Sunday, September 29, 2013

Newspaper Tips their Hand

...contributing to the Amalgamation fear-mongering.

Today's front page headline is "Vernon considers tax hike".

Nothing unusual about taxes increasing, no matter which jurisdiction.  (Vernon's projected increase of 3.7 per cent is comprised of 1.8 for operations--"most of it for collective agreements"--and 1.9 for infrastructure).

But it's the timing of this article--three to six months earlier than any previous years' stories on budget deliberations--that is easily read to promote the status quo on the amalgamation issue.

"We are talking about very broad, generic numbers at this point."  Will Pearce, Vernon's chief administrative officer

Sure it's early; that's why the numbers are very broad and generic.

It isn't as though Coldstream taxes haven't gone up year after year.
But somehow, to someone somewhere, it seemed important that yet another tax increase for Vernon were made public this early.
Because it plays into the fear-mongering.

Coldstream councillors have been quoted as saying "taxes would increase" if amalgamation occurred.  Area directors also stated "we're rural, we don't want curbs and streetlights" and "Silver Star Road would cost us $1 million a year to maintain if Victoria weren't responsible for it within the regional district".

But read it carefully, folks, and the answer is right there.
In plain sight.

One-point-eight per cent of a 3.7 per cent increase "most of it for collective agreements" is the answer.

That 50 per cent of what we pay that goes to wages and benefits.
For three bureaucracies, year after year.

What the Society for the Future Governance of Greater Vernon hasn't said at all until today, let alone not said it well, is that there would be fewer government employees if amalgamation occurred when three bureaucracies are gutted and a new Greater Vernon municipality is formed.
Expensive government employees.

Yes, that's the only way the amalgamation idea will work as KPMG proposed.
That's the whole idea.
Eliminate dupllicate / overlapping services and costs, as KPMG's core services review recommended.

"We are looking for a new municipality and not just an absorption by Vernon of the other jurisdictions."  Peter Moore

But until Bruce Shepherd and Peter Moore actually talk plainly about things on peoples' minds, people will be swayed by the fear-mongering.

Peter did so today at the conclusion of the Society's story:  "We are looking for a new municipality and not just an absorption by Vernon of the other jurisdictions."

The Society still has a considerable distance to travel to sway people.

Presuming that the "new municipality" won't have the same mayor and council as Vernon now does, who will orchestrate the redefinition of boundaries and representation?

To keep the rural areas as they want, rural, will require an entirely new Official Community Plan for the greater Vernon that allows rural areas to say "no" to curbs, sidewalks and streetlights.
Because that's what they want, to remain rural.
So does that mean Bylaws won't apply to the rural areas if they can say "no" to development pressures?

Does the Local Government Act actually allow that?
Or is the the LGA a dinosaur that prevents the evolution to, say, a ward system?

And what about Bylaws?  (not that many of us love them).
Whose bylaws are "best practices"?
Would those prevail over others?
Do we throw out all bylaws and start again from scratch?

Someone, some agency, some....ok, I'll say arm's length from the current situation will need to be in a position of authority during the transition.
Who will grant that authority?
And will it be legal?

Sounds like a lot of lawyers and lawyer fees.
And time.

Can the area afford the severance packages that will arise?
Word has it that defined benefit pension plans are still being offered new hires in local governments.
Word also has it that local government pension plans remain an unfunded liability.
Where will that money come from?

" almost immediate saving of more than $2.3 million dollars just in salaries and expenses for the Coldstream elected officials and staff alone."
Doug Vincent, letter to editor.

The Society needs to state just how they'll convince Victoria to change legislation that the former RDNO's highways will still be maintained by Victoria, even if the regional district disappears.  The Local Government Act will be impacted, and Victoria will balk at that simply because the B.C. government doesn't want the amalgamation theme to spread to other areas of the province.

They'll need to convince MLA Eric Foster that a streamlined local government is desirable.
Streamlined by two-thirds.

Just guessing...but we think Eric isn't showing his hand.
He's hoping the amalgamation push will fail as it did previously.

"I'll tip my paw that amalgamation will succeed," offers Kia.

Greater Vernon Governance Society website:

The petition is here:

An updated list of "amalgamation comments" from the public is found on this blog, just scroll down....

Thursday, September 19, 2013


Bartenders do hear everything...

Since the amalgamation issue was raised by the Greater Vernon Governance Society, there's been no shortage of opinions as folks spend time on the patio and at the bar at Highlands Golf.

Knowing there would be considerable discussion among residents of Coldstream, Vernon and the Regional District areas, I was amazed--gobsmacked, as any Brit would put it--at the discussions that occurred.  Especially when lips were loosened after a beer, the person obviously comfortable among friends.
Or at least like-minded individuals, hard-working family people who were having a few hours of fun in their busy week.

One person said "write them down"; others agreed, saying "nobody will say these things on the petition."

"As long as you don't use our names," was the proviso.

