2021 New Staff REQUESTS

Administration

1. Manager, Climate Action and Environment

Program Request Description:

The position of Manager, Climate Action and Environment is required to move the District's emissions reduction, natural asset protection, and environmental initiatives forward. The position will coordinate the District's environmental initiatives across departmental teams, including staff in Engineering, Planning, Land Development, Parks, and Finance. Currently, the District is making progress on many fronts in the environmental portfolio, but these efforts are not coordinated, and in some cases, duplicate work is being done. The position will also be responsible for establishing milestones for District programs and reporting against these milestones, including carbon reduction targets, protection measures for natural assets, integration of sustainability into District processes and projects, and working on community initiatives such as a reduction in single-use plastics.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

The Manager, Climate Action and Environment will directly influence the District's ability to make headway on Council's objectives under strategic goal 3.0 - Climate Change & Nature. The District has an opportunity to move to the forefront in terms of environmental management, initiatives, and sustainability objectives. Currently, many efforts are being made, but they are somewhat fragmented, which is undermining progress in this area. This position will address that issue.

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $166,260

 

2. Communications Assistant

Program Request Description:

As the global shift to embrace online communications and social media continues to escalate due to the pandemic, West Vancouver residents also continue to lead in the adoption of online channels and demonstrate corresponding expectations for online content. To accommodate this continually-increasing shift, the District must be able to deploy sufficient resources to post and respond to online information requests on a full-time basis. This resource will allow the District to keep up with the resource-intensive requirements of engagement in the digital world while also providing the necessary resources required to improve issue management and the engagement needs of the community and organization. Maximizing organizational efficiency includes a coordinated effort to post all public information on the website with the intent of minimizing, and streamlining responding to requests for information to all departments.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

The ability to maximize organizational efficiency requires a sound communications infrastructure that can proactively anticipate and respond to the community’s need for accurate information about District services, initiatives and issues. With the proliferation of alternative sources of information, it is increasingly more important to coordinate proactive online campaigns, monitor online conversations, and respond strategically. In addition, a new website to be developed in 2021 will provide further improvement of online communications and will require a corresponding investment in content management.

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $77,856

 

3. Committee/Policy Coordinator

Program Request Description:

Legislative Services does not have sufficient resources to (a) maintain its outreach, support, and training program for committee/working group clerks and liaison staff in other divisions; or (b) provide proactive management of District policies, including policy training, guidance, and review. Both functions represent an important part of the District's corporate administration program and require appropriate resources in order to be supported. In addition, the COVID pandemic has demonstrated that the Legislative Services division is insufficiently resourced to fulfill its statutory responsibilities. This position would assume some of the duties currently conducted by the Deputy Corporate Officer, allowing him to provide additional support to the Corporate Officer.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

Since July of 2018 staff have initiated two major support projects: an outreach, support, and training program for committee/working group clerks and liaison staff in other divisions; and a policy drafting, guidance, and review program for administrative staff in other divisions. These programs support key District administrative functions that have traditionally operated without a centralized guidance and support structure. Prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, staff did not have sufficient resources to administer these programs. Since the onset of the pandemic, this situation has become critical, with the Corporate Officer often providing a level of support for committees that would be more appropriate for a position of this nature to provide. This enhanced support is required in order to ensure that committees are able to function in a legislatively compliant manner. A full-time staff resource urgently needs to be allocated if committees are to be supported on an ongoing basis. Given the role that committees play in advancing Council's priorities, it is imperative that this position be filled.

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $77,000


 

Engineering & Transportation

4. Sign Shop - Permanent Staff Position

Program Request Description:

The Sign Shop requires an additional permanent staff position in order to keep up with critical maintenance relating to the increasing signage inventory and to continue to support other departments within the District. The Sign Shop installs and maintains all signage, roadside banners, and "cat-eye" raised pavement markers; supports the successful delivery of major events such as Harmony Arts, Remembrance Day, and Rock Ambleside by providing traffic control and ensuring safe entry of equipment and stages to the festival sites. The Sign Shop currently has two permanent positions and has been operating with supplemental temporary staff for several years.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

The addition of another permanent staff position will continue to decrease our reliance on temporary staff and has the potential to improve staff morale. Temporary staff positions have been utilized for the last several years and the volume of work demonstrates that regularization is necessary. This position will also reduce our reliance on outside contractors to complete work at a higher cost. The sign shop has been relied upon heavily during the pandemic for printing decals, signs, and other supporting services to ensure the District operates safely.

