Candidates for Area A Director discuss how to represent everyone equally

Columbia Shuswap Regional District (Area A): Director Candidates - How do you plan to represent all the residents of Area A equally

  • Nov. 6, 2014 7:00 p.m.

Karen Cathcart

Area A happens to be the largest geographic Area of the CSRD, 13,500 square kilometres and has a population base of over 3000. The Area A Community is made up of Donald/Blaeberry/North Bench, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, Nicholson/Habart, Parson, Field and the Beaverfoot.

How do you represent all residents of Area A equally?

• Establish a communication strategy that will support how residents want to receive information. The strategy must be created by the residents. Only they can tell you how they wish to receive and give information. The components of the strategy would include:

• Building a diverse advisory committee with representation from all sectors of Area A. We would strive for gender balance and age balance, skill sets and experience. This team would be empowered to work with their respected areas and report back to the larger group.

• A media plan that would include: newspaper, radio, and social media, and email to ensure people are informed and we are being heard and to receive feedback.

• Focus groups in the areas on a quarterly basis focused on planning and strategy.

Residents in Area A could now talk about who they want to see on the Area A advisory committee.

Garry Habart

Area A is geographically large, diverse and continually changing, representing all constituents in Area A can be a challenge.

To meet this challenge, I formed an Advisory Committee representing a cross section of the Area A community. The committee was established, by sending out an expression of interest to the community and the interested residents were interviewed, and chosen by a joint decision between myself and two senior members of CSRD staff, and approved by the CSRD Board.

This was an effort to be more approachable to the community, and I would like to thank My Advisory Committee for their volunteer work.

Resolving issues when residents have different interests can be a challenge, and it is hard to find solutions that everyone can live with, for example there is a large part of the community that wants to keep taxes in check, and a different group that wanted to support Kicking Horse Culture. A solution to satisfy both groups was to fund KHC through the BC Hydro PILT money available to the town and Area A.

If re-elected I would again seek input from an advisory committee.

Brian Spain

I plan to represent Area A by making house calls. Going to homes of Area A residents and have good conversations, finding out what people in the valley want and need. Thankfully my job as a Telus technician takes me to these homes on a daily basis. Therefore I feel I have my finger on the “pulse” of the valley. For more important decisions I plan to host town hall meetings.

Another tool in my repertoire is Facebook. This is great for two way conversations both public and private. I can communicate what I am doing in the valley and valley residents can post what they think and feel about my actions. Just think how nice this will be when we all have affordable internet access. Spain/737541776299545

Email is another easy tool to engage Area A residents. It is more private and better for longer conversations.

I hope that every resident of Area A will reach out and ask me any question relevant to them and to the region. I’m Brian Spain and I want to be your Area A Director.