Port Edward, B.C. is in a dispute with its neighbour, the City of Prince Rupert, over the Ridley Island Tax Sharing Agreement. (Shannon Lough / The Northern View)

LETTER: Dispute over Ridley Island taxes

Port Edward resident defends his community amid the dispute with the City of Prince Rupert

I have lived in Port Edward most of my life. I resent what I read in the newspaper – The Northern View. For years Port Edward has being building to have decent place to live. Thanks to all those who have worked so hard for this. Allan Shepard, Ed Wampler and Dave MacDonald, to the present Mayor Knut Bjorndal, we do have a decent place to live.

According to the paper, we of Port Edward are getting a whopping $ 900,000 while poor Prince Rupert is only getting about $4.5 million. Now Prince Rupert wants to reduce what’s going to Port Edward by more the $600,000. So Prince Rupert will get over $5 million.

Poor Prince Rupert is suffering, so let’s take it from the smaller communities.

For years while the pulp mill was operating Prince Rupert received all the taxes from Watson Island. Port Edward received the pollution, the stench, the air which was hard to breathe. WAS THAT FAIR? Definitely not.

READ MORE: Prince Rupert fire crews won’t help Port Edward after negotiations fail

Today, what does Port Edward have from Ridley Island that we should share with Prince Rupert.

Let me see, coal dust blowing daily from trains, loading of freighters and storage, trains blowing their horns all hours of day and night. Now liquid gas is to be on Ridley Island. They say it’s not dangerous. If one of these storage tanks blows, it will wipe out at least a six mile radius. No more Port Edward to worry about. I know that this sounds far fetched but anything is possible.

When you look at Port Edward people and say they are getting all the benefits, you are wrong.

Port Edward people spend money on Prince Rupert, groceries, gas, household goods, etc.

READ MORE: Prince Rupert, Port Edward reach two-year tax agreement on Ridley Island

Port Edward had to pay Prince Rupert $500,000 to dispose of sludge from their sewer system that relates to $1,000 per capita. Who pays that much for utilities. Maybe Port Edward residents should just pump it all out to sea like some other communities.

To the people of Port Edward, we elect good people for our counsel, past and present. Let’s stand beside them.

I cannot say what Prince Rupert get in tax revenues, judging from Ridley Island, Prince Rupert must be getting millions of Revenue.

The port taxes and all the Business taxes, the property taxes what you all pay. Don’t blame Port Edward.

Challenge your Counsel.

Charles Morven

Port Edward, B.C.

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