Mayor Nils Jensen was away and as Acting Mayor for March, it was my opportunity to Chair the Committee of the Whole meeting for the first time. Highlights of the meeting included:
- Receiving for information the minutes of the Oak Bay Parks and Rec Commission, a Monthly Report from the Municipal Treasurer and an update from the Director of Engineering on last year’s Pavement Management Study.
- Receiving for information an update from the Director of Engineering on the Haultain Street Bike Route, coming out of the Alternate Transportation Advisory Committee’s (ATAC) earlier report to Council on suggested improvements to Oak Bay’s main cycling corridors. The Director also indicated that he will bringing forward a report to Council in the next six weeks or so about the recent Kickstand Forum, held last week at UVic and winding up with a reception at the OB Beach Hotel last Friday evening, hosted jointly by the CRD and District of Oak Bay.
- Moving to Council seven applications presented by the Director of Planning and Building, two of which involved registered heritage properties that were referred to the Heritage Commission for their input. Others were approved for referral to Council, with no concerns expressed by staff and in all cases, owners have taken care to ensure that improvements enhance their properties and do not encroach on nieghbours.
- I opened a lecture session, sponsored by the OB Heritage Foundation, featuring local food guru and author of the Zero Mile Diet, Carolyn Herriot. Carolyn is a national and international authority on growing organic food, maket gardening and local food security. She has recently published a wonderful cook book titled “The Zero Mile Diet Cook Book,” a copy of which I bought for my home chef, husband Fred. Carolyn opened her lecture with a historical retrospective of Oak Bay’s agricultural roots. My thanks to OB’s Heritage Foundation and especially to volunteers Marion Cumming, Ben Clinton-Baker and Marg Palmer for coordinating this lecture series and setting up the space and refreshments. The lecture was very well attended.
- I will be attending on March 22 and 23 a Centre for Civic Governance conference on the Lower Mainland titled “Deepening Democracy.” This will be the first time that I have had the opportunity to attend one of the Centre’s annual conferences and I look forward to learning more about local governance.
March and April are busy months and there are a variety of activities and events planned that I will summarize in my next post. Please remember to also visit the OB municipal website for updates on what’s happening in our community.
Next Council Meeting: March 25, 2013 at 7:30 in Council Chambers.