a brief interview, before listing a few of the resolutions Port McNeill council has supported and will follow up on, namely, “Resolution for the provincial government to fully fund post-secondary education and make it accessible to rural and remote communities; Review by the Utilities commission on the two tiered BC Hydro system; Our Mount Waddington communities have no access to an alternative fuel, unless it is firewood and many of our citizens, especially our seniors, are having great difficulty paying their exorbitant hydro bills; and we will also be following up on our agenda item at the Small Talk forum last year about the need for small resource based communities to see 1-2% of the monies realized by companies who log, mine, or take other resources from our communities.
The provincial government introduced the Rural Dividend program this year, but it is 75 million over three years for rural and remote communities. It pits communities in competition against one another for a set amount of money that is only guaranteed for three years.”
Mayor Ackland also mentioned that she is sure that “all Vancouver Island communities will speak to the need for the provincial government to replenish the funds for the Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET). Many of our communities were able to access funds to build harbour expansions, promote economic development projects.”