April 23 Council Meeting Highlights

  • Oak Bay Parks and Recreation Proposal

A proposal to award the contract for consultant services to construct the recently announced Henderson Recreation Centre expansion was approved after submission of a report from Ray Herman, General Manager.  

The contract will be a direct award, given that the consultant has been previously involved in the pre-planning stages of the project and is well known to the municipality for its work, all of which has been reported to be exceptional.  I asked if direct awards are a standard for Oak Bay and was assured that in this case, it is entirely appropriate.

  • Heritage Alteration Permit Application for 1936 Hampshire Rd.

Council voted to refer this item to the Herutage Commission for their review and recommendation. My understanding is that the owner wants to alter a heritage garage to make room for a new garage and more parking.

  • Driveway Widening Application 

An application for a variance on a driveway widening was referred to a Committee of the Whole meeting for further and more open discussion, including submissions by the property owner.

  • Funding Request for the Oak Bay Tea Party

Council voted to approve a request for funding from the Oak Bay Tea Party. An additional sum of approximately $800 was awarded to cover a variety of costs to hold the event.  The Tea Party is an icon for Oak Bay, an ideal community-building event, attracting a big crowds. 

  • Juno Awards

A presentation by the Downtown Victoria Business Association was part of a request for partnership funds to support the bid by Victoria to host the 2014 Juno Music Awards.  The request is being made to a number of local governments in the region and Oak Bay is being asked to contribute about $18,000 as its share.  The Province is putting up $1.5M I understand. Council agreed to a letter of support but asked that the Association submit a formal request as part of the normal budget process for 2013.

I agree that the Junos are a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase Victoria and to attract significant tourist dollars to the region.  The Junos also support arts and culture, specifically the music industry, at a time when all levels of government have been cutting back on this type of funding.

  • Oak Bay Business Improvement Association

2011 financial statements and the 2012 budget were approved by Council to support the Association and its related activities, especially the very popular Oak Bay Ave. Christmas Light-Up.

  • Oak Bay Lodge

Focus Consultants were back before Council to present new timelines for public consultation and decision on the Oak Bay Lodge proposal.  The dates of June 19 for a large public meeting at Monterey Centre and a final Council decision on June 27 were tentatively identified.  

Focus agreed to the consulting model, citing that it reflects a good balance between community, Council, proponent and consulting needs.  I asked if a balloon test will be done to demonstrate the proposed building height and the consultant indicated that they would proceed with such a test.  As well, the parking by-law will be examined ahead of a traffic study that will be conducted in the the second month of the consultation process.

Council also agreed that all Council members will be present on June 27 when the final decision on the Lodge proposal will be made.