Decisions not for the people

Letter-writers weigh in on two recent White Rock council decisions.

Editor:

Re: Council votes to move chambers, July 25.

I am appalled that council has voted to move the council chambers out of city hall. I applaud Mayor Wayne Baldwin on his stand stating it “should not happen.”  I can assure you that Coun. Helen Fathers will never get my vote again, as well as the other three councillors who voted in favour of the move.

Just imagine what could be done with the increase of $37,000 in annual operating costs:

1. Clean up Johnston Road from North Bluff Road to Five Corners. Talk about trash and litter everywhere;

2. Fix uneven sidewalk bricks everywhere along Johnston;

3. Install larger front street signage with illuminated lettering; or

4. Look after the city’s other pride, the beach. I challenge everyone to go down there on a weekend for four hours and use the washrooms, especially the one by the pier. What about the historical signage at each end of the promenade?

Where are the priorities?

The move itself will cost another $184,000 (estimated). Just to move your meetings. Imagine how ridiculous this is.

Plus, another $400,000 to put in an elevator. I am sure Helen Fathers will say it’s not required, but if having council meeting at the Fir Street building eliminates one single person from attending due to access, then the elevator will have to be put in.

You all should be ashamed of putting yourselves before the citizens of White Rock.

Howard Pateman, White Rock

•••

Something strange happened on the way to city council the other day. Council was voting on a zoning change for properties bordering Marine Drive on West Beach, or CR-2 zoning to CR-3 zoning.

Despite all the letters to council, letters to the newspaper, consultation with the city planner, more than 100 signatures on petitions from local residents, numerous residents speaking against the changes at city council, not one single person from the public speaking for it, and delays by council to vote on it, it happened! City council approved it at the July 15 meeting.

So, now expect four storeys and beyond on Marine Drive as developers/owners rush to cash in on the new changes permitting them to do just that from the earlier three-storey limit.

And with the variances being granted these days, who knows what will actually be approved. You don’t think this will happen? Then you were not at a recent public meeting for developing the Ocean Beach property.

White Rock is open for business. The residents be damned. This city is up for sale. Thank your city council, specifically Mayor Wayne Baldwin, Couns. Louise Hutchinson, Bill Lawrence, Grant Meyer and Larry Robinson. Couns. Al Campbell and Helen Fathers listened to us and voted against the changes.

Remember this for the next election.

Simon Bergen-Henengouwen, White Rock