Pemberton council rallies for upcoming municipal convention 

Bike lanes and Airbnb top the discussion list for government meetings

click to enlarge FILE PHOTO - Have your say The Pemberton Music Festival brought in tens of thousands of concert-goers. The Village of Pemberton has an online survey so residents can share their concerns about local parking and access during the festival.
  • File photo
  • Have your say The Pemberton Music Festival brought in tens of thousands of concert-goers. The Village of Pemberton has an online survey so residents can share their concerns about local parking and access during the festival.

Pemberton council is organizing a few key arguments for the upcoming Union of B.C. Municipality Convention (UBCMC) next month and top of the list are the issues of improved bike access on the highway, as well as looking into concerns about Airbnb.

The UBCMC is scheduled for Victoria from Sept. 26 to 30 and presents an opportunity for smaller community delegations to present their concerns. Pemberton Mayor Mike Richman said the time allotment for each minister or official is tight, so the arguments must be quick yet direct.

"Basically you can get an audience in Victoria, and especially for small communities it's a good chance to get meetings with ministers. So you put together some requests, and after you've met with the premier, you put a briefing together so the staff has a chance to look at it and generally you have about 15 minutes for each minister," Richman said.

"I don't mess around with my 15 minutes," said Richman, adding that this is not the first time the bike-lane issue has come up.

"If you come up on the weekend from Vancouver, it's incredible how many road cyclists there are. It's a huge industry — it's an emerging industry. We're right at the heart of it in the corridor. It's not just about cars and trucks anymore," he said.

"That's something I brought last year as well," he said. "Some of these advocacy things you have to do two or three times before you get results, so that's why we keep knocking on the door."

Also on the agenda will be discussion about Airbnb rentals.

"I don't know if we'll get an actual session on it, I know there's a lot of conversation about it from communities that are looking for a little support on it. It's a hard one for us to regulate on our own," Richman said.

Pemberton Music Festival survey

A survey has been posted on the Village of Pemberton (VOP) website to discern the local response to the festival that brought upwards of 150,000 people to Pemberton last month.

The survey asks 10 questions that address issues of parking, access and traffic flow.

"It's more about municipal operations during the festival," said Richman. "We want to get feedback."

The survey can be accessed at pemberton.ca.

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