One of the highlights for me from the North Central Local Government Association Convention in Quesnel last week was an update from Federation of Canadian Municipalities president Karen Leibovici that the federal Gas Tax Fund will be extended for 10 more years.
In addition, the funds, which are returned to municipalities, will be indexed at 2 per cent annually. This means another $500 million each year coming back to communities. We also heard from Union of British Columbia Municipalities president, Mayor Mary Sjostrom of Quesnel. She and Karen had the most informative sessions I’ve attended.
Local governments, the BC Mayors Caucus, the UBCM and FCM, are all on the same page in demanding more support for our communities’ infrastructure from the federal government. It’s great to see local government standing united and starting to see some results.
Congratulations to lifetime Legion members Reg Norberg and Vivian MacNeil, the two latest recipients of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal. Thank you for all that you do, and for supporting the Legion in all of its hard work in the community.
I was very impressed at Seedy Saturday this year. The local food celebration has come a long way in the past three years. The Food Policy Council and others have done a great job promoting local food.
We have farmer’s markets, community gardens, children and their families are being educated about healthy, local food choices. Local food and agriculture is one of the strategic priorities in our Official Community Plan, and it’s great to see all the farmer’s markets, the community gardens, and events like Seedy Saturday. I’d even like to give garden spinning a try!
Kerry Cook is the mayor of Williams Lake.