Juan de Fuca director won’t back performing arts facilities plan – Sooke News Mirror


A Capital Regional District program to plan, develop and fund performing arts facilities in the Greater Victoria area receives no applause from Juan De Fuca electoral region director Mike Hicks.

The CRD Board of Directors approved the $ 150,000 set aside for the project and directed staff to begin the process of establishing a department, under the direction of a new committee. Jointly paying for the service requires a CRD regulation, requiring approval from all member jurisdictions.

As the idea progressed, Hicks and several other directors, including Langford’s Lanny Seaton and Denise Blackwell, Salt Spring Island’s Gary Holman, and Central Saanich’s Ryan Windsor, opposed the idea.

“In all honesty, I felt we were so far away from this service that we shouldn’t have to participate in it,” Hicks said, noting that Youbou is closer to the McPherson Playhouse in downtown Victoria than to Port. Renfrew.

Hicks estimated that supporting the program would cost Juan de Fuca’s electoral district around $ 30,000 per year.

Blackwell said his town already financially supports the arts on the West Coast and plans to build its own performance venue. She and Seaton said their board is unlikely to support financial sharing in a regional facilities plan.

Sooke County. Jeff Bateman said he was in favor of exploring what the plan would mean for Sooke and the region.

“This is a first step and we will see what emerges,” he said.

Board chair Colin Plant suggested that all municipalities, including those already contributing to the arts in their own communities, could benefit from a regional service.

“That’s the whole point, that we will all benefit from it,” he said. “There’s no question that when Langford builds a facility, it will be a regional facility with 1,400 seats or 800 seats. It’s just inevitable.

While the creation of a service is necessary, he added, all CRD jurisdictions will be asked what precisely they would like to see before a settlement comes back to the CRD board.

– with files from Don Descoteau

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William E. Bennett

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