Governance proposal draws support

Greater Vernon chamber wants government to get involved in reviewing amalgamation

Local efforts to simplify amalgamation between communities are gaining momentum on the provincial scene.

The Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce’s call for legislative changes to enable the provincial government to take a more active role in regional governance reviews has received support from delegates attending the B.C. Chamber of Commerce annual general meeting Prince George.

GVCC members have continually raised concern about Greater Vernon’s current governance structure.

“Provincial legislation is quite limiting in allowing for the exploration of different governance models that could achieve positive results for business in streamlining regulatory and development processes among neighbouring local government jurisdictions, said Matt Davidson, chairperson of GVCC’s policy advisory committee.

“We appreciate that there are pros and cons related to different governance models but those can’t be examined if there is unwillingness by local governments to explore those ideas or if there is a lack of financial resources from the province to undertake such reviews.”

The GVCC policy resolution calls for changes that would enable the provincial government to initiate a study even if only one jurisdiction is interested in exploring the business case for changes in regional governance.

“The GVCC is pleased to have received the support from our peers from across the province,” said Jaron Chasca, GVCC president, who is at the B.C. AGM.

“Our chamber is committed to creating a more business-friendly region and we think this policy will help achieve that outcome.”