North Saanich has systematically denied anything that would allow any kind of development to the point that the area demographics is seriously compromising the future of a mixed community. Young families cannot afford to live in the area, schools’ enrolment is decreasing and even though it is a mostly senior population there are no previsions for seniors’ homes.
A dysfunctional council and administration is making things worse for all taxpayers. Council members are not allowed to speak directly to staff and all questions are answered during council meetings to the dismay of those that need to have items discussed in an expedient manner.
Additional costs are incurred to cover the incompetency such is the case for the need of an arbitrator. This should be paid from the pockets of mayor and council and not the taxpayers. Other expenses are the result of stalling tactics to avoid any kind of development, such case is the housing study being currently conducted. A thorough housing study was completed a few years ago and the mayor and council “selected” parts of the study that were convenient to their anti-development strategy.
Growth happens and we have to plan for it. We want mixed communities, people of different age, gender, backgrounds, cultures, and income because this is what makes a community vibrant and prosperous. An intelligent development approach would allow for the rural areas to stay rural, for businesses to have customers, and for residents have a place to work and to live. The principles of sustainability are not only to protect the green spaces, it is also to reduce the carbon footprint of people driving from the Western Communities to the Peninsula because they cannot afford a place to live, increased density in areas already serviced is sustainable and is the responsible approach to a “green” future.