Tim McGonigle, councillor. (File photo)

Tim McGonigle, councillor. (File photo)

Lake Cowichan council declines e-bike loans

Forward thinking bylaw not yet required, McGonigle says

The Town of Lake Cowichan council wasn’t ready to take the step of granting loans to councillors for the purchase of e-bikes.

At a special council meeting on Sept. 6, council gave the first three readings to the Town of Lake Cowichan Council Remuneration and Expense Bylaw. While the bylaw passed all three readings with just minor changes, one thing that stood out was the striking from the bylaw of a provision that would have seen loans to councillors for the purchase of e-bikes.

“It’s a little bit early for us to be suggesting at this time,” said Councillor Tim McGonigle, who motioned for its removal. “It could be looked at in a future council remuneration bylaw if the increase in usage is occurring.”

Coun. Kristine Sandhu seconded McGonigle’s motion and votes for its removal, and the bylaw itself, were both subsequently passed.

The provision had read: “Council may provide a loan to a maximum of $5,000 for the council member for the purchase of an e-bike at interest rates the Town currently receives on its investments. The purchase must be supported by a purchase receipt and evidence of insurance coverage must be also provided. Any loan and accrued interest must be fully repaid when a member retires or is not re-elected.”

Mayor Bob Day said the idea is very forward-thinking.

“The consultant hired to recommend the council remuneration for the next council saw this in another community and thought it would be a good suggestion,” Day explained. “My wife and I own e-bikes and we love them. Anyone who doesn’t think they can ride a bike again should consider giving one a try.”

Lake Cowichan