FTE Request: 1.00

Revenue Neutral

Request Amount: $100,900

 

5. Engineering Assistant II

Program Request Description:

Roads and Transportation requires an additional permanent Engineering Assistant II. This position is a critical administrative function as part of the successful delivery of annual operational programs; minor engineering designs; day-to-day administrative and field functions on District roads capital construction projects; and processing of Street Occupancy Permits. For the last 10 years, this work had been carried out by a temporary, full-time, employee.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

Operational support of this function in part addresses District liability relating to sightline obstructions at intersections and at other locations along the District roadways. In addition, due to the high volume of work received the EA II's input reduces dependency on third-party recourses.

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $86,000

 


 

Financial Services

6. Business Manager (Corporate Services, Planning & Development Services, Human Resources)

Program Request Description:

Corporate Services, Planning & Development Services, and Human Resources (HR) need a shared Business Manager to support their Divisions in providing financial advisory services, coordinating and participating in the District's financial planning cycle, helping departmental manage to develop their operating and capital budgets, work programs, tracking expenditures and budgets, and increasing financial reporting functions. Currently, the support is provided by Finance at a limited level and there is a further need for financial advice and analysis in these three divisions.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

The position is being proposed on a cost-recovery basis. The Business Manager supporting Corporate Services, Planning and Development and Human Resources enables savings, process improvement and optimization in some of the most critically important areas of the District's work - capital maintenance and management; management of permit applications, support of the planning operations and management of labour costs. Corporate Services engage in significant Facilities and IT capital projects each year (~38% of general fund capital budget) and require a finance expert to work with the departmental managers to develop the budget, business cases, financial modelling, project tracking and long-term planning including asset management support. In addition, there are opportunities to assess the business license and fee revenue ($1.5M+) and provide support on land acquisition/disposition transactions from an accounting and forecasting perspective. A considerable amount of permit and development application revenue (~17% of general fund revenue excluding taxation and reserve transfers) is generated from the work of the Planning and Development division. This is a significant portion of revenue that funds District services and requires detailed analysis for forecast projections taking into account external factors in the market, historical trending and projects in the pipeline. The current setup in these reporting systems makes it challenging to analyze permit revenue in-depth and requires a rebuild. This project will require extensive time and coordination between multiple departments to accomplish. This position will support the HR division during the financial planning cycle by helping to develop their operating budgets and work programs, and tracking expenditures and making variance analysis for quarterly financial reports. The position would also support the Deputy CAO and Director of Planning & Development in making high-level strategy decisions by identifying financial risk and resolving potential issues. This position is successfully used in other Divisions with clear demonstrated benefits. Municipal Services - the position enables and supports fiscal sustainability with respect to the District's Operations (revenues and expenses) and the management of the District's Capital Assets in Planning and Development, Facilities and Human Resources business units.

FTE Request: 1.00

Revenue Neutral

Request Amount: $139,430

 

7. Purchasing Clerk

Program Request Description:

Purchasing & Risk Management is requesting the approval of 1 new FTE for a permanent full-time Purchasing Clerk. As District activity and work volume increases (driven by increases in other departments), so does the demand on services provided by P&RM. P&RM remains at 2001 staffing levels, with a temporary clerk being hired as workload demands. Approving this position will enhance our ability to support District objectives, reduce attrition risk, improve our succession planning and create cross-training opportunities around critical P&RM functions.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

Purchasing is directly involved with the delivery of all Council objectives involving external materials, services, or construction. An independent review of Purchasing completed in 2010 identified internal customer requests from other divisions for an increase to P&RM staffing levels. Expectations of P&RM in terms of service delivery and responsiveness are high due to pressure on other departments to complete Council priorities and department work plans. In 2019, P&RM handled 451 files (Quotes/Tenders/RFPs). This is 231% more than the 195 files handled in 2010.

