Do you ever find yourself in a gathering where one person not only dominates the conversation but eventually loses everyone’s attention by recounting every minute and irrelevant detail of the story? Unfortunately it happens far too often…which is not good for those of us with waning attention spans that can barely remember last week let alone the name of a friend’s cousin’s uncle who knew the stepson of the woman whose aunt’s best friend worked in the same office as the ex-husband of the prime minister’s executive assistant.
I’m increasingly mindful of being guilty of the same trait so I try to keep my stories succinct and to the point. That said, I’ve been accused of leaving out important details so I work hard to find the right balance to provide necessary information without putting anyone to sleep, especially in these messages.
This week I perused the newly released Union of BC Municipalities’ (UBCM) Resolutions Book which contains no less than 205 resolutions put forward by various civic government representatives to be discussed, debated and voted on at next month’s convention in Vancouver. The document is 179 pages long although the first 22 pages consist of voting and other procedural instructions, as well as a table of contents that itemizes who put what motion forward in a specific category.
Detailing every last resolution might cause you to zone out, so in the interest of brevity and relevancy, allow me to summarize a few of the key tourism-related recommendations for attention and advocacy.
In the housing category, the City of Revelstoke has put forward a resolution to ask the province to provide additional enforcement mechanisms for local governments to be able to issue tickets to non-compliant short-term vacation rental operators.
On the emergency management file, the City of Nelson wants the province to create an annual fund for local governments to more adequately prepare for and respond to local emergencies. The municipality also recommends that government provide sufficient additional funding to double regional rural transit system services.
Similarly, the Sunshine Coast Regional District is urging the province to provide more flexible and innovative models for transportation service delivery (e.g. transit on-demand) for smaller and rural communities where conventional transit may not be an appropriate service delivery model.
Port Hardy has suggested that UBCM lobby government to re-establish a downtown revitalization grant program and provide adequate financial resources to enable transitioning rural resource communities to improve their downtowns for the benefit of residents, businesses and tourism.
The East Kootenay Regional District believes the province should implement a crown land camping fee structure to help pay for amenities (e.g. pit toilets) and provide additional resources for conservation officers given the increased use of the backcountry and the consequential impacts on the environment and wildlife.
The Fraser-Fort George Regional District is calling on the province to recognize highway access points (e.g. boat launches) established under provincial legislation as official public access points to be maintained by government so people can get to various BC lakes.
As you can appreciate, these are but a handful of the resolutions that TIABC and our various sector partners will be paying attention to at next month’s convention. It will take the better part of three mornings for delegates (i.e. city councillors, mayors) to approve the various motions covering a broad spectrum of issues. Once we determine where local governments land on specific files, TIABC will either align its advocacy efforts accordingly or conversely lobby against policies we believe to be detrimental to BC’s tourism sector.
For your interest, UBCM’s Resolutions Book contains 57 points for handling rules and voting related to various motions. I’ll spare you the details but can you imagine being in a conversation on resolution procedures with an individual that has them all memorized? Zzzzz!