Is City Council Taking a Look at IPG?
Prince George, B.C. – The City of Quesnel may be in the process of dissolving its Economic Development Corporation but don’t expect more of the same here in P.G. with Initiatives Prince George.
“We’ve gone through our budget process and now we’re just going into the fourth reading sometime in the next couple of months. So there was no discussion during the budget deliberation around IPG,” says Mayor Lyn Hall.
“If somebody from council wants to take a look at anything in the budget at fourth reading, they have that opportunity, but we’ve had no discussion about changing anything at IPG.”
Quesnel Mayor Bob Simpson said last week his council believes that an in-house economic development function will more directly align with its strategic plan and budget constraints which includes a $575,000 budget shortfall.
In order to deal with the shortfall they’ve also rescinded a remuneration increase for council and mayor and froze wages for senior management.
However in Prince George, Hall says the city is getting “good bang for the buck” for the roughly $1 million budgeted each year for IPG.
”Yes, and I think that it’s our economic arm for the City and I think with that organization they’re doing what the City is asking and that’s to be our economic development arm,” says Hall.
“They’re into the “Move up PG” program which is trying to garner more people, more skilled labour to come into Prince George, so I think its doing its job.
As for whether or not bringing IPG in-house would save any money he’s not sure.
“I don’t know what, if any, cost savings would be there by bringing them in-house,” says Hall.
And over the last three years that I’ve been on council we certainly haven’t talked about them coming in-house.”