After a successful re-election campaign, Zeb King (Councillor re-elect) says he immediately identifies three major issues to focus our attention on.
- Transit Seat: A window of opportunity is quickly closing, and Cllr King calls on Mayor and Council to seize this opportunity. "Central Saanich must be given the single peninsula seat at the Victoria Transit Commission," says King. The single seat for the peninsula municipalities is supposed to rotate each term to a new municipality appointed by the province, but a mistake was made in the last term. The seat should have gone to Central Saanich in 2018, but without explanation and despite howls of protest by Cllr King in the previous term and a letter sent by the Council, the province re-appointed North Saanich. "Before the two terms held by North Saanich, Sidney held the peninsula seat. That means Central Saanich hasn't held the seat for over a decade, which is unacceptable," Says King. "As a re-elected transit advocate, I'm calling on Mayor and Council to ensure the province doesn't ignore Central Saanich again." The province will make its appointments known soon, and King will ensure that Central Saanich is as proactive on this as possible.
- Climate Deadline Looming: Central Saanich has only eight years to reach the first target of its ambitious carbon reduction targets (45% reduction by 2030). The next four years will tell whether we are serious about achieving the target or not. We have no room to roll back or go slow if we are serious about the target and the Climate Leadership Plan Bayside School students pushed Council to adopt in 2019. (See, CS Climate Leadership Plan)
- Protecting Rural/Farmlands: Finally, Central Saanich is unique in the region. The next four years will test whether we continue to hold the line on protecting rural and farmlands against urban sprawl. Development pressure may intensify, but maintaining the urban containment boundary will continue to be a defining issue for Central Saanich and help us keep a quality of life, including food security, critical to the region.
Many other issues are also important, and King notes that "we can walk and chew gum at the same time," meaning that we will also address a myriad of other issues. Do you agree with these priorities or have more to add? Please comment, email or text. [email protected]