North Copwichan’s council must decide if it wants to continue with new RCMP detachment project and approval process while the COVID-19 crisis continues. (File photo)

North Copwichan’s council must decide if it wants to continue with new RCMP detachment project and approval process while the COVID-19 crisis continues. (File photo)

North Cowichan must decide if it wants to continue with new RCMP building this year

Municiplaity wants to use alternative approval process instead of referendum

The Municipality of North Cowichan is expected to make a decision on whether it wants to continue to the next step in the construction of the new $40 million RCMP detachment at its meeting on April 15.

Staff will ask if council wants to move forward with its plans for an alternative approval process to be held to determine if the electorate wants to borrow the money for the new detachment while the COVID-19 crisis continues.

RELATED STORY: COUNCIL CHOOSES AAP OVER REFERENDUM TO GET VOTER APPROVAL ON NEW RCMP DETACHMENT SPENDING

In a report by Megan Jordan, the municipality’s communications director, Jordan said failing to move forward at this time will delay the project until next year.

She said that to enable staff to move forward with the project this year, staff are proposing to remove one of the elements of the plan previously approved by council.

“At this time, it is no longer feasible to carry out a media/resident tour of the existing RCMP detachment due to physical distancing orders put in place by the Provincial Health Officer,” Jordan said.

Jordan said that by shifting North Cowichan’s emphasis more toward digital communication, the public can still be provided with the necessary information to proceed with the alternative approval process safely, notwithstanding the 90-day postponement of all public engagement made by council on March 18 when the COVID-19 crisis first struck the area.

RELATED STORY: NEW NORTH COWICHAN/DUNCAN RCMP BUILDING ESTIMATED TO COST $40 MILLION

The municipality decided in a council meeting on July 17, 2019 to use the alternative approval process to determine if the electorate wants to borrow the money for the new detachment.

An AAP requires that 10 per cent or more of the eligible voters in a municipality must sign and submit response forms in opposition to the project to stop the borrowing process from proceeding.

If 10 per cent of voters in North Cowichan sign forms in opposition to the project, the municipality would then have to choose to either hold a referendum within 80 days, or council may put the project on hold and consider alternatives.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

municipal politics

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

North Cowichan considers extending tax payment deadline by two months. (File photo)
North Cowichan considers extending deadline for property tax payments

A two-month deadline extension to Sept. 1 gets three readings

John Horn is leaving his position as executive director of the Cowichan Housing Association. (File photo)
John Horn leaving Cowichan Housing Association

Will take on role as executive director of John Howard Society in Nanaimo

Cowichan Tribes Chief William Seymour has taken a medical leave of absence but expects to return soon. (Citizen file)
Chief William Seymour takes leave from office

Seymour will return once fully recovered

A cougar was sighted in the 500 block of Cedar Avenue in Duncan on May 6 at about 9:30 p.m. (Facebook)
Cougar sighted in residential Duncan

Spotted in the Cairnsmore neighbourhood

The Lake Cowichan branch of the Royal Bank of Canada is closing. (Google)
Lake Cowichan’s RBC branch will close in November

RBC says banking needs will still be met

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to start releasing neighbourhood-specific COVID numbers after data leak

Documents obtained by the Vancouver Sun show cases broken down by neighbourhoods

Ladysmith RCMP safely escorted the black bear to the woods near Ladysmith Cemetary. (Town of Ladysmith/Facebook photo)
Black bear tranquillized, relocated after wandering around residential Ladysmith

A juvenile black bear was spotted near 2nd Avenue earlier Friday morning

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix update B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count creeps up, seven more deaths

445 people in hospital, 157 in intensive care

Summerland’s positive test rate is much higher than surrounding local health areas, according to internal BC CDC documents. (BC CDC)
Summerland 3rd behind Surrey, Abbotsford in daily per capita COVID-19 cases

Interior Health is rolling out additional vaccine availability to the community

Amazon is pausing its Prime Day marketing event in Canada this year amid ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks at its facilities in Ontario. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Amazon Prime Day halted in Canada due to COVID-19 outbreaks in warehouses

The event was postponed to protect the health and safety of employees and customers, the company says

Ally Thomas, 12, seen in an undated family handout photo, died on April 14 from a suspected overdose. Her family says they are frustrated more public supports weren't available when they tried to get her help. THE CANADIAN PRESS
Minister says suspected overdose death of 12-year-old pushing B.C. to ‘do better’

Minister Sheila Malcolmson of Mental Health and Addictions says the government is working ‘as hard as we can’ to build a system of care for youths

At this Highway 3 check point, police officers will be asking for identification from drivers, documentation regarding the driver’s name and address, and the purpose for the driver’s travel. (RCMP)
No fines handed out at 1st COVID-19 roadblock as checks move across B.C.

Cpl. Chris Manseau says a total of 127 vehicles were stopped at a roadblock in the Manning Park area

A spectator looks on as the Olympic Caldron is relit in downtown Vancouver, Wednesday, February 12, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Small majority of B.C. residents in favour of a Vancouver 2030 Olympic bid: survey

A new survey shows a split over the possibility of public money being spent to organize and host the winter games

Most Read