The RDN will use gas tax money from the government to fund a number of projects in rural areas of the regional district
According to a staff report, electoral areas from within the Regional District of Nanaimo are directed gas tax money based on population, with municipalities receiving funding separately. In all, $7.5 million is budgeted in 2022 for projects in RDN electoral areas, the report said.
Work in South Wellington (in RDN Area A) to convert an old school into an activity centre will see the highest allocation with $1.2 million to remediate the building. A press release last June stated work would involve hazardous material mitigation, seismic upgrades, installation of a new roof and fixtures.
Another Area A project will see $186,000 for work at a boat launch in Cedar, which will include boat launch widening, paving work, line painting, toilet facilities and improved signage. This project is subject to approvals by other parties.
Gabriola Island and surrounding islands (Area B) will be allocated $27,000 for the next phase of Gabriola Village Trail and $263,000 for construction of a skate park and parking area at Huxley Community Park.
For Extension-East Wellington-Pleasant Valley (Area C), $137,000 will be allocated to fund construction of a shelter to protect a replica coal car at Extension Miners Community Park. Other electoral area projects of note are improved amenities such a safer vehicle entrance, improved parking and amenities such as a picnic area, grape arbor and improved landscaping at Anders and Dorrit’s Park ($175,000), a basketball court for Extension Recreation Society ($160,000) and work for a playground at Meadow Way Community Park, as well as a nature walk ($350,000).
The renewed gas tax agreement, with the federal and provincial governments and Union of B.C. Municipalities, and community works fund agreement with the RDN and UBCM began in 2014 and are in place until 2024, noted the staff report.
As part of the deal, money is transferred annually to local governments to be used for local priorities and enhance public infrastructure, the report said.