Okay.   Here goes (relying solely on memory). 
  • Coldstream's new mechanic shop:  they spent $78,000 on an engineering study for the cranes and equipment the shop needs.  They could've had ALL that stuff for about $18,000 total...installed.  Without the engineer.  Jeez, they study everything to death, why?  So no-one gets blamed for the screw ups that still occur, even with consultants.
  • Consultants get our tax dollars with their grossly-inflated cost for studies.  But it gets the bureaucrats off the hook, nobody's responsible for anything.
  • Both Coldstream and Vernon are proof that good knowledgeable smart people don't run for office anymore.
  • Why stop at Areas B & C?  Give Cherryville to Lumby, they can use the tax dollars.  Give Enderby to Armstrong for the same reason.  Give unorganized regional district areas to their closest city.  Presto, no need for a regional district at all. 
  • These days, it's government departments charging other government departments, all of whom we pay for.  And they don't care.  There's only one of us!  Far too many of 'em.
  • Sure, keep the workers...the roads and water guys, they actually do something.  Get rid of two councils and three administrations.
  • No way do I want Vernon's (existing) mayor running things in my area!  (which led to the following:)
  • They have to start from scratch, a whole new GVA (Greater Vernon Area) mayor and council over the entire area.  
  • We taxpayers can force Victoria to change laws that they still have to look after the main highways and road that leads to Silver Star Park.  They work for us; time we tell them that.
  • Fear-mongering from B says they don't want curbs and street-lights and higher taxes.  That's a rural area and the new GVA (amalgamated) has to do a new community plan that designates that area won't get curbs and street-lights, therefore, taxes won't surge.
  • Ten or 15 years ago there was a Vernon planner that screwed around so long with a software company that wanted to locate here that they finally got fed up with all the delays and lack of decision-making and went to Kelowna.  They were up and running in half the time it would've taken in Vernon.
  • All the young people have gone north 'cause they're sick of flipping burgers or pumping gas.  University grads have no work here, but they'll come back to retire (laughing).
  • If it weren't for Tolko and Kal Tire, the average age of residents here would be "deceased" (more laughter).
  • Dying town, and hiring an economic development guy doesn't change anything, just adds another expense account that has to be paid.  And a desk and a computer.  That reminds me:  "traffic demand coordinator" -- what the hell is that anyway?  Probably somebody else making $100K.
  • Had amalgamation occurred years ago, Coldstream would have a hitching rail outside of a small office, with only a rural manager and a clerk. Would prefer that to the new municipal hall and all the debt that brings.
  • If DoC amalgamates, can we put a For Sale sign on the muni hall and get our money back?
  • Look at Coldstream and Vernon councils...can't find one person with real business/life experience, they're either consultants or a lawyer, or ... what?  a teacher for a mayor, yeah, like that'll ever work.  Most of 'em have nothing better to do so they run for office.
  • The way this area is going, we must've taken a lesson from Kenora.  Reminds me of what happened to Tolko in Kenora, Ontario.  Tolko wanted to build a strand board plant, 700 employees.  They got so dinked around by local government they said bugger it and built the plant in N.Manitoba.  And you'd think Kenora would've learned how to treat business differently from what happened earlier when their paper plant left town to the tune of eight hundred employees.  That's 1,500 in a town of 15,000.  But you can bet the bureaucrats kept their jobs.  Incredible!
  • Coldstream and Vernon learned from Ottawa's senators how to keep ripping us off.  Don't forget the regional district, someone added.
  • Who's the government idiot who read the book called "The Road Diet"?  Enough bike lanes already.  Yeah, and heaven forbid, we--driving a 2,000 pound vehicle--would have the right of way.  Nope, they do.  Now you can't even turn right on a red because some biker is sittin' in the right lane sipping chai tea in his painfully tight speedo bike suit.
  • They're all crooks, jealous of what people have so they put everyone through the ringer.  
  • Empire building, power trips by people who'd never have power if they were on their own; couldn't achieve crap on their own, yet they relish in putting roadblocks in front of people that have achieved something.
  • Good people don't run anymore...have a look at wishy-washy today.
  • Didn't that guy...Coldstream councillor say that "we (Coldstream) own all the land in Coldstream?"  He'd never say that to my face, I've got 6 acres.
  • Yeah, and they tried to rezone acreages here.  (Reminded them the RU10/RU30 isn't dead yet).
  • Bureaucrats, ALL of 'em, hate ALL the elected officials.  And the public hates bureaucrats 'coz of the cost.  So much for what we thought was democracy; it's dead, especially in B.C.  Christy will fall over, she's leaning so far left, some Liberal, eh?
  • ICBC and Hydro bank accounts emptied by Victoria, so look at who our local governments are learning from.  Some role model about fairness to taxpayers, eh?  They all stink, no matter who's in.
  • You used to be able to go to a desk and get help from government...building a house or barn, they'd help you fill in the ONE form.  And you could start building it.  You didn't need an engineer's report or an environment study.  We even scribbled our barn plan on a napkin and the guy at the desk laughed and said after we explained it, "yeah, okay".  We walked out with our plan.  And it was cheap, a few bucks.  Now it costs a fortune to build a dog house.
  • Permits for everything, sick of it.  I'm old and remember when we burned our acreage fencelines to keep the place nice.  Kids would jump in the leaf piles before we burned those.  But now there's 2 people with asthma that don't want anyone to burn, got nothing to do with earth warming.  And people's places look like s**t.
  • Permits?  don't get 'em anymore, for anything!  (Laughter).
  • Didn't Coldstream Mayor get quoted in paper saying "you can still PAINT your house without a permit."  Everything else needs a permit?  Ya right.  He can paint my house alright.
  • And he thinks somebody's going to need the old Consumers Glass plant for a movie.  Wait until it falls down on the crew and DoC will be liable for it falling apart, meaning taxpayers have to pay...again.
  • Look what you (me!) went through to get a liquor license!  (No comment!  Either about the original application and public hearing, nor the liquor license change years later!)
  • What's with that town centre thing?  who the hell wants that?!?  They don't want business, look at how they treat the few businesses they have!  
  • Glad the Coldstream Ranch kept all their subdivided lots the way they were, after the socialists asked them to put it back into one parcel.  Keith would've been insane to buckle under to them.  What a bunch of socialists! 
  • The Ranch should sell all their little parcels off to people looking for small acreage; I hope they do sell them.  That'll show that councillor who REALLY owns the land in Coldstream, certainly not the bloody council!
  • They piss away so much money.  I could do those jobs for one third the price they pay with our money.
  • Look at what Coldstream paid for those 2 traffic islands outside Kal General Store, think it was $16,000, with 25 plants.  Jeez, where do I get a job paying 800 percent over cost like that?
  • Bureaucrats are all crooks, making up the rules depending on who you are.  So much for fairness.
  • Water things drive me they're not making enough money because people are conserving, so they raise the prices.  There's places in Kelowna that aren't even on a water meter today.  They've got so much water 'coz they've worked to satisfy their customers!  I wish we had moved to Kelowna's outskirts instead of here.
  • And some group runs watershed issues here (Okanagan Basin Water Board), yeah, that's who.  So they want everyone to grow cactus.  We're losing historical trees because of their advice and the high cost of water.  Yeah, that'll cool the place down as temps climb...dead trees, no shade.  Who can afford to water 'em?
  • Everybody in government is an expert.  And they think we're all dumb.  It's the other way around.  Ya, we are dumb for electing them and for not getting rid of bureaucrats sooner.  But good people don't run any more, so what can you expect?  Mindless lefties.  Pissing off everyone except one or two in their circle.
  • Yes amalgamate, please.  Get rid of 'em all, start again.  And this time, keep watching 'em.  If the new bunch screws up, toss them.  And if our MLA doesn't like things, he can go with them.
  • They're all in cahoots, from BC Assessment to Victoria, to local government.  Assessment is BS, and Victoria won't give our governments more money, because they're all broke.  There oughta be a law.
  • (reply)  There's enough laws already!
  • Half what we pay goes to wages, never that way years ago.  We actually got something for our money then.  Now the government boys get new offices.  Whoopee!
 "I heard that, too, and that's what taxpayers said," confirms Kia.

 I was right; these comments would never make the official petition Comments page.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Society for the Future Governance of Greater Vernon

(Note:  Petition comments updated daily, and are found immediately below this document)

(Highlighting by blog author)

Single government structure, “Long overdue”
September 13th, 2013
For Immediate Use

The Society for the Future Governance of Greater Vernon has been collecting signatures for less than one week, and already there is a general theme coming forward from citizens. The Societies website is collecting signatures from citizens who want local and provincial authorities to review the opportunity of combining local governments into a single entity, for the purpose of more efficient use of our local tax dollars.  

Society President Bruce Shepherd says “The most frequent comment is that investigating the concept of one local government entity is LONG OVERDUE. In addition, we’ve heard that citizens are tired of the ineffective and inconsistent way in which governance of the area is handled.”

“We keep hearing that a unified government structure is of no interest to Coldstream citizens” said Shepherd “but clearly that is NOT the case. Based on the first few days of on line petition signatures, over 30% of respondents are Citizens in the District of Coldstream, just over 10% from Areas B & C with the balance from the City of Vernon.”

He went on to say that some concerns being expressed about increased costs for taxpayers in Coldstream appear to be unfounded.  Some costs may increase such as policing but what about the cost savings of not having three separate administration structures to fund? To use Coldstream as just one example, from 2006 to 2011, the cost of remuneration and expenses for Council, Administration and Staffing rose by $805,210.  That’s an increase of 45% in 5 years.

We reiterate, who is taking the initiative to find cost and efficiency savings in Greater Vernon?  There will be no shortage of need for taxpayer dollars in the future for infrastructure, transit, recreation and cultural facilities. Equally as important, the area needs a unified vision to promote economic development so that job growth can return to the area. 

