Cabinet approves electoral change for Cultus Lake

Approval granted for the creation of the new Electoral Area ‘H’ for the Fraser Valley Regional District.

The configuration of the Cultus Lake Park Board is set to change after this fall's election.

Residents and businesses in Cultus Lake and the Columbia Valley will be voting in a different electoral area this November.

Laurie Throness, MLA for Chilliwack-­‐Hope announced Tuesday that the provincial cabinet has passed an Order in Council approving the creation of the new Electoral Area ‘H’ for the Fraser Valley Regional District.

Currently, Cultus Lake and the Columbia Valley are within Electoral Area E, which also extends east to the Chilliwack River Valley and includes Chilliwack Lake.

Throness asked for the order after extensive consultation with the Cultus Lake Community Association, the Cultus Lake Park Board, and at a public meeting held in Cultus Lake this summer, where broad public support for the idea was expressed.

“I’m so pleased that our government has responded in such a timely way to the needs of our small community,” said Throness. “This will pave the way for a new electoral area director to be elected in the local elections in November and provide better representation for the people who live here.”

Earlier this year, the BC Legislature passed Bill 27, The Cultus Lake Park Amendment Act, which reduced the Cultus Lake Park Board from seven to five people, and increased the number of commissioners elected by Cultus Lake residents from two to three.

“The creation of Electoral Area H will further enhance accountability by providing a representative to the FVRD who is directly elected by the residents of Cultus Lake and Columbia Valley,” explains Throness.

Sharon Gaetz, Chair of the FVRD says “In terms of community, there has always been a natural divide at the Vedder Bridge along the boundaries of the City of Chilliwack. The new director will better reflect the needs of Columbia Valley and Cultus Lake leading to better, more responsive government and greater access to FVRD services.”

Dave Lamson, Director of Electoral Area E says, “We have been talking about this for years. It’s a natural thing to do, since the Chilliwack River Valley is different in geography and culture from the Cultus Lake area. I’m glad to see it finally happen.”

The 2014 local election takes place on Nov. 15. Interested candidates can obtain information and nomination packages at www.fvrd.bc.ca or by calling Chief Election Officer Suzanne Gresham at 604-­‐ 702-­‐5032.

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