Valley municipalities and electoral directors are slated to meet Aug. 12 to discuss Cumberland’s intention to withdraw from the regional economic development service.
Cumberland council would prefer to spend money on initiatives that directly impact the Village.
Last year, Cumberland provided $45,157 to the service that is provided under contract by the Comox Valley Economic Development Society.
Some members of Courtenay council are disappointed with Cumberland’s position.
“I think this is incorrect of Cumberland to engage in this process,” Coun. Erik Eriksson said at the July 6 meeting. He feels economic development should be Valley-wide.
“Cumberland would benefit from any economic improvement in Courtenay.”
Mayor Larry Jangula concurs.
“When the mill was functioning in Campbell River, 40 per cent of the employees lived here, so the mill had a very definite effect on this valley,” Jangula said. “Anything that happens anywhere in the area will benefit all of us. I think it’s most unfortunate that Cumberland has taken this position. I think you weaken the union when you start jumping out of the union.”
The request to withdraw from CVEDS rests with the provincial government.
Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development Coralee Oakes, responding to a letter from Cumberland Mayor Leslie Baird, hopes the Village will remain in the service.
“Regional economic development services are important to enabling local governments to work together to stimulate business and other economic development opportunities for their communities,” Oakes states in a return letter to Baird.