More rec centre cost info needed before tax increase

The Editor,

Re. “Down or up?” (The Tri-City News, Jan. 17).

The 1 to 1.5% proposed tax increase for the aging Port Coquitlam recreation complex and seniors centre was poorly presented in this year’s 2014 Budget at a Glance. One would question if it is a one-time levy or one that is carried over for a number of years?

Is the city not putting the cart before the horse?

They have set aside $250,000 in this year’s budget for recreation complex site planning. So why not wait, find out the total construction cost, put a budget together and then ask taxpayers for approval?

What they are asking now is for taxpayers to give them a blank cheque and we will be told the final figures later.

What kind of budgeting is this?

Not too many years ago, PoCo taxpayers got burned when the final cost of the Coast Meridian overpass came in much higher than projected.

Perhaps the city budgeting department could further enlighten taxpayers as to how some of the finer budgeting details of this project will unfold.

Al Williams

Port Coquitlam



$25 isn’t much

The Editor,

I applaud Mayor Greg Moore, council and all those staff people who worked on creating the comprehensive flyer on the proposed 2014 Budget at a Glance.

This flyer was handed out to all present at the Jan. 13 PoCo council meeting. I liked the diagram with the pie chart where it shows where our tax dollars are spent. It is a great visual aid.

I found it amazing that current property taxes are expected to decrease by 0.34%. I am even more impressed to see that PoCo is engaging and asking the citizens for feedback on a proposed property tax increase, as well as asking how we want our tax dollars spent.

In my opinion, asking for an increase of approximately $25, or 1 to 1.5% on property taxes, doesn’t seem like an unreasonable amount to be seeking. I believe money destined to be spent on replacing the well-used, aging PoCo recreation complex and seniors centre is money well spent. Countless families in the community will benefit from this enhancement.

I can also think of a couple of other places I would like to see my tax dollars spent. I have expressed these by filling in the survey and submitting it online.

Please consider having your voice heard by Jan. 31 by providing your feedback to the city.

This concept of asking for public input is democratically the right thing to do.

Nancy McCurrach

Port Coquitlam



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