With Mayor Causton taking a short break to run for Liberal candidate in the Victoria riding, he took the opportunity to say good-bye Monday night. At what may be his last council meeting ever, he brought up a lot of unresolved business that he wanted to see put to bed.
Unsurprisingly, the first thing he mentioned was the town hall meeting, something he promised to the protesters from the the other day. What he promised was a meeting without an agenda, and he promised that he would facilitate that However, he wanted to have it during April, which means that somebody else will need to chair that. Causton ended up suggesting the acting Mayor — Nils Jensen for the month of April — as a suitable substitute. As for a date, there are a few being kicked around, all in April: 12th, 14th, 19th, or 20th.
Second on his agenda was “improved communication”, which apparently just means the website currently, something Tara Ney is taking over. As an aside, I see a pattern emerging here; prospective mayoral candidates being asked to get involved in high profile issues (although neither have said anything either way).
Lastly was the giant hot potato known as secondary suites. Causton has pushed hard on this issue recently, prompting one councillor to ask “What’s driving this issue?”. My suspicion is that council is going to shelve this until after the election. We are only eight months out (Nov 19) and nobody wants to commit to such a polarizing issue right now.
Thankfully, the Mayor is not shirking all of his duties as he runs federally: the children of Willows in Grade 1 and 2 are going to get a visit by him to, as he put it, “explain a federal election without getting political”, as well as chairing the local Mayor’s lunch and one final Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities’ AGM and conference up in Sidney.
And so we (possibly, although I think not very probably) bid adieu to the Mayor of Oak Bay for the past 14 years. Emperor Frank (of Saanich) he was not, although he is equally long standing. Now the speculation will turn to what councillors are going to run again this year and who will replace him.