Council votes to pay for baskets

The money will come out of the city’s stabilization reserve fund

The District of Mission agreed to pick up an $8,000 tab to water the hanging baskets downtown this summer.

The money will come out of the city’s stabilization reserve fund after most councillors objected to taking the funds out of the council contingency pocket.

Only Coun. Jenny Stevens opposed the spending.

She argued the Downtown Business Association (DBA), which will purchase the colourful hanging baskets, chose to hire an executive director last year instead of putting money aside to water the plants.

The choice to have a coordinator or hanging baskets was made by them, said Stevens.

“I resent the DBA effort to reintroduce the item after it was turned down for a fee for service.”

The district is in the middle of developing a revitalization plan and Coun. Jeff Jewell asked where the DBA’s commitment is to beautifying downtown.

“We need the participation of the business community,” he said. “They can’t spend their money and ask us to pick up the shortfall.”

A non-profit organization, Longterm Inmates Now in the Community, will be hired to water the baskets for four months.