We are now at the halfway point in our council’s mandate. Accordingly, they regularly tout their accomplishments. The previous council was severely criticized for demolitions and overbuilding, inattention to the rapidly deteriorating infrastructure and lack of public engagement.
Residents turned out in record numbers in 2018 to vote for the changes which were promised as candidates campaigned. After two years into the new mandate, heritage buildings continue to come down; property taxes continue to go up; roads are rougher; and pipes keep leaking and bursting.
If there is a remediation plan, it is not made easy for residents to discover. Public engagement is lacking (except for a weekly advisory of “progress”) and there is a much greater complement of very expensive management staff for a municipality with almost no growth.
Empire building is alive and well in Oak Bay. “The more things change, the more they stay the same.”