Oak Bay All-Candidates Meeting on Reconciliation September 18, 2022

See what comments and commitments candidates made and hear Mayor Kevin Murdoch’s take on Reconciliation in his first term in office and the future.

Below the video, you’ll see candidate answers to audience questions that couldn’t be addressed during the meeting.

Post-meeting Q & As

The following Reconciliation-related questions came from audience members. Candidates were given one week to provide their answers. 
(Two questions went missing from the question queue in the post-event knockdown process; please send us replacements if they were yours.)
Two other questions were directed to Kevin Murdoch.

Audience Questions Answered Post-meeting

1.Re: The Spewhung / Turkey Head / Marina Lands- While one may have an informed opinion and an idea about what to do with these lands, is anything other than climate resilience really worth spending a lot of money on?  If you look at the forecasted sea levels for this area, you quickly see that these lands are very, very vulnerable. Plus I heard that the current operation and lease agreement is a net money loser to the district of Oak Bay.

Is this true and what are your thoughts on a large capital expenditure (more than 300K of Oak Bay funds) for reimagining this vulnerable area?

2. Would you support a combined strategy with the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations that would cover both Discovery and Chatham Islands and the Oak Bay Marina?

3. How would you engage the Songhees/Esquimalt Nations in the future of the Oak Bay marina?

4. Would you support a voluntary, transparent property owner tax contribution to Indigenous titleholders?

Questions for Mayor Murdoch

1. Why would the District hire an Indigenous consultant rather than engaging directly with the Chief and Councils of the Nations?

Kevin Murdoch
“The District already engages directly with the local First Nations, both staff-to-staff and Council-to-Council, and will continue to do so. The First Nations Advisor position was created to provide staff capacity within Oak Bay and our partner nations to help move our joint initiatives forward in a way respectful of First Nations needs, priorities, and procedures. Both Oak Bay and local First Nations have limited capacity in-house to take on new projects, and this is seen as way to help all parties achieve meaningful momentum on shared initiatives. To be clear, the scope of the position is being guided by Esquimalt and Songhees Nations staff and they are assisting in the recruiting process.”

2. What about inviting Indigenous stewardship of our Garry Oak Meadows? Using ethno-ecological approaches, acknowledge these special areas as endangered cultural spaces? Braid together respectfully Indigenous science and western science in restoration?

Kevin Murdoch
“I am fully in favour of having local Knowledge Keepers work both in an educational and advisory capacity within our natural parks. We anticipated this idea will form part of the Sitchanalth / Willows joint planning initiative underway, as Uplands Park is directly adjacent to Willows Beach and forms an integral part of the cultural history of the area.”