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City of Nanaimo to address second AAP during special council meeting

A special council meeting has been called by the City of Nanaimo to discuss how to proceed after the second Alternative Approval Process failed earlier this month. 

In a media release by the city, they admitted several errors were made including not making forms available to electors in accordance with provincial legislation.  

The meeting is slated to start at 4:00 p.m. this afternoon at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre, and according to the city’s website, members of the public are invited to attend and hear from the delegations. 

Nanaimo resident and lawyer, Sandford Bartlett says he was scheduled to appear in front of council on Feb. 5, after he highlighted the areas of noncompliance in the second AAP but was denied an appearance.  

“For the second time the city is running an AAP in noncompliance with the legislation,” he says in a Feb. 5 interview. “The result is a second invalid AAP and further loss to Nanaimo citizens in wasted expenditure of public funds, as well as their time and energy.” 

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He says the processes haven’t been a total waste because city residents have learned a lot.  

“We’ve been through these two processes, and a lot of money has been spent,” Bartlett says. “We’ve spent a lot of time, money, and energy which hasn’t been wasted because we’ve been educating the public.” 

Council did not specify how the city would proceed with the legal challenge, but councilor Tyler Brown did say on Feb. 5 that they would provide directions in a special meeting. 

The first AAP failed on Nov. 3, but council voted to start the process again on Jan. 10. 

The AAP was used by the city to get electoral consent for long-term borrowing of $48.5 million to build a new Nanaimo public works yard, which is expected to cost a total of $163 million. 

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