Sunday, January 28, 2018

NorthVanPolitics.com: Like a Phoenix!

It seems that reports of the death of this blog may have been premature.  At the last minute John Sharpe stepped back in, and will surely get things back to their usual lively self.
Many thanks to John for deciding to take on the job once again.

In the meantime be sure to take time to check out some local stories of note:

Therapy Dogs Want Pat On The Back, But Heartless CNV Passes The Buck
(Quille) Kaddon is the program manager for Vancouver Ecovillage, a non-profit that enables ordinary pets to become therapy dogs after a four-month rigorous training program. Kaddon says she was shocked when she found out that City of North Vancouver has denied a dog licence exemption for three therapy dogs which are in North Vancouver.
At a recent council meeting, the council voted to not grant an exemption for therapy dogs. Instead, the council is writing a letter to the province asking that it create legislation for therapy dogs in the same manner that it regulates the guide dogs. The city does provide free dog licences to the guide and service dogs because there are certificate programs and it is regulated through provincial legislation.
North Vancouver school trustees vote themselves 2% raise
The board of education voted Tuesday to give themselves a 2.2 per cent raise for the period July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018....
Trustees Cyndi Gerlach, Barry Forward, Franci Stratton and Christie Sacré voted in favour of the increase. Trustee Jessica Stanley abstained and trustees Megan Higgins and Susan Skinner were opposed.
Thanks To Your Taxes, Mayor Walton Now Knows More
If you live in the District of North Vancouver, you can take pride in the fact that a small portion of your tax revenue helped pay for Mayor Richard Walton’s education. Mayor Walton was reimbursed $9,647 for a Directors Education program course he took recently.
The DEP program is jointly developed by the Institute of Corporate Directors and the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. The program fee is $17,500 plus taxes for all modules, along with a $500 application fees.
According to the school, the 12-day course is taught by leading governance experts delivered in four three-day modules and offers practical learning to help directors navigate the boardroom intricacies.
(For those who were looking last fall, The Global Canadian newspaper is now available on-line, and on Facebook.  They would appreciate your clicks and likes.)

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good employers encourage job training and maintenance even amongst their directors... within reason. I would support the councils getting up to 10% of their salary for discretionary educational programs per year or lump sum over the course of a term. There should be some test for relevance to the position, but board training sounds fair.

Anonymous said...

The therapy dogs may be doing a good thing, but that doesn't mean there is no cost to manage the programs. Frankly, lazy complainers bother me. She makes the effort to contact the newspaper about the imposition of the license and says its about the respect, not the $50 fee. The fee is actually only $30.

Lots of organizations are doing great things in this community and still have to pay some small part of the costs to run the system. Saint John's Ambulance saves lives through their training but they still have to have a business license.

Discourse & Democracy said...

The North Vancouver Politics.com blog may be the only democratic voice we have left since the new North Vancouver Community Association Network (NV CAN) has become a less democratic vehicle for the public to express the concerns of the District politics. Some DNV community associations are even calling themselves "non-political"! What is up with that?

Unlike the more democratic, but defunct FONVCA (Federation of North Vancouver Community Associations) , these are the rules of NV CAN's public correspondence and discourse:

"In January, 2018, NVCAN adopted the following policies relating to emails:

1. NVCAN does not distribute emails from the public to its membership.

2. NVCAN’s email is for the purposes of responding to questions about NVCAN or for receiving emails from the Community Associations.

Please forward your email to your local Community Association."

This is a municipal election year! It is not a time to become non-political, nor even a-political. Kudos to John keeping this blog running! Let's show some support for the democratic process here on North Vancouver Politics people!

Lyle Craver said...

I strongly disagree with the 1/30 anonymous who supports public financing of our politicians' professional education.

Specifically municipal politicians already double dip from their involvement with Metro Vancouver and Translink and paying these bills essentially mean "triple dipping" which is great for ice cream but a terrible deal for the taxpayer.

I've been following municipal affairs for 15+ years now and in that time we have seen municipal tax increases WELL in advance of the rate of inflation - and while DNV has their '1% infrastructure levy' (which was supposed to end in 2014) our infrastructure is in better shape than most and I frankly don't see the benefit to the taxpayer in letting it morph into our local version of the 'airport improvement fee'.

Those who own homes are sitting on windfall profits but that's not cash in hand which is what taxes are paid from. Taxes aren't at the "drunken sailor" level but are trending that way. The major challenge for the next Council is providing "value for money" and keeping the lid on increases.

I regularly shake my head at many of the grants our Councils choose to make. Local government is much larger now than it used to be and I speak for many who think we were better off before it got into the social engineering business.

"Business as usual" is no longer good enough.

Anonymous said...

Lyle,

DNV Council (including Mayor) used to have 1/3 of their income counted as expenses so it was tax exempt. My understanding is that is now gone. That should amount to about a $6,000 loss in compensation through taxation. The council compensation package was set based on the expense portion being tax exempt so isn't it only fair that that should be made up somehow? I think an education fund up to 10% of their income is a pretty minimal correction for a $6,000 loss.

Still looking for an article in the paper to talk about the pay cut councils took. I suspect they will show up when the wages go up.

Anonymous said...

(Just checked... Trudeau brought the change forward in last years budget but it doesn't take effect until the end of this year.)