Following a decision of Islands Trust Council made last month, council chair Peter Luckham has asked Municipal Affairs Minister Nathan Cullen in a letter to bring council’s request for a provincial review of the Islands Trust mandate, governance and structure to the attention of Lieutenant Governor Janet Austin.
According to a July 15 Islands Trust press release, “Trust Council’s decision in June 2022 to request a provincial review comes after much debate and discussion around the policy statement review process and a governance review conducted by external consultants earlier this year.”
“Over the past few years, we have heard many different viewpoints around how to best carry out our special mandate to preserve and protect the unique amenities and environment in the Islands Trust Area,” said Luckham. “However, we can’t do this work alone. As an agency of the province, we require provincial leadership, direction, and support to ensure that we are honouring the preserve and protect vision, while also addressing the new realities and challenges facing the Islands Trust Area today.”
Trust Council also established a new standing governance committee at its June 2022 meeting, comprised of seven elected members. This new standing committee will begin an in-depth review of the recommendations laid out in the governance review by external consultants. It will also be well placed to assist a provincial review process, should the province accept Trust Council’s request.
The governance committee trustee members are Alex Allen, Kees Langereis, Lee Middleton, Laura Patrick, Timothy Peterson, Tahirih Rockafella and Kate-Louise Stamford.
New members will be elected when the 2022-2026 new term Trust Council convenes in November.
It has been nearly 50 years since the Islands Trust Act was initiated and 35 years since it was last meaningfully reviewed by the Province. The Islands Trust Area is located within Coast Salish territory. The Trust states that “Working closely together with First Nations to align Islands Trust’s governance model, structure, and mandate with the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act will be key to fulfilling Islands Trust Council’s (and the Province’s) commitments to reconciliation, and to the effective stewardship of this culturally and ecologically significant region.”