North Saanich Mayor Alice Finall has been named the chairperson of the Capital Regional District’s Planning, Transport and Protective Services Committee.
It’s the same position she held at the regional government level three years ago. During the last term of council, Finall was voted out of a CRD representation role — traditionally held by the mayors of Greater Victoria communities — by the majority at the time.
Finall says the protective services portion of the appointment is somewhat diluted by the fact that there are a variety of policing jurisdictions and agencies in the region.
However, she said she anticipates much of her work with the committee will be surrounding the CRD’s Regional Sustainability Strategy.
Finall said there’s a draft of a revised strategy available now, adding it will be going out for public feedback soon.
“During the last three years, the CRD has been doing this larger review of the Regional Growth Strategy (within the Sustainability umbrella), looking at various concepts of sustainability, like food strategies and long-term planning, transportation, development and more,” she said.
Finall admitted she needs to get back up to speed with the committee, after being away so long.
“I’m anxious to see where they’re at.”
Finall said North Saanich is considered a rural-residential community within this strategy, noting there were some changes made by the District council last term, to allow additional levels of development.
“I’m not sure if there will be any changes to North Saanich’s designation,” said Finall, adding in its interim report, the strategy looks to improve protection of that designation.
“But with five new committee members, it’s hard to say what will happen.”
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Finall said North Saanich’s new council is currently reviewing its own strategic plan and setting goals for the new term.
A draft report on the discussions, which took place at the beginning of January, is in the hands of a facilitator.
“We met as a new council and it’s important to have this done early,” said the mayor, adding the municipal council’s four-year plan will be made public soon.