The society expects to soon be adding mail in petitions as well as petitions lists being collected by volunteer canvassers to our results.  This is a very healthy discussion which has just begun amongst the citizens of Greater Vernon.

For Further Information:    Bruce Shepherd 250-503-0663 or Peter Moore 250-545-2432

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Updated Comments from Amalgamation Petition

Petition "comments" are extremely interesting, and are reproduced here verbatim.
Updates from the online petition will be made regularly.

  • I support a review to determine the most efficient governance model for the North okanagan region 
  • It's an idea whose time has come, in fact, overdue
  • please get it done.  
  • Long overdue. We need to get less governance and more effectiveness from a single council. 
  • Good idea!  
  • I will promote this concept. Thank You! 
  • Not sure live up Silver Star Mtn.  
  • I think it is now the right time to make this review. 
  • we need a single governance to enhance planning, protect sensitive areas, improve parks, water and utilities.  
  • I agree with combining the local governments, and specifically with the reduction of staff in any and all areas with even a small overlap. 
  • lets do it  
  • Good work 
  • Amalgamation is long over due.  
  • Make better use of our tax funds. 
  • I was informed about your quest by (name removed by blog author).  Although I do not have a lot of time I am very passionate about this topic. Let me know if I can help the cause 
  • Assume such review would include Greater Vernon Water coming under this consolidation 
  • Should have been done, but the sooner the better for all concerned.  
  • Bravo on your initiative. Governnace is a serious, crippling issue and is holding us back in many ways - particularly in economic development
  • This is most certainly a valid petition. What a joke.  
  • It's time--well passed! 
  • We need 1 mayor and 6 councilors and that is all. also absorb NORD.
  • About Time.  
  • Great start. 
  • excellent idea.  
  • Combine to save and speed up decisions 
  • It's great to see this initatiave move forward. Thks  
  • One communit makes sense to me. Better use of tax dollars. 
  • We strongly agree with amalgamation
  • I fully support your efforts  
  • this is LONG overdue, too much beauracracy 
  • Would like less money spent on duplication of governments and services.  
  • I fully support amalgamation as the best possible way to create efficiencies in our communities with the long-term goal of reducing taxes 
  • A referendum would show if there is actual support for amalgamation, instead of just relying on the opinions of elected officials  
  • Great idea. We need to amalgamate. 
  • It is time!!!  
  • Have lived here over 15 years and am still confused by who governs what. Dismayed by the squabbling and waste of my taxes. 
  • Long overdue  
  • I definitely agree with combining the Electoral areas especially Coldstream with Vernon at the very least and consolidating taxes, services and expenses. 
  • This is long overdue. We are spending a fortune, with too many levels of government. It's a huge waste of out tax dollars.  
  • I lived in Kamloops when they amalgamated and was very happy with the resulting efficiencies. 
  • For 60,000 people we only require one source of Government - too much duplication of costs!!  
  • We don't need these many politicians, committees, etc. in an area this size; it's a waste of tax payers money. 
  • We are strongly in favour of amalgamation.  
  • I feel strongly about amalgamation for this area ! 
  • I am very much in support of amalgamation.  
  • About time as the area is too small for so many local governments. Too much overlapping of services and indecisive decisions. 
  • We need to have Vernon and Greater Vernon under one umbrella rather than duplicating services and budgets.  
  • hopefully this will lower all of our taxes and get the RDNO out of our lives. 
  • I am definitely in favor of a plan and a referendum on this subject.  
  • Too many jurisdictions/bureaucrats to deal with. eg We are trying to create a viable tennis club but are stymied at every turning point, Now they are changing the ownership of Marshall Parks which just makes it more confusing and frustrating. 
  • An amalgamation vote is long overdue  
  • I commend the committee of respected & credible citizens of Greater Vernon who have brought this forward for discussion. The time is now for change! "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead 
  • Long overdue! Hopefully, you/we are successful.  
  • Make the greater Vernon area one governance area and that includes the District of Coldstream and Area B & C. 
  • Long overdue!  
  • I firmly believe in amalgamation as it would eleminate duplication of services and constant infighting over cost sharing of services such as sewer, water, parks and common facilities. Personally I am tired of listening to elected municipal politicians pursuing their municipal goals rather than the to the benefit of all in this beautiful valley. Until this happens we're in deep trouble. l goals rather than the 
  • It is about time. Very tired of all the different areas and levels of government.  
  • I am in favor of amalgamation of all Disticts in the North Okanagan 
  • Resident : 18 years Strongly believe in amalgalation concept  
  • Hopefully this question can be settled in the near future. 
  • I vote yes for amalgamation  
  • I vote yes for amalgamation With Coldstream 
  • This initiative is long overdue! Keep up the good work :)  
  • Bruce Shepard is right in that there is so much money wasted that could go into benefits to our area. 
  • One body to govern the interests of all the residents in a ward fashion. We all use the services and would be stronger working together for the residents. It is time to move forward.  
  • Long overdue! 
  • It is frustrating reading about the jurisdictional squabbles year after year. What a waste of time energy and money.  
  • I am all for amalgamation as there are way too many politicians and committees. We need better organization and to save money to apply it to actual services. 
  • Your representing the quiet thoughts of the many. Please continue in your mission statement as enough is enough of oversized, stagnant government.  
  • Thank-you for undertaking this. As stated in yesterday's MStar (and I paraphrase), there is a silent majority that feels that we have too much government and the decision-making process (sic) is completely dysfunctional. Thanks again. 
  • Tired of other districts not fully paying their way & using our services.  
  • It's a start. 
  • this is far far over due good luck  
  • Thanks so much for taking the inishitive on this very important issue. In my humble opinion, this is the most important petition of this valleys history. Best of luck, I'll do my best to inform as many people as possible. 
  • 100% agreement. Thank-you to the organizers for getting this going!  
  • Its about time 
  • This would be the best thing to happen to this area. Way to go for initiating this venture.  
  • only makes sense 
  • About time!  
  • The choice is an obvious one. 
  • It's about time we modernized our political situation. We need high rises downtown Vernon & waterfront hotels for starters. Vernon has had it's head buried in the sand for a long time & an amalgamation is the right step forward.  
  • stop the waste 
  • It needs to be addressed, formulated and implemented.  
  • I am very much in favour of amalgamation of Vernon,Coldstream and area B and C. 
  • Both West Kelowna & Lake Country have amalgamed, it would be interesting to see what they think the positives & negatives have been.
  • I am glad you have this petition and hope something happen's as a result.  
  • this group has my support 
  • ABOUT TIME!!!!  
  • This is well overdue 
  • The subject of this petition is overdue and much needed!  
  • About time! 
  • These regions should have been combined many years ago. I'm behind this effort 100%
  • I moved here in 1985 and was shocked to learn that there were so many little "Fiefdoms" . Over time these "electoral "areas have been assimilated by Vernon. Only Coldstream now remains and that is due to the Coldstream politicians serving thier own selfish financial interests. The amalgamation should have been long ago, only the greedy politicians of Coldstream, and short sighted thinking has prevented this . The cost savings on staff alone are worth it.  
  • Its ridiculous to continue spending so much time and money on the redundancy of overlapping civic governing bodies. 
  • Yes we need to combine them into 1.  
  • It makes no sense to me that the governance of this area is so split into such small areas. This makes developing any kind of coherent future strategy for the area so difficult. We constantly see examples of how strategically disconnected this area is causing gross inefficiency and unnecessary bureaucracy. Lets reap the benefits and get the economies of scale and amalgamate now. This should not go on any longer. 
