Progress Report on Priorities from my 2011 Election Campaign
1. Signage that highlights and directs people to parking areas Improved highway signs directing traffic into downtown. Status: Stage One COMPLETE and stage two (directional signs) to be completed next fiscal year
2. Establish effective and safe routes for biking and other alternative methods of transport supporting forward movement of the development and begin implementation of the Active Transportation Plan Status: COMPLETE and In Progress. The Active Transportation Plan has been adopted after a lengthy process that included public input as an integral part of the process. This included Safety Walks and going out to local schools to work with both walkers and cyclists asking them to identify areas of concern and suggestions for future planning that supports their needs.
3. Clear objectives with input and guidance from organizations and people affected that reduce poverty and provide affordable, integrated housing alternatives. Status: A Work In Progress that has included supporting the organizations working in the region through grant-in-aids, and active participation in events and activities.
4. Working towards a localised economy that provides employment and living wages Status: A Work In Progress that we have recently been exploring on council but has not yet come to the point of a resolution of council. Living wage in the Cowichan Valley is 17.04. Here is the research on local living wage and here is an example of its adoption. This is something I wil continue to work on in my next term. As for a localized economy I dedicate volunteer time to supporting the developments that local organizations and groups are doing two work towards local economic opportunities and will continue to commit time to see this region have strong economic business and employment for all.
5. Focussing on the enhancement, sustainability and smart growth that add to the health of the environment Status: A Work In Progress having been on the Itegrated Sustainability Comitteee for the first year and half of council, I was honoured to work with many member of the community who answered to our call-out for community participation in the process of developing a community based list for council to consider when making decisions and goals for council to warm towards that the community identified. The plan itself has been adopted and some implementation steps have begun but there is much more to do to continue to reposed to the needs and priorities identified through this process.
6. Expand curbside pick up to include seasonal pick up of compostable yard waste Status: COMPLETE we now have yard pick up and glass monthly for all homes in Duncan. Next steps are for film plastic curb side pick-up to be reinstated, styrofoam to be added to monthly pick-up and working with local companies for apartment pick-ups.
7. Develop a process for people to participate in the decision making of their of government Status: ONGOING with STEPS TAKEN as I have mentioned a few times there have been many projects we have worked on at council where the community was contacted through newsletters, online, newspapers and social media to participate and have their voices heard. This included reaching out and contacting all businesses in the sign making community for their input and then again for their feedback foe sign bylaw changes. Safety walks and direct connection with people who walk and cycle through the communities; going out to schools and youth groups to invite participation of youth on a more active and engaged youth council; reaching out to citizens through our Citizen Satisfaction Survey to find out what is important to you and dozens of other examples of how we worked to substantially increased the level of direct participation of citizens in the decision making process.
8. Foster more effective partnerships and regional planning with other local governments and community groups/organizations Status: ONGOING with STEPS TAKEN
9. Establish an intergenerational youth and senior/elder advisory committee Status: Youth Council COMPLETE - I was the lead mentor for the process of working to establish partnerships with local organizations who work with youth in our community. Together we went into schools and invited youth who were interested in trying their hand in politics. The youth were mentored through the council process by the amazing administration staff at the City of Duncan, they held ether election for Mayor and Council and from there developed resolutions based on the youth community consultations they had done in the community. They focussed their energy on Transportation, Safety, River Health, and Youth representations on regional committee's. They are currently developing a safety map for youth and a portable mural related to youth safety to present to youth and other in the region.
Status: Elders Advisory is a goal of my second term is to develop an Elders Council that makes recommendations to council and works with the youth council.
10. Encourage new business ventures and the expansion of existing business Status: A Work In Progress
11. Establish urban agriculture as part of a viable economy that provides local food security Status: A work In Progress with STEPS TAKEN we now have an urban chicken by-law, and working to include fruit trees, shrubs in the City's tree pallet for City plantings and will move forward working with the community to develop an urban farm bylaw based on other successful models but with a Cowichan flair the currently exist in urban ares such as Esquimalt. With the rising cost of produce and forecasts for costs to continue to rise, supporting urban agriculture means creating economic opportunities and providing space for people to take care of the basic needs.
12. Bylaws and legislation that encourage innovation, build resilience, offer economic sources of alternative energy, supports neighbourhood revitalization, increases green space, participates in creating edible landscapes and city rain gardens. Status: A work in progress with STEPS TAKEN as a council we with community partners we continued developing opportunities for revitalization projects such as Hewai Park at the bottom of Cairnsmore stairs, addressing safety and visibility concerns on the trials along Canada Avenue by hedge removal and a new open landscape, working on identifying ways of incorporating more efficient energy use in City building, and working towards alternative energy options for homeowners, more efficient wood burning alternatives and exploring the future of district energy.
13. Cultivate innovative urban planning through density and smart growth Status: Ongoing with STEPS TAKEN Re-Zoning for Carriage Houses and Secondary Suites APPROVED, the next steps I would focus on is to bring citizens and businesses together in neighbourhood meetings to develop visions for each area for the future and then to develop a future vision for the city that takes in to account the unique needs and desires of each area within the City.
14. Establish a citizens commission Status: Some progress and much more work to do! Council and staff has made huge inroads in more public consolation and involvement establishing an art committee that reviews and makes recommendations to council on the artistic merit of proposals. One citizens commission may not be the most effective model but instead establishing citizens commissions, assemblies and committees as they are required based on projects, proposals and development application processes. This is an are I am extremely passionate about as the members of a community must be part of the process of designing their future.
New Parking Signs Guide Locals and Visitors
Duncan Junior Youth Council take on responsibility to tackle issues in their community