A standing committee chaired by Mayor Fred Haynes will continue to draft the terms of reference that will eventually guide the citizens’ assembly tasked with reviewing “the costs, benefits, and disadvantages” of the amalgamation between the District of Saanich and the City of Victoria.

A standing committee chaired by Mayor Fred Haynes will continue to draft the terms of reference that will eventually guide the citizens’ assembly tasked with reviewing “the costs, benefits, and disadvantages” of the amalgamation between the District of Saanich and the City of Victoria.

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes said stakes of amalgamation process

Eventual formation and funding of approved citizens’ assembly will require provincial support

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes said the stakes behind the current amalgamation process are high because it could lead to the dissolution of the municipality.

“This is the biggest decision since the formation of Saanich,” he said after the first meeting of the citizens’ assembly standing committee. While amalgamation might be in the interest of Victoria, his job as Mayor of Saanich is to assess whether it is in the interest of Saanich, he said.

RELATED: Voters in Saanich and Victoria support creation of citizens’ assembly on amalgamation

RELATED: Saanich strikes standing committee to help create citizens’ assembly

Haynes comments came after the committee chaired by him held its first meeting Wednesday. Its membership also includes Couns. Judy Brownoff, Colin Plant and Rebecca Mersereau.

During their first meeting, committee members started the process of drafting the terms of reference that will guide the citizens’ assembly, which will see voters in both Saanich and Victoria tasked with exploring “the costs, benefits, and disadvantages” of the amalgamation between the District of Saanich and the City of Victoria.

Haynes said the committee was working off a document that the chief administrative officer (CAO) Paul Thorkelsson had prepared, drawing on the terms of reference that had guided comparable citizens assemblies in other communities like Cowichan and North Duncan.

“I would say the tone of the meeting was professional and collegial and we were very task-oriented,” said Plant. “Everyone contributed and we all listened and respected each other’s idea.”

The committee will resume the drafting process at its next meeting. The terms of reference will then go before council for approval, followed by consultations with the City of Victoria, and eventually, the provincial government, which will have to sign off on the process between Saanich and Victoria before giving its blessing and financial contribution.

RELATED: Saanich councillor says amalgamation motion has ‘failed’

“I would say that we need to get the terms right, this is a large process, based on ballot question ‘to explore costs, benefits and disadvantages’ of amalgamation of Saanich and Victoria,” said Brownoff, who had previously raised concerns about the process, including the eventual financing of the citizens’ assembly.

“You know that I have raised the question of costs, so I feel we need to establish the budget, within what we have.”


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Const. Mat Jones of the CRD Integrated Road Safety Unit joined a team of Saanich police officers and ICBC representatives cracking down on distracted driving at the McKenzie/Quadra intersection in Saanich on March 3. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
‘Leave the phone alone’: 40 distracted driving tickets issued in two hours at Saanich intersection

Saanich police, CRD Integrated Road Safety Unit crackdown on drivers’ cell-phone use

Police seek information after a pedestrian was hit in a crosswalk at the intersection of Goldstream Avenue and Veterans Memorial Parkway on March 3.(Google Maps)
Witnesses sought in Langford pedestrian hit and run

Suspect is older man driving four-door, gold sedan

The University of Victoria has said some of its students were impacted by an off-campus exposure to COVID-19 last weekend. (Black Press Media file photo)
University of Victoria students impacted by off-campus COVID-19 exposure

UVic has not specified where the exposure occurred

This male Dungeness can safely be harvested after passing muster. An official with Fisheries and Oceans Canada says it is not clear how well locals on the Saanich Peninsula are complying with crabbing regulations, but her comments suggest that any problems might be of a minor nature. (Department of Fisheries and Oceans/Submitted)
Sidney and Sooke record 57 crabbing violations in 2020

While recreational crab fishery has ‘compliance issues,’ no evidence of ‘large scale poaching’

Cleanup happens after an overnight flood Monday damaged areas of the Oaklands Community Centre. (Facebook/Oaklands Community Association)
Greater Victorians offer flood of support to Oaklands Community Centre

Blown hot water tank Monday night leaves staff cleaning up soggy mess

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of March 2

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: How’s your butter?

Recent reports have some Canadians giving a second look to one of… Continue reading

Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson (Office of the Chief Justice)
Judge questions whether B.C.’s top doctor appreciated right to religious freedom

Lawyer for province says Dr. Henry has outlined the reasons for her orders publicly

A sample of guns seized at the Pacific Highway border crossing from the U.S. into B.C. in 2014. Guns smuggled from the U.S. are used in criminal activity, often associated with drug gangs. (Canada Border Service Agency)
B.C. moves to seize vehicles transporting illegal firearms

Bill bans sale of imitation or BB guns to young people

The City of Duncan will implement a new pilot project targeting vandalism this spring. (File photo)
Graffiti trouble? Duncan will give you the brush and the paint to remove it

Initiative based on a successful project to protect Port Alberni from unwanted spray paint

BC Housing minister David Eby is concerned that Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter will result in a “tent city” similar to this one in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / Black Press file)
‘Disappointed and baffled’ B.C. housing minister warns of tent city in Penticton

Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter could create tent city, says David Eby

The first of Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s long-range maritime patrol aircraft—the Dash-8—becomes operational. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s new De Havilland Dash-8-100 long-range surveillance air craft is capable of staying aloft for eight to 10 hours for a variety of missions up and down the B.C. coast. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
New plane will double DFO’s surveillance capacity in B.C.

The Dash-8 will fly out of Campbell River for enforcement, conservation missions

A recently published study out of UBC has found a link between life satisfaction levels and overall health. (Pixabay)
Satisfied with life? It’s likely you’re healthier for it: UBC study

UBC psychologists have found those more satisfied with their life have a 26% reduced risk of dying

Most Read