  • It's about time. I wholeheartedly support the amalgamation!  
  • I love living in Coldstream and believe that we would all live "better" if we utilized our resources more effectively, so Centralization should be a consideration. 
  • I think it has been a long time coming and very much needed. with the amount of people Vernon services from the electoral areas, it is too inefficient to remain separate. there are so many benefits that outweigh any cons. streamline the process to cost everyone involved less.  
  • Very worthwhile. 
  • Your efforts are greatly appreciated. It should have happened a long time ago. If left to the politicians, it will never happen.  
  • Embrace this idea 100%. 
  • It will be a challenge but must be started sometime. Sooner than later. 
  • Thank you for bringing this petition forward! After the failed Greater Vernon governance experiment, this much-touted new era of "cooperation" is also not what it seems - rather than finding efficiencies, we are creating duplication. Discussions are taking place at several different tables, instead of one table. Municipal amalgamation is now apparently the only way to ensure that assets paid for by the collective, will remain as such. One single municipality to ensure efficient delivery of services and optimal use of our precious tax dollars - imagine what we could do with integrated planning! Would there be interest in a ward system, maybe, where you could elect a rep from your neighbourhood? 
  • This has been an ongoing issue for years. It is time for Areas B and C, District of Coldstream and the City of Vernon elected officials to support putting the question on the ballot for the next local elections. Time for the politicians to step aside and let the residents decide.  
  • Thank you for initiating this petition. Amalgamation is long overdue 
  • About time! Absolutely ridiculous the overlapping and increased cost structure that goes with it. I mean really? A full municipal office in Coldstream along with the resultant cost and there really isn't any major businesses as such in Coldstream etc to support such a venture!  
  • this is only 20 years late ...well done and hope you meet your goal 
  • We need only one single government for Vernon, Coldstream & districts.  
  • As a long-time naysayer against amalgamation, I've changed my mind and KNOW that some other method of governance is needed. 
  • Prior to this petition going to referendum - whoever is organizing and preparing the document; I strongly suggest that concrete financial figures are obtained and made public. These will determine the cost saving. Areas needed to be looked at are many. Council - cost of attending meetings, courses, seminars, number of representatives, staff and time for preparation of agendas, grants. The need for Public Works Utility Facilities, Public Works equipment use both in time and costs of distance and time need to be looked at. A typical example to look at - Street Sweeping costs would be a great saving if services were combined. Difference in tax structures. The steamlining of government in decision making should definetly be made. The concern of having City, District and Regional District Goverance operating in one area leaves much to be desired.  
  • Thank-you for giving the residents of the North Okanagan an opportunity to give feedback 
  • Thank-you  
  • Lets make Greater Vernon a economic hub, and a reason to move to the North Okanagan. 
  • Long overdue  
  • Less local government, more bang for our buck, I think (and hope)!!! 
  • I support the initiative on the basis that the cost of local government will be reduced and the processes in dealing with local government will be streamlined and made more efficient.  
  • It's about time for this! 
  • It's about time!  
  • The time is right now. 
  • Long overdue 
  • having 2 mayors and staff for this number of people is just like the senate, just a waste of money,  
  • I agree with your proposal- too many tax dollars spent on duplications within the governing framework. 
  • I would like to see a reduction in duplicate waste and please note NOT a reduction in taxes. I would like to see the savings to be spent on public infrastructure projects, such as more sports facilities, better bicycle paths, and for the purchase of parks/greenspace. It is about time that someone corrects the mistakes of the past and takes back some of the greenspace around Vernon to give it back to the people to be used by the people rather than a select few private land owners.
  • I've said for years that our current governance structure is grossly inefficient and needs to change. We need to seriously look at the amalgamation question.  
  • business owner in Vernon 
  • I support a review on this topic. I believe the four areas should be amalgamated into one single entity.  
  • This is long time coming. Let's cut the beaurocracy and inefficiencies and make this region fair to the taxpayers. 
  • If there is no amalgamation, then I think a toll should be charged for every person,(car, foot, bike, etc) that enters Vernon. They are are using the services that Vernon is paying for, then at the very lease they can pay a user fee.
  • I don't even know what elect.area !'m in.... that should tell us something - I know that I'm 2 properties outside the City of Vernon...  
  • I think a periodic honest review is a good idea. 
  • Consider going to a Ward system for representation.  
  • This has been a long tme coming and we really require better services in Area B, especially a sewer system as pump and haul cost are out of control. 
  • Implement a ward system  
  • Long over due!! 
  • It has been confusing as to who we deal with as we have tried to grow tennis in the area through the newly formed Vernon Tennis Association.  
  • Amalgamation of the noted areas is long over due in my opinion! 
  • It's about time!  
  • Heads us for those of you hoping for additional services...Ok Landing and Bella Vista amalgamated about 20 years ago and we are still waiting for sewer services. Our taxes increased substantially with no increase in services. We eventually received city water and bus service but this wasn't until about 6 years ago. Our septic system had to be replaced at a substantial cost as there is still no option for city sewer. But I do agree with the current push for amalgamation as there is such a duplication of admin costs everyone in the area enjoys all that Vernon has to offer. 
  • I have always considered amalgamation to be the way forward.  
  • Absolutely I would like to see an amalgamation of these districts. The administrative cost savings can be better used to improve the community at large which generally has the same important issues. 
  • One council - one administration  
  • I believe it is time to actually have a frank discussion regarding the pros and cons of amalgamation. Show the taxpayers the real facts regarding the costs and or savings that amalgamation would bring. Some say it will raise taxes - will it? We need facts not fear-mongering. 
  • TOTALY IN FAVOR OF IT, 100 %  
  • I think an amalgamation of these districts has been long overdue 
  • Finally, a serious effort to solve this ongoing and escalating problem!! Kudos to everyone involved. If you do a paper petition, I would be glad to have them executed at my place of business.  
  • I strongly support a review and possible amalgamation of the above 4 areas. 
  • the parks split up will cost all stake holders more money,thats what happens when small people what more power instead of whats best for the taxpayer.  
  • I do believe this is a long time in coming 
  • about time! All three jurisdictions spend their time naval gazing!  
  • With respect to Coldstream, it may be time to allow amalgamation,just as Rutland and Mission did concerning Greater Kelowna some years ago. 
  • YES! Let's move forward!  
  • I am a long time Vernon and Coldstream resident. It is time to come together as one community for services and governance. 
  • I definitely think a single set of Mayor, councillors, etc would be a great cost saving measure. I always understood that taxes in Coldstream were higher than Vernon. What is mr Kiss talking about?  
  • I have always thought there should be one governing body, I lived in Victoria & went through the amalgamation process there and it was for the better. Of course Coldstream would be reluctant, they use Vernon's services (shopping etc.) and pay almost half of what Vernon tax payers pay. Who would want to change that sweet deal? 
  • We all use the municipal services working, shopping, recreating and we all should pay our fair share of taxes to support these amenities . Every morning the Coldstream commute begins into Vernon to use these services. Amalgamation would give all of us a better community undivided by the present NIMBY effect.  
  • I consider myself a citizen of Vernon, Coldstream is a suburb 
  • The organizers could stop a lot of misinformation with some hard data comparing taxes in Vernon and Coldstream for like properties. Include garbage collection.  
  • a cost saving must...... 
