As the Union of B.C. Municipalities heads into its second day, Mayor Maja Tait and the rest of Sooke’s council are busy attending a host of meetings, presentations, and tours.
The convention, which has brought together municipal leaders from across B.C. to discuss common issues facing their communities, started on Monday and continues until Friday.
“Yesterday, I hosted a study session to discuss parity in politics and how we can engage more women in politics and attract them to run for political office,” said Tait, who will be named UBCM president later this week.
“There’s a whole host of other study sessions, including a session on funding and resources for local governments.”
Monday also gave delegates from Sooke the chance to join B.C. Ministry of Agriculture on a tour to showcase a broad range of farm operations and to discuss the challenges that agriculture faces within the context of urban expansion.
Coun. Tony St. Pierre participated in that tour with a view to getting some ideas on how to manage the district’s own experiences regarding food security and the loss of agricultural land.
Coun. Jeff Bateman also attended a tour. He learned about emergency services and was given the opportunity to experience first hand the challenges of being a firefighter.
Tait said that she’s looking forward to upcoming sessions and is especially interested in discussions about the development of a regional transportation funding and how permanent support for public transportation could impact the District of Sooke.
Other topics under discussion on Tuesday afternoon will include the issue of ride-hailing, the resilience of B.C. forests, and planning for tourism strategies.
“The UBCM convention is a wonderful chance to meet with other civic representatives and discover solutions for concerns that we share. It’s well worth the time we spend here. Everyone comes away more informed and with new ideas and answers to problems,” said Tait.