Esquimalt opts not to pursue Japanese twin

Limited financial and municipal staff resources factor into decision


After years of on- and off-again efforts to twin Esquimalt with a municipality in Japan, the idea has again been nixed.

“It’s an unfortunate set of circumstances,” said Mayor Barb Desjardins, following council’s decision Monday night (June 18) not to forge a twinning connection with Tagajo, Japan.

The suggestion was made last month by Canada’s ambassador to Japan, Jonathan Fried.

The township has been interested in twinning with Onagawa, Japan, located in the same prefecture as Tagajo, since at least 1989. A twinning task force was created by 1992. The twinning idea was shelved, given limited resources, but later resurfaced in 2010.

Onagawa ultimately declined Esquimalt’s offer, siting a long-standing relationship with Nelson, B.C., but the two municipalities have stayed in touch.

“The reason we were doing it was because it was Onagawa, not because it was just to twin,” Desjardins said, adding that twinning is not in the township’s 2012 community plan.

Twinning could require staff and financial resources, and more involvement and support from the community, according to a staff report to council. It’s estimated that municipal twinning budgets range from zero dollars to $25,000.

Desjardins has long touted twinning as an opportunity to expand a community’s cultural awareness, leading to economic relationships and the exchange of ideas.

“I think there’s a lot of value in it, but I don’t think that in these fiscally restrained years that it will happen,” she said.

Just Posted

‘More animals could have a chance:’ Victoria Humane Society in desperate need of a home

Animal rescue currently has 163 animals in foster and volunteer homes

Free-B Film Festival celebrates 20th anniversary

Head to Victoria’s Beacon Hill Park to see some family favourites on the big screen

Central Saanich accused of not following Climate Emergency declaration with urgent action

Motion to research climate response options and costs rejected then rescheduled in tense meeting

Join North Saanich invasives removal and experience three key benefits

Friends of North Saanich Parks says July 27 clear-up will be rewarding as well as green

Esquimalt gives six-storey rental complex the green light

A new apartment building is set to go up on Admirals Road

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Vancouver Island teens missing after vehicle found ablaze near Dease Lake, BC

RCMP say a body discovered nearby not one of the missing teens

A year later, ceremony commemorates victims of the Danforth shooting

It’s the one-year anniversary of when a man opened fire along the bustling street before shooting and killing himself

Japanese Canadians call on B.C. to go beyond mere apology for historic racism

The federal government apologized in 1988 for its racism against ‘enemy aliens’

B.C. VIEWS: NDP pushes ahead with Crown forest redistribution

This isn’t the time for a radical Indigenous rights agenda

Two dead in two-vehicle crash between Revelstoke and Golden

RCMP are investigating the cause of the crash

Ottawa fights planned class action against RCMP for bullying, intimidation

The current case is more general, applying to employees, including men, who worked for the RCMP

Alberta judge denies B.C.’s bid to block ‘Turn Off the Taps’ bill

He said the proper venue for the disagreement is Federal Court

Most Read