BILL MCQUARRIE PHOTO The Port McNeill Marina could potentially be expanding its operations if Alan Jackman and council are able to get on the same page and work together.

Resident wants to expand Port McNeill marina’s current operations

The plan to expand operations that was presented to council remains in the concept stage.

A presentation by Alan Jackman of North Island Marina led the agenda at Port McNeill’s June 3 town council meeting.

Jackman was there to brief council on the marina’s plans to expand their current operations to include better support for the increasing boat traffic from the lower mainland and pacific northwest.

Jackman noted that currently there are no facilities in Port McNeill capable of supporting – in terms of maintenance and repairs – the larger yachts that are arriving in the port. Referring to boats in the 48 to 60 foot and above range, he explained, “It has always been our dream to expand the harbour to better service the larger commercial and pleasure boats.”

On behalf of the marina, Jackman was asking council for a letter of support, indicating they backed the general concept of an expanded port facility, stating, “We are hopeful you see the benefits to the investment in the community.”

Although the idea has been talked about as far back as 1985, the plan presented to council remains in the concept stage and has yet to involve such agencies as the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, as well as the Ministries of Environment for both the province and federal governments.

According to Jackman, while local First Nations are aware of the plans, no formal consultations have begun.

When Mayor Gaby Wickstrom asked about the need for an Archaeological Impact Assessment, Jackman explained that the need for an assessment wouldn’t be known until they see, “…what the first few shovels find.”

Later in a telephone interview, Jackman explained that nothing had ever been discovered in previous construction projects on the property, but he was aware of the need to move forward cautiously.

Coun. Derek Koel and Coun. Shelley Downey mentioned that current zoning doesn’t allow for the project and would likely require a review and possible amendment to the Official Community Plan (OCP).

Following the question period, Koel put forward a motion asking that staff prepare a report detailing the implications the project might have on the OCP and what liabilities council and the town might have with respect to a letter of support.

Objecting to the motion and resulting delay, Coun. Ryan Mitchell asked if there was any real benefit to the staff preparing the report.

The motion was passed, with Mitchell abstaining and the request for the support letter has been handed over to staff. No timeline for reporting back to council was provided.

In other council news, The Tourism Steering Committee updated council on their progress, advising that they had selected committee members and would be asking Council to approve the choices they had made.

A motion to appoint the following committee members was approved: Bruce McMorran and Kristie Eccleston (appointed for a one year term) and Jonna Dixon, Liza Furney, Cheryl Jorgenson, Bill McQuarrie and Boni Sharpe (appointed for a two year term).

The steering committee will be tasked with developing short and long-term plans for growing the tourism industry in Port McNeill. The goal of the committee is to help both town and industry planners develop and implement successful strategies that will attract more tourists and extend the stay of those who do travel to the area.

Next council meeting is June 17 at 7 p.m. and the public is welcome to attend. For copies of agenda and previous minutes, visit

– Bill McQuarrie article

Just Posted

Eke Me-Xi Learning Centre’s 2018-2019 graduating class

The Eke Me-Xi Learning Centre is located on the Tsulquate reserve in the North Island.

Skin deep: A look inside the ink behind Beacon Tattoo

Patrick Berube, owner of Beacon Tattoo, spends most of his Tuesdays at… Continue reading

Second recreational cannabis shop opens its doors in Port Hardy

Pacificanna owner Darren Saunders was excited to finally see his family-run business open up shop.

Bradshaw’s Photo Highlight: A lone crow landing beside an eagle

“I saw an eagle just sitting there, but I had a feeling it wouldn’t be there long as I got closer”

Port McNeill council’s June 17 meeting features ‘packed agenda’

A draft policy on wildfire response for the Port McNeill Volunteer Fire Department was presented.

Astronaut David Saint-Jacques returns to Earth, sets Canadian space record

Native of Saint-Lambert, Que., set a record for longest single spaceflight by a Canadian at 204 days

Poll: Rising gas prices force B.C. residents rethink summer road trips

63 per cent of respondents reported gas prices are impacting their day-to-day finances

PHOTO: Moose cow and calf relax in Williams Lake flower garden

The homeowners got a surprise when they checked their most recent surveillance footage

Two in hospital after plane crashes in Okanagan Lake

RCMP say wheels left down caused landing plane to overturn on lake

The world’s Indigenous speakers gather in B.C.’s capital to revitalize languages

Organizers estimate about 1,000 delegates from 20 countries will be at the conference

Join talks on international treaty: B.C. First Nations mark ‘historic moment’

Representatives of the Ktunaxa, Syilx/Okanagan and Secwepemc Nations participated

Companies need clearer rules on workplace relationships, study suggests

One-third of Canadians have been in love at work, and half say no policy on the matter exists

WITH VIDEO: Two endangered marmots released on Vancouver Island

With three new pups born in May, two more Vancouver Island Marmots… Continue reading

‘Text neck’ causing bone spurs to grow from millennials’ skulls, researchers say

Technology use from early childhood causing abnormal bone growths in 41 per cent of young adults

Most Read