On rail and growth
Re: funding for the E&N railway.
Qualicum Beach Coun. Dave Wille is right. There is no way the RDN can justify granting the ICF $945,000, of which Qualicum Beach will have contributed nearly $250,000, without a definite business plan supporting the return of train service on a regular basis beyond Nanaimo.
The monies pledged by Qualicum Beach and the other communities along the line was explicitly for the return of daily service, with the schedule being modified to better suit the ridership. The way it stands now we are only being told that some service will be restored after the train starts running as far north as Nanaimo. This is not good enough and until that information is made available and confirmed, the RDN must say no. I must add that in my opinion this whole endeavour is sheer folly, should be abandoned, and the funds saved or put to proper use for the benefit of all the people, not just the few who will ride the train.
And while I’m at it, I would like to say that there seems to be a concerted effort by a small group of dissatisfied people in this community who wish to paint Willie as some sort of threat to the security of this town. These are the same people who will stand by and allow this town to turn in to nothing more than a backwater community. We need some growth and renewal to continue being the vibrant wonderful town we all love. I believe this councillor has that vision.