Township of Langley Mayor Jack Froese spoke on behalf of his business, JD Farms, prior to a vote on dissolution at Tourism Langley's special general meeting on March 2.

UPDATE: Tourism Langley remains DMO for the City and Township

The City of Langley now exploring options for creating their own Tourism model

Tourism Langley will remain intact as the Destination Marketing Organization for both the City and Township of Langley.

The decision was made by the organization’s membership during a vote by secret ballot on Thursday night.

This comes after Tourism Langley’s board called a special general meeting to vote on the following motion: “The Tourism Langley Board of Directors recommends the dissolution of Tourism Langley as a standalone organization mandated to make decisions that benefit the entire tourism industry in the Langley region due to escalating demands by the Township of Langley, which will remove autonomy and independency of staff and the Board of Directors, thus making this organization an entirely Township-centric operation.”

In her opening address, Tourism Langley chair Teri James told those in attendance at the meeting that the board felt they had “hit a wall” due to some of the Township’s requests for greater involvement in the organization.

“After discussing the latest letter from the Township, it was of great concern to the board that due to the Township’s new requirements regarding the ex-officio staff person and their responsibilities, and the concern that all of these discussions were subject to the transition of two Township councillors from non-voting to voting, the board felt it could no longer manage the Township’s requirements on behalf of the membership, and that it was time to ask the membership to have a collective say,” she said.

Now that the decision to keep the organization together has been made, Tourism Langley will hold a board meeting next week to determine how to proceed. The next steps will likely involve reinstating their search for an executive director, while continuing negotiations with the Township, James said.

“We actually didn’t know what to expect but we just felt we could no longer make decisions on behalf of the membership. So the membership’s spoken, and now I guess it’s onward and forward,” James told the Times.

“I appreciate that the membership showed up and we really appreciate that their voice was heard because we had hit what we thought was an impasse.”

Township Mayor Jack Froese said he is pleased with the outcome.

“I’m happy that Tourism Langley will stay intact. I think that, as I said, they’ve done a lot of good work. There’s a really good base and yes, they’re going through a time of change now, but change sometimes can come out good.”

Froese believes Tourism Langley’s claims that the organization is turning into a “Township-centric operation” are incorrect. He said council is doing its due diligence in asking for enhanced financial reporting, and that there has been “some confusion” over the role of having a Township staff member attend their meetings.

“As the mayor, I don’t think that this will become Township-centric anymore than it was before,” he said.

“I believe in Tourism Langley, I think they’ve done good work. And I’d rather see it stay together, work through these issues and move forward.”

City of Langley Mayor Ted Schaffer’s response was neutral.

“As government on the City’s perspective I just want to stay impartial at this point, and we’re going to be reassessing our role in tourism,” he told the Times.

On Friday, the City of Langley issued a press release announcing that “the uncertainty of the future of Tourism Langley has led Langley City Council to reconsider the delivery of tourism services in the City.”

In the release, Schaffer is quoted saying: “the City will explore its options regarding the provision of tourism service for the City which could include the creation of a new tourism service delivery model and service provider.”

Coun. Gayle Martin, the City representative for Tourism Langley, later confirmed that the City will be talking to their stakeholders about the possibility of leaving Tourism Langley. However, it is still early in their discussions, and no decisions have been made.

Martin said that Tourism Langley has always been more Township-centric, given that there are more venues in the Township to promote, so perhaps a City-only approach would give them more bang for their buck.

“I think if we did it within the City somehow, that we would have more coverage for our stakeholders,” Martin said.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Gators depth leads team to Valley title

Walnut Grove’s Kevin Kao earns most valuable player honours in leading Gators to victory

Thursday summit at Langley Events Centre outlines sprinkler benefits

Township stresses importance of residential sprinklers in homes

A new high for Spartans hockey program

Trinity Western hockey team has won 18 games, a new benchmark for the program

Poppy students lead the way for Langley United Wrestling Club

Four gold and three bronze medals for Langley wrestlers in advance of provincial championships

New group for parents of overdose victims launched by Langley mother

There is a lack of long-term resources for grieving parents

VIDEO: Top 10 B.C. budget highlights

The NDP is focusing on childcare, affordable housing and speeding up the elimination of MSP premiums

BCHL Today: Merritt peaking at right time and Taylor signs with UNH Wildcats

BCHL Today is a (near) daily look at what’s going on around the league and the junior A world.

Violent sex offender found not guilty of breach for smoking marijuana

Once designated a dangerous offender, Kevin Miller reportedly back at Chilliwack halfway house

Video: B.C. firefighters featured in quirky video

Oliver Fire Department posts video about their B.C. volunteer firefighter spring training seminar

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: Two more medals push Canada into third place

A gold in ski cross and a bronze in bobsleigh as men’s hockey advances to the semis

5 to start your day

NDP rolls out first budget, piano teacher accused of sex assault involving former students and more

Trudeau reiterates denial of Sikh separatists in cabinet, condemns extremism

“We will always stand against violent extremism, but we understand that diversity of views is one of the great strengths of Canada.”

Canada wins gold in men’s ski cross

Leman earns redemption with ski cross gold; Homan out early

Trump says more must be done to protect children

In a tweet Tuesday night, Trump indicated he wants to strengthen the background check system, but offered no specifics.

Most Read