Members of the regional district’s Electoral Areas Services Committee approved recommendations Monday to consider a bylaw to establish an arts and culture grant service to provide funding to societies and non-profits that own or operate arts or culture facilities at sustainable levels.
Pending adoption by the CVRD board, the service would be subject to public approval by way of the alternative approval process.
Proposed recipients of ongoing, consistent annual funding include the Comox Valley Art Gallery, Arts Council, farmers’ market, Pearl Ellis Gallery, Sid Williams, and Courtenay, Comox and Cumberland museums.
Combined recommended funding for 2014 would be $35,000, increasing to a maximum of $70,150 at the end of a five-year agreement. The Sid would receive the largest amount, going from $10,000 to $25,000.
“I’m very, very pleased to see it moving forward,” Area C director Edwin Grieve said.
Although he would prefer a regional system, Grieve said it is reassuring to provide stable funding.
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Changes to federal regulations intend to shift production of medical marijuana from residential sites to large-scale, commercial facilities.
Local governments can regulate the use and location of facilities, but not prohibit the use outright.
Grieve applauds government for taking a stand on the issue, noting smells and other aspects of illegal grow ops infringe on neighbouring properties. He is concerned, however, about taking it out of the hands of small entrepreneurs and into the hands of industry.
Area A director Bruce Jolliffe is concerned how the issue is unfolding, and questions how production can be managed.
The Agricultural Land Commission considers licensed medical marijuana production to be a farm use permissible within the ALR. The Ministry of Agriculture in Victoria has yet to take a position.
Staff will report back next year with recommendations on further steps in the local implementation of
Health Canada’s new Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulation.