Surrey councillors – two of whom supported a casino

Surrey councillors – two of whom supported a casino

Political fallout over casino vote

Letter writers for and against a casino/hotel/convention centre defeated in South Surrey take issue with politicians.

An open letter to Surrey Couns. Tom Gill, Barbara Steele, Barinder Rasode and Linda Hepner.

We are writing to express our disappointment in you for voting in favour of the South Surrey casino proposal.

Clearly none of you considered or cared about the impact on those of us living in the South Surrey community close to the proposed site.

You were elected to consider all of the citizens of Surrey in your decisions and you seem to have forgotten that. We are disappointed that you chose to ignore the hundreds of us that took the time to let all of you know we did not want the casino in our backyard.

It was clear to the mayor that many of us living here did not want the project, but somehow this was lost on all of you. None of you will get our vote in the next election.

Kevin Jones, Surrey

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An open letter to Mayor Dianne Watts and Couns. Bruce Hayne, Judy Villeneuve, Marvin Hunt and Mary Martin.

It is with a heavy heart I find myself having to write you on the proposed South Surrey entertainment complex that was defeated by council on the morning of Jan. 19.

What perplexes me is how you can turn your backs on the potential this proposition would have brought to our city. I can’t fathom how you, as elected officials, can turn down such an innovative grand facility that would have put Surrey on the map as an entertainment destination.

I feel as if the needs and wants of just a very small group have outweighed the needs and benefits for the majority of those who reside in Surrey. As a resident myself, I would much rather have the option of spending my entertainment money within my own city rather than taking my hard-earned dollars elsewhere.

I can’t understand why the prospect of 500 permanent jobs, as well as up to 1,200 jobs in the construction sector, can be brushed aside so easily, just because a vocal small population sample protested adamantly against.

I ask that you rethink your decision. Perhaps a public referendum would be the more democratic way to see what the citizens really are in support of, rather than a small cross-section who don’t want change to their area.

If not an entertainment complex, perhaps a land-fill or noisy factory may be in the future, which I think would be somewhat less desirable.

K. Owens, Surrey

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An open letter to B.C. gaming minister Rich Coleman.

I read your criticism of Surrey council’s rejection of the South Surrey casino project.

Who the hell do you think you are? It appears that the bottom line is your only interest and concern and not the wishes of the residents. What a terrible attitude.

It may surprise you that we – the citizens, taxpayers – have a say and control in our area, not you.

Fred Somers Sr., Surrey

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Mayor Dianne Watts’ decision to reject the South Surrey entertainment complex unquestionably made her a loser in the common-sense department.

She opted for popularity among naysayers rather than to act with the best interest of all of Surrey in mind.

In the media, she claimed receipt of 4,000 letters opposing the complex and that is why she voted no. The population of Surrey is 500,000. I doubt the mayor read each letters’ contents to sort out fact from fiction.

At the public hearing, a small number of those against had legitimate individual reasons, but the majority fell back on misinformation. The mayor seemed not interested in substance and took no notice.

Lost was a true destination resort for South Surrey providing badly needed facilities, including a convention centre, a venue for the performing arts and a four-star hotel. Tourists and conventioneers would find excellent golf courses, White Rocks’ beaches and an abundant variety of shopping to spend money at. This and other local entrepreneurial opportunities are now gone.

Every business organization in Surrey and White Rock, as well as competitors, was in favour. Individual citizens were also in favour. All were ignored sum.

You blew it, mayor. Big time.

J. Edwards, Surrey