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Council rejects mayor’s task force

The mayor is now officially 0-for-3 on his attempts to form a series of mayor’s task forces.

Last October, council rejected Mayor Walter Jakeway’s recommendations to form groups of no more than five people to look into exhibition grounds, and community gardens.

Jakeway’s third suggestion, a task force to investigate developing the city’s waterfront from Jubilee Parkway to Race Point Road, was the only attempt that didn’t die at the council table.

Instead, council voted to defer the issue to the city’s Advisory Planning and Environment Commission to discuss.

However, the commission reported back to council last week with a recommendation that council drop that idea too.

“The general consensus by the group was to not give priority to the waterfront task force at this time,” said Coun. Ryan Mennie, who chairs the commission.

The advisory commission, with help from the Community Services, Recreation and Culture Commission, noted that the city already has 11 documents that regulate waterfront development, including the official community plan, the Tyee Spit Long Range Plan, a Strategic Parks Plan, and a Downtown Waterfront Design Charrette. Mennie predicted in October, when Jakeway proposed the waterfront task force, that it would likely not pan out because the concept was too broad.

“I don’t think we’re asking clearly enough what we want,” Mennie said. “I think it’s going to fail and confuse the commission.”

Coun. Claire Moglove was also not supportive of Jakeway’s initiative, saying that the city already has several plans in play that take into consideration issues such as boat ramps, marina development, sea walk expansion and other waterfront concerns.

Jakeway’s intention with setting up the waterfront task force was to have a group of people investigate future marina capacity development, boater access ramps, recreational needs, waterfront walkway expansion and other marine-related features.

Jakeway had proposed providing the task force with $12,000 from the city’s gaming reserve to accomplish those tasks.

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