Announcement

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2022 Municipal Election Q&A

Posted by JDF Webmaster on Oct 13 2022 at 08:43PM PDT

The Juan De Fuca Lacrosse association (JDFLA) is providing all 2022 candidates running for municipal council and mayor with the opportunity to outline their vision for recreation facilities in Langford, Colwood, Highlands, Metchosin and Sooke.

The JDFLA provides lacrosse to youth who reside in the western communities. The organization is a not for profit and is the sole provider of both minor field and box lacrosse for youth ages 4 to 17 and is the largest organization of youth Lacrosse on Vancouver Island.

Over the last number of years, the JDFLA has advocated for indoor and outdoor facilities for the sport of Lacrosse. Most recently the use of indoor venues for our box lacrosse programs. Unfortunately, the only facilities that are usable (for league games & tournaments) for box lacrosse are located at Westshore Parks and Recreation center. Often, these venues are not useable due to weather, ice (hockey) or limited times as there are multiple other associations/sports using the already limited spaces.

The JDFLA is asking candidates to provide detailed information on how they, if elected, would support organizations, such as the JDFLA, in their area.

1. What is your vision for building in your areas for youth sport recreation facilities?
2. How do you support the, not for profit organizations delivering sports for youth under 18?
3. If you are an incumbent, describe in detail how you supported youth sport in the last term?

The JDFLA will be sharing your responses or non-responses on the JDFLA website (jdflacrosse.com). If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Ryan Hyland at president@jdflacrosse.com.


From: Keith Yacucha

Hi Ryan

I can start off by saying as my son played for JDF LAX and as I served as the treasurer for Saanich LAX before moving to Langford, I fully appreciate the importance and struggles faced by youth sports.

To answer your questions.
1. What is your vision for building in your areas for youth sport recreation facilities?
I have a vision to create several small scale community/rec centers throughout Langford (ideally the Westshore). Mimicking this model as it has successfully been utilized in other municipalities we see that this space often serves the community through several facets including increased recreation space through the provision of Gyms, fields, and LAX/road hockey boxes.

2. How do you support the, not for profit organizations delivering sports for youth under 18?
Sport and access to sport is vital for child development. In this way I fully support access to U18 sport at all levels, further encouraging access to recreation for all Langford residents. This means ensuring that youth sporting organizations have adequate access to public space and facilities to train, play and grow their sports.

This means having staff work and liaise with these organizations to collaboratively provide access to sport to all youth.

3. If you are an incumbent, describe in detail how you supported youth sport in the last term?
Not an Incumbent


From: Mary J Wagner

Thank you for this opportunity to express my support for sports in our community.

Thank you for this opportunity to voice my support for youth sports.

In response to question 1, I believe we need more facilities in the area. The fact is, we are growing incredibly fast in the Westshore, and in Langford in particular. To support our population, we need to focus on affordable recreation, arts and culture. I propose that Langford should have a recreation centre/community centre similar to the Westshore Recreation Centre. I love the Westshore Rec Centre, but it is located in Colwood and it’s heavily used already. New people coming to the city require more space for their favourite activities. A project of the size of a whole recreation centre modeled after the Westshore Rec Centre is going to require a lot of time, effort and money, but is essential to the health of our community. Indoor facilities might be a great option so that kids can play in all weather. I am a scientist by training (PhD in biochemistry) and a teacher as well (University Biology). I believe we should look at all the evidence and data we have and make educated decisions about how to best spend our money to benefit the public.

2. I currently have a 12 year old who loves to dance, so we spend a lot of money on lessons. Not for profit organizations are so important because they offer kids the opportunity for sports and recreation but are only charging what they need to keep the organization going. I am a long-time member of the Victoria Curling Club, and in the last couple of years, my older daughter, now 15, has curled with my husband and I on a team. She receives a large youth discount on her fees that helps us be able to afford it. It’s fantastic for people of all ages, but in particular youth who are trying to find their way in this complicated world, to take part in team sports that allow for individuals to shine, but also build trust and reliance on teammates. All youth can benefit from healthy exercise and having fun while challenging themselves in a sport! Since all children are different, offering a variety of options is key.

