Gospel Rock has been off the radar lately, but the issue is far from asleep.

On September 14, 2011, Town of Gibsons Council received a staff report outlining potential ways of resolving outstanding issues in the Gospel Rock Neighbourhood Plan, Draft Version 3.1.  Staff recommended tabling the whole process in light of the property owners’ wavering support of the Plan and their consequent hesitancy in honouring their funding commitment for the planning process. Council did NOT endorse the staff recommendation, and chose instead to continue their examination of the remaining outstanding issues in the Plan, with an aim to resolving these before the November 19th Municipal Elections.

To that end, on October 12, from 1 to 4 p.m. in Council Chambers, Gibsons Council will discuss possible resolutions to the outstanding issues in the Plan, including examination of staff-identified options for resolution of the previously discussed outstanding points.

The present Council hopes to have a completed Plan prepared for consideration by the incoming Council.  A number of steps are still necessary before this, or any, version of the Plan can be incorporated into the Gibsons Official Community Plan By-law.  Council must agree on the outstanding issues.  Staff must incorporate the changes into a final Draft Plan.  Staff must draft a by-law to amend the OCP to incorporate the Plan. Public Hearings are a part of this process, as are referrals to other affected agencies. The final steps in the process are the four readings by Council required for final adoption.

Of course, any incoming Council will not be bound by the Plan, which will still be technically a draft at the time they consider it. However, this Council intends to provide the new Council with a Plan; and the hope is that a new Council will accept the final draft of the Plan as the culmination of a series of very lengthy processes during which virtually every member of the affected communities, myriad community groups (including the SCCA), and a host of consultants, staff people, and other government agencies, have had a chance to provide input.

No one can say what a new Council will look like, or what they’ll decide to do with the Plan. The new Council’s composition is up to the electors. So, whether or not Draft 3.1 of the Gospel Rock Neighbourhood Plan is everything we’d like it to be, our best chance of having things move ahead towards a Plan we can accept is to GET OUT AND VOTE on Election Day, Saturday, November 19th.

There's more about this issue on our Gospel Rock page.