Cumberland councillor questions relationship with Economic Development
Coun. Roger Kishi questions Cumberland's relationship with the Comox Valley Economic Development Society.
Noting public demand for transparency and accountability from CVEDS, Kishi questioned Monday if the Village is benefiting from its participation with the organization. He suggests it could be worthwhile to consider other options for economic development.
"Are we irrevocably tied in with CVEDS?" he said, noting Nanaimo and Campbell River are among other places experiencing strained relationships with economic development corporations.
Kishi said questions about certain issues, such as proposals on industrial land on Bevan Road, have not been answered by CVEDS.
Former Cumberland mayor and councillor Bronco Moncrief sits on the board of directors at CVEDS, which receives about $1 million a year from the Comox Valley Regional District. Part of that amount comes from Cumberland taxpayers.
Local government dollars formerly received by the Cumberland Chamber of Commerce to operate the village's visitor centre started flowing to CVEDS April 1 as the Vancouver Island Visitor Centre prepared to open its doors within Cumberland's boundary near the highway interchange. The chamber lost a staff member but continues to operate the centre on a volunteer basis.
Kishi suggests Cumberland could create its own economic development officer with the money it gives to CVEDS.
The Village will invite CVEDS representatives to speak at a future committee of the whole meeting.