3. I am not an incumbent, but I have been attending almost every single council meeting for over a year, and have read the agendas and reports. I am ready to hit the ground running if I am elected, and I will do whatever I can to support JDFLA.

Sincerely,
Mary Wagner, Langford City Council Candidate


From: Lillian Szpak

hi Ryan,
Thanks for reaching out to candidates to find out where they stand with recreation facilities.
Here are my answers:

1. My vision for building in my area for youth sport recreation facilities:
The City of Langford has built many recreation facilities in the past years. In fact, Langford decided to make itself a “Sports Destination City”. While we have expanded our recreation facilities, I believe, and many residents agree, that our facilities are too elitist, expensive and lock out the average kid/youth who wants to play sports, doesn’t have a lot of money and isn’t necessarily competitive – on the way to the big time. Often, parents of youth complain that there is nowhere to just pitch/kick a ball, throw a frisbee or have a pick-up game of hockey, let alone sports organizations that just don’t have the funds to book our busy facilities. I am a fan of JDF rec because it is good recreation that is affordable, subsidized by the community and available for youth athletes who are not on their way to being pros, who are in the game for the fun of it and are from families of average income. I would like to see expansion of those facilities; more playing fields, rinks, lacrosse boxes, a skate park, and another swimming pool/aquatic centre. Langford had an open-house a few weeks ago to ask residents what they’d like. I haven’t seen the results of this inquiry yet.

2. The first way to support not-for-profit organizations delivering sports for youth under 18 is to ensure that whenever there is an opportunity, make sure we provide facilities for those youth. Recently, there was an opportunity, which I hope isn’t lost. As Chair of the Regional Water Supply Commision, I announced, along with the City of Langford, the purchase of lands in the Goldstream neighbourhood. The condition of sale to Langford from CRD water for these lands, was that Langford use the land for park/recreation. I was surprised that the Mayor announced there would be baseball diamonds on this land. We were about to have our open-house for residents to chime in on their wants and desires for recreation, yet he didn’t wait for that. I believe, and residents have told me, that they were hoping for lacrosse on this site – I hope there is still an opportunity to have lacrosse boxes on this site – yes, the baseball diamonds are great, but that isn’t the only use possible on this land, and did not even come to Council for a decision before that announcement was made. Maybe this decision can be rolled back so we can provide lacrosse – a great sport for youth in our community.

3. As an elected leader in our community, I support youth sports by advocating for more non-elite facilities that are publicly funded and subsidized for all youth, not just those with better financial resources and elite potential talents. I have advocated for Langford to stay within JDF parks and rec when the Mayor and some members of council were advocating to pull out our support. I have advocated support by Langford in the form of annual “grants” consideration, as Vice Chair of Admin Finance Committee in Langford. One example is Lions Pride gymnastics Society – non-profit – a very accessible, popular sport for girls, especially – their request for grant was not supported by the Chair of the Committee two years in a row, and therefore not by Council, and I believe they gave up after that. Unfortunately, not for profit groups have not been supported as often as they should. I have supported “Girls in Sports” tournaments and fundraisers as well as Sport-assist. The most important consideration in supporting youth sport in our community is accessibility for all levels of income and abilities. Otherwise we are turning ourselves into a community of spectators at big events that not everyone can even afford a ticket to. I don’t agree that elite sports in our community will always inspire more athletes and sports participation in our youth. Providing facilities and support for youth sports is part of the picture – the most important part is affordability and building good (not elite, locked up) facilities that reflect the needs and wants of our residents and are kept at the affordable, accessible community level.

Thanks for opportunity to comments, Ryan!
Take care,
Lillian


From: Kim Jordison

Hi Ryan,

Thanks for your email and for the questions. My response to each question is below.

