Skaters from Lake Cowichan in the Island regional were celebrated in ‘The Lake News’ of Nov. 17, 1993. They include, back row, Natasha Coulombe, Julia Carsley, Kristin Neuffer, and Christina Quenville, and front row, Christine Stokes, Tavera Hauck, and Lynette Sawyer.

Lake Flashback: Youbou pre-election scuffle, Lake Cowichan’s 50th anniversary plans, and byelection for Area F

Howls from developer, concerns about book, and annoyance from the province: just a day at the Lake

Welcome to Lake Flashback. Reporter Lexi Bainas has been combing through oldnewspaperswiththeassistance of the Kaatza Station Museum and Archives so we can jog your memory, give you that nostalgic feeling, or just a chuckle, as we take a look at what was making headlines this weekaround Cowichan Lake in years gone by.

This week around the Cowichan Lake area…

10 years ago:

Aren’t you glad the elections are over? 10 years ago at this time the Lake Cowichan Gazette was still full of election news.

“One candidate is anti-development, says owner of Youbou Lands” screamed the headline in the edition of Nov. 12, 2008.

Let’s see what it’s all about.

The company proposing a 1,950-home and resort development at the old Youbou millsite is jumping into the Electoral Area I election by accusing one candidate of being anti-development.

Thomas Kreilein of the Youbou Land Development Group, in a news release sent to several media outlets, says that if candidate John Ward gets elected Saturday and pushes through his preference for a waterfront walkway and a secondary access road he would have to scrap his plans.

“I would split it up and sell it as currently zoned (F1),” said Kreilein.

He said that, after attending the candidates’ debate in Youbou last Wednesday, Ward appears intent on shutting down the proposal that also calls for a 225-unit resort hotel on the 673-acre site.

Kreilein said the development group is in great financial shape, despite the tough economy, but he’s concerned.

“We’re in great financial shape, our concern is what happens if the director elected in the region is completely against development, then this project could very much be in jeopardy,” he said.

“John Ward seems to be anti-development,” said Kreilein. “He’s taken these positions without even talking to me about it.”

Ward, who is running against Klaus Kuhn, denies that he’s anti-development.

“Not at all,” said Ward. “I’m quite in favour of it, as long as it’s done properly.”

He said there’s an old logging road above Youbou that he thinks could be upgraded to address the safety and heavy traffic concerns on Youbou Road.

Kuhn said he doesn’t know if Ward is anti-development, but he certainly agrees he and Ward have big differences when it comes to the development.

25 years ago:

As Lake Cowichan’s 75th anniversary year is approaching, it’s interesting to read in The Lake News of Nov. 17, 1993 that village council was wondering how much the 50th anniversary celebrations would cost.

Coun. Pat Foster was bullish on the party.

“Next year’s anniversary celebration could show a profit of $20,000,” Coun. Pat Foster told council last week. If so, she would like the money used for a permanent memorial of the anniversary.

She made the remark after council members rasied questions about the celebrations, particularly the village book. Mayor Earle Darling said he had been asked by the publlic (1) had the book, publishing of which is expected to cost $25,000, been tendered? (2) Was the printer out of the province? (3) Was the printer unionized?

Coun. Leon Portelance remarked that when the matter came forward, council never discussed it.

“I was concerned that there was no prior approval by council,” he said.

Foster, of the 50th Anniversary Committee said the publishing arrangements for the book had been handled by a subcommittee…[which] included members of about 20 service clubs.

The deal to publish the book has not yet been signed, she said. The printer being dealt with is in Winnipeg, and was chosen because he specializes in village histories and has done about 5o of them. She said as far as she was aware, the printer was not unionized.

She suggested tabling the matter until more fundraising is done…Sales have been going well, she said. The committee has on hand more than $8,000, enough to pay the first third of the publishing price.

A donation of $3,000 towards the picnic can be temporarily allotted to pay for the book and returned later. In addition, 2,000 copies of a commemorative calendar are being printed, which could raise $7,000 towards the book costs.

40 years ago:

Remember that we told you that Area F couldn’t even field a single candidate to run in the 1978 municipal elections?

Well, the provincial government was unimpressed.

According to The Lake News of Nov. 15, 1978, they swung into action.

“Municipal affairs minister orders Area F byelection” said the headline.

Interest in regional politics has been so low during recent nominations that residents of this area failed to field any candidate for the coming election in the Cowichan Valley Regional District, but it appears they will be given another chance.

Under the Municipal Act, the minister of municipal affairs could appoint someone to fill the vacancy in Area F that will be created when Dave Berry resigns next month, but the minister has decided against that.

Instead he has asked the regional board to call a byelection to fill the seat. A nomination and election date has not been set yet.

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