Opinion

COLUMN: Standing up for what we hold dear

Standing up for the Kootenays is something I take seriously. Our region is the most beautiful place in the world; our local economy is resilient for its diversity; and the people here show strength, determination and passion for all that they do.

There are many examples and one that comes quickly to mind is our long standing opposition to Jumbo Glacier Resort.

We all know how much we love to ski and how much we love our local ski industry. The Kootenays has the highest concentration of ski resorts in North America.

No surprise then that we know a good ski hill from a bad one, and that’s why we know that the proposed Jumbo Glacier Resort is a bad idea. In fact, we’ve known that for over two decades.

We also have a sense of responsibility for each other. When people lost their homes in the Johnsons Landing mudslide, we came together and raised funds to help.

With the same determination we raised over $1 million for a CT scanner that has yet to be available 24/7, but I know our passion will make sure we get it.

Considering the above, it was a slap in the face to see the Liberal government find $1 million dollars to fund the fake town of Jumbo over the next five years when they have told me that they don’t have enough money to help real people with real problems in the Kootenays.

For the residents of Johnsons Landing left homeless by the mudslide, the Minister of Justice told me in a face-to-face meeting that she doesn’t have $1 million to offer a buy-out program similar to the one the Liberals had for North Vancouver in 2005.

After all the waiting for Trafalgar school upgrades, the Liberals chose to pay a mayor and council and their staff for a town of no one.

No roads, no schools, no hospitals, no houses, no people… nothing! And yet the Liberals find money for this town while our School District struggles to maintain our schools.

Early last week, when fellow Kootenay MLA Norm Macdonald questioned the Minister responsible for funding the “town” of Jumbo, I couldn’t help but be outraged at her smirks and response.

How could she not know all that we’ve been through in our region when it comes to keeping Jumbo wild? She behaved as though she was proud of the Liberals deceptive way to ram through a resort via a fake municipality.

Not acceptable.

With two minutes left in question period, the point of the day when we get to ask questions of the Ministers, I pressed her on such wrong-headed priorities.

Tax dollars should be going back into real services for real people, not to some Liberal friends overseeing a fake town with not a single resident, street or building.

Like all that I do on your behalf in the Legislature, you can watch the exchange at my YouTube channel or search Michelle Mungall MLA on YouTube or simply click on the YouTube icon at www.michellemungall.ca

In the weeks ahead, you can be sure that I will continue to stand up for Jumbo Wild, to save our ALR, for reducing child poverty and for all that we hold dear in our beautiful region.

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