Great news! Yesterday the SCRD approved in principle the concept of a coastwide economic development agency.
The CAOs will now develop a MOU for local governments to approve and sign outlining philosophy of the entity, funding model and scope of works planned. We hope the MOU will be completed for local government review by end of 2011 and perhaps something will start to happen in early 2012.
The funding piece will be part of budget deliberations, so it could be late, the first quarter of 2012 before funding is approved and things can go ahead. It will depend on the pace desired by new Boards and Councils to move this ahead. It is very important the community elect officials who support this initiative.
We hope the CAOs will seek our input into the scope of work to be done but no communication from them yet. They will have to plan their strategy and I will keep abreast of those developments and report to the Task Force. Thank you to all who showed up at the meeting yesterday. The next call to arms will be when they bring this back to individual local governments as there are still issues to be sorted out, particularly the budget for this entity and how that will get divided up amongst the funders.
D.J. (Jim) Cleghorn
SC Econ Dev Task Force