North Cowichan is encouraging residents of the municipality to vote “yes” on the regional recreation referendum question that will be part of the municipal elections on Oct. 15
Electors will be asked to vote on the Cowichan Valley Regional District’s new regional recreation funding model.
If approved, the funding model would save North Cowichan $714,000 in recreation costs each year.
The CVRD and its municipal partners, including North Cowichan, have been trying to find an equitable funding model for recreation services in the Cowichan region for many years.
The preferred model, which is based on facility-usage data, has been identified and is what residents will be voting on in the referendum.
Currently, there are nine “regionally significant recreation facilities” included, all of which are owned and operated by different jurisdictions, and funded inequitably by different taxpayers.
For example, currently only a few jurisdictions pay for the Cowichan Community Centre, but residents from all jurisdictions in the region use the facility either a little or a lot.
Under the new model, each jurisdiction would pay an amount based on how much the residents use the facility.
“It’s important to understand the overall positive impact this will have for the municipality,” said Mayor Al Siebring.
“By voting yes, you will help to ensure North Cowichan begins paying a fair and equitable portion of regional recreation costs, while saving the municipality $714,000 each year.”
Different areas of the municipality currently contribute to different facilities, so the impact to North Cowichan property owners will vary based on location.
For most North Cowichan residents, this could mean a property tax decrease of approximately $108.32 for an average single-family home.
But residents that live in the north part of the municipality (Crofton and Chemainus areas) could see a property tax increase of approximately $113.34.
Learn more by visiting www.ConnectNorthCowichan.ca/regional-recreation.