“We recognize the importance of, and will enhance relationships with our neighbors and other levels of government”
Esquimalt has many strategic Partners from which great relationships result in great things. Our community borders with Songhees First Nation, City of Victoria, View Royal, and Saanich just across the Gorge waterway. But internally we have significant landownership by the federal government DND and Esquimalt Graving Dock. Esquimalt has its own family of schools as well as the only Francophone School of the region so we have a relationship with 2 School Districts. Of course we are part of Capital Regional District, working together on issues such as waste, water, and parkland.
Our relationships with Federal departments are critical. They provide significant economic benefit to Esquimalt, through the work they do, the jobs they provide and the taxes they pay. This relationship requires ongoing dialogue, and communication. We benefit currently through mutual aid agreements and joint training opportunities with our fire departments. We benefit by use of MacAulay Point as a park through lease agreement. The base and the Township did joint work toward deer management as well. We have developed joint luncheon meetings between staff of DND and Esquimalt with the Base Commander and Mayor and Council included. These occur twice per year and help to ensure ongoing relationship building despite the challenges of change in Command and movement of DND personnel.
The School Districts are important partners within our community as well and council continues to explore the options for greater benefit. Joint use agreements have helped the Township access classrooms, theatres, and sport fields. We are currently discussing enhancement of the sport field at Esquimalt High for Rugby.
Our relationships with our neighbors, Esquimalt First Nation and Songhees First Nation have been growing and this work will continue with the work of meaningful reconciliation. We already benefit from 2 separate properties within the Township that are owned, and have been redeveloped by these Nations and we will continue to work for strong and ongoing partnership opportunities.
Finally, Esquimalt wherever possible works toward shared services with CRD and other municipalities. These provide significant benefit to us through resource, finance, and public safety. Our shared fire dispatch service being a key example and of course through CRD there are regional Arts, parkland acquisition and Housing First programs. The South Island Prosperity Project has in its short time improved the interest and investment into our region , to the benefit of its members of which Esquimalt is one.
Relationships require work and they are worth it for our community for greater social, economic and environmental benefit.