2017 was a very busy year for the District with trail improvements, a new crosswalk at Chapman Creek, improved lighting on the highway, new developments and several paving projects. Sometimes these projects are scarcely noticed by the public as they are not, in fact, very exciting, but they are very significant. The road, trail and lighting improvements improve the safety of anyone who walks, cycles or drives in our community. While you might not notice sewer upgrades, you certainly would if they were not done. Just for some perspective, the paving on Mason Road was $250,000 and the current Sewer Extension Project is budgeted at $3.6 million (areas A02 & A06 in West Sechelt). These are very necessary things and very expensive. Like fixing the roof on your house, it may cost a lot but you know you really need it even though you’d rather renovate the kitchen or go on a holiday.
2018 is off to a busy start. In the last week we have approved three subdivisions, creating 16 new single family lots in the District. Council also voted to approve the rezoning and OCP amendment for the Big Maples expansion. Last week staff issued 30 building permits for 30 units of lower-cost housing. As well, at the Feb. 2 Council meeting the final 36 units of the Highpoint Strata were approved. These new developments are important to the growth of our community and to ensure there is a range of affordable housing available in different neighbourhoods of Sechelt.
Some items included in our current budget deliberations are:
• Area A02 & A06 Tender and Construction – 150 new sanitary service extensions in West Sechelt and West Porpoise Bay – budget: $3,600,000 (83 per cent of the project is funded by grant)
• Trail Bay Ocean Storm Outfall Structure Upgrades – budget $100,000
• Trail Ave Realignment and Road Improvements Construction (Phase 1) – Between Teredo Street and Anchor Road – budget $2,500,000
• Various trail upgrades – budget $240,000
• A proposed tax increase that will amount to an average of $105 per household to ensure future financial sustainability and maintenance of existing infrastructure
Your views on our annual Budget are essential to helping Council make the right decisions for our community. The District will provide the public with an opportunity to review and comment on our draft 2018 budget at an e-Townhall meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at 7pm in the Community Meeting Room. You are invited to attend in-person or participate online via YouTube, Twitter, Facebook or sechelt.ca. Details are available at sechelt.ca by clicking on the “Budget 2018” icon on the homepage.
With over $13 million in proposed expenditures it is important that you know your money is well spent. Let us know what is important to you so we can create the Sechelt we all imagine