It should be called Cowichan Community Centre — forever

This is my told you so moment.

It should be called Cowichan Community Centre — forever

I was one of those people begging not to lose the name Cowichan Community Centre. This is my told you so moment.

Now as back then, we the taxpayers paid for this, and prefer the whole community to own it — thus Cowichan Community Centre. I would have thought that it should have been a simple budgeting item, to cost in signage, which we originally paid for when new. Even simpler, it should have been factored in that “capitol projects including facility upgrades, a new parking lot, new sound system, a new Zamboni and more”, would be a line on a budget somewhere.

As a community we decided we needed/wanted this facility, went through a referendum, passed and was acted upon. Surely we must all realize that there will be a cost to upkeep our investment. I thank Island Savings Credit Union for its financial support. I do not believe any future partners should be able to claim the site under their name, there must be some other public way to give recognition to them for the financial support they give. Now it’s like a divorce, we lose the name, must change all stationery, utility contracts, banking, advertising — phone book, etc. The rebranding that an advertising agency suckers established businesses into refreshing their look, is a huge waste of money. The only person who makes money is the advertising agency. If it ain’t broke — don’t fix it. I remember being on site, with people looking for where the bank was in the complex.

May I offer three possible solutions? First, if this can be remedied by simply costing this onto a budget somewhere, do so. Second, if it can’t, what do we need to do to make it so? Does it need to go to a referendum? Get on with it. It should not be much different than what we just went through for housing and water. I can’t imagine that it will cost more than the minus $4 we just agreed to and we are looking at roughly the budget of $100,000, so +/- , we’re in the ball park here. Third, do we have to fundraise, to kick in either $50 with another 2,000 people or $100 with another 1,000 people and this year is covered for capital projects, but only on the condition that the name returns to Cowichan Community Centre, and remains so. The goal would be to ensure that the next calendar year, sees capital expenses included in the operating budget and/or a referendum held to see funding is in place, on an ongoing basis.

Questions: what does the Island Savings Centre Commission do, what is its purpose? Are we getting our monies’ worth out of this board? I assume these are paid positions; why haven’t they secured funding for capital projects in the last decade or more? We can ask Al Siebring, as he has eight years of answers, and naming rights were a known factor for a 10-year period. Was there ever a move to include this into the budget of the CVRD, and/or other parties involved? If not, why? Was the Island Savings Centre Commission only enacted once naming rights were started? At what cost, if we cease this practice, can we disband it and monies saved, could fund capital projects?

Karen A. Chaster

North Cowichan

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