Airports, partnerships and growth 

It’s all in Pemberton’s 2005 strategic plan

Pemberton council has released its 2005 strategic plan and if it can stick to it 2005 should be an exciting year for the residents of the area formerly known as Spud Valley.

The plan outlines the council’s objectives and "strategic focus areas" and some of the significant points include the need:

• To implement a comprehensive community plan by October 2005;

• To develop a comprehensive airport plan by December 2005;

• To study and implement boundary extensions to the mutual benefit of all partners and citizens by December 2006;

• To strive for appropriate funding levels to respond to the (fire/emergency) protection needs of the community (ongoing);

• To develop a communications plan and policy by June 2005 and to retain a communications writer on a contract basis (Lisa Richardson has been hired);

• To promote and market effectively the Village of Pemberton including economic development (ongoing);

• To ensure Development Cost Charges reflect the realistic costs of developing infrastructure (by September 2005);

• To acquire the necessary human resources required to provide municipal services (changes expected throughout 2005);

• To explore where appropriate the opportunities for working with the private sector on municipal projects i.e. airport, recreation (ongoing).

Pemberton supports regional transport

Barnett presents Whistler’s proposal

Whistler’s push to form a regional transit authority received another boost this week when Pemberton council passed a motion to support the initiatives proposed by Whistler’s general manager of Public Works and Engineering, Brian Barnett.

Barnett made a presentation to Pemberton council because he said the demand for regional transit was outweighing the supply and he wanted Pemberton council’s support for a regional plan.

Pemberton council didn’t hesitate, they passed a motion to support the plan while Barnett still had his computer open.

During his presentation Barnett explained that "the problem isn’t demand, it’s the funding."

Several regional districts and transit authorities pay for their services by using gas taxes and Barnett said the same system could be implemented here without having to raise the price of fuel.

"In rough terms, a three or four cent per litre gas tax would pay for a Mount Currie to Squamish (bus) service," said Barnett.

"The other benefit of the gas tax is that you don’t burden only the residents and the businesses; visitors help with cost recovery as well."

He went on to explain that Whistler had three options for establishing a governing body; a Transport Commission, a Transit Authority or a system managed by the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District.

Mayor Elinor Warner and Pemberton council, which has been vocal about the need to increase regional transport services, wanted other details about the plan but Barnett said that would "happen next" after he gets the support of the Mount Currie Band.

"I see this as being a two-year process," said Barnett.

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