Our Council meeting this week was efficient, helped along by a fairly short agenda with not a lot of meat on it (that will, apparently, be next week).
Assessments are here. For those who own homes, this means a letter arrived in the mail telling you what the assessed value of your property was on July 1, 2019. It also tells you what the assessed value was over the previous three years. Some people are very upset to find their property has gone up in value, which means their property taxes are going up. Others are very upset that their assessed value has gone down, and their investment is losing value. At least, that is what I glean from Social Media, but maybe I need to get out more.
I have written before about the relationship between property assessment and property taxes, and about how the assessment process works, so this will be a bit of an update/summary of those posts. A bit of redundancy, but with new numbers
In many jurisdictions in Canada, municipal councilors are not elected “at large” to represent the entire City like in New West, but are elected to represent a single neighbourhood or group of neighbourhoods called “wards”. Instead of voting for your favourite six from across the city, you vote for one from your neighbourhood only. For some reason, this is not common in British Columbia, and excepting Lake County (which has 4 wards and two “at large” councilors, to the chagrin of some), there are none in BC. Surrey is looking at it, though.
A new year is here, and we had Council Meeting right off the bat! The open agenda was fairly short, so it was soft landing back into the real world. We started with a piece of Unfinished Business:
The Vancouver Special was developed in Vancouver (and adopted in some adjacent communities) because it was a governance and market response to needing a bunch of affordable-ownership housing during rapid growth. I like where this proposal went, because it applied that kind of thinking to our current housing situation. To answer your question in TL;DR form: I like the idea, I don’t know if it would work, but I wish Vancouver had given it a try.
This is a blog. A dying media, but indulge me. I this in 2010 when blogging was something people did. I started writing about things going on in New Westminster and my volunteer work with the New West Environmental Partners under the title “GreenNewWest”. I then realized this was probably confusing to people because I […]
Yikes, too much going on since last time I reported out on my Council-adjacent activities, so I’ll keep this short. One paragraph each (scroll down to see if I keep that promise, kinda curious if I do myself…)
I am really not good at keeping up with these, but here are a few things that kept me busy over the last couple of weeks.
I think I found the right title for my “community” posts, because this is really just a run-down of things that happened that I happened to be near as opposed to things that happened because of my or things I made happen, though some of those may slip in. Passive voice -its not all about me! Since this is the third in my recent resurgence of this topic, I’m starting at 3. Don’t @ me.
OK, so maybe I already missed the mark on my soft promise of weekly updates on my council-related community activities, but let’s call them almost-weekly, and if we can keep ahead of fortnightly (although I love the term), and we can call this a success. It is going to depend on how many things I […]
“Council work” includes a bunch of reading of reports, reading for independent research, and countless e-mails and conversations on the street with residents, business owners, and others. Lots of times, you wake up in the morning thinking about it, and go to sleep at night thinking about it. You sit in the pub and chat about recycling, friends corner you at the curling rink and ask you about dog parks, the barber fills you in with the latest happenings during your trim. I’m a social guy, and I love to talk, so I don’t want that to come across as a complaint, but his makes it hard to “count the hours” of the job. Is it full time or part time? The only answer is that it is a job that expands to the time available to it.