Nanaimo Regional Board reaffirms support for inter-regional collaboration within Georgia Basin


Note to Reader:

Launched in 2012, the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative (IREI) provides local governments on the east coast of Vancouver Island with a mechanism to collaborate, share outcomes and cross-pollinate experience with each other and with local governments in the Metro Vancouver region.

When the Nanaimo Regional Board met on March 24th 2015, it supported a request from the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC for endorsement of continued participation by the Regional District of Nanaimo in the IREI.

IREI_five regions_Nov2014

Towards a Watershed Health Legacy

In his Staff Report to the Board of Directors, Mike Donnelly (Manager, Water & Utility Services) wrote that:

“The Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia (PWSBC), is undertaking to align the efforts of four regional districts on Vancouver Island (Capital Regional District, Cowichan Valley Regional District, Regional District of Nanaimo and Comox Mike Donnelly_2014_trimmed_500pValley Regional District) and Metro Vancouver to build upon the inter-regional educational initiative introduced to the Board in March of 2012.”

“The initiative focuses on education, collaboration and sharing of ideas and experiences on water sustainability, rainwater management best practices and more recently with a focus on asset management.”

“The conservation and protection of water and watersheds is a priority in the RDN and the proposed inter-regional education initiative provides another opportunity to assist local governments to better understand the relationships between watershed and stream and site development.”

To Learn More:

To download a copy of the Staff Report that provided the basis for the Board Resolutions reaffirming continued participation, click on Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative.

Context for Collaboration

The Partnership for Water Sustainability’s history of collaboration with the Regional District of Nanaimo provided context for two Board Resolutions:

RDN_context for IREI Resolution_Mar2015

Nanaimo Regional Board Resolutions (March 2015)

Colin Haime

Colin Haime

Bill Veenhof

Bill Veenhof

Motion #1 – “That continued participation in the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative as proposed by the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC be endorsed.” 

Motion #2 – “That the Board continue to support staff participation in Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC activities associated with water sustainability.” 

To Learn More:

To download a copy of the Board Minutes for March 2015, click here. Each motion was moved by Director Colin Haime (Deputy Chair) and seconded by Director Bill Veenhof.

Watershed Health Goal_Jan2015_no border

Background on Implementation of Inter-Regional Program

“A changing climate and community expectations to provide higher levels-of-service at reduced levels-of-cost are drivers for the IREI program,” states Kim Stephens, Partnership Executive Director. “Inter-regional collaboration accelerates implementation Kim Stephens_DSC_0503_Mar2015_120pof standards of practice (engineering, planning and environmental) that are affordable & effective in maintaining healthy watersheds and streams.”

“This desired outcome aligns with outcomes envisioned in the Regional District of Nanaimo’s Drinking Water & Watershed Protection Plan.”

“A guiding principle is that IREI program elements will align with local government priorities and staff workloads. And a program goal is that local governments will leverage more with the same resources.”

To Learn More:

To download a copy of the Backgrounder that informed the decision by the Nanaimo Regional Board, click on Background on Program Implementation for ‘Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Educational Initiative’