Five new members sit on the Sidney Business Association’s board of directors while one has left his seat.
“I’ve resigned as a director,” said Richard Talbot, who took up the position at the May 18 annual general meeting. He’ll continue to chair an audit committee that is reviewing the SBA’s financial statements.
Talbot resigned after moving that five people be appointed as directors: Christina Smethurst, Cliff McNeil-Smith, Erin Bremner, Jane Powell and Muffet Billyard-Leake. Fellow director Victor Sanchez seconded the motion, but decided against supporting it when he learned there were other applicants for the seats.
“What is sad is you guys just don’t understand that you’ve hit the iceberg and here you are all partying on the deck and the ship is going down,” Talbot said of the SBA. “If we don’t do something to expand the membership we’re going to sink.”
Instead, Doug Clarke, Elaine Curwen, Noel Pike, Theo and Bill Macris became directors.
The SBA’s president Ross Macfarlane is “ecstatic” to have an almost-full board.
“I’m sad to see Richard go,” Macfarlane said. “He’s extremely knowledgeable about downtown business activities and how the structure works. I hope he’ll still be a good resource going forward here.”
Macfarlane added he plans to meet with the five suggested by Talbot.
“I was excited to see that they wanted to join and I don’t want to lose their energy and enthusiasm to support the SBA and the town in general.”
Sanchez said the SBA chose the five directors based on them being “most capable for the positions.”
But Talbot believes the SBA’s choice was spurred by another factor.
“If your major concern is to block the [business improvement association] if it comes up again, the best way to compete is to have a thoroughly working, supported SBA. Who needs a BIA if you have a properly functioning SBA?” he said.
“I’m surprised really. I would have thought common sense would have prevailed.”
With one director’s seat now vacant, the SBA is taking applications from members wishing to be involved.