Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Editorial: Scout Island Debate at June 28th Council Meeting


At last night's Council meeting - supporters of Scout Island showed up in droves to Williams Lake Council Chambers and impress upon Williams Lake City Council on the importance of Scout Island and what it offers the City.  Council also saw in the public gallery a few who support "modernizing" Scout Island into a facility that the community can be proud of, although the supporters of Scout Island outnumbered the modernization supporters by a ratio of 10 to 1

Council had before it last night both a letter dated June 23rd from the Williams Lake Field Naturalists and also a verbal presentation from Sue Hemphill - Executive Director of the Scout Island Nature Centre

Things got slightly heated during the Question/Answer period between Councillor Jason Ryll/Ms. Hemphill where the Scout Island supporters in the public gallery reacted negatively when they perceived that Councillor Ryll was not treating the delegation with respect and when some who supported the modernization of Scout Island yelled out "It's our road too!", those who wanted to maintain the status quo were called to order by Mayor Cobb when they too wanted to speak

Council referred the June 23rd WL Field Naturalists letter to the July 12th Committee of the Whole meeting for further consideration.  Meanwhile, Council also agreed to maintain the status quo as it relates to the maintenance of the causeway to Scout Island until Council further considers the matter, at the request of Councillor Ivan Bonnell

Meanwhile - supporters of the modernization of Scout Island have "rallied the troops" on Facebook  calling on those who support their cause to write to Mayor/Council and particularly Councillors Jason Ryll/Craig Smith as those who support the "status quo" of Scout Island did previously

Councillor Laurie Walters was absent from last night's Council meeting so it will be interesting to hear her views when this is next discussed on July 12th.  I would suggest that those in attendance in the public gallery last night will be in attendance at the July 12th Committee of the Whole meeting to observe what Council does next with this item, but whatever happens, someone will not be happy with Council's decision...  but as an elected official, I can truly sympathize with Council in that, I would be doing what they are doing now -- get all of the information you can, weigh the differing perspectives and make a decision accordingly...

The above editorial is my own and is not reflective of my elected capacity as Electoral Area 'D' Director of the Cariboo Regional District

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