City of Duncan should quit spending money on greenery

Duncan – Wow. Only a 2.69 per cent tax increase for Duncan residents in 2015. Doesn’t seem like much, but it is well over double the inflation rate and brings our total tax increase over the last seven years to a whopping 46 per cent. Did anyone receive a 46 per cent pay increase in the last seven years? Probably not, except for Duncan City council, that is, who voted for a pay increase for themselves in the 40 per cent-plus range.

In addition it is entirely irresponsible to claim that invoking tax increases now will prevent debt for future generations. What will prevent debt now and for future generations is fiscal responsibility on the part of Duncan City council.

Taxation is a necessary evil but for the most part taxpayers don’t mind as long as their hard earned money is spent wisely. Unfortunately that is not the case in Duncan.

Duncan city council continues to spend massive amounts of money on useless initiatives while the city falls into a state of disrepair unlike ever before and traffic congestion is at historic levels.

The intersection at Canada Way and Trunk Road – the worst intersection on Vancouver Island and a complete waste of money.

The Cairnsmore Street “improvement”, a spectacular failure that achieved none of its stated goals, and a complete waste of money.

Duncan city council continues to turn wide, safe streets into narrow dangerous obstacle zones simply to plant trees. The Urban Forest Strategy, they say these trees are going to make Duncan “sustainable” for future generations. Apparently they haven’t noticed we live in a west coast rainforest amidst and surrounded by millions of trees. This is like dumping a few truckloads of sand in the desert and claiming everything will be okay now.

Do we really need to plant 3,500 trees in Duncan? Duncan city council says we “need” to plant 3,500 trees. Well actually we don’t “need” to. Some trees are nice but 3,500 in a community that is approximately one square mile and at the cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars?

What we “need” to do is to stop wasting money on ridiculous ideology like the Urban Forest Strategy.

Other small cities on Vancouver Island like Parksville, Courtenay and Campbell River are well maintained and enjoy clean, wide, safe streets with little if any traffic congestion and not surprisingly their tax increases for 2015 were much less than the tax increase for the City of Duncan.

Mark Williams