Sea to Sky LRMP moves on to next step
Community input has already changed the tentative stakeholder groups slated to develop the Sea to Sky Land and Resource Management Plan.
"The list of potential reps has changed after considering some of the comments from the public," said Dave Tudhope, project manager with the Sea to Sky LRMP.
One of the original stakeholder groups has been dropped altogether. Two others have been tentatively added and yet another group has asked to be split into two.
Last month the government identified 13 groups as a starting point in Sea to Sky LRMP discussions. Then, they asked for community consultation to refine those groups.
After taking this input into account the government decided to drop the Water group listed as one of the 13 seats.
Now, the environmental conservation seat will handle any issues concerning water quality for domestic purposes and future water supplies.
The local government seat will also be looking out for water, said Tudhope.
Another group, Commercial Recreation/Tourism, has asked to be split into two groups because combined they represent too many different interests.
Tourism itself deals with things like golf courses and hotels, whereas commercial recreation is more concerned with backcountry operations like heli-skiing and snowmobiling.
The two new seats that may be added to the planning table are Labour and Energy.
The labour group, also classified as the community workforce group, would represent the workers in the plan area.
"The goal is to represent the workers regardless of what natural resource dependent business activity they might be in," said Tudhope.
He said the one major challenge with this group is that the workers aren’t already organized into subgroups, like their environmental or recreational counterparts.
Another new group is Energy, representing independent power producers and geothermal power producers in the area.
But they have expressed concerns they may not have the available resources to donate to the process.
"Even though we’ve identified some sectors, they’re not sure whether or not they’ll have the resources to be able to participate," said Tudhope.
The various representatives at the table will be expected to devote about 24 full days over the course of the LRMP process, which is scheduled to take about one year starting this September.
They will also have to meet with the concerned constituents in the group they represent in order to bring all concerns to the LRMP table.
If the energy group cannot find the resources for representation during the planning process, Tudhope said their interests will still be taken into account.
"We will look to see if there are ways to ensure that those interests are brought forward in the plan," he said.
He also suggested BC Hydro may be asked to get involved.
The updated stakeholder list came as a result of last Saturday’s LRMP meeting at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler where roughly 20 stakeholders met to discuss the makeup of the planning table, among other things, during a half-day meeting.
"At least somebody from most of the key interests were there. Whether or not they end up being the reps, I don’t know," said Tudhope.
This step in the process focused on the non-government stakeholders like forestry, agriculture, public recreation and environment.
Tudhope said there will be a different process to organize the local government group.
The final list of stakeholders has yet to be solidified but it is getting closer, he said.
At this point the government is mostly concerned that the stakeholder representatives are connected to all the various groups in their constituency.
The representation will be confirmed this summer in time to start work in the fall.