North Cowichan looks for public input into OCP update. (File photo)

North Cowichan wants public participation in OCP process

Official Community Plan to be updated in coming months

North Cowichan is inviting the public to participate as the municipality updates its Official Community Plan.

The municipality last updated its OCP, which is a statement of objectives and policies to guide decisions on planning and land use management by local governments, in 2011 and council has decided it needs to be refreshed.

The municipality has identified the update as a top priority in council’s recently adopted 2019-2022 strategic plan, and Mayor Al Siebring said council is excited to be kicking it off this summer in an initiative called the OCP Project.

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“The backbone of a successful OCP is community support,” Siebring said.

“An OCP guides all of us towards a goal, towards a desired future. There will be many opportunities for citizens to tell us what they envision for the future, and we invite all North Cowichan residents to get involved in this process. It’s only with your input that we can together create a shared, meaningful plan.”

North Cowichan suggests that one way to get involved with the OCP process is to become a member of the OCP advisory group or community ambassador team.

The advisory group is seeking residents with experience and knowledge in key business and community sectors to provide advice to staff through all phases of the OCP Project process.

The community ambassador team is seeking residents that represent the various geographies and neighbourhoods across North Cowichan (i.e. Quamichan, Berkey’s Corner, Maple Bay, Crofton, etc.) to inform the OCP Project by liaising with their neighbourhoods and providing community-specific information through the process.

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Residents can also help design the OCP Project logo and tagline in a friendly community competition.

Between July 25 and Aug. 14, the municipality is inviting North Cowichan artists and residents to submit suggestions for a logo and tagline that will be used on all OCP materials for the duration of the project.

Following the submission period, all entries will be posted on PlaceSpeak, North Cowichan’s online engagement platform, for North Cowichan residents to vote on their preferred option.

A $250 prize will be awarded for the chosen logo, and another $250 prize will be awarded for the chosen tagline.

“There will be ongoing opportunities to learn about the OCP Project and provide your input over the coming months,” Siebring said.

“Please be part of shaping the future of this community.”

For more information, contact the municipality or check out North Cowichan’s website at www.northcowichan.ca.

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