Mayor's Update: December 16
Council held our last meeting of the year this week, and it’s time to start thinking about the holidays. But, before the year is over, I would like to share one last newsletter with you with updates on a few important topics.
Extreme Weather Events
Flooding and weather is the topic on everybody’s mind. We have had a year of unimaginable tragedy, loss and destruction, but we have also seen communities coming together for each other.
During periods of heavy rain our staff are out working around the clock, ensuring that catch basins are kept free of debris so that streams do not overflow their banks and create flooding situations. With more rain and snow on the way, it is important to be prepared, pay attention to weather advisories, and report any damage or issues to our staff at 604-925-7100.
The impact to so many British Columbians has been devastating, and our province will take time to recover. In West Vancouver, we have been relatively fortunate so far, so if you can, over the holidays, please consider a donation to the British Columbia Floods and Extreme Weather Appeal, which provides financial assistance to those who have been evacuated from their homes.
Council’s Strategic Plan 2021-2022
At the November 9, 2021 Council meeting, we adopted a renewed Council’s Strategic Plan. Council set out its first Strategic Plan at the beginning of this term, and reviewed and confirmed the strategic goals and objectives in Spring 2020. Over several months in 2021, we spent many hours reviewing our goals and updating the plan for the last year of our term.
Setting out a strategic plan is one of the most important things we do as a Council. Our plan defines a vision with very specific deliverables to direct staff’s workplan, which, in turn, ensures efficient delivery of our services and objectives. It’s an ambitious plan, and many of the objectives are well underway.
The municipal budget is also a very important job of Council. The 2022 proposed budget has been developed to support these goals and objectives. In the new year, I encourage everyone to learn more about the proposed budget, ask questions, and provide comments for Council’s consideration.
You can find information about the budget here.
West Vancouver Police Department
In my last update, I was pleased to share the good news about online reporting of non-emergency matters. Our WVPD has also made a change to telephone reporting of non-emergency calls by changing our service provider to the Transit Police which will provide call-taking and dispatch services. Together, these improvements to the system for non-emergency matters will greatly improve police response times and service to our residents. In the meantime, I will continue to advocate to the Province for significant changes to the health emergency response system, as the horrible tragedies that occurred during the summer heat dome highlighted major deficiencies in the system.
As information about the Omicron variant of concern continues to evolve, I urge residents to exercise caution over the holidays, and closely follow public health guidelines, in order to keep themselves and others safe. It is advised by officials to not attend large holiday parties and to avoid non-essential travel outside of Canada. The precautions we take now will help lower the level of transmission in our community.
West Vancouver Foundation Vital Signs Community Survey
The West Vancouver Foundation releases a Vital Signs report every year. It measures the vitality of our community, identifies significant trends, and examines issues that are critical to the quality of life in West Vancouver. This year the Foundation is introducing a Citizen Survey to collect feedback from the wider community. In addition to themes of community belonging, diversity, housing, health, arts and recreation, the survey also includes questions about how the COVID-19 pandemic may have affected your well-being. The research findings along with community dialogues will help to inform the next Vital Signs report being released in early 2022. I encourage you to visit the website and include your voice in West Vancouver’s 2021 Vital Signs.
I wish you all a joyful, safe, and hopeful holiday season!
Mayor Mary-Ann Booth