Central Saanich Mayor Ryan Windsor said the municipality has set reasonable parameters around the future use of COVID-19 re-start funds for non-profits. (Submitted file photo)

Central Saanich Mayor Ryan Windsor said the municipality has set reasonable parameters around the future use of COVID-19 re-start funds for non-profits. (Submitted file photo)

Central Saanich Mayor Ryan Windsor defends council’s decision-making on grants

Coun. Zeb King criticizes pace of response

Central Saanich Mayor Ryan Windsor said the municipality has set reasonable parameters around the future use of COVID-19 re-start funds for non-profits.

“I know council had a good debate on what funding should be made available to the community at-large and set what I think are reasonable parameters around that, given that that money first came from the province labelled as re-start. Certainly, we are not the only community that has entertained the idea of helping out not-for-profits. There may be some need that has already emerged and there may be needs that will emerge with respect to organizations out there in the community.”

Windsor made that comment in an interview with the Peninsula News Review after Coun. Zeb King said council is not acting fast enough to help those struggling with the economic effects of COVID-19. King made that comment after a meeting where council voted against his notice of motion that would have asked staff to consult with the Farmland Trust Society about using some of the $3.45 million the municipality received through a joint federal-provincial program designed to help municipalities deal with the effects of COVID-19.

“This is certainly not a rapid response to helping the needy and it fails to show leadership,” King said after that meeting. “Instead, the council wants to punt this to a slow staff allocation process that might provide $7,500 max.”

RELATED: Central Saanich councillor criticizes colleagues for being too slow with grants

King is referring to council’s unanimous decision to set aside $50,000 for applications by non-profits for a one-time-grant of up to $7,500 with the chief administrative officer — rather than council — making the final decision subject to criteria.

Councillors later considered, then rejected King’s notice of motion, with opponents arguing it would have politicized a process after council had tried to de-politicize it.

During that meeting, Windsor encouraged groups to apply, adding later in a letter to the editor responding to coverage of King’s comments that “council has the authority to increase the total amount available and maximum available to a qualifying group.”


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wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Saanich Peninsula