It’s hard to walk away from pet projects and that’s certainly the case around the Vernon council table.
During a basic procedural move Tuesday, council incorporated the master transportation and parks plans into the city’s official community plan.
However, protests were lodged by Coun. Bob Spiers, who wants the transportation plan to reference the possibility of a highway bypass, and Coun. Scott Anderson, who is upset with what he sees as restricted off-leash dog access at Marshall Field.
Now the reality is that considerable time was spent debating these two issues and a majority of council decided not to include them in the master plans. Much of the decision was based on considerable consultation with the public on the future of parks and transportation.
Including the parks and transportation plans in the OCP doesn’t mean they are written in stone. Such documents are fluid and change to reflect the evolving needs of the community. Perhaps a bypass and dog access at Marshall Field could rise to the surface as priorities in the future.
“It’s a blueprint. It doesn’t mean we’re committed to anything but we won’t get anywhere without a plan,” said Coun. Juliette Cunningham.
In the end, Spiers and Anderson can remain committed to their favoured projects and continue to lobby for them, but voting against adding the transportation and parks plans to the OCP is unfortunate.
A lot of work, particularly from residents, went into developing these visions and they should be accepted even if they don’t include every detail put forward.