The municipality is using ‘Postcards to the Future’ to gather community feedback ahead of this spring’s OCP update 

Also in municipal news: Landlord information session set for Thursday March 15

click to enlarge FILE PHOTO
  • FILE PHOTO

The Resort Municipality of Whistler has come up with several different strategies to gather feedback as it works towards updating the Official Community Plan (OCP) this year.

Following a Community Vision Formum on March 5 that drew over 150 attendees, community members are now able to voice their ideas about what they'd like to see Whistler look like by dropping a 'Postcard to the Future' in any of the 'My Future Whistler' mailboxes located throughout the resort. The yellow boxes are available to receive submissions at the Whistler Public Library, Municipal Hall and at Meadow Park Sport Centre for the remainder of March.

"Whether you've been a Whistler resident for 30 years, three years, or three months, your voice is an important part of our story. Whistler's continued success needs to include perspectives from our early community days, as well as more recent experiences," said Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden in a release.

For those who prefer to submit their feedback online - or have too many ideas to fit on a single postcard - there's also an ideabook the municipality has developed to help gather input.

The 61-page document (available for download at https://www.whistler.ca/sites/default/files/2018/Mar/current-projects/pdf/24515/myfuturewhistler-ideabook-2018-03-07.pdf)

can be filled out, either partially or fully, by typing directly into the writeable boxes, following which it can be saved and emailed to planning@whistler.ca. It asks for feedback on topics like the OCP's vision statement, growth management, natural areas, residential and visitor accommodations, the environment and other important aspects of life in Whistler.

The ideabook can also be printed out and filled in by hand, or copies can be picked up at Municipal Hall. The deadline for input is March 31, while another community forum is set for sometime in early May.

In undertaking the OCP update, the municipality will first look to revisit the community's guiding vision - also known as Whistler2020, which was originally developed in 2004 and 2005.

The second part of the long-term project will focus on updating the OCP itself. That process aims to build upon the previous OCP update that was adopted by council in 2013 before being squashed by the B.C. Supreme Court. During that process, the municipality carried out an intensive 20-month period of community engagement, policy development, document preparation and referrals.

Meanwhile, the municipality is also gearing up for a Landlord Information Session with a presentation by Landlord BC, hosted by the Whistler Housing Authority.

The free session aims to inform both current and prospective landlords about recent changes to the Residential Tenancy Act regarding fixed-term leases.

In October of last year, the provincial government introduced Bill 16, or the Tenancy Statutes Amendment Act, to address some landlords' use of a "vacate clause" in fixed term leases in order to get around B.C.'s annual rental increase limits.

If passed, the bill would, among other provisions, disallow landlords from requiring tenants to move out after a fixed-term lease has ended. That lease would instead become month-to-month, and would therefore make any rent increases subject to the legal cap.

The two-hour session is scheduled to take place on Thursday, March 15, at 2 p.m. at the Whistler Public Library.

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