Expansion for Alberni airport goes ahead after Alternative Approval Process passes

Only 303 eligible responses recorded against ACRD's controversial loan authorization process.

Expansion at the Alberni Valley Regional Airport will go ahead after opponents failed to collect enough signatures to quash an Alternative Approval Process for the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District to borrow up to $6 million for the project.

The 32-day-long process closed at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 5. Only 303 valid elector responses of a required 2,050 were recorded, according to Wendy Thomson, ACRD’s manager of administrative services.

The Alternative Approval Process required 10 per cent of the eligible electors within participating areas—Port Alberni, Beaufort, Beaver Creek, Cherry Creek and Sproat Lake—to vote against borrowing up to $6 million to expand the runway at the airport.

The AAP drew criticism from people in the Alberni Valley who felt a full referendum would be the only fair way to determine whether people in the regional district truly approved of the ACRD’s plans. If enough signatures had been collected, the ACRD would likely have held a full referendum on the matter.

The decision comes as the regional district closed the existing runway to aviation traffic for four days so the Thunder in the Valley drag racing event can run (Aug. 8–9, 2015, see www.albernidragracing.com for more info).

Read some background on the ACRD’s plans here.

editor@albernivalleynews.com

Twitter.com/AlberniNews