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District of Saanich | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion


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#61 Wayne

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Posted 04 November 2019 - 08:07 AM

I thought the video was well done, but would have little interest to the businness communtiy.

 

Though I am also a big fan off Saanich, I am not sure what positve influence the Mayor or council has had since being elected.

 

They have had approved the largest increase property taxes in the past ten years and given themselves a huge pay raise (13% for Mayor and 11% for Councillors).

 

What would be a positive?


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#62 Nparker

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Posted 04 November 2019 - 08:27 AM

...They have had approved the largest increase property taxes in the past ten years and given themselves a huge pay raise (13% for Mayor and 11% for Councillors). What would be a positive?

Assuming the mayor and council members live in Saanich I am sure they think the pay raise is positive.


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#63 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 04 November 2019 - 08:39 AM

it's pretty easy for saanich to be a "stay the course" type of municipality like metchosin.  a few of us wish victoria could be more that way.

 

i think their parks and recreations department is well run.


Edited by Victoria Watcher, 04 November 2019 - 08:39 AM.

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#64 AllseeingEye

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Posted 04 November 2019 - 07:17 PM

I will say if we're talking strictly from the perspective of 'well run', since the Atwell-spyware case they've cleaned out and cleaned up the senior IT management team, the two most senior of which I know quite well. From a systems leadership-technical-architecture-security perspective, the muni is certainly in good hands.

 

That said I'd like a 13.22% pay increase too please. God knows I am no fan of the CRD but one thing they do which I agree with re: salary increases, is that they automatically lift their rates as part of their budget process, drawing on cost-of-living figures instead of comparative figures from other municipalities, which is what Saanich does.


Edited by AllseeingEye, 04 November 2019 - 07:17 PM.

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#65 Jackerbie

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Posted 05 November 2019 - 10:02 AM

I thought the video was well done, but would have little interest to the businness communtiy.

 

Though I am also a big fan off Saanich, I am not sure what positve influence the Mayor or council has had since being elected.

 

They have had approved the largest increase property taxes in the past ten years and given themselves a huge pay raise (13% for Mayor and 11% for Councillors).

 

What would be a positive?

 

That said I'd like a 13.22% pay increase too please. God knows I am no fan of the CRD but one thing they do which I agree with re: salary increases, is that they automatically lift their rates as part of their budget process, drawing on cost-of-living figures instead of comparative figures from other municipalities, which is what Saanich does.

 

I believe most - if not all - municipalities backed a significant pay raise this year. It all came about because of a change in the income tax laws, where Councillors and Mayors previously had about a third of their salary exempt from income tax. That said, must be nice to be in a position to give yourself a raise when the government increases your tax bill.


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#66 VIResident

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Posted 05 November 2019 - 10:14 AM

When one can insulate oneself from the very increases in taxes one imposes on others, well that is a very special, elitist, entitled position to be in indeed!

 

If you think the CRD tax increase recently announced is over-the-top....just wait, you ain't seen nothin yet.  


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#67 VIResident

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 11:08 AM

A few of you here in VV might be interested in this job posted today on Indeed:

 

 

Civilian - Computer Forensic Examiner 
Location : Saanich BC CA
Human Resources, District of Saanich, 770 Vernon Avenue, Victoria, BC, V8X 2W7 (Fax 250-475-5550) or Email careers@saanich.ca


Edited by VIResident, 21 January 2020 - 11:08 AM.


#68 Rob Randall

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 12:28 PM

Saanich Councillor Colin Plant:

 

Unprecedented times:

An unprecedented 2020 Saanich Budget

 

On Monday night (3.24) Saanich Council met in person (likely the last time for the foreseeable future) to consider, amongst other matters, the 2020 Saanich Budget.

 

While the budget will be officially passed via bylaws prior to the legislatively-required date of May 31st, Council provided direction to staff to bring forward a "status quo" budget for 2020. The vote was not unanimous, it passed 6-3. (I voted in favour).

 

And while that may seem like a logical thing to do when facing this COVID-19 pandemic, there is a bit more to the story as this means many new Strategic Plan-based initiatives that Council was very excited to pursue, have been put on hold.

 

The Saanich 2020 budget process had gotten underway at the end of February. We started with departmental presentations (current and planned initiatives) and then had resource requests presentations (new initiatives).

 

We had learned that the maintaining of services that we had provided in 2019 was going to result in a budget increase of 3.74% or $99.59 to the average single family homeowner.

 

If we were to add all the resource requests (and undoubtedly this list would have been reduced), we would have seen an additional 3.36% increase adding up to 7.1%.

 

I don't think any member of Council was likely to support an increase of that size. And to be accurate, staff was going to bring forward a report with 1% and 2% budget reduction scenarios through strategy-based reductions. This report never made it to Council, because...

COVID-19 HIT THE CANADA.

