As a Surrey resident, I am tired of Surrey’s mayor and city councilors approving more and more residential development, then repeatedly joining the Surrey School Board in blaming the province for a lack of school infrastructure.
Insanity is repeating the same actions over and over and expecting a different result. Surrey needs to stop the insanity and change the dynamic between the province and the city.
Surrey’s municipal government has some control here – they determine what development proceeds in the city. Experience shows clearly that more residential development approvals mean more children requiring more schools.
Surrey’s leverage with the province centres on development. What would happen if Surrey started to reject residential development applications in areas with no schools, schools with portables and schools with no empty space to accommodate new students and clearly stating this as the reason for rejection?
Developers, construction businesses, workers, and would-be Surrey residents would start to put pressure on the provincial government to provide sufficient funding for new schools and the expansion of existing schools.
Development would occur elsewhere so other cities would also be in the same situation as Surrey and add their weight to the call for proper funding.