Sooke PocketNews has received word that the mayor of Sooke, Maja Tait, has just been elected as the Third Vice President of UBCM (the Union of BC Municipalities). Tait was nominated from the floor on Wednesday, September 28 2016, and was running against the Mayor of Oak Bay, Nils Jensen. The results were announced Thursday morning.
The UBCM is currently holding their annual meeting in Victoria BC. The UBCM was formed to provide a common voice for local government.
Parental rights are also on the agenda. The District of Sooke brought this to the forefront when Councillor Rick Kasper refused to return an appointment (CRD Director) to the mayor when she returned from mat leave, in spite of the fact that the motion assigning Kasper the position indicated that it was temporary.
At an Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities (
Kasper made a motion to reinstate Tait as the CRD Director at the April 11, 2016 Council meeting.
The resolution, as it appears on the UBCM list of Resolutions, is thus:
B99 Parental Rights for Elected Officials (Oak Bay, Esquimalt)
Whereas the BC Employment Standards Act guarantees the rights of parents to maternity and parental leave;
And whereas the Local Government Act and Community Charter fail to protect parental rights of local government elected officials, requiring council or regional district board approval of leave for elected officials who become parents:
Therefore be it resolved that UBCM encourage the provincial government to amend the Local Government Act and the Community Charter to guarantee maternity and parental leave for elected officials to be consistent with the Employment Standards Act provisions following the birth or adoption of a child;
And be it further resolved that the legislation be amended to permit the elected official to return to work on the same terms that were in place at the start of their leave, and that any changes in the elected official’s appointments to committees, boards or commissions will not be made as a result of the maternity or parental leave.
Endorsed by the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities
UBCM Resolutions Committee recommendation: No Recommendation
UBCM Resolutions Committee comments: The Resolutions Committee advises that the UBCM membership has not previously considered a resolution asking the provincial government to harmonize the Local Government Act and Community Charter in order to guarantee parental leave for elected officials that is consistent with the Employment Standards Act.
Once we learn the results of this resolution, we will post it on SPN.
The UBCM acts as a lobby group for municipalities, representing their collectively-agreed-upon concerns to the provincial government. The UBCM meets once a year to consider and vote on resolutions. If passed, the resolutions are forwarded to the provincial government for consideration. For more information, visit them online.
The 2016 UBCM Convention began on September 26 and wraps up on September 30, at the Victoria Conference Centre.
- UBCM updates: Sooke mayor elected as Third Vice President, mat leave motion pending
- Navigating through fog: Sooke Mayor speaks with CBC’s Gregor Craigie about mat leave
- SPN take-aways from the April 11 Council meeting; Kasper returns CRD Director position to Tait
- Clarification on the implications of yesterday’s AVICC unanimous motion
- What do you get with a room full of politicians discussing parental leave? Unanimous consent digging us out of the dark ages. #BecauseIts2016
- Editorial: Sooke Council appointed temporary CRD Director and Alternate
- No joke: Sooke’s elected mayor returns to Office
- Is Sooke mayor Maja Tait’s personal life public domain?