Revelstoke city leadership needs to clarify mission, plans, strategy

City of Revelstoke council and administration needs to fill vacuum created by stack of unfinished development bylaw overhauls.

More than is good for anyone’s health or sanity. That’s how many city meetings, open houses, planning sessions and committee sessions I sit through.

Yet, despite paying close attention, I couldn’t tell you where the City of Revelstoke is going from here. Here’s why.

Even casual followers know the basics: Five years of intensive, resort-driven planning processes. A total overhaul of all development-related bylaws and policies. Then, after years of macroeconomic disaster, the planning director resigns. From there, a new ‘restraint’ agenda with a focus on improved customer service at city hall.

That’s the city hall story at its most basic.

But many plotlines haven’t been wrapped up.

For example, we were told the economic downturn was actually fortuitous, in a sense. The pause allowed Revelstoke to modernize its planning and development processes in time for the next development boom. Currently, the plans are half-finished, but the overall unified development bylaw has been killed. How is this going to be tied back together? It hasn’t been sorted out. What happens if the economy picks up?

The transportation plan is another example. It’s been received by the city, then it has basically fallen off the agenda, and lingered for years.

What about the vacation rental plan? Remember that one? The city was going to allow new vacation rental zones through the city. That’s just faded away.

The Integrated Community Sustainability Plan was presented to council in the past months. Is that going to occupy space on the shelf alongside the others?

There are several more inter-related planning processes that are also in limbo.

The City of Revelstoke’s new customer-focused agenda seemed to be well-received when it was announced earlier this year. Looking at it another way, the city pronounced it would do what it should have been doing all along: providing adequate customer service.

Better-received was the austerity messaging; the results of that effort will be measured in dollars, and will be assessed in the coming months when budget numbers roll out.

The City of Revelstoke – staff and council – needs to communicate what their intentions are around these outstanding planning issues. Until they do, we’re faced with an uncertainty-generating, investment-killing vacuum of information. There is no clarity around plans or directions for the future.

I write this as a close observer of city hall; if you’re further removed, you may assume you missed a plot turn when you skipped an episode. You didn’t.

In fact, you didn’t miss anything; just the deus ex machina that is restraint and efficiency messaging, and an apparent unwillingness or inability on city hall’s part to address years worth of unfinished (and expensive!) planning processes.

 

Just Posted

Another climate rally scheduled for Friday in Revelstoke

Join students at City Hall to call for climate action

Roads and whether for Revelstoke today

No new fires in the Southeast Fire Centre

Revelstoke Community Calendar for May 22

Downhill Fiver Series May 26, 10 a.m. Get stoked for the 2019… Continue reading

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: rain, clouds, thunderstorms and flash floods

Environment Canada forecasts dreadful weather for Thursday

CSRD applies for funding for a composting program at Revelstoke Landfill

BC Organics Infrastructure Program is taking applications for a maximum of $300,000

Hundreds of homeowners angered over proposed development on WFN land

Westbank First Nation are seeking to rezone Lot 348-3 from low density to high density area

Crews fight fire with fire to keep blaze from northern Alberta town

The wildfire now covers some 920 square kilometres

Man in B.C. charged with murder and arson in 2016 New Brunswick death

He is charged in the death of 71-year-old Lucille Maltais, who was found inside a burned down home

Young Vernon melanoma survivor speaks out about sun danger

World Melanoma Day is recognized every May to highlight the growing prevalence of malignant melanoma.

Kelowna fundraiser returns to support African grandmothers

The 2019 Stride to Turn the Tide walk is June 1

Kelowna thrill-seeker returns to rally racing

Mark Jennings-Bates is back behind the wheel at Rocky Mountain Rally this weekend

Improve your life and theirs, adopt a cat from the BC SPCA

The BC SPCA holds an adult cat adoption promotion

Okanagan pastry chef wins top honours at Vancouver’s Chocolate Challenge

Jalayne Jones creation, ‘Beer & Pretzels’, won

Black bear spotted near Salmon Arm elementary school

The bear was sighted at around 4 p.m. after school was out

Most Read