This week provides an opportunity for everyone to learn more about what their local government does and its role in all of our lives.

It is Local Government Awareness Week.

The mayor of North Cowichan, Al Siebring said local governments touch our lives every day whether it’s turning on a tap, using transit, sidewalks or, roads.

“We do it for 8 cents on the dollar. Every tax dollar that you hand over to any level of government, the municipal government gets 8 cents. For all that you get services, everything from roads and sidewalks to police protection, fire protection, land use planning.”

He said local governments often hear about issues that are out of their jurisdiction like the opioid crisis or mental illness and, although, it’s not anything they can deal with directly, the information is helpful and welcome.

“It’s never wrong for people to engage with local government. We need that kind of input so we know what’s happening on the ground, equally, people have to understand that we don’t have the capacity to deal with everything that they bring to us. These things sometimes belong to other levels of government, our role, in that case, can be to advocate with the senior levels of government.”

During this week, staff from local governments in the region will be getting out in the community to connect with residents.

You can get more information about our local governments this week at the CVRD booths at the Chemainus Market tomorrow (Wed) or at the Duncan Farmers’ Market on Saturday.

You can participate by correctly answering the daily local government trivia question on 89.7 JuiceFM.