  • 2 councils, 2 facilities for staff. Why?  
  • I fully support this 
  • totally agree with this concept!!  
  • The developement of a plan should be quick. This should have been done years ago! You don't need to be an accountant to see this duplication and excess spending!!! 
  • It is always in the best interest for all parties to review any plan that could benefit our tax dollars. 
  • I have watched with bewilderment the confusinig & waistefull back and forth actions of the area's different governing bodiys for the 18 years I have lived here and I still can not figure out who dose what. It is about time to clean up this governence mess! 
  • Amalgamation should have taken place many years ago and will be a benefit to every citizen of the entire area
  • Hopefully this works. But I am not sure how much impact e-mail petitions work. I would rather see written petitions placed around town I think those have more of an impact.
  • Thank you Bruce and Peter for bringing this issue to an awareness of the general public. Can't think of 2 better people to support.
  • Amalgamation should have happened years ago. Time to get with the times and become more efficient and save some money!!
  • Skip the review, go straight to amalgamation! Overdue! 
  • Please do something. We spend so much money fighting between jurisdictions instead of spending money of infrastructure and things that matter 
  • This is way overdue 
  • Coldstream uses all the services that are in Vernon. There are no recreation facilities except for soccer and baseball diamonds on Kidston Road, no shopping malls, restaurants, except for Friesen's. They do have fire services but I believe Ambulance services are located in Vernon. Most other amenities are in Vernon. This seems to be a very good reason for amalgamation to me. 
  • This makes sense for the future 
  • Its about time!!!!!!!!! 
  • Its about time we were all under one umbrella. 
  • I beleive Coldstream and Vernon would be stronger together - I realize it is hard to embrace change, but there are two leading groups who are working towards different goals for a singular population - it just doesn't work. 
  • In favor of amalgamating. Thanks for taking this initiative. 
  • I believe this will result in more efficient spending of tax payer's dollars. also better collaboration on community planning for venues required eg. track and field facility; another upgrade to our recreation centre; etc. 
  • Own and operate businesses and property in Vernon 
  • It's about time we amalgamated as we are far over governed. 
  • It is time to address this issue, bring it forward for discussion and evaluate the pros and cons of amalgamation. It is not only about money savings, but the efficiency that could be realized by consolidation of resources. 
  • Combining our regional governments is the most sensible thing our elected officials could do to better serve their constituants 
  • We can not afford to have so many different Counsels and representatives for 50000 people.
  • Let's investigate to see if there could be cost savings & less duplication of services. Full disclosure of pros & cons for each district is necessary.  
  • I am totally for amalgamation and willing to help out if you need people
  • Way to go, about time somebody tried something that the public can have a say about. Keep pushing and I will forward on to my email list. 
  • I Support this petition 100 %.  
  • I am in favour of amalgamation. Among other reasons, we have some big issues that need to be planned for as efficiently as possible. 
  • If we can save money , go for It/  
  • It is time to consolidate! 
  • long past due!!!  
  • We suport this position tired of the wasted dollars on too many separte governace bodies 
  • I don't want to see any more time and money wasted on this subject. Since the petition does not allow for this opinion, we must assume that residents that don't sign the petition are opposed.  
  • I find it inyereating that only the politicians speak out against this. Maybe that's because they would be the only ones to lose their jobs. 
  • I think this issue should be at least looked into.  
  • Way over due 
  • It is about time!  
  • There are currently too many layers of 'municipal' government which produce time delays, increased costs and uncertainty. 
  • the division we have now is so stupid that I can't believe that it's gone on this long. It's time to end the insanity and the waste of tax payer dollars.  
  • about time 
  • We support a review by local and provincial authorities, to develop a plan to combine our regional governments (City of Vernon, District of Coldstream, Electoral Area B, and Electoral Area C) into a single entity, for the purpose of more efficient use of our local tax dollars.  
  • I think we need to all be under one roof. It is a waste of tax payers money to have multiple areas. 
  • Great idea and pleased to see non politicians starting the process!  
  • This should have happened years ago. We can't let special interest groups over-ride the greater good. 
  • I find it a waste of tax dollars to have so many small "governments" in such a small area. Coldstream does not have any facilities for its residents, we all use Vernon facilities. It's about time amalgamation occurs,  
  • We think it's long past time for amalgamation as a means of governing the greater Vernon area sensibly! 
  • TI is time! I note most comments in the paper most negative comment indicate a increase in TAXES. Is the a fact?. Would like to see if this is so?
  • I have lived in Coldstream, and Vernon for 37 years. I cannot believe amalgamation of the area has not happened. It is absolutely stupid to have these separate little kingdoms. For the people who like the space of area B & C, that will not change, ask them when they travel, do they tell people they are from area B? Or do they say they are from Vernon. Where do they shop. One city would be so much better
  • I think it,s about time someone looks at the expence of running several government in stead of one, where we live we are pinched into a small subdivision which should have been somewhere other than B X. we have terrible service IE road maintainance, where there is a distinct difference, our area looks like dog patch.rules of conduct are non existent,( covenants), Would love to see all these issues resolved., 
  • Too many years of wasteful turf wars at tax-payers expense.
  • We can benefit with amalgamation. eg: common grounds for by-pass route. Its time Vernon and area to enable growth, not disable it. Everyone benefits with amalgamation. Too many negative ideas from outlying areas. Small time thinking brings small time results. Great potential but the negative attitudes are putting a damper on this. 
  • Amalgamation should take place immediately.
  • A smaller government would be much more cost effective. 
  • This has been a long time coming. together we have more influence with the Provincial Government 
  • About time!
  • Good idea! 
  • long overdue 
  • wasn't it about 1973 that Nanaimo, Kelowna, Kamloops and Prince George were amalgamated with their outlying communities? Outside the lower mainland, these are today's progressive, leading communities. 
  • it is about time we get rid of the duplication of services 
  • This is a great idea 
  • When I moved to Vernon almost 11 years ago I was blown away by the various area governing councils that were in place for such a small population base. Talk about inefficiency. You sure could not run a business entity effectively with that structure. 
  • It is time to set aside our power-struggle and think what is best the whole. 
  • Thanks for bringing this to action. Always seemed strange to me to have two 'cities' so close to one another and one of the 'cities' doesn't have a grocery store, gas station, or hockey rink. 
  • I own an events company and host events in Penticton, Whistler and Sun Peaks. I inquired to host an event with the city of Vernon and was given 4 contacts for the next step of approvals... making moving forward difficult. All my other events have one point of contact. I believe many efficiencies can be made with one local government. 
  • : In favor of a regional concept of governing, services and municipalities. 
  • in favour of amalgamated services and governing of the Vernon area 
  • It's time to stop the waste of taxpayers money as Vernon is supporting too much of the infrastructure costs for the region. 
  • While pointing to successes in the status quo is good, it is my experience that, as in business, your household or politics, "if better is possible, then good is not enough." 
  • I moved here 5 years ago from Manitoba and have been astounded by the number of regional gov'ts ther are in this area. Amalgamation needs to happen!!! 
  • Time has come This is a MUST! 
  • It is about time to be one city and work towards attracting people
  • Thanks for getting the ball rolling!  
  • It's time to move forward 
  • Very much in favour of streamlining servives
  • amalgamation long overdue. Time to eliminate the small minded power brokers