1. What is your vision for building in your areas for youth sport recreation facilities?
My daughters graduated in 2019 from Royal Bay Secondary and all through school they were big into sports. When they attended Dunsmuir Middle School they were part of the Soccer Academy. And when they went to Royal Bay they were part of the Soccer Academy, the Basketball team, and the Girls Lacrosse Academy. As Colwood has grown I have seen beautiful parks and park equipment built for smaller children but my concern all along has been, what happens when those children get older? We are lacking a lot of indoor and outdoor recreation facilities and Juan de Fuca recreation is no longer able to accommodate the growing population. Every year we had to travel to the Langley Events Centre of the Island for tournaments – wouldn’t it be great if we could build one here, in Colwood. Maybe build a joint building of Arts and Culture and a Sports Event Centre to put Colwood on the map. I often hear an outdoor swimming pool would be great for the community and the sport because we don’t currently have an olympic size pool to hold competitions in. A Youth Centre where kids can play basketball, outdoor fields for baseball and lacrosse boxes are needed. One of my daughters was very keen on continuing with Lacrosse but for girls lacrosse it was extremely limited. As our population of children grows we need to ensure these facilities are available.

2. How do you support the not-for-profit organizations delivering sports for youth under 18?
I believe in equal access to sports for all youth. No child should be denied the opportunity to participate in sports due to lack of finances. I believe sports are so important for youth and it creates all kinds of positive change. When kids take part in sports, they learn teamwork and build confidence and because they are more physical, they are better focused and motivated to succeed in school. Also, kids that play organized sports are less likely to be involved in crime, which makes our communities safer. I support not-for-profits delivering sports for youth in every way I can.

3. If you are an incumbent, describe in detail how you supported youth sport in the last term?
N/A

Thank you,

Kim Jordison


From: D.G. KOWALEWICH

1. What is your vision for building in your areas for youth sport recreation facilities?

As Vice Chair of WSPR I promise to continue to support youth Sport facilities in the Westshore. If re-elected and re-appointed, I plan to use my experience in sports to gain momentum in this area.

2. How do you support the, not for profit organizations delivering sports for youth under 18?
As a youth sports coach I know it starts at the grassroots level. All levels of government should look for ways to better support youth under 18 in sports. Not only does it keep them fit physically, it is proven to help their mental health.

3. If you are an incumbent, describe in detail how you supported youth sport in the last term?
Yes and I have coached youth hockey, lacrosse, and was Vice Chair of WSPR.

Councillor Damian Kowalewich


From: John Rogers

1. What is your vision for building in your areas for youth sport recreation facilities?

View Royal is a small community with limited resources. Besides the youth baseball facilities at Centennial Park, I am committed to invest in the Westshore Recreation Centre for all other youth recreation facilities. The proposed skateboard park is a prime example.

2. How do you support the, not for profit organizations delivering sports for youth under 18?
For many many years View Royal has supported and relied on the “not for profit organizations” to deliver baseball for youth under 18. We maintain the park and fields, they coordinate the teams and look after the buildings.

3. If you are an incumbent, describe in detail how you supported youth sport in the last term?
Centennial Park baseball as mentioned above, supported the sizeable Westshore budget including a focus on the sound infrastructure resiliency. Youth programs, sports or otherwise, are important. This is why I supported the plan to donate significant portion of capital to build the youth skateboard park. … over and above the regular budget.


From: Dean Jantzen

Hello all,

Firstly, let me start by expressing the gratitude of the residents of the City of Colwood and my personal thanks for all that you do for youth sports in our community! The past few years have been a challenge for all sports and for us at the council table, given all the COVID issues. I am seeking a second term with the City of Colwood Council and am looking for the support of JDF Lacrosse families in Colwood.
Your Questions:
Here are some of my thoughts on your questions. If you require further, or wish some clarity, please let me know.