 

Our response in Saanich has seen us establish an Emergency Operations Centre where we work to ensure the municipality can continue to provide the essential services and coordinate all responses to this pandemic.

 

Recreation centres have been closed. Playgrounds have been closed. Our Hall has been closed to the public except by appointment. So many things have happened in the past week it's hard to comprehend. So much change in such a short time seems to be the new normal.

 

As a result of these unprecedented times our staff late last week put forward a recommendation to Council to essentially have a roll over budget for 2020. I can only imagine this was a gut-wrenching recommendation to make because, like Council, staff had identified initiatives that would be beneficial to the municipality.

 

So that is how we got to last night.

 

When the opportunity arose, I put forward a motion to endorse the staff recommendation and see a "status quo" budget for 2020.

It gave me no pleasure to say "not now" to the new resource requests that would have helped see Saanich meet its strategic goals. It gave me no pleasure to see important advancements put off a year while we deal with this pandemic.

 

However, I have to recall that it is my role to look out for all of the municipality and not just those who have the same political ideology as myself. While I personally support the full suite of requests, I recognize that a 7.1% tax increase, or anything near that, is not appropriate when a pandemic is likely to cripple our economy.

 

One of my colleagues astutely observed that it was unlikely most Saanich residents were seeing a 3.7% increase in their wages in 2020, and were more likely to see less income as a result of COVID-19 and therefore how could we consider anything more than the status quo. I agree.

 

It really stung to not be able to support the additional requests to support initiatives such as active transportation and climate action. These are valuable and important responses to our community’s aspirations as stated through our Strategic Plan.

 

But here is where I will begin to wrap up. I fully anticipate that next year we will advance these important initiatives. These initiatives are not cancelled, they are put on pause for 2020. I commit to advancing these initiatives in 2021, and if possible, sooner. In the meantime Saanich will continue to fund programs already in place to support these community needs. We are not starting from zero. We are already doing a lot, but wanted to do more. But this, in my opinion, is not prudent at this time.

 

I recognize if you have read this far, you likely fit into one of three categories:

  • -The increase is too high.
  • -The increase is too low.
  • -The increase is appropriate.

And whatever you feel, I would welcome a discussion with you.

 

All I can say is that I tried to find a balance for our community during these tumultuous and unprecedented times.


"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

-Tom Hawthorne, Toronto Globe and Mail


#69 Mike K.

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 12:32 PM

As a result of these unprecedented times our staff late last week put forward a recommendation to Council to essentially have a roll over budget for 2020. I can only imagine this was a gut-wrenching recommendation to make because, like Council, staff had identified initiatives that would be beneficial to the municipality.

So that is how we got to last night.

When the opportunity arose, I put forward a motion to endorse the staff recommendation and see a "status quo" budget for 2020.
It gave me no pleasure to say "not now" to the new resource requests that would have helped see Saanich meet its strategic goals. It gave me no pleasure to see important advancements put off a year while we deal with this pandemic.


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#70 Nparker

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 12:36 PM

 

COVID-19 HIT THE CANADA

"THE" Canada?  :confused:



#71 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 12:46 PM

only in the land of municipal politics is a 3.74% budget increase "status quo".  slow clap for your courage in these extreme times, saanich.


Edited by Victoria Watcher, 24 March 2020 - 12:47 PM.


#72 shoeflack

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 12:47 PM

You know, kind of like THE Ohio State University. Go Buckeyes!



#73 lanforod

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 04:06 PM

A lot of expenses the city would normally be spending money on is being delayed or deferred now, isn't it? Not regular salaries perhaps but certainly many costs related to running facilities, projects, meeting costs etc.

#74 spanky123

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 07:10 PM

A lot of expenses the city would normally be spending money on is being delayed or deferred now, isn't it? Not regular salaries perhaps but certainly many costs related to running facilities, projects, meeting costs etc.

 

They are not nearly as exposed as Victoria which is going to lose millions in parking revenues and service fees.



#75 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 07:11 PM

Victoria is going to have some property tax defaults too. If only for a year.

#76 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 07:13 PM

bc transit is already taking a hit at cash farebox and next month they will sell almost no monthly passes.
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#77 Nparker

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 07:36 PM

 

bc transit is already taking a hit at cash farebox and next month they will sell almost no monthly passes

Except for the "free" youth passes already purchased by the CoV?


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#78 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 25 March 2020 - 04:36 AM

yes. the city buys those despite all kids being confined to homes.
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#79 Bernard

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Posted 25 March 2020 - 12:16 PM

BC Transit still gets the revenues from all the Upasses and from all the people who signed up for longer term bus passes



#80 Nparker

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Posted 25 March 2020 - 12:32 PM

BC Transit still gets the revenues from all the Upasses and from all the people who signed up for longer term bus passes

Such as ProPASSES used by many government workers.


Edited by Nparker, 25 March 2020 - 12:32 PM.


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