Arm’s-length organizations haunt city

You know what should “scare us?” All the arms-length alphabet-soup organizations that get money from the city.

To the Editor,

Re: NEDC turmoil should scare us, Editorial, Oct. 27.

You know what should “scare us?” All the arms-length alphabet-soup organizations that get money from the city then tell us to take a hike when we question their (mis)management.

For four of its six years in existence, the Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation has overspent its budget. So, like a spoiled child who constantly disses the parents, there is only one thing to do, disband the whole lot of them.

City hoteliers have appeared before council citing there is no combined destination marketing plan between the economic development corporation, Vancouver Island Conference Centre or the Downtown Nanaimo Business Improvement Association, all getting heavy taxpayer funding.

So, what is truly haunting city taxpayers? Not giving these runaway organizations a firm spanking and getting rid of them. The time is now, before the ghosts of years past keep spending us into the poor house.

George OliverNanaimo


To the Editor,

Re: Economic Development CEO fired, Oct. 27.

What is it going to take to get Nanaimo back to the good old days? For example, 2005, when Malaspina University-College and the City of Nanaimo’s Downtown Partnership won an Innovation Award from the B.C. Centre for International Education. Another example, 2012, when our city won its second provincial planning award in four years. Or 2013 when the city captured the Spirit of Innovation Award for best technology from the Municipal Information Systems Association of B.C.

All of these awards were the result of co-operation and communication between city government and institutions. Fast forward to 2016; what’s the award going to be for the slash-and-burn strategy at NEDC? First, cut off the tourism portfolio with no warning or discussion, leading to the firing of the CEO when he complains about it. Add to this last week, when a councillor told the mayor to “bite me” in public.

This is award-winning stuff all right, right up there with the Keystone Kops and Howard Stern.

​John HarrisNanaimo

Just Posted

Graeme Roberts, who was mayor of Nanaimo from 1984-86, died this month at age 89. (Photo courtesy Nanaimo Community Archives)
City of Nanaimo flags at half-mast as former mayor Graeme Roberts dies at 89

‘Giant-killer’ beat out Frank Ney in mayoral election in 1984

Curl B.C. chairperson Teri Palynchuk is this year’s winner of the Janette Robbins Award for leadership. Palynchuk is pictured here with the Curling Canada Foundation Cup along with past chairperson Peter Muir, left, and Curl B.C. CEO Scott Braley. (Photo courtesy Curl B.C.)
Nanaimo curling exec wins Curl B.C. leadership award

Teri Palynchuk receives Janette Robbins Award

(Black Press file photo)
RCMP: Air ambulance called to Whiskey Creek after crash involving 2 motorbikes

Both riders taken to hospital with serious injuries

Vancouver courthouse. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Man loses bid to appeal conviction for 1999 rape at Abbotsford music festival

James Redden, 53, formerly of Nanaimo, was found guilty in 2019 following six-day trial

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

Cowichan Tribes man Adrian Sylvester is worried that he was targetted by a trailer hitch thrown from a vehicle. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Tribes man worried he was target of trailer hitch

Adrian Sylvester says no one has reported a missing hitch after one nearly hit him

CVSAR search the Puntledge River following a report of an abandoned kayak. Photo, CVSAR Facebook page
Comox Valley Search and Rescue spends four hours searching for no one

Overturned kayak a reminder for public to contact officials if they have to abandon a watercraft

Most Read