Editorial

Desperation Tactics at Final Council Meeting: All Pretence of Propriety Abandoned by Outgoing Councillors

Desperation Tactics at Final Council Meeting:  All Pretence of Propriety Abandoned by Outgoing Councillors The behaviour of outgoing councillors Ambler, Hillian, and Winchester at the last meeting of this council left much to be desired, but Councillor Hillian deserves to be singled out for special mention. Doug Hillian did a substantial disservice to Courtenay voters when he read without comment a scurrilous piece of defamation and misinformation by Andrew Gower which has been circulating on the internet for the past ten days or so.  This statement has been thoroughly critiqued and debunked for the inaccurate and misleading piece of political propaganda it is.  Gower’s statement, together with our fact checking responses, can be found on the home page of this website. Hillian’s action in reading this defamatory distortion of fact into the public record was grossly inappropriate because: He treated the Gower comment as fact, which it most certainly is not; He neglected (as has Gower since he began circulating this propaganda piece) to mention that Gower has a serious conflict of interest: he is disparaging and defaming several candidates in the election, and he has failed to disclose that he is an active campaign worker for Jon Ambler and that this is presumably the motivating factor behind his attack on other candidates. Mr. Gower is a former member of Friends of Maple Pool. While the Friends of Maple Pool have not to date endorsed any slate of candidates in this election, Mr. Gower was always aware that most Friends of Maple Pool considered a vote for Jon Ambler to be a vote to continue the lawsuit and close... read more

Ambler Convention Motion

Courtenay City Councilor Jon Ambler tabled a motion that included “to send any Council member that is willing and able to participate to all such conferences.” This year one of those annual conventions, the Federation of Municipal Councils, was held in Niagara Falls. After the delegates disembarked from their plane and were comfortably checked into their rooms they were welcomed to: “Join us at the Niagara Welcome Reception and experience the natural wonder of Niagara Falls! Niagara is one of the most attractive destinations in the world, from its rich history and beautiful parks, to the sprawling wine country. With the spectacular Niagara Falls as the backdrop, guests will experience culinary delights from Niagara’s abundance – fresh produce, tender fruits, meats, poultry and fish, and award-winning wines – at the beautiful Table Rock Welcome Centre. Guests will experience Niagara’s Fury, an immersive 4D experience – walk through the tunnels behind the Falls to observation decks at the foot of the Falls, and hear the roar of thundering water. Sprinkled throughout the Table Rock, musical gems from Niagara will be showcased that will encourage guests to discover what awaits them around every corner.” And at their closing formal gala evening they were requested to: “Join us for An Enchanted Evening – Gala Reinvented! This spectacular evening will feature interactive, chef-attended food stations and Niagara wine, creating a wow experience for each and every guest. Non-traditional seating will allow guests to explore, network, and dance the night away. Plan on experiencing a magical evening infused with the sights, sounds and flavours of Niagara – une soirée enchantée.” Taxpayers paid $10,786.39 to... read more

Some interesting things in the last issue of the Record prior to the civic election.

http://www.comoxvalleyrecord.com/news/282482951.html Firstly a statement on the front page attributed to incumbent Councillor Hillian who states “Unfortunately, this issue has been politicized”. My comment to this is that elected officials have been voting to pursue this unfair and unpopular lawsuit and now we are in the final days before the election. An election is where the voters decide to keep incumbents thus endorsing their actions while in office, or vote in new community leaders. It is nice that at least we have acknowledgement from an incumbent that the Maple Pool issue is, in fact, an issue in this election. We had heard previously that some incumbents held the belief that Maple Pool would not be an issue. It is encouraging that our caring community has finally come to the attention of at least three incumbents. Councillor Starr Winchester is quoted in the article as stating that she “concurs that “vulnerable” members of the community have been used as a “political football”. Our mission statement on our website is very clear. “We are a group of Courtenay voters united by a common conviction that the legal persecution of Maple Pool and its residents by Courtenay City Council is perverse, morally reprehensible, and fundamentally contrary to the interests of this community. It is also a gross and inexcusable waste of the taxpayers’ money. ………..we come from right across the political spectrum. We would disagree amongst ourselves on many other issues. But we are all convinced that this indefensible four year legal vendetta against some of Courtenay’s most vulnerable citizens, together with the ongoing harassment of and defamation against two of Courtenay’s most civic-minded... read more

