As Metro Vancouver’s Regional Growth Strategy enters a dispute resolution process now to deal with Coquitlam’s reasons for rejecting it, we urge media and citizens to watch carefully what happens next. We feel that the majority of municipalities glossed over serious problems with the RGS and the process by which it got to this point, which we cover elsewhere on this site, and which some media have covered (still nothing recent in any of the mainstream media). We remind everyone that the RGS is a serious legally-binding bylaw “with teeth” and has an intended life of 30 years, to 2040. The words and actions of the provincial government, representatives of Metro Vancouver, and board members from each municipality going forward bear huge significance and will display the true character of the parties involved. We are about to find out how democratic Metro Vancouver really is. The Metro Vancouver site provides official status of the RGS here. Below text adapted from that web page.
On January 14, 2011, the Metro Vancouver Board gave second reading to the Greater Vancouver Regional District Regional Growth Strategy Bylaw No. 1136, 2010 (as amended), after which the RGS was submitted to “affected local governments” (21 municipalities, Tsawwassen First Nation, Fraser Valley Regional District, Squamish-Lillooet Regional District and TransLink) for them to either accept or not accept by March 22. By that date, 22 affected local governments had accepted the proposed RGS, BUT unanimous acceptance is required before the RGS Bylaw can be enacted. Port Moody did not accept the RGS, but identified conditions under which it would accept it. Coquitlam rejected the RGS, triggering a dispute resolution process (see sections 859-862 of the Local Government Act) and putting the RGS on hold until that process is completed. According to Metro Vancouver’s website, the next step is to notify the BC Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, who will choose the type of dispute resolution process to be applied (either non-binding or binding).