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Share the revenue and costs
With the recreation debacle still simmering, it is somewhat disappointing to see residents of the area choosing to vent their anger at their respective councils and area directors rather than the mayor and council who produced and directed this divisive bit of legislation.
However, the fact that they exercised their democratic right is a good thing. Thankfully, we do not live in the Ukraine or Russia or I am sure that we would have been “Putinized” long ago. I could go on and on about the negative actions related to the Trail council but that would be counter-productive to this letter and its contents, so on a positive note this is my suggestion in helping to solve the present problem which impacts residents regardless of where they live.
We would have two pots, one with the industrial tax monies and one with the participating municipalities and electoral areas. While the City of Trail receives over 60 per cent of their taxes paid by Teck Cominco they would pay 60 per cent of the identified regional facilities and the other 40 per cent would be paid per-capita by the surrounding communities and electoral areas.
The tax pot would include taxes from Teck, the dams, Fortis and other high-taxed companies for everyone to share in per capita.
The identifiable regional facilities in my mind are: the pools, libraries, and Haley Park because of the track, which is expensive to maintain and used by many.
My suggestions relate to the operation and maintenance of present facilities only and if area politicians could agree on this formula or improve it would could go a long way in healing wounds rather than opening new ones.
A prime factor in this whole process is scrapping the so-called resident card and I am confident that the library would see a resurgence and the aquatic centre numbers would zoom. This has to be done quickly for the sake of all residents and if the aquatic centre is not quite where it wants to be in regards to incoming monies, then increase the admission by 50 cents or one dollar and the people would accept that.
I would hope the politicians could approve or improve on my suggestions and at least try the formula until the next elections.
The talk of amalgamation or district municipality is premature at this time but not to say it can’t be looked at in the future. When we can get everyone from Paterson to Marsh Creek, Genelle to Casino and everyone in between on one page we can begin. Only those in elected office or who have been there can appreciate the challenge.