  • I support a proper amalgamation of Vernon, Coldstrea, Spall, and the two areas B & C
  • I believe there SHOULD be less cost to taxpayers if there is amalgamation BUT - what about Vernon tax payers, having to pay for road works that the province now pays for? I want taxes to go down NOT up because of amalgamation. Who can tell the truth on this matter ?
  • One efficient regional government would be nice.  
  • YES!! Long overdue. 
  • For those of you that are truly interested about the joy and happiness of being amalgamated into the City of Vernon, ask those residents of former Electoral Area A who lived there before and after the annexation. The City still seems to think that bigger is better. They are wrong. I am dead against amalgamation with the City of Vernon. A meeting held at the BX Elementary School a few years back showed 95% of the people attending were against amalgamation. Then Mayor Lippert was present and appeared thunderstruck! 25 to 30% higher taxes for same service??? I don't think so. Ask the people recently annexed on Silver Star Road (48'th Ave)  
  • I think the time for amalgamation is over due. Thanks for starting the discussion! 
  • About time!  
  • Yes its about time, Vernon is behind the times...we do not need double/triple the government expenses. I can hardly believe the present situation exists in this day and age...just look to other cities for example...lets not have anymore "dead-end sidewalks" built in our city. Where do the "Coldstream" residents bank,shop,dine, swim, and play etc. Can you imagine the Mission or Glenmore areas of Kelowna having their own Mayor, etc....Lets grow up Vernon ! 
  • Administrative efficiency and avoidance of duplication of services  
  • This is long overdue. It makes common sense to have one governing body for the areas convcerned to make better use of our taxes. 
  • I am in favor of amalgamation 
  • Please let me know how I can help. Thank you for doing this.
  • I have been a proponent of amalgamation for forty years because we need to show our voice as a single entity. I have lived in the Coldstream and was in favour of "a:" then. We need to decide a common direction for Vernon and all its surrounding districts and do away with the petty in-fighting.  
  • I moved to Vernon 8 years ago and was shocked to find out each area had their own governments. What a waste of tax dollars. 
  • Makes sense to get rid of some duplicate high salary positions  
  • Do it now 
  • Working for the CIty of Vernon, I see the ineficiencies of having 3 governments involved in day to day operation of the parks, facilities and water. It is not working well and would work way better under one leadership.  
  • It's about time, we need to do this!!! 
  • I would like to see a referendum held on amalgamation of city of Vernon, Coldstream Area B & C..  
  • Thanks for initiating this! 
  • Great idea, more unified, less doubling up of services
  • It's really about time
  • I agree that amalgamation would be the best thing for Greater Vernon tax payers. I think it will allow for a more even distribution of taxes for all. 
  • I own property in Coldstream and Vernon. I am in support of this! 
  • Its time to end the nonsense. I am embarrassed to drive by a sign which says "Entering Greater Vernon" when we are a small city. 
  • Good job, let's at least get it on the table and see what the folks who pay the freight say! 
  • Consolidation is long overdue, will lead to more efficient planning and should result in decisions that benefit all residents, with significantly lower overhead costs. We do not need multiple political & municipal groups to run this area. This initiative must be adopted. 
  • Strong support of petition 
  • It needs to happen 
  • It is definitely time to explore this issue. 
  • I do believe this is a very worthy topic to be discussed  
  • I am interested in knowing how our taxes might change if we get NO change in services; would be willing to pay more for fire protection. 
  • I am against the amalgamation of the Districts.  
  • About time 
  • The multiple layers of governance in this area is unbelievable. The different areas operate like private little fiefdoms. If all areas are not onside on any issue, the issue doesn't move forward! Lets get on with governance petition.  
  • It's about time to have "one" city. 
  • It's called economy of scale.  
  • Thanks for taking the initiative to get the community talking aboout this. It seems crazy to continue the status quo. 
  • The time is past due for single governance!! What a inefficient use of our money. We will look back a number of years ago and wonder why this did not happen earlier  
  • should include spallumcheen for industrial expansion, 
  • I strongly endorse this movement 
  • long overdue  
  • More efficient, save money, less politics and bureaucracy. 
  • About time this happens. Maybe we could then have fire response time on the Hwy side of Kal Lake under 20 minutes.
  • supporting a review sounds smart to me! 
  • I feel one local government would be advantageous in dealing on Provincial and Federal levels. 
  • I’m really pleased to see this initiative. Prior to retirement I was the manager of Health Protection for Interior Health for the Okanagan Service Area. It was my job to amalgamate the regulatory services for the former North and South Okanagan Health Units, including inspections and licensing. There is always resistance to change, and some changes take time and patience. The amalgamation for Interior Health did result in streamlining and we could ensure that services were applied equally throughout the Okanagan Service Area. There were opportunities for the staff as well. There are more specialized positions, specialized training, and more room for advancement. We need to achieve these economies of scale at the Municipal level. We have increasing needs for infrastructure, and we need a cohesive approach to providing services. We cannot afford to ignore the opportunities available through amalgamation. Let’s get the facts from this review so people can make an informed decision.
  • Thank you for taking action. 
  • I believe that better more efficient governance is required and I and I support the right to vote. I believe 
  • amalgamation asap is a logical must
  • about time.. RDNO, is the most challenging place to do business with. they run by their own set of rules.. it is very disturbing that three areas within a stone throw of each other all have different rules, regulations, and visions... all effect eachother, yet they don't respect eachother..  
  • Time to move on... let us work together... Area A is well and good! 
  • Sooner the better  
  • I'm all for it. 
  • We need to amalgamate to make this a better community for all and so we can afford to keep up with the expensive infrastructures all our areas require.  
  • I agree with your "Mission Statement" entirely that Vernon should be one entity. My address is an example of the absurdity of the current situation. I have lived in Vernon, at various locations, since 1970, but due to my current postal code: v1h 1r9. I am prohibited from voting in civic elections, yet I am allowed to vote in regional matters such as referendums! I truly hope you are successful in bringing about the changes you seek! 
  • : I have lived in all areas over last 14 years and believe a single governance structure would benefit the area. I would also like to see an end to referendums to spend money on major projects as I find they are a waste of time and money. We elect politicians to make these decisions and few people actually take time to vote in these useless referendums.  
  • This seems to be good logic. Less time and money arguing over cost splitting of services. e.g. Museum & Art gallery, water, rec. services & parks etc. .More constructive use of time and moneys with less redundancy of infrastructure. 
  • : I am very pleased that this action to combine all of the Vernon area into one cohesive group is finally being undertaken. Thank you very much for taking this on. Maybe now Vernon can make some economic progress without constant conflict and duplication of services!  
  • Too much money spent when too many government bodies. 
  • Very, very long overdue and happy to see that it has finally been addressed - amalgamation needs to happen and should have happened years ago!! We all use everything, benefit from everything and are impacted by everything ....and we need to become one. In this day and age, and with the increased costs and growth in this community how can one possibly support the continuation of 3 local governments all with their own agendas? Ridiculous!!! 
  • We definitely need a more cost effective way of doing things!! The only way is to have ONE ENTITY, combining all areas named above.
  • Great idea, for all involved, keep it simple. 
  • Regional government will be a huge cost saving move that is long overdue in the region. Eliminate duplication of services and save huge administration costs
  • it should have never happened to begin with!  
  • Yes!
  • About time we got rid of duplication and saved some money as a senior I object to all these layers of government  
