The change from “Corporation” to “City” will be gradually phased in, with stationary and signage updated as existing supplies are exhausted. (James Smith photo)

It’s official: Delta is now a city

“Corporation” gives way to “City” as Delta gets provincal government approval for its change of name

It’s official: Delta can now call itself a city.

With the presentation of the municipality’s new letters patent from the province and a report by Delta CAO — now City Manager — George Harvie at this week’s council meeting, the now-former district municipality has been officially reclassified a city, with a new name to match.

“This is a momentous milestone for our municipality, reflective of the growing, vibrant diverse city that Delta has become with its variety of municipal services, infrastructure and initiatives,” said Mayor Lois Jackson in a press release. “I’m so pleased with Delta’s new designation and to welcome our municipality as the newest city in Canada during Canada’s 150th commemorative year.”

This marks the culmination of more than eight months of work in order to formally drop the “Corporation” mantle adopt the name City of Delta.

Council voted unanimously to pursue the name change at its Jan. 30 regular meeting. The Corporation then undertook a vote to gauge public support for the move.

Delta used an alternative approval process where residents were asked to fill out an elector response form only if they did not support the name change.

Only 1,506 people submitted valid elector response forms — 1450 from South Delta and 56 from North Delta — constituting 2.15 per cent of residents, well short of the 10 per cent of residents, or 6993 people, needed to block the initiative.

With the assent of voters, council gave the name change unanimous approval on May 15 and officially requested the province to make it so.

Initially, Delta was expecting the name change to take between six to eight weeks, but the May 9 provincial election and eventual change in government led to delays in the approval process.

On Sept. 22, the provincial government approved two orders-in-council: one officially reclassifying the Corporation of Delta as a city under the new name City of Delta, and one confirming Delta will retain all additional powers previously held as a district municipality.

The orders also confirm that Delta will retain all of its existing bylaws, permits, resolutions, licences and other actions issued, made or passed by council.

“Delta is grateful for the provincial government’s support to move ahead with this initiative,” Harvie said in press release. “A city classification builds upon Delta’s success and reputation as a vibrant municipality with a unique mix of urban and rural development, providing greater clarity and recognition for Delta.”

The push to rename the municipality came after the municipality sent a delegation to the World Conference on Cities and Ports in Rotterdam, Netherlands in October, 2016.

According to a report to council dated Jan. 3, 2017, the delegation ran into issues when officials from the host city “mistakenly assumed the Corporation of Delta was a private business and had difficulty comprehending Delta as a local government.”

Prior to council giving the plan final approval on May 15, Mayor Lois Jackson mentioned encountering similar difficulties during a trip to Ottawa.

“When we’re in Ottawa and people think we’re a business looking for grants, it’s a little bit embarrassing,” she said.

The Jan. 3 report goes on to say that the name change would “also supports the promotion of Delta’s identity as a vibrant city and community rather than a corporation.”

This is another topic Jackson brought up prior to council’s vote in May.

“If you Google the cities of British Columbia, Wikipedia does not have us there as a city,” she said. “That’s not good.”

According to Harvie’s report to be presented to council on Monday, a total of $2,200 was spent on advertisements promoting the proposed name change and informing Deltans about the alternative approval process. Any additional costs associated with the change are expected to remain within the $5,000 total project budget.

The report says Delta’s bulrush brand, coat of arms and municipal motto (“Ours to preserve by hand and heart”) will not change, “as these symbols remain integral to Delta, representing aspects of the municipality’s past, present and future.” However, Delta is required to notify the Canadian Heraldic Society of its reclassification and provide a copy of its new letters patent.

Most of Delta’s signage, vehicle fleet and stationary does not include the words “Corporation of,” and stationary items that do — such as business cards — will be updated as existing supplies are exhausted, helping keep costs to a minimum.

Staff will be updating Delta’s social media accounts from “CorpDelta” to “CityofDeltaBC,” but there are no costs associated with that change.

As part of the transition, the offices of chief administrative officer and municipal clerk will be updated to city manager and city clerk, respectively, to match naming conventions used by other Metro Vancouver municipalities.

Delta will celebrate its new name at two already-planned Canada 150 events to be held on Sunday, Dec. 10: one at Ladner Leisure Centre (2 to 4 p.m.) and one at Sungod Recreation Centre (3 to 5 p.m.), in partnership with the North Delta and South Delta minor hockey associations. Public admission is free and will be funded through federal government grants.

Parks, recreation and culture staff will also be developing an interactive timeline that will “highlight significant milestones and successes in Delta’s history” leading up the name change. Part of the display will allow Deltans to add their own community-based achievements to the timeline, and a touch-screen kiosk will give them access to additional archival information.

The timelines will be featured in Delta’s recreation and seniors’ centres following the Canada 150 skate celebrations.

– With files from Grace Kennedy



editor@northdeltareporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

VIDEO: Volunteers, donations needed as ‘Whalley Santa Cause’ returns to Surrey’s 135A Street

Volunteers will descend on the Surrey ‘Strip’ to give hampers to homeless on Christmas Day, but help is needed

#MeToo at work: How reporting sexual harassment works – and how it doesn’t

British Columbians have four options to report harassment or assault, but none of them are easy

Right before Christmas, Surrey woman with two kids loses everything in fire

Bentley, her husband, and her two boys who have health issues are now left homeless

California competition gives Tamanawis an edge in high school hoops

The senior boys team played four games and watched UCLA in action last month

Surrey RCMP report ‘Tank-ful’ ending to stolen pit bull puppy case

Tank was reported stolen in late September, when he was 8 weeks old

Border officers rally at B.C.’s Peace Arch

CBSA employees tire of ‘lack of respect’

Federal Crown drops appeal after charges against pot activist dismissed

Dana Larsen said he was served notice at his home in Vancouver and the case was to be heard July 2

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to marry May 19

Kensington Palace announced the date to the public Friday

Debt-to-household-income ratio rises in third quarter

Total household credit market debt grew to $2.11 trillion in the third quarter

PART I: How Prince Rupert schools teach Indigenous language to hundreds of students

A multimedia series with videos and photos from children’s Sm’algyax classes on B.C.’s North Coast

B.C. Mountie told to resign after texting teenage sex assault victim

RCMP documents say Const. Brian Eden sent sexually inappropriate photos to 17-year-old girl

B.C. Interior First Nation create a community radio station

The Tsilhqot’in National Government is developing a radio station to promote language revitalization and create unity

Full Cupboard Holiday Program: Raising food, funds and awareness.

Envision Financial and Langley Advance support area food banks this season

Family doctors should learn to treat addiction, not shun patients: scientist

B.C. Centre on Substance Use’s Dr. Evan Wood said efforts underway to change addiction medicine image

Most Read