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October 27, 2017 8:47 pm

TalkTober Starts Tonight

Wednesday, October 12, 2016 @ 5:58 AM

Prince George, B.C. – The first in a series of community consultations will get underway this evening in Prince George, as City Hall  launches TalkTober.

The first session will take  place the Columbus Community Centre in College Heights  from  6:30 – 8:30 pm.

The sessions provide an opportunity for area residents to  express their  concerns to  City staff  and those members of Council who plan to attend.  The sessions also  provide  an opportunity for  staff to  gather input on where tax dollars  should be allocated when budget time rolls around.

Also available  at  the 2016  TalkTober  sessions  is the draft Park Strategy  (see previous story). Residents will have an opportunity to  make their  thoughts known on the  future  of parks in their neighbourhood.

There are a couple of new aspects  to TalkTober this year as  BC Transit will be on hand to collect  residents thoughts on  transit service “Transit is a huge  topic in this City” says Mayor Lyn Hall “We’ve heard a lot from students who say you’ve got to  give us different, more accessible transit to the downtown,  expand the transit off the main routes to the University  and the College, so this is a good opportunity  for people to   get an  idea of the transit operations in the City and see the changes that are coming.”

Mayor Hall  says City Hall Service Centre reps will be also be  on hand “People phone in to report potholes,  they’ll phone in for  different information like their street hasn’t been plowed for a long time, when’s that going to happen?  Questions  around garbage pick up,  any concerns that they have   go through our service centre, they are logged then they are pushed out to the various departments  so  you’re  going to be able to come to a TalkTober event and you’re going to be able to register  those comments or concerns right there, right then with the Service Centre folks.”   Although  the Mayor admits if people are reluctant to phone in, they are not likely to  show up at a TalkTober event  to report  something in person “What it does, is  it just rounds off we’re trying to do when it comes to TalkTober , which is to provide a service,  you  have all of the other departments there, so to have the Service Centre there makes sense.”  He says it  won’t be just about lodging complaints,   as folks can ask Service Centre reps for details on things like paying utility bills or taxes.

This  round of TalkTober sessions  is packed with  information  from Transit to  Service Centre , the Park Strategy to budget  ideas,  but Mayor  Hall  says  he doesn’t think residents will be overloaded  “I think, what we found last year was that residents came with a specific purpose, they were looking for information from a particular department.  I’m the first one to  say that we want to make  sure we don’t overload people and if  it looks like   the TalkTober event has too much, then we’ll have to  look at it again next year that we  don’t overload people, but it has been our experience that it has been  one or two issues that people come to talk about.”

The evenings are set up in a casual  format,  and will  include a question and answer  session led by Mayor Lyn Hall. “What I want to do  is talk about the things  that are happening from the development perspective  and I want to ttalk about things we’ve done in the various neighbourhoods,  some of things you won’t necessarily  see because it was underground infrastructure work, but more than anything I ‘m interested  in people and the questions they have and the things that we are doing well, we absolutely need that feedback.”




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