  • Keep the pressure on 
  • Worthy undertaking and good luck  
  • The current local government structure(s) are too expensive and job killers. 
  • It's about time!  
  • This is long overdue! 
  • Do a door to door canvas of all the areas  
  • Good initiative. Needs to be done and long overdue. 
  • As someone who has lived on the border of Electoral Area B &C (technically in Area B, by one street) for the last 10 years and will be moving to Coldstream soon - I have always thought that it should be one municipality. I use all the services of Vernon and consider myself a Vernon resident, and am pretty much done with the duplication of resources in some areas and the abject neglect of some services in other ways (roads, lights, sewer in the rural area). I really favour the concept of a ward system and would love to see it implemented here.
  • I hope amalgamation does take place, it's been a long time coming
  • To continue as the four separate entities is a colossal waste of money!! Let's get on with amalgamation .... please!!! 
  • Would be in the best interest for all residence. Its called" logical" 
  • Kamloops is an example of how this would work.
  • Reduce duplicate costs!  
  • It's about time this happened ! 
  • Incessant bickering and waste of money. Enough!  
  • why don't you start out with the petition and put the rest of the info following. 
  • I think the algramation would be the best thing for Coldstream and Vernon to do, it all makes sense to me.  
  • City of vernon 
  • I would like to see what are the wishes of the general population in all regions.
  • I'm tired of seeing such a waste of money that could be used on much more productive projects (2 mayors/2 councils, 3 bureaucracies). 
  • Great idea. 
  • Strongly support the proposed amalgamation 
  • About time 
  • Want a donation in US dollars what kind of BS is that!!!!   (BLOG NOTE:  The "donation" request is from--and for--the iPetition website, NOT from the Society for the Future Governance of Vernon!)
  • Would like to see Services brought out to Swan lake area and beyond. this area will be important for the future expansion of Vernon. thank you for your service to our community. 
  • would like services to extend north of the city to include Swan Lake RV Resort 
  • In support of better use of our local tax dollars, less bureaucracy, more timely decisions and more unity and strength through this beautiful region.  
  • As a resident of BX I am in full support of combining all 3 governments!
  • If amalgamation occurs, there must be a system of wards where each citizen is represented by an elected councillor from his/her ward.  
  • It only makes sense to cut overhead and duplication 
  • This discussion is long overdue.  
  • I fully support this. 
  • Sooner or later amalgamation will happen because it is logical and necessary. I am in favour of sooner.  
  • I fully support this. 
  • While "close to home" management of municipal business is desirable, three different sized units are realistically governed in combination.  
  • Makes sense.
  • Help us modernize our services  
  • It's ridiculous to have so much duplication in the local governments 
  • There are two key reasons to look at consolidation of the four local jurisdictions: financial efficiency and vision. The financial case needs a thorough and fair examination. As one local government, the elected officials and senior municipal staff of the future will focus on making Greater Vernon a better place to live, instead of the unproductive competition and one-upmanship that has prevailed in recent decades. There are many imaginative ways for residents to protect the special character of their own neighbourhoods. Coldstream and Vernon residents have always been great neighbours; there's no reason that this would change under one government.  
  • i feel this is long overdue and a great way to be more efficient 
  • I am BX Swan Lake  
  • Tired of being in an area where neither NORD or City of Vernon care about our services. 
  • Are there any plans for a sewer system out by Swan lake  
  • long overdue!! 
  • It's everdue for this to happen - The existing system(s) are absolutely ludicrous. Good luck 1  
  • About time! 
  • Would save tax money
  • It's about time! 
  •   Let's work together 
  • good for you taking this on! Maybe you should run for mayor or council:)  
  • I believe the areas as a single entity would be more cost efective and give less duplication .
  • Great idea - let's move ahead!  
  • As a long time resident who has lived in Vernon, OK Ldg., Coldstream and now Foothills my experience is that for the most parts our needs and the facilities we use are for the most part, the same no matter which part of the region we live in. 
  • Area B and C, Coldstream and Vernon should be one entity  
  • My wife and I own properties in the City of Vernon. 
  • As a citizen of Greater Vernon, I support a review by local and provincial authorities, to develop a plan to combine our regional governments (City of Vernon, District of Coldstream, Electoral Area B, and Electoral Area C) into a single entity, for the purpose of more efficient use of our local tax dollars.
  • It's about time!!!!!!!!! 
  • This area needs to amalgamate to be able to move forward in an economical and productive way. Those people who do not live in Vernon but rely upon the goods and services of Vernon are not paying their share. Politically, there are way to many big fish in small ponds; the levels of bureaucracy in this area are astounding to me. Sadly, such a structure guarantees morbidity. 
  • I certainly support this logical course of action. 
  • have properities in all areas, worked in kamloops and kelowna when amalgination forced by govt. nothing but positive results
  • Long overdue with currentyl 55 politicians in the NORD.
  •  It's about time!!!!
  • We really need to team together  
  • Great job keep up the effort to keep these guys accountable. Please review the costs of the new Museum and Art Gallery . This project should have private money not tax dollars to fund . if people want it....... tell them to pay for it on their own cash. Ask the big corporate people in town to buck up and pay. Hey Tolko and Kal Tire !! look where you live and support community. 
  • I fully support this review  
  • Let' move forward with amalgamation to make better use of our tax dollars. All citizens in this region can support where we work and play. 
  • long overdue!  
  • I have lived in Coldstream and Vernon for over 22 years and have always questioned the wisdom and costs of having multiply levels of governments in our area. Let us make it work together. 
  • It is really the better thing to do , to save the taxpayers some money in the future.  
  • It's about time. 
  • Unifying these separate areas is the only sane way to go to help control administration costs.  
  • When you finish with Greater Vernon, start on Armstrong/Spallumcheen 
  • Thank-you for putting this petition together -- this makes so much sense.  
  • Hope this happens but sadly I'd be shocked if this actually reduced anyone's taxes! 
  • I own property ... Cosens Bay Road. (identifying address removed by blog author).
  • I believe it is a good way of reducing our taxes to get the governance under one roof 
  • It's about time!!! Maybe the intergovernmental wrangling will stop
  • I really hope that the people of our area really look at this seriously. It could save the taxpayers so much money. I commend the people who had the courage to make this petition happen.
  • Amalgamation is way overdue. Let's do it. Amalgamation, just like every other human endeavour, will never be perfect, but better now than later to begin to reduce costs. All for one and one for 
  • Excellent idea. 
  • This is so rediculous when the city of Toronto amalgamated but little vernon and Coldstream cant,what a waste of hard earned tax dollars 
  • Yes I am in favor of joining with Vernon in our governing affairs. 
  • I am in favor of amalgamation with Vernon District 
  • It makes sense. 
  • About time 
  • Long overdue!
  • this is a no-brainer 
  • about time! ;) 
  • eliminate GVWS too 
  • Anything to reduce councellors over inflated salaries. 
  • amalgamation is long overdue !.... I have lived here for over 40 years so am well aware of the historical frictions. 
  • I agree to have them join. 
  • : I think it is only common sense to have only one governing body instead of wasting money on duplication. 
  •  It makes sense for economies of scale to work in Government. 
  •  Yes, let's get on with this. There would be many benefits. 
  •   being a homeowner ,it would be a good move for taxpayers, especially the ones like myself that are on fixed income 
  • Kudos to the governance society...let's be efficient and not ineffective!  
  • In favour of review for obvious infrastructure savings. Concern that in a voting situation, the rural community vote may be overrun by the larger urban voice i.e.. Vernon vs Coldstream. 
