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Vernon shoots down Coldstream's bid for seat

Vernon Coun. Juliette Cunningham says there is no need for Coldstream to have an additional regional district seat at this time. - Photo submitted
Vernon Coun. Juliette Cunningham says there is no need for Coldstream to have an additional regional district seat at this time.
— image credit: Photo submitted

Coldstream’s calls that it’s under-represented are being cast aside.

Vernon council unanimously voted Monday to oppose Coldstream’s request for a second seat at the Regional District of North Okanagan board table.

“It would add another director at the cost of $10,000 per year,” said Coun. Bob Spiers.

Presently, each jurisdiction is allowed one vote per 2,500 in population but it takes an accumulation of five votes to gain a director.

While Coldstream’s population climbed from 9,471 in 2006 to 10,314 in 2011, the municipality is only entitled to one board director.

Coldstream officials have suggesting RDNO change its structure so there is one vote for every 2,000 people, creating another seat at the table.

“We should let the structure evolve as it is now,” said Juliette Cunningham, a Vernon councillor.

“I believe in representation by population and this (current) structure supports it best.”

Coun. Patrick Nicol isn’t sure that a change between two census reports is sufficient to warrant an additional seat.

“Given there’s an ebb and flow to population, you can’t predict (what will happen long-term),” he said.

Nicol, who is RDNO chairperson, also insists that the agency is responsive to local communities.

“We continue to make the regional district work hard through all of the members,” he said.

Besides Vernon, Armstrong and Lumby have also opposed Coldstream’s proposal.

Vernon is entitled to a fourth RDNO director under the current system because of population growth during the 2011 federal census.

 

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