New economic leadership needs to look at VICC

Re: City’s economic corporation signs partnership deal, Aug. 25.

To the Editor,

Re: City’s economic corporation signs partnership deal, Aug. 25.

When the Vancouver Island Conference Centre was first proposed, many of us, involved with Friends of Plan Nanaimo or not, knew it was a bad idea.

At the time only two convention centres in North America were turning a profit; the majority of research, except that of the convention centre industry, spoke against developing such.

To all who supported it and those wise enough not to, it is unfortunately here and here to stay.

Hotel or no hotel, there is no guarantee that any difference would be made in the lack of use of the convention centre.

It is now up to current and future councils, as well as business and citizens, to try and mitigate the subsidy Nanaimo citizens provide.

In short, we need to broaden its uses.

Recently, city council created the Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation, independent of city hall but funded by Nanaimo’s citizens, to replace the current Economic Development office and Tourism Nanaimo.

Part of the new corporation’s job will be to work toward the above as well as, in a city with one of the highest unemployment and poverty rates in the country, help guide the city toward economic prosperity.

Nanaimo, in my opinion, is a great city with great potential; unfortunately the powers that be continually try things other cities have found not to work.

Provided the corporation is not composed of the same people who have for years misguided, it has a chance to do good things.

The time has come for Nanaimo to move forward.

Gordon W. Fuller