Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Questions on structure of Redesign Rupert raised at Council session

The public comment period from Monday's Council session brought
Larry Golden forward with questions on Redesign Rupert

With the city council still speaking of the success of their four day retreat last month to explore elements of civic design through the Redesign Rupert program, one resident spoke to Council Monday evening seeking some clarification on how the whole Redesign Rupert initiative works.

Larry Golden, a frequent contributor the public comment period of the city's Committee of the Whole sessions, approached the microphone on Monday, looking to explore some themes when it comes to transparency and accountability of the civic improvement project.

Noting how he had been advised by City staff that Prince Rupert's contribution towards the recent redesign initiative had come at a cost of $200,000 from last years budget; the main thrust of his questions for Council were to  seek some clarification on the structure of Redesign Rupert and City Council's relationship to it.

"What kind of entity is Redesign Rupert ... what's Councils relationship to it, is it a product of Council?"

In reply, Mayor Brain explained that the relationship is through a contract arrangement with Community Futures of the Pacific Northwest and they are responsible for any hirings.

"I can explain the structure to you, Redesign is actually a contract with Community Futures, so Community Futures actually is the holder of Redesign Rupert, anyone who is hired to manage the project is hired through Community Futures. 

We actually have a partnership with Community Futures through an MOU which we do our contributions from. We also have applied for grants through the rural dividend fund which is paying for our project manager."

Mayor Brain also made note as to how some Industrial partners that have joined in have directed funds towards Community Futures for the program administration.

"The partnership of the industrial partners that have come together on that, all of those funds go to Community Futures and we administer Redesign through that"

The Mayor observed that the program is not that of a top down approach but more of a collaboration between all of the participants.

That theme was prominent a few weeks ago as City Council reviewed the recent four day workshop that was hosted by Redesign Rupert, a session which highlighted those partnerships and shared goals and found many of the Council members quite enthused for the new blueprint it may offer.

July 26 -- Council members share their enthusiasm for Prince Rupert's future, following four day planning session
July 18 -- Partnerships will blaze the trail towards a new look as part of the 2030 Prince Rupert Plan

Mr. Golden followed up with a few other questions related to accountability of the program and whether the access of grant money for the program was conducted through Council resolutions.

His observations do seem to highlight how Council has embarked on its Redesign mission, with the project one which tends to fly under the radar at the public council sessions, with few discussions of its mechanics and structure, or explanation of cost to the city to move the initiative forward.

A look at our archive of notes on the Redesign initiative  does seem to indicate that much of its work tends to take place outside of the scope of City Council's public commentary.

Since Council is currently on a bit of a roll when it comes providing for public presentations at Council sessions, perhaps inviting representatives from the program to Council at a future public session to offer an outline of the project may be helpful for the public.

It would also offer up a chance for Council members to ask the kind of questions that Mr. Golden introduced on Monday evening, providing for a public overview as to how the Redesign program works and how the growing collection of partners that are coming aboard and the city will be working to develop the latest new vision for the community.

You can review the discussion between Mr. Golden and Mayor Brain from the City's video archive starting at the forty minute mark.

For more items of interest from the Monday Council session see our Council Timeline feature, as well as our Council Archive page.

A wider overview of past Council Discussion themes can be explored from our Council Discussion page.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

1 comment:

  1. Considering that Grand Trunk Pacific did the Hays 1.0 city design it's fitting that there would be a lot of corporate involvement in the Hays 2.0 Redesign.