Voters in the Comox Valley Regional District have a variety of opinions about our local governance structure.
Some contend the structure is outdated and could be improved. But many of the various opinions held probably are just opinions. Generally, they are not based on facts and analyses.
Hence, the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce has undertaken a project that, if successful, will lead to an independent study to get the facts about how our current local governments provide the services for which they are responsible to our citizens.
The provincial government would consider commissioning a study if it can be shown that there is broad community support for one.
Evidence of that community support will be provided by the petition being circulated by the Chamber’s Governance Review Task Force. The petition provides voters with an opportunity to participate in a process leading to discovering the most appropriate local governance structure for the Comox Valley in the 21st century.
The study would have no preconceived alternative structures – it would simply seek the facts on which to base its conclusions and recommendations.
Two letters in the Record of July 8 relating to the subject of governance review illustrate in different ways the need for such a review.
Warren McDonald advocates a need for Comox Valley local governments to speak with one voice, an issue that a study could address, and presumably he would be interested in providing input about that need to a study committee.
In another letter Don Davis suggests that electors should vote on having a different government structure without knowing the facts about how our present governments operate, and about what greater efficiency and effectiveness could be achieved.
In any decision-making situation it is essential to first have the facts before careful consideration can be given to making changes that in our case would affect all of the Valley’s communities.
The support of voters in the Comox Valley for a study is most important so that all concerns can be addressed.