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Posted on May 2nd 2015 at 12:00:00 AM by (Crabmaster2000)
Posted under Game Quest, Game Store, City Council, Delegation, Politics



So you've been operating your retro game store for a few months now and things are going better than you could have hoped. Customers are happy, new stock is getting traded in on a regular basis, bank account is moving in the right direction. Nothing can bring you down. Cue Bylaw Enforcement Officer..........

Getting Political Part I
Getting Political Part II
Getting Political Part III






The new head of bylaw services in Prince George paid me a visit prior to the council meeting. He congratulated me on our successful delegation and showed me an early draft of the proposed changes. He wanted to get my feedback on the suggestions. Among them was my request to reduce the hold time to 7 days from 30! I told him I was happy with nearly all of the options and thanked him for his work on the staff report. Now to see what council would do with it.

The day finally came and I was eager to see if they would take us seriously or if we were going to be brushed aside. This was the moment of truth. We had already made our point, so I didn't push to get as many people to join me at this meeting. Myself and about a dozen others were in attendance. When they got to us near the end of the meeting, I got to see a great discussion unfold while the council members tried to decided which option would best suit both us and the City in general. Ultimately, they chose to go with what I felt was our biggest long shot and voted to amend our secondhand bylaw to exclude “video game software” completely! This meant that after the bylaw passed during the final reading in a few weeks, I would not have to hold games at all anymore, I could now purchase games outside of the store front, and I could store them anywhere I wanted!!! This was literally the best case scenario.

This was a long, exhausting, eye opening, frustrating, and challenging process, but ultimately, I was glad to have taken part in it. Not only did I make things easier for my business, but because of all the media coverage and people involved in the process, we got a lot of free publicity, which has turned into customers. In one of my past blog articles, I also spoke about how I intended to brand the store and one of the important parts was that I hoped to label us as “honest.”  This process went a VERY long way in establishing that in my community. Instead of trying to skirt the bylaw, which realistically wouldn't have been very hard to do, I chose to go about it the "proper" way even though it meant a lot more work. I tried to be as transparent as possible, which I think helped even more with our image.

The new bylaw went into effect in early November. The final reading was during the very last council meeting before the new council was elected (which was commented on during the final vote by one council member). It was one of the final things that council saw through from start to finish. Since the changes, we have had a lot more freedom with how to run the business and decided that things are going smooth enough to expand into a bigger building. I am happy to say that we are currently looking for new spaces to move into Smiley



If you are interested in seeing the actual delegation our city records each council meeting to broadcast live and post on their website. The link provided below will open the video player to the night of my delegation. To the right of the player is the list of agenda items for that particular meeting. Simply click on Item B.2, you should notice a handsome, hairy, gentleman in a Batman T-shirt. That will start the video right before my speech. The actual speech is about 7 and a half minutes, but if you're interested in seeing how the council and city manager react to the delegation it is about a 30 minute video. Thanks for following the situation through my blog and for the great comments and encouragement.

http://princegeorgebc.swagit.com/play/08252014-965




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Comments
 
Great job, Crabby!!  I'm happy for you and for living your dream.  Now can you hook me up with some NES games?  Smiley
 
It's nice to hear in detail about how this entire story unfolded. We spoke a lot while all of this was going on and I know about all of the hard work you put in to reach this result and the way in which you did it. It's great to see the system work for someone who does their research and goes about it the right way. I know you have impressed a lot of the members at your town council and have done a great thing for the gaming community in your area. You not only saved your business, but also earned a great deal of loyal followers. Hats off to you good sir, you've earned it! Smiley 
 
Am I the only one thinking that this would make an awesome movie?  Anyone?
 
@bombatomba: Starring Brad Pitt as Crabmaster2000!!!
 
A legal drama with a happy ending. Congrats!
 
@Crabmaster2000: Nah... that Napoleon Dynamite kid. He could use some work right now.

Or better yet: Gilbert Gottfried.
 
Congratulations and thank you for sharing your story. Glad things are working out for you.

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