Saanich council approved new names for three parks.
The farming history of Panama Flats is entrenched in the park’s official name, Panama Flats Park, as recommended by the Residents Association of Strawberry Vale, Marigold and Glanford.
Two more parks were named, Glencraig Park was chosen over for the Shelbourne area park and the Cecilia Creek Falls Park, which is amid a long process of rehabilitation and daylighting, was also made official.
Glencraig is named for the adjacent street and development. The Quadra Cedar Hill Community Association suggested Cecelia Creek Falls title to reconnect the park with its natural geographical feature of a creek and falls running through it.
In-camera results reported
Coun. Colin Plant reported that Saanich council will begin reporting the results from council’s in-camera meetings.
The amendment flew ‘under the radar’ during the Dec. 14 council session, during which a debate over the delegation portion of councils earned the most attention.
“I feel this is a good initiative as some members of the public are suspicious of things happening in-camera,” Plant said.
“I look forward to be able to report out more often now that we will be reminded on our in-camera agendas to rise and report.”
However, legal issues will limit council from sharing some items from in-camera sessions.
Saanich tackles youth plan
Saanich’s Youth Development Strategy team presented its five-year strategy and implementation plan to council on Dec. 14, approved by council.
At the core of the YDS plan is a theme of over-protected children who need a chance to experience success and failure. Otherwise, “they do not develop the resiliency, judgment or confidence to make wise decisions as young adults,” the report said.
The report suggests reducing financial barriers that keep Saanich youth from registering for organized sports and physical activities, as well as increased outdoor facilities such as skateboard/BMX parks.
Task force for refugees
Council approved Coun. Leif Wergeld’s request that Saanich send a letter to the Capital Regional District asking for a short-term CRD task force to assess services that can assist refugees.
The motion also tasks Saanich’s chief administrative officer to build a report outlining Saanich municipal services or programs that could further assist refugee families to resettle in Saanich.
Saanich names FOI heads
Mayor Richard Atwell was the only opponent to an otherwise unanimous approval that appoints both the director of legislative services and the municipal clerk as heads of Saanich’s Freedom of Information and Privacy Protection Act.
The change eliminates the position of information and privacy co-ordinator. Either head can now appoint a privacy officer and an information officer and delegate to these individuals.
Schedule of 2016 acting mayors
Council passed the acting mayors schedule for 2016 based on seniority of councillors. Coun. Judy Brownoff will be acting mayor for the remainder of December (2015) and January, Coun. Leif Wergeland in February and March, Coun. Vic Derman in April and May, Coun. Susan Brice in June and July, Coun. Vicki Sanders in August, Coun. Dean Murdock in September, Coun. Colin Plant in October and Coun. Fred Haynes in November.
Goward gets new ramp
There was some hesitance from council in using nearly all of a $9,000 reserve fund to build a new wheelchair accessible ramp at Goward House. The ramp was approved unanimously.