SURREY ASSOCIATION OF SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES

 

MINUTES OF GENERAL MEETING

 

Thursday, February 16, 2012, at 7.30 pm

 

McDonald’s restaurant in Fleetwood

 

Persons present:   Leonor Bradley (Guildford Community Partners) George Davies (Royal Park Group), Bob Dhaliwal (W. Panorama Ridge RA),  Barb Paton (Semiahmoo RA), Fred Weber (Ocean park CA), Rosemary Zelinka (Elgin Ratepayers and Coordinator for Surrey ASC).

 

1.           Chair for the Meeting

Rosemary Zelinka was appointed Chair of the meeting.

 

2.           Minutes

The Minutes of the September meeting were approved as circulated.

 

3.           Discussion re municipal election results

 

Some members expressed concerns that now that Surrey Council is one party, it may be harder for questioning or opposing viewpoints to be expressed at the Council table. It was noted that although the Council is one party, they are not bound to vote along party lines and hopefully individual Council members will still question information and decisions.

 

Concern was also expressed that Council members are now chairing all advisory committees.  However it was pointed out that they already chair most of them, except for one or two, such as the Environmental Advisory Committee, so this is not much of a change.

 

There was general agreement that Surrey ASC should endeavor to continue its watchdog activities on Council actions and make representations where appropriate.

 

4.  City’s Consultation processes

 

Recent actions by the City  to develop a set of Community Consultation Principles were discussed.  Coun. Rasode’s initiative in holding public dialogue to develop these Principles was acknowledged with thanks.   The City is now intending to instruct all departments to comply with the Principles in their everyday work.  Coun Rasode has also announced that the informal group of community association representatives and BIA representatives that met to work on the principles will continue to meet, as necessary.  They are, in effect, a continuation of the community association group that used to meet occasionally with the Mayor.

 

While the Principles are very much welcomed, it was noted that they are very broad, that objectives to achieve each Principle should be developed, and an action plan to implement the objectives should be prepared.  It was noted that this recommendation had been made at two follow-up meetings of the community group, without success.   It was agreed that a letter should be sent to the City in this regard.

 

The Coordinator advised that she and several other community association representatives have volunteered to serve on a sub committee organizing a Community Summit, which the City wants to hold once a year or two, like the Economic Summit. Top motivational speakers would be invited, e.g. the Kielburger Brothers who founded Save the Children.  The City would raise money through donations to fund the event.  The group has met once and is thinking of next March as a suitable date.

 

5.  Preparation for March AGM

 

A speaker as an attraction for the AGM was discussed, and it was agreed that Bob Bose should be approached.  As the Coordinator is leaving at the weekend for two weeks’ vacation, Barb Paton volunteered to undertake contacting him.  A more central location than Port Kells will also be sought.

 

6.   Reports from Community Associations

 

Fred Weber advised that he has resigned from Ocean Park CA’s executive, and hence a new representative to Surrey ASC will have to be found.

 

Leonore Bradley advised that Guildford Community Partners is lobbying for an Olympics size swimming pool in Guildford.

 

George Davies expressed concerns about the dwindling number of active community associations in Surrey.

 

7.  Next meeting

The AGM on Thursday, March 15.

 

8.  Adjournment  - 8.30 p.m.