  • It would be a relief to eliminate the political posturing and in-fighting. The money saved could go toward improving infrastructure and establishing a more balanced tax base. As an aside, I believe that special interest groups should pay for their requests.  
  • This idea has been a long time coming. It would certainly be more cost efficient and save a lot of bickering between different level of government. 
  •  Hopefully, common sense will prevail and politicians will support amalgamation and do what's right for the entire area. 
  • Thanks for initiating this petition.  
  • We fully support combining all local governments. 
  • Vote Yes!  
  • overdue, I'd say 
  • The capacity of politicians and for that matter humans to be unable to bring together logical processes for their betterment, is absolutely stunning.  
  • Having all this redundancy of local government for 58,000 people is a misuse of tax payer money. 
  •  Fingers crossed 
  •  Should be only one area 
  • If this unification will stop the steady increase in taxes.....I am all for it.  
  • We deserve the option to vote on amalgamation. 
  • : I previously lived in Summerland that is administered by a single regional council. It works efficiently and well. We should be doing the same thing here.  
  • Good on you for taking this on! 
  •   I support amalgamation, especially if it leads to a greater rural character for the new municipality, as I see tremendous economic potential in redefining urbanism, using urban-agricultural opportunities. 
  •   We have too many levels of government!! 
  •  An amalgamation would lead to greater efficiencies and reduced costs of local Govt. 
  • I think I am in "B"! The BX  
  • In the past our area was supported by numerous industrial like companies that no doubt helped generate tax revenue as well as a strong economy.Today most of the young people i know have moved out of our area due to a lack job opportunities. I find it frustrating that I rarely hear of our local governance whether it be Vernon or Coldstream trying to find ways to encourage new businesses to our area. Instead I see them tripping over each other spinning their wheels with referendum after referendum asking for more tax dollars. Maybe spending time trying to grow successful business opportunities would be a better solution. Se 
  • keep advertising, and ask people to share the movement on facebook and other social media. anyone i have talked to believes we have way too much government for this many people. thanks for doing something about it !  
  • Too many boards, committees, advisories, and governances, something needs to change. 
  • Thank you to the organizers. We really need to get this moving.
  •   In the long term this has to happen but in the short term we are taking on a huge load to bring roads etc up to acceptable standards in outlying areas. 
  • I believe that it would be much more efficient to have one governing body rather than several levels arguing with one another over who does what. Time to put the egos aside!!  
  • Long overdue!!! Just makes sense!!! Hope it happens sooner rather than later!!! 
  • E/mail - C/O my son  
  • Its time to reduce the multiple levels of governing bodies and streamline it and hopefully reduce costs of governing the whole area and reducing redtape 
  • There's too much duplication in the present system. When I moved here from Toronto I was so surprised to find that Coldstream was a separate 'city' and had a separate council. What a waste of money and resources.  
  • About time we all had a say. 
  • It's about time for this discussion  
  • I have lived in Vernon area for over 20 years and could never understand why there was duplication in governing. What a lot of added expense and frustration for all! 
  • About time  
  • It's about time , to eliminate the duplication ,and operate more business like. 
  • : I think that one government should generate cost savings for all tax payers.  
  • As a cost saving, less government, well worth it. 
  • I think its time to move forward change will be a good thing.  
  • Makes so much sense to combine the work of governing into one body. The taxes we pay and the cost of water are so much higher here than we paid in Prince George before moving here. 
  • Wholly support amalgamation !  
  • It is timely and important to examine this issue and to engage public conversation. 
  • Yes Greater Vernon is overly governed. Not only that it is severely overly bylawed! Ocannotwalk walk  
  • Hope this goes through. It is about time. 
  • It's time to see if this will work and how it could be done  
  • I would like to have an open discussion of amalgamation with a referendum of the electorate. In this economic times we need to spend our money carefully and wisely. We should be looking at any options that will help us accomplish this . 
  • I fully support a unified municipal governance model for the greater Vernon Area (GVA)  
  • it's about time this is done 
  • : Long overdue.  
  • It's about time!! 
  • This is long overdue. Should have happened years ago.  
  • Streamlining governance would cut costs. I, as a citizen of Coldstream am for amalgamation. 
  • Our local governance is just too top heavy. Nothing can really get done because everyone is protecting their territory, instead of thinking what is the well being of everyone in all areas.  
  • This is long overdue. This area has too many layers of government bodies for the population base that all use the City of Vernon facilities. It is time to trim the fat, streamline our available systems and resources and move into the 21st century.
  •  Should have been done when Kamloops and Kelowna were done. Look at progress and perks they have gotten over the years 
  • time to save money, and stop the duplication...  
  • I believe combining our regional governments is a great idea and will benefit everyone. 
  • : It makes no sense to have so many jurisdictions. The City of Winnipeg, with whom I worked for many years, was in the same inefficient organizational situation back in the 1970s. Amalgamation into one City realized many efficiencies in financial management everyone wondered why the previous organizational model had been allowed.  
  • I believe amalgamation is in everyone's best interest and a huge cost saving of duplicate services. 
  • It makes sense to combine the areas together  
  • A long overdue action 
  •  This must be investigated! 
  • Long overdue  
  • Let's get this done! 
  • Amalgamation means less politicians, less interregional bickering and more progress for Vernon.  
  • I think this is long overdue and want the local governments to save money 
  • Lessor governrnment is better government.  
  • It's about time we had this opportunity to vote on this. 
  • Yes, should be put to referendum vote. But projected costs to amalgamate, and cost savings must be made clear to the public before the vote. Who will pay for such reports/analysis?  
  • I support this amalgamation 
  • I agree that it needs to be studied  
  • Good Idea 
  • YES!!!!!!  
  • About time. 
  • I support unification.  
  • Should have been done years ago 
  • I wholeheartedly support the municipalities combining into one.  
  • Sooner the better 
  •  coldstream is not sustainable on residential taxation alone. new model should be a ward system to give residents proper representation 
  • One government for all the people  
  • One government for all of us, too much money is spent having too many seperate municipalities. Let's be one big community and we will all be surprised as to what we can do!!!! 
  • yes to combine our region  
  • I've thought this way for many years. We all live in the same area and should be together on all decisions that affect us 
  • Having lived on Southern Vancouver Island for several years, I've seen the costs of overgovernance & the cost savings of amalgamation.  
  • Having spent a lot of time lobbying for parks and pathways, I would welcome a single entity. 
  • We are a small area and do not require multiple levels of government to provide a comprehensive service to our residents. Sometimes less is more and the cost savings and potential expansion of services is well worth the consolidation.  
  • I want the chance to vote on this issue 
  • Absolutely! I am all for it!  
  • Great for future progress plus eliminate stepping over each other all the time. 
  • We simply have too many orders of Government: municipal multi-levels, Reg. District, Provincial, Federal, Senate... But only one taxpayer pocket -- the ultimate in inefficiencies. I will always support tax reduction initiatives.  
  • I am in favour of combining the Municipalities. 
  • It is about time this city and outlying districts join together and create a place for industry to come to and make jobs for are childrens future and not for Alberta.  
  • lets do this now. Save money and stream line deceisions.
TO PG. 34 (1672)

(blog author note:  The Ipetitions website seems to have changed its format....aaaargh!  Can't access the entire list anymore, so will just add the one comment discovered on 22/11/2013):

  • stay with it guys,don't let coldstream talk you out of keeping this going.