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

Revelstokian calling on the city to clean up the Columbia River

The letter writer submitted several photos of the mess along the river bank at Centennial Park

Regional district director working to remove building inspection requirements

David-Brooks hill wants to remove the requirements for those outside the fire protection zone

Revelstokian on Vernon soccer team brings home gold

Vernon Tolko United U15 boys Team win provincial championship and Fair Play Award

A permaculture journey: Low maintenance gardening

Part 1 of a series constributed by the NCES

Food fight: Liberals, Tories trade shots as pre-campaign battles intensify

Health Canada released an overhauled document that did away with traditional food groups and portion sizes

VIDEO: Bystander training gains traction as tool to prevent sexual harassment, violence

Julia Gartley was sexually assaulted after an event, and no one stepped in to help

Shuswap air cadet contests Department of National Defence gender policy

Haircut inspires challenge of regulation around male/female identity

North Okanagan residents warned of road closure

Cherryville bridge closures planned

Update: Coroner investigating after body recovered from Okanagan Lake

Penticton fire department assisted the RCMP with the recovery of a body Saturday

Two brands of ice cream sandwiches recalled due to presence of metal

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a recall on Iceberg and Originale Augustin brands

Sexual assaults, extortion on the rise even as crime rates stay low: Stats Canada

Rates of police-reported sexual assault rose for the fourth year in a row

Donkeys await your hugs and scritches at anniversary event

Turtle Valley Donkey Refuge invites public to help celebrate 20 years of care.

Most Read