Saanich residents invited to weigh in on local governance

May 10, 2017

For immediate release  

Saanich, BC – There is still an opportunity to have your say on Saanich governance before the public consultation period ends May 31st. The Governance Review Citizen Advisory Committee (GRCAC) is looking forward to hearing from the community on ideas, priorities, and recommendations for enhancing local governance.  

“Two town hall meetings are coming up May 17th and 27th, and we invite people to attend to learn more about governance and why it is so important, and to share their thoughts on governance in Saanich and the region”, says GRCAC Chair John Schmuck.  “The work of local government touches you every day – from turning on your tap to using roads and sidewalks, enjoying parks and taking part in recreation programs – these are just a few examples of many key services and amenities enjoyed by Saanich residents.  How Saanich governs itself, and the role it plays in the region, also directly affects its citizens and businesses”. 

Online consultation kicked off March 1st and includes a survey, discussion forums, and polls.  Two public workshops were held in April. The committee is also meeting with stakeholders and community organizations to gain the perspectives of a broad and diverse population. 

“I encourage people to attend a town hall or send us comments by email or Twitter.  There is also still time to complete the survey and take part in a discussion forum”, added Schmuck. 

The town halls on May 17th and May 27th will be emceed by Dr. Kimberly Speers and Dr. Evert Lindquist, respectively, both from the University of Victoria School of Public Administration. These meetings are designed to share information on governance and the governance review, as well as provide an opportunity for the public to offer their ideas to the committee. 

“Our governance review is a priority initiative for Saanich Council”, said Mayor Richard Atwell. “Council is looking forward to receiving the committee’s report in the fall and developing an action plan based on the perspectives established by the review. We encourage all residents to participate in the review so that we can make the most of this opportunity to be heard.” 


Public engagement was launched February 9th by Mayor Richard Atwell and GRCAC Chair John Schmuck, and concludes May 31st. 

The GRCAC mandate is to consult broadly with the community to obtain a diversity of feedback, with goals of enhancing awareness and knowledge of governance matters and how they relate to citizens and service delivery, and encouraging participation in the engagement process. 

The committee is engaging the public on issues such as:

  • Decision-making processes
  • Citizen engagement
  • Accountability, transparency and exercise of authority
  • Continuous improvement
  • The District‘s relationships with local municipalities and within the region 
Get Involved – Consultation opportunities are available up to May 31.

Public consultations have been designed to be as inclusive and flexible as possible, and include:

  • Online consultation:  survey, polls, discussion forum, at
  • Town hall meetings:
    • Wednesday, May 17:  7 – 9 pm – Saanich Commonwealth Place, 4636 Elk Lake Drive
    • Saturday, May 27:  1 – 3 pm – Garth Homer Centre, 813 Darwin Avenue
    • Coffee chats, focus groups & community meetings
    • Comments can be sent to


Learn More

For details on engagement opportunities, more information on the Saanich Governance Review or the committee, please visit:




 Media Contact 
John Schmuck
Chair, Governance Review Citizen Advisory Committee