On Revelstoke: Thoughts on signs, schools and trails

Editor Alex Cooper comments on the Jacobson Ford sign, the Revelstoke school board and Trailstoke.

I usually avoid opinion columns but last week, I had a column in mind about a few things — the Jacobson Ford sign issue and the Revelstoke Board of Education’s response to the teachers.

Unfortunately, I ran out of time and space, and so the column sat half-finished on my computer. Here it is, along with a few more idle thoughts.

On Jacobson and signs

Council made a bad decision on the Jacobson Ford sign issue. They really should have sought out a solution that involved working with the business to accept their sign before going down the enforcement route. Carrot before the stick and all that.

This council has a problem — real and perceived – that it’s unfriendly to business. Signs are a big part of that because they’re something seemingly basic, but always so problematic. Sign regulations are important otherwise you could end up with a chaotic, ugly disaster. You don’t want a streetscape of random signs, each shouting louder than the next for people’s attention.

Still, there should be some flexibility. One of the reasons Jacobson is being asked to take down its sign is because signs with changeable lettering aren’t allowed. Why? I’m not sure. It should really be more a question of aesthetic and on that council — and I — agree that the sign Jacobson put up looks good and fits in with their building.

I get the fear of setting a precedent, but the real push should be to make sure people have nice signs, not only ones that fit withing the confines of the bylaw.

There’s also the problem that they built it on city property without permission, but that’s easy to resolve. Charge them rent for the space and that’s that.

If you can’t come to an agreement, then make them take it down.

A limp response

The Revelstoke Board of Education’s response to Revelstoke teachers at their last meeting was not much. It took an hour of pressure for one of them to really speak up and express an opinion, but the resolution they came up with and the letter they wrote was weak.

Compare it to a letter sent out by the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows school board. They called for more funding for education to offset cost pressures school board’s face, yet have no control over, like negotiated wage increases and energy price hikes.

“… we cannot pay as much attention to students as we have done in the past,” they wrote. “Fine arts and physical education programs are inconsistent in our elementary schools given the lack of resources to hire specialists in these areas. We cannot move ahead with new schools in developing areas as quickly as we should …”

The Arrow Lakes school board penned a letter saying they “will continue to advocate for increased stable funding for our education system.”

The Kootenay Lake school board wrote, “Increased funding for districts and classrooms, in particular, is a priority for our board. Funding levels have not been adequate to support the needs of our students.”

The letter from the Revelstoke school board was two sentences. One said they were concerned about the state of bargaining and the impact on students, staff and the community. The other asked them to get back to the negotiating table. There was no mention of the big problem — that funding from the province doesn’t keep up with the cost pressures on the school boards.

The board has done an admirable job making Revelstoke the envy of many of their peers but they should be more vocal in speaking out about the pressures they face.

Thoughts on TrailStoke

And on a less serious note, I was completely blown away by the abilities of the people who took part in the TrailStoke race. The pace at which the lead runners went (and even the ones near the back of the pack) was incredible. You could also tell they loved it, even though parts of the course could be deemed cruel and unusual punishment.

I took the race as a chance to get up on Revelstoke Mountain Resort in the summer and see what’s up there. I was hoping to find that long-lost section of single track, but alas, what I found was a short, gruelling section of trail that I wouldn’t want to take a bike on. Still, it is beautiful terrain up there, and hopefully feedback from the race will convince Northland that it’s better to open up the alpine sooner rather than later.

We’ve got fantastic alpine around here — a lot of which is very accessible — but a gondola that can whisk you into the alpine in 15 minute, that’s pretty rare.

 

Just Posted

Live results for municipal elections 2018

Watch here and on Facebook for live results

After being reported missing elderly woman in Revelstoke is found

Line went missing last night after experiencing symptoms of dementia. She was found alive and well this morning.

Revelstoke gets of the vote

City of Revelstoke say roughly 300 people voted this morning

Missing: Elderly woman in Revelstoke

The missing female is Alice Lines, a long-time resident of Revelstoke. She was last seen at 8 pm Friday night when she left her home.

Tommy Chong says cannabis legalization makes him proud to be a Canadian

Legendary marijuana advocate and comedian celebrates cultural milestone at Kelowna event

Team Canada gold medal winners for first time in world curling championship

Team Canada earned gold in Kelowna at the 2018 Winn Rentals World Mixed Curling Championship

B.C. passenger caught smoking weed in a car issued $230 fine

Saanich police did a field sobriety test on the driver and deemed it safe for him to drive

Payette invites critics to ‘come and spend a few days’ with her

Governor General Julie Payette made her first official to B.C. back in March

More pot stores expected in B.C. in coming ‘weeks and months’: attorney general

Attorney General David Eby and Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth visited the new BC Cannabis Store in the province’s Interior

Telus launches charitable foundation to help vulnerable youth

The Telus Friendly Future Foundation complements other social initiatives by the company, including Mobility for Good

Police say suspicious death of B.C. artist ruled a homicide

Patrick Zube Aylward’s body was found in a residence on a rural road outside of Seton Portage, west of Lillooet, B.C.

Temporary roads being built in areas affected by landslide in northern B.C.

Emergency Management BC news release says Disaster Financial Assistance is available to eligible residents of the Peace River Regional District who may have been affected by the landslides

B.C. tickets win big in Lotto Max draw

Jackpot carried over; B.C. tickets share Max Millions prizes

Most Read