Bev Eert Director Area A

Bev EertBeverley Eert is running for Director Area A, Regional District of Nanaimo. In July 2008, Eert gained prominence as a leader of the Say No to Cable Bay campaign which prevented the extension of Nanaimo’s city boundaries into Cedar to accommodate an elitist golf resort proposed by Alberta developers. By stopping the Cable Bay annexation this summer, Bev proved that she don't just talk about issues, she digs in and gets the job done. This same conviction is present in every aspect of her life. Bev's experience in architecture, planning, and construction, plus her unwavering commitment to community and the environment, are already reflected in her home and lifestyle. Bev Eert is a person of vision and action who deserves the vote of residents of Cassidy, Cedar and South Wellington on November 15, 2008.

Bev Eert was born and raised just outside Winnipeg. Her family had been farming in Manitoba since the turn of the century, and her home was located at the edge of the city, with well-tended garden and orchard. After high school, Bev completed dual degrees in music and fine arts at the University of Manitoba and established a private music studio in Winnipeg. In 1980 she moved to British Columbia, spending six years north of Terrace before moving to small farms in Cowichan Station and now Cedar. Increasingly interested in community, environment and architecture, Bev returned to the University of British Columbia to complete a degree in architecture, specialising in environmentally sensitive construction and planning. After working in an architectural office for two years, she organised a design-build company, producing energy-efficient timber-framed homes. Since settling in Cedar in 2001, she has returned to music and now owns and operates the successful Nanaimo River Studio. Bev and her husband Will are presently working toward food self-sufficiency on twenty acres along the Nanaimo River, a property that bridges the communities of Cedar and South Wellington.

Bev Eert has been committed to community most of her life. Community service began in high school when she ran for school president. At the University of Manitoba, she was students' union representative for the School of Music. For many years, she volunteered in every provincial election. She became seriously involved in politics in the Cowichan Valley and served on her local Area Planning Committee. She was instrumental in defending community interests against a huge development proposal for the sensitive slopes of the Malahat at Bamberton.

In Cedar, Bev has been busy establishing the Nanaimo River Studio. Last winter, however, she recognised the need for leadership in preserving the integrity and liveability of her community. She built a scale model of the Cable Bay proposal and soon had opportunity to use it. Her model, combined with hard work as volunteer coordinator, led to the resounding defeat of the Cable Bay annexation Alternative Approval Process.

Bev Eert’s comprehensive campaign statement for the position of Director Area A, Regional District of Nanaimo, is as follows:

Our community is at a crossroads. There is enormous pressure for urbanisation from the City of Nanaimo and large developers. We need to define and vigorously defend the rural values, environmental integrity, and sense of community long cherished by our citizens.

I will preserve our rural lifestyle by ensuring the Official Community Plan and Regional Growth Strategy accurately reflect the rural character of Area A. I will support parents' groups to keep the schools in our communities.

I will act on local environmental issues by protecting our precious water resources, encouraging green building technologies and sustainable planning, promoting at-home composting and demonstration gardens, and establishing protection for significant trees.

I will maintain clear and open communication by establishing a community-driven Area Planning Committee, conducting regular community townhall meetings, maintaining an Area A website and newsletter, keeping regular office hours, encouraging recorded votes at Regional District meetings, keeping the public informed about development proposals, and resisting the use of the Alternative Approval Process.

I will address local transportation issues by improving public transit, pressing for better road maintenance and wider shoulders, linking our communities with the Morden Colliery Trail, and supporting the upgrade of the Island Rail Corridor.

I will enhance the role of agriculture by developing a comprehensive agricultural plan for Area A, establishing the Agricultural Advisory Committee, creating permanent markets for local produce, and pressuring senior governments to support the small producer.

I will encourage local trade by promoting gradual development of village trading areas through the Official Community Plan and by recognising the needs of farming as a business.

I will expand recreational opportunities by completing the skateboard park, advocating for additional sports and recreation facilities, using Area A parks money in Area A, and reviewing existing policy for park dedication.

I will promote arts and culture by supporting established community facilities, maintaining a community activities calendar on my Area A website, and working toward an improved performance venue.

For more information on the campaign of Bev Eert for Director Area A, Regional District of Nanaimo, call 250-722-2606 or visit her website.

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