Jim Abram loves what he does.
And that’s the driving force behind his decision to run for re-election as regional director for Area C.
“I love the area that I represent. I love doing things for others. And I love helping people accomplish their goals and address their needs,” said Abram. “We live in one of the most beautiful places on earth. It’s easy to forget this in the midst of our daily grind, but future generations depend on us to take care of this place we call home.”
Abram said he is a representative; not a politician.
“I strongly believe in local control for local people and the involvement of the local community in decision making,” said Abram.
Abram was instrumental in developing a shoreline zoning process to further involve the community in decisions on land use processes, which was extended to all of Area C, with numerous community processes to implement and update these plans for specific geographic areas over the years since he was first elected.
According to Abram, the greatest challenge as a community now is to decide which direction to take.
“We are being faced with some of the toughest issues that communities have ever faced and, as we have in the past, we must rise to the challenge and pave our own way into the future,” said Abram.
“In Area C, we face, as do all other areas in B.C., demographic changes beyond our control. Our population is aging, and we must adapt, while considering the younger population that is slowly coming into the system. We need to provide services, employment, housing, and a secure local food supply.”
Abram said Area C needs to continue to focus on continuing to diversify of its economy.
“During the time that I have been director, we have diversified the economy of Area C faster than other areas, softening the impact of this downturn,” said Abram. “We have embraced other industries such as tourism, woodlots, aquaculture, and the arts. We have moved from traditional industrial forestry to family-run businesses and value-added products. We not only catch and grow fish and shellfish, but we process them in a value-added manner.
“We have had members of our community create niche employment as the needs have arisen.”
Abram that while he plans to continue developing these industries, he also said increasing costs such as ferry fares and housing are on his priority list.
“I have been constantly fighting for reductions in ferry fares for residents and businesses, and strategizing about and planning how we can change our housing situation,” said Abram.
Abram worked to include green building techniques while providing housing for seniors and young families in Quathiaski Cove into the Official Community Plan.
He said he will continue to work hard to represent the area.
“Our area has always been at the forefront of innovation,” said Abram.
“I will work my hardest, using the contacts and connections I’ve built in all levels of government and media over my years as regional director, to make sure that we continue in this tradition.”