Letter from Jin & Dali Lin of Maple Pool

As you know that Friends of Maple Pool had organized a march on City Hall on Nov 10, it went well. After then, we feel that I have something to say, to express our gratitude to our community. It is so grateful to feel the care from friends who we know and we haven’t met, we know that we are not alone. The peaceful march on Nov 10, was successfully. It was on the CTV evening news on the same day, you may visit CTV web as follow: http://vancouverisland.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=488558&binId=1.1180928&playlistPageNum=1.  Thank you so much to those folks who showed up and joined on march, thank to many people who tooted the horn and passed the energy to us. Many good people with a caring heart are in Comox Valley, they must are helping less fortunate in a different way. We hope that all incumbent elected official heard the voice  from every corner of community, and wish this not that “complicated issue” can be solved after the election 2014. Everyone deserve a respect, everyone has a right a say; all equal. I believe that  a true leader is one who is humble enough to admit their mistake, use their wisdom to fix whatever the problem is. A couple of quote to share: “Good leaders must first become Good servants” – Robert Greenleaf , “The time is always right to do what is right.” – Martin Luther King Jr.   Jin & Dali Lin of Maple... read more

First step to change is accepting its necessity

posted Jul 7, 2014 at 12:00 PM; Roger Albert – Guest columnist So, the CVRD board has decided to give you an opportunity on Nov. 15 to express your support for, or opposition to, creating a service in support of affordable housing and helping the homeless. It will be in the form of a non-binding market-type survey. Well, at least, that’s something more than we have now. November 15 is not that far off, but it still gives us some time to consider alternatives and arguments for and against creating a CVRD service in support of affordable housing and projects aimed at ending homelessness in the Comox Valley. Of course, some folks are going to be opposed to such a move no matter what arguments are put before them or how thick the evidence is in support of it.  Their minds are already made up. The truth is that there is an underlying and strong prejudice in our society against the poor and homeless. Some people simply see them as moral degenerates, undeserving of any help.  After all, we achieved everything we have with just hard work, right? Well, they argue, it’s fine to hand out a few bags of groceries at a food bank, provide lunch at a soup kitchen or emergency shelter for those who need it, but there should be no doubt that helping the poor too much removes any incentive they might have had to work or get more training to ‘better’ themselves. Other folks, the majority of us, I believe, have sympathy for the poor, homeless and disadvantaged. Some of us see inequity as a social justice issue. We... read more

Remaining homelessness grant money finds a home

by  Scott Stanfield – Comox Valley Record; posted Jul 2, 2014 at 11:00 AM The regional district board approved a request from Comox Director Tom Grant to commit remaining homelessness grant funding from the Vancouver Island Health Authority to the Dawn to Dawn Action on Homelessness Society. The money — $15,654 — will help the society continue a scattered housing program through the winter months. The CVRD has an agreement with Dawn to Dawn to deliver the program that houses marginalized individuals in rental units. However, the agreement ends in November and funding is running dry. Earlier in the year, previous funding of about $174,000 helped the organization exceed its goal of housing 18 clients over a two-year period. “I think the scattered housing concept is very effective,” Courtenay director Manno Theos said at Tuesday’s meeting. TFP goals get approval The board was unanimous in its approval of Transit Future Plan goals such as attracting new riders and aligning the region’s transit system with town centres. Opinion, however, was divided when it came to the question of funding short-term service priorities identified as highest ridership and revenue per service hour. In a 7-3 vote, the board approved a $270,000 net cost to the CVRD. Courtenay director Starr Winchester feels the additional money is not going to increase bus ridership in the Valley. Courtenay Directors Bill Anglin and Manno Theos also opposed the additional cost share with BC Transit. The 25-year Future Plan identifies key corridors and considers other factors such as the physical benefits of walking to and from a bus stop. Letter to Ministry The district will send a letter to the Ministry of... read more