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $67,835


 

Planning & Development Services

8. Senior Planner (Urban Design)

Program Request Description:

With an adopted OCP in place (guiding higher-level objectives and policies), the focus in community planning now and for the coming years will move more to “3 dimensional” or design planning. Examples include the 3 local area plans (Horseshoe Bay, Ambleside, Taylor Way), a rewrite of the single-family zones (based on Neighbourhood Character Working Group recommendations), the preparation of design guidelines for missing middle housing forms (e.g. townhouses), and an increase in complex rezoning applications requiring more design consideration. A new senior planner with urban design expertise would meet these needs and help deliver these outcomes. A new position is required because this work is additional (i.e. other existing functions of the division are still required and, in fact, increasing in demand e.g. meeting Council's sustainability and housing strat plan objectives).

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

A number of Council’s 2020-21 priorities are expected to be delivered by the Community Planning and Sustainability division. These include the direct fulfilment of priorities 1.1 and 1.2 (housing), 1.4 (single-family changes to enhance neighbourhood character), 2.2 (Horseshoe Bay LAP completion), 2.3 (Ambleside LAP commencement), 3.1 (community GHG reductions), 3.2 (wildfire and foreshore development permit areas), 3.3 (urban forest management plan). There are also many other priorities where this group would be expected to provide support to other groups, such as 1.3 (Cypress Village), 4.1-4.3 (land use input to transportation planning), 5.3 (this group does more public engagement than any other in the District), as well as the subsequent revenue source that is provided via the development capacity created through local area and development policy planning that represents a significant funding source outside of taxation – and so on.

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $152,720

 

9. Community Planner

Program Request Description:

Positon would be 0.5 FTE dedicated to heritage planning initiatives including heritage development projects, management of the Heritage Advisory Committee, implementation of the policy and planning framework described in the policy report approved by Council "Preventing Heritage Demolitions". The remaining 0.5 FTE would be dedicated to working on development projects and would primarily work on projects that would achieve Council's objectives related to the implementation of the OCP to deliver "missing middle" housing.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

The position would allow for reduced processing times for medium-density "missing middle" housing projects. Planning applications have continued to stay at a high volume. Currently, the group's workload is significant and processing times are delayed. Approval of this position would contribute to delivering on Council's 2020\2021 priorities for housing delivery and municipal service provision. As well, the position would enable the delivery of heritage projects and implementation of heritage policy and planning work directed by Council (Strategic goal 6.10). With Council's adoption of the Preliminary Public Consultation Policy for Development Proposals, a significant increase in submission of preliminary proposals has occurred. As of January 1, 2021, a new fee will be brought in for drafting a pre-application council report. As well, planning fees were recently (Jan 1, 2020) increased across the board (in some cases up to a 300% increase).

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $121,734

 

10. Land Development Technician

Program Request Description:

This new FTE request is a direct response to the increase in the number of development applications received each year. The land development techs are responsible for the review of nonbuilding related aspects of a development application such as demolition, utility servicing, stormwater management, traffic management, erosion and sediment control, boulevard and landscaping, land covenants/rights of way, and encroachments; and collection of fees and security deposits for the same. The three land techs are unable to keep up with the current volume of development applications, resulting in long permit review times. This is exacerbated by the discrepancy between the number of plan checkers and land techs, as seven plan checkers are actively reviewing the same number of applications as three land techs.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

With seven plan checkers reviewing the same number of development applications as three land development techs, the pace at which land development can review the same applications is much slower. The disparity in permit review times between the two departments creates a public perception that the land department is "holding up their permit" when all other aspects of the permit are ready to be released. Without an additional Land Tech, the permit review times will continue to increase to an intolerable level to the public. Having an ever-increasing backlog of work creates high stress and low morale and could result in poor staff retention or time loss due to stress.

