Progress updates make sense

A simple request for regular updates on activities was met with open resistance by Regional District of North Okanagan staff.

It’s unfortunate a simple request for regular updates on activities was met with open resistance by Regional District of North Okanagan staff.

On Thursday, members of the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee asked that they receive status reports.

“I just want to know that progress is being made. It gives a better handle of where we’re at,” said director Catherine Lord.

Lord’s argument makes complete sense, so the reaction from administrator Trafford Hall was a surprise.

“It can’t just be done by a secretary. It has to be done by senior managers who are already stretched,” he said.

Hall also tried to throw the issue back on to the politicians.

“My recommendation is you keep your own files and bring them back,” he said.

It’s difficult to know what Hall is concerned about, but GVAC directors are not asking for the wheel to be reinvented.

Many jurisdictions regularly provide their elected representatives up-to-date reports on where key initiatives are at. Vernon is currently moving in that direction, and such progress reports were commonplace at GVAC many years ago.

Such lists aren’t meant to add to staff workload or make them feel bad if a timeline isn’t being met. It’s all about keeping the politicians informed on the direction they provided to staff. After all, it is the directors who are ultimately responsible for everything that happens on GVAC’s behalf.

Ultimately, the broad issue is one of transparency.

In the end, the board reminded staff who the boss is and progress reports are moving ahead.