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Councillor will recommend city hiring freeze

Coun. Ziggy Stewart wants the city to implement an immediate hiring freeze and will be asking council to support a motion to support that at next Tuesday’s regular council meeting.

Stewart said there are positions on city staff that are not filled but he would like to see those included in a hiring freeze.

With a tough budget looming over city councillors, Stewart feels this is not the time to be doling out more money.

“If we’re going to say we’re millions of dollars in deficit, how can we justify spending more money on hiring new people,” said Stewart.

He added he would like to see all future job postings be brought before council to discuss why or why it is not needed.

The doctor’s in

The city wants to hear from local doctors and support staff about how the potential loss of certain health services at Campbell River Hospital could impact the community.

“We don’t get enough information from the doctors. We talked to VIHA but we have not talked to the doctors in a long time and I think it’s time we opened up some discussion. I don’t always want to just hear it from the papers,” said Coun. Ziggy Stewart, who was the mover of the motion to invite the doctors as a delegation at a future council meeting.

Council also agreed to extend the 10-minute maximum for presentations to 30 minutes.

VIHA recently requested a review of microbiology lab services at both the Campbell River and Nanaimo hospitals which will likely determine whether services will be removed from those facilities and centralized in Victoria.

Mayor Charlie Cornfield said he would like to hear about the “service issues” from the doctors who could be impacted.

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