1. Vision: we have a generational opportunity with the growth of our community in the Royal Bay (RB) area. We are anticipating at least one, perhaps two new fields with the build of the new elementary school. My vision is that the community partners with youth sports groups to work together to deliver these fields, so they serve the widest number of user groups. As a former JDF Soccer executive member, at the time, we worked to help fund the current lighting at the RB all weather field, something I am proud of. A collaboration like that with user groups could help us leverage the highest possible use of any new rec opportunities at RB.

2. Not for profit organizations: with two sons, my family has been heavily involved in youth sports for many years. They were both Whalers for several years as well. However, our primary sport was soccer and I served as a multi-year coach and then executive member for several years. Of course, as a family we supported all the usual fundraisers along the way. As a council member, we regularly fund many great community groups during our grant process, which is part of our yearly budget.

3. As an incumbent: in this last term, I have worked with Councillor Logan and some SD 62 board members to begin a dialogue about a lacrosse and multi use sport court facility behind RB Secondary. The city does have some reserve funds for opportunities like this that may be applicable as well. Unfortunately, there have been some barriers, along the way, but I am hopeful that this project may move forward in this next term. The RB developer has also committed their support as well, and the land exists behind the parking lot area. I anticipate that collaboration with JDF Lacrosse will also be an asset in moving a project like this forward. Similar to the soccer field, which was structured with some preferential access to JDF Soccer, I would expect there could be a similar arrangement for JDF Lacrosse. Another example is the Colwood Council approving funding for a multi use sport court type facility behind the Dunsmuir School grounds along Metchosin Road. This project was opportunistic and in concert with SD 62 and is currently under construction.
About me:
I am a police officer in the region and have been for 26.5 years (hard to believe?!). Before that I was a BC Corrections Officer, an old Army officer and paratroop. I reside in Colwood in the lower Triangle Mountain area with my wife and two 20 something sons. I have worked hard for the City of Colwood over the past four years at the council table and am now seeking re-election. My life has been about public service, something I wish to continue for our community.

My commitment:
I am a big supporter of youth and adult sports in our community. I am a lifelong soccer player and have now transitioned to golf, as it is lower impact?! I believe that our region is well served by the many volunteer organizations, such as JDF Lacrosse. My commitment is to leverage every opportunity to improve all recreation opportunities, including lacrosse, in our community. I will work with the next council to try and advance the opportunity for a lacrosse box behind RB Secondary. I will also work hard to leverage all opportunities for recreation in the RB south development.

Contact me:
Feel free to reach out to me at anytime if you have questions. Many of you I have met over the years, some I have not, but I would love to.


From: Doug Kobayashi

Hi Ryan. Thank you very much for your e-mail. My response to your questions are detailed below.

(1) I grew up as a youngster in the sixties and early seventies in both Colwood and Langford. I initially played house league hockey at the JDF arena eventually making the rep team, JDF Gulls, and I played football for year as a JDF Tiger. Hence sport recreation facilities are extremely important to me. I was also enrolled in swimming lessons. In a nutshell, youth sport recreation facilities are an extremely important element of a community. I was so busy with sports, I never had the time to get into trouble as sports were an integral part of my younger life. My vision for building areas for youth sport recreation sports in two-fold:
(a) Ensure our current sport recreation facilities are properly maintained and upgraded as necessary to meet the requirements of the user community; and
(b) Diversify our tax base so that we can focus on providing increased opportunities for sport recreation facilities to meet the growing demand with increased population. This can also be achieved through Public Private Partnerships (PPP).

(2) I am now retired but I used to be a minor hockey Coach Level 2 and I also coached youth soccer teams in Alberta. These organizations were all not for profit organizations so I understand how the not for profit system works.

(3) As a Colwood City Councillor, I always voted for the needs of the Westshore Parks and Recreation requirements to support youth sport for the Westshore.

