Civic Centre Regional Office Building Project AAP, 2017

Between July 6 and August 18, 2017, an alternative approval process (AAP) was held in order to get elector approval of a loan authorization bylaw that would enable the long-term borrowing required to fund the Tax Neutral Regional Office Building Project.

Background

The Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) developed a financing strategy for its Tax Neutral Civic Centre – Regional Office Building Project based on redirecting the current lease amount and reserve fund contribution toward the debt repayment. Under this strategy, instead of paying rent with no building asset, the CVRD would make debt payments with ownership of a community asset at the end of the term.

The project, estimated to cost $11.7 million based on Class D estimates, would be funded through a combination of $2 million from reserve funds, $1.5 million of grant funding from the electoral area community works funds and the remaining $8.2 million through long-term borrowing (which would require elector approval).

Results

In order for the CVRD to proceed with the final adoption of Bylaw No. 457, less than 10 per cent of the electors in the CVRD would have had to submit an elector response form. The total number of electors within the service was determined to be 50,545; 10 per cent of that number, or 5,055 individuals, would have had to submit an elector response form to prevent the CVRD from adopting Bylaw No. 457 without going to referendum.

At the close of the process on Friday, August 18, 2017, 831 elector response forms were received from electors in the service area. Following the deadline, the corporate officer determined that three of the submitted forms were not eligible because the forms did not include a full residential address in the service area. Therefore, 828 eligible electoral response forms were submitted to this process.

On August 29, the CVRD Board of Directors approved moving forward with the project and adopted the borrowing bylaw.