FTE Request: 1.00

Revenue Neutral

Request Amount: $115,191

 

11. Plans Examiner III

Program Request Description:

This new FTE request is in direct response to the increase in the number of larger, more complex, building permit applications received in the Permits & Inspections Department. The new OCP has paved the way for more multi-family and commercial development, and we anticipate the upward trend in application numbers to continue. In addition to the challenge of managing this workload and meeting the industry expectations for reasonable permit turn-around times, the Province has legislated that after February 28, 2021, only people who have BOABC Level 3 Certification will be qualified to review Part 3 (large/complex) projects. Our objective is to support staff and respond to industry demands by strengthening our complement of Level 3 Plan Checkers.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

Successful Part 3 (complex buildings) permit review and approval relies on an experienced and knowledgeable Plan Checker to manage the file to issuance. Presently the P&I Department has one (1) Plan Checking Supervisor/Level 3 Plan Checker for all complex buildings. (A junior Level 3 Plan Checker assists with much of the smaller tenant improvement work). Responding to inquiries, review of professional code reports, meeting with consultants, and working through unique designs and complex code-compliance scenarios form much of a Part 3 Plans Checker’s daily work. The present demand on Part 3 Plans Examiner resources is not sustainable, and will not be sufficient to meet the upcoming demand. Successful Development Permit Applications, which start out in the Planning Department and are approved by Council, require Building Permits prior to the start of construction. Further to the OCP, the Planning Department is, and will be, seeing more complex Development Permit Applications, which will result in more Building Permit Applications. In addition to the regular, smaller scale, commercial and multi-family residential work, we are presently experiencing the pressure of new complex projects in Horseshoe Bay and Taylor Way/Marine Drive, and expect larger-scale commercial and residential projects in Cypress Park over the next several years.

FTE Request: 1.00

Revenue Neutral

Request Amount: $103,924

 

12. Environmental Protection Officer

Program Request Description:

This position is primarily required as the District has established a Development Permit Area for wildfire hazards and will be establishing a Development Permit Area for coastal flooding and foreshore protection, which will increase the number of Development Permits to be reviewed by staff and inquiries related to these new policies and regulations. In addition, this position would support current staff levels to answer enquiries and provides information to the public, contractors, developers and other contacts regarding environmental regulations, development permits, bylaws, and other related matters; communicate with applicants regarding municipal procedural requirements and applications; review development applications and building permit applications for appropriate environmental, flooding, and wildfire protection measures; receive and investigate complaints of environmental degradation and respond to the public as necessary.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

This position would also support the enforcement of environmental regulations, bylaws, and policies of the Official Community Plan (OCP) related to the environment, with the Bylaw Department. This position contributes to Council's Strategic Plan in terms of Climate Change and Nature and Municipal Services and specifically addresses the increased workload to meet Objective 3.2 of the Strategic Plan to address the threats of wildfires and floods. In 2020, Council adopted a wildfire development permit area and in 2021, staff are bringing forward a foreshore development permit area. There is already a significant workload within the environmental group of the Planning Department and the additional Development Permits related to these new policies will increase the workload. Existing environmental staff that perform this customer service function along with inter-departmental project reviews and stakeholder engagement responsibilities are currently under-resourced. This position will provide additional capacity to manage the Environmental Portfolio and allow the Manager of Environmental Protection the capacity to begin the development of an Urban Forest Management Plan to address Objective 3.3 of the Strategic Plan as well as develop guidelines for hedge maintenance, which is a new Council Objective brought forward in 2020, to complete in 2021.

FTE Request: 1.00

Request Amount: $99,829

 

13. Planning Technician

Program Request Description:

Answers enquiries and provides information to the public, contractors, developers and other contacts regarding zoning, land use and related matters. Communicates with applicants regarding municipal procedural requirements and applications. Conducts analysis and preliminary review of various development proposals. Performs a variety of research tasks related to feasibility and policy studies for planning projects. A new position is required as planning applications and proposals that require review and processing by staff have continued to stay at a high volume. As well, with the anticipated foreshore development permit area that will be adopted by Council in Q1 2021, it is expected that the current planning team will be processing a number of new foreshore development permits.

Rationale - Link to Strategic Priorities & Council Objectives:

There is a significant amount of planning enquiries and a significant workload within the planning department. Existing planning staff on the Current Planning team that perform this customer service function along with research and project review are significantly under-resourced and the work contributes to Council Strategic Plan in terms of housing targets and municipal service delivery.

FTE Request: 1.00

Revenue Neutral

Request Amount: $97,749


 

Grand Total

FTE Request: 13.00

Request Amount: $1,406,429


westvancouverITE.ca/budget

×