Big city thinking

Why do citizens have to look at austerity measures and municipalities do not?

The wish list recently unveiled by the Qualicum Beach council should by any measure remain just that, a wish list.

With all due respect to the fire chief and his dedicated crew, who do an outstanding job when called upon, I must question the necessity of a new fire hall. At $4-5 million, it works out to about $1,000 for every taxed residence, money we do not have.

Our financial administrator John Marsh has indicated there are ways of borrowing excessive amounts of money without referendum. Just what does he mean by that? Is he suggesting we are to be treated like mushrooms and kept in the dark? And just why should we plan to automatically increase spending through to the year 2022?

There would seem to be a consensus that we all want to stay with the small town ambiance, but this council’s proposed spending spree sounds more like big city thinking.

For example, $5.83 million to fix Memorial Avenue? A new railway crossing at $1.5 million for a train that will probably never again enter our town? Half of a million to expand a works yard? This item must be meant to accommodate all the trucks that seem to have no place to park and endlessly drive around town with no apparent reason other than to kill time.

And while they’re at it, why not throw $40,000 towards another electric vehicle which seems to give some of our elected officials that warm and fuzzy feeling? While the rest of the world is looking at austerity measures, it would appear our council wants to single handedly stimulate western Canada’s economy.

Am I the only one who thinks this way? I would surely like to know.

Jim Bergot


Qualicum Beach



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