City to take over Rivercorp function

The city’s economic development arm, Rivercorp, will be amalgamated into City Hall

The city’s economic development arm, Rivercorp, will be amalgamated into City Hall.

Following recent meetings between city council and the Rivercorp board, the city has begun the process of changing how Campbell River economic development and tourism services are delivered.

“This is the first phase of reviewing and re-structuring the delivery of economic development and tourism services,” said Mayor Andy Adams.

“A thorough re-evaluation, in collaboration with the Rivercorp board, has helped us conclude that the best way forward is to bring the economic development role into city operations.

“We are confident that combining the economic development function with community development work done in other city departments will result in a more efficient and coordinated effort.”

Rivercorp board chair Donna Hains said a decision was made with cooperation from all parties.

“Our recent meetings with city council were very respectful and constructive,” said Hains.

“It was apparent throughout our discussions that the board and City Council share common objectives for sustained community economic growth and prosperity, and we strongly support council’s decision to better coordinate economic development initiatives with city operations.”

The decision comes on the heels of a review of economic development that was initiated by the current city council after it took office last November.

“The 2015 strategic plan has identified economic growth as one of council’s key focuses for its term and we recognized the need to take a closer look at how we are delivering economic development in the community,” said Adams. “Council recognized the challenges, and we knew that we needed to work closely with the board to maintain current momentum and to yield improved economic development results for the community. Council is very appreciative and impressed with the level of cooperation and commitment with which the board approached these meetings, and together we have developed a strategy that will serve the community well. Over the next few months, we will finalize the details around these changes and transfer the economic development function into city operations.”

Tourism services for visitors will continue to be offered through the Visitor Information Centre, and tourism promotion will continue to be directed by the existing tourism leadership group.

“With a plan now in place to have economic development activities conducted by the city, we will focus our efforts on improvements and enhancements to the tourism function,” said Adams. “Tourism promotion plans will continue unchanged for 2015, with brochures printed and trade shows booked, and now is the time to take a look at strategic changes for 2016 and beyond to develop a renewed tourism strategy that can take our efforts to the next level.”