Regards,

Doug Kobayashi


From: Ian Ward

Hi Ryan,

Your letter is timely in that just last week when door-knocking I spoke with a parent whose daughter has been offered a scholarship to a US school for lacrosse (she also coaches U12 I believe?) but yet has no place to practice locally!

We need to do a better job in Colwood planning for recreation needs as our burgeoning community skews heavily towards young families. My own son and wife both play soccer with JDF and we’ve seen firsthand the challenge in securing field time for all ages.

If elected, I will immediately approach the developers of both Royal Bay and Royal Beach (largest developments in Colwood) to gauge their interest in amending their plans to include recreation-specific facilities vs open green space. Further, I would like to examine strategic planning to look at the feasibility of a second regional recreation centre that would offer multi-sport facilities. We are growing at a pace that requires it. Perhaps there is an opportunity to work with SD62 as well on this, and I will certainly reach out to the new board of trustees to explore strengthening our relationship towards this, and other outcomes.

Suffice to say I am a supporter of sport in our community and the health and opportunities it offers our children (and adults!). You have an ally in me.

Regards,

Ian Ward


From: David Grove

Hello Ryan
In my travels around Colwood this past 2 months I have spoken to folks letting me know of their sports engagement, specifically lacrosse.

Having played the game a few years in my teens I can attest to the values of the game. It allows access to affordable team sports while being easy to play – a stick, a ball, a wall, is all it takes to be active.

The need for more lacrosse boxes is apparent. This fits with my concern we plan, design, finance, and build suitable facility. Now is the time when development growth is strong to engage with folks to strengthen the OCP to ensure needed infrastructure is built: Sport, Recreation, and The Arts.

Sincerely,

David Grove, candidate for Council, City of Colwood.


From: Kimberley Guiry

1. What is your vision for building in your areas for youth sport recreation facilities?

One of the major components of my platform is developing communities and that includes consultation to find out what our community needs are. Langford is known for its family friendly resources however while I have been consulting with residents I have been finding communities no longer have access to the facilities that they need. I would support a public consultation to determine our community needs and then pursue funding and space for recreation facilities to meet those needs. Langford has been growing rapidly and we need to keep up with the needs of our developing communities.

2. How do you support the, not for profit organizations delivering sports for youth under 18?

I would support the not for profit sports organizations by doing everything we can to make sure there is equitable access to facilities. If there are barriers to providing program to the community than we need to find out what those are and then come up with a plan on how to work with partners and neighbouring municipalities on how to address them. Sports communities have a huge impact on the mental and physical health of our residents and not for profit organizations for youth depend on volunteer energy to deliver programs to children. Fostering the growth and well-being of these organizations is important.

3. If you are an incumbent, describe in detail how you supported youth sport in the last term?
N/A


From: Donald Brown

Hello Ryan,

Thank you for this opportunity. As you already know I have coached numerous box and field lacrosse teams in JDF and Victoria since 1976. I am running for View Council this election. View Royal is an active participant in the poperatins of West Shore Parks and Recreation. Below are the answers to your 3 questions:

1. My vision is to continue to support the West shore Parks and Recreation (WSPR). I am currently the Chairperson for View Royals Parks, Recreation and Environment Committee. View Royal recently gave a large grant to build a skateboard facility which I fully supported. I was disappointed that the JDF Curling Rink was closed as it provided a sports opportunity for youth and persons of all ages and abilities. Pickleball is a fast-growing sport and I often see the empty tennis courts at Royal Roads that if WSPR, Royal Roads and local pickleball organizations could work together these courts could be converted to 4 Pickleball courts. I know most pickleball players are older but young person could be encouraged to take up this sport for health and fitness.

2. I plan to continue my support of minor box and field lacrosse by coaching, managing, assisting with fund raising, and through donations.

3. I was a Trustee when we successfully negotiated the sale of the old Belmont High Schol to the mall. This enabled us, along with the Provincial Grant to build the two beautiful High schools in Colwood and Langford with their great fields and gymnasiums for youth to enjoy various sports.