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SLRD asks for consultation on boundary expansions

Squamish-Lillooet Regional District Director John Turner is looking for more consultation when it comes to boundary expansions in the region’s member municipalities.



Turner, who is director of Area D between the south end of Whistler and Furry Creek, raised the issue at Monday’s regular board meeting in Pemberton.

"We hear all these rumours flying around about potential boundary expansions in the SLRD municipalities but we don’t have knowledge of the details or what’s been applied for and what the status is," he said after the meeting.

"This can put electoral area directors on the spot.

"I think that in all fairness the electoral area directors should be aware of boundary expansion applications in Victoria."

Earlier this year the Resort Municipality of Whistler applied to the province for a large boundary expansion as part of the resort’s Olympic legacies.

If granted the boundary expansion would see Whistler increase in size from 16,500 hectares to close to 27,000 hectares.

A portion of the expansion stretches into Area D.

"We keep reading in the paper that there’s boundary extensions or possible boundary extensions with Whistler and really, I don’t think it’s fair that we would have to find out in the paper after the fact," said Turner.

"That shouldn’t be where our information is coming from."

Turner said he would like to see more consultation at the board table.

Board Chair Susan Gimse agreed with Turner.

"These kind of discussions have to come back to this table," she said.

Gimse said the board is working on the Regional Growth Strategy and land use is the top priority of that strategy.

"Clearly this boundary expansion issue is something that should be a part of those discussions," he said.

It also puts board members in an awkward situation when constituents within the boundary area call for clarification and board members cannot help them, she added.

Whistler Mayor Hugh O’Reilly explained Whistler’s application for its boundary expansion would trigger a consultation process.

He also said Whistler’s plans for a boundary expansion have been well known for some time.

Callaghan report comes to regional district

The Squamish-Lillooet Regional District is preparing to rezone land in the Callaghan Valley for Olympic development.

At Monday’s monthly meeting, board members received an information report and instructed staff to prepare the zoning bylaws for first reading in August.

Board Chair Susan Gimse, who recently was on a tour of the area with some of her fellow board members, called the area "beautiful, beautiful country."

According to the report the Whistler Nordic Centre will be rezoned to accommodate a permanent year-round training facility for athletes and commercial recreation opportunities.