I would like to respond to the negative letters to the pellet project.
Residents discuss strong opposition to pellet terminal and that industrial developments shouldn’t be along the waterfront.
First let me say I am neither for nor against the pellet project at this date. There will be an open discussion on the 18th of this month which I urge all residents to attend.
First and foremost, yes Prince Rupert has the distinction of having one of the highest per assessment taxes in the province. This is due to the lack of industrial development. City council and the residents have opposed development for years. This has resulted in a tax shift to the residential sector, which cannot support the City’s infrastructure.
City councillors should be trying to find ways to ease the tax burden on residents, not scare residents into voting down new industrial developments. They should be neutral and listen to the community, not vice versa.
As mentioned Prince Rupert has endured a boom and bust economy because Prince Rupert has run its finances on speculation and at the same time is restricting commercial development, whether it is industrial or retail – again causing the tax base to shift to the home owner. That’s why the roads, parks, trail; leisure and recreation facilities have suffered.
As far as the city councillor saying that this will be a blow to the City’s finances is not entirely correct. It’s another scare tactic used by certain individuals to sway a vote. The City’s finances are already a shambles, that is why taxes are rising and services are declining.
As for your home being a long term investment in your future, it has long been held that people should not count on their home being the source of their financial retirement plan, mostly in such a volatile housing market as in Prince Rupert. Best seek the help of a financial advisor at a young age.
As far as trucks in the downtown area, you should be asking Council what happened to the Wantage road project that would divert the trucks away from the downtown core.
As for hiring only 13 employees you must take into account the multiplier factor. What this generates in this case is supposedly $350,000. Every time a business says it will employ 10/12 employees they are “shot” down. Has anyone ever stopped to think that 10 small employers would equal 130 new jobs?
I was also told that at one time there was a grain elevator on that site, which nobody opposed.
As for having industrial land within the City, you only need to go to Merritt, B.C. and you will find that the sawmill is in the city with the land they are on designated industrial.
We do not live in an isolated community. With access by road, air and rail we are, or should be open for business.
This means looking at all the opportunities that come our way not rejecting them on the basis of some self-interest group or person.
In Shelley Stafford’s last paragraph she comments that the Government of Canada needs to consider opening up the Prince Rupert city ocean front area for community development. A very worthy idea.
However this is purely political.
As long as our MP is not a member of the incumbent party, in this case we have an NDP MP and the Conservative party is in power, the governing party will not consider helping your community; you will only get a pittance, if you are lucky.