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Province commits $11 million to Duncan/Cowichan amalgamation

$8.5 million would be towards policing costs, if vote approves merger
Province commits $11 million to amalgamation, if approved. (File photo)

The province has committed $11 million in restructuring assistance if Duncan and North Cowichan decide to amalgamate in the referendum on June 23.

Almost $8.5 million of the funding would be committed to increased policing costs

According to information of the website, the purpose of the restructuring assistance, which would be provided over five years, would be to aid in helping to pay for some of the transitional costs associated with a change in governance structure.

The offer of assistance for policing would be based on the new municipality assuming the annual cost of at least 10 members currently being paid for by the province.

In addition, the existing municipalities, up to incorporation, and the new municipality will incur costs associated with the change in governance structure, so approximately $2 million of the funding will be paid over five years to be spent at the discretion of the new council.

As well, almost $500,000 would be used to support expenses and initiatives.

Those expenses include the amalgamation vote, a transition manager, an interim corporate manager, the inaugural election of a new council, harmonizing of bylaws, discussions about an Official Community Plan for the new municipality, indigenous relations, and a referendum to name the new municipality.

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