Councils demonstrate fiscal responsibility by pulling out of recreation agreements

" one enters politics with a goal to divide and separate communities."

I am encouraged to see the level of participation and interest among so many community members lately on issues that impact all of us, specifically our recreation opportunities.  This is true community engagement and it is good to see.  I write in response to an editorial about “Parochial attitudes hurting entire region,” from the March 20 paper.

First; no one enters politics with a goal to divide and separate communities.  In fact, the aim would be the opposite; to unite and grow as communities.  We all have friends and family in each of the Lower Columbia communities.  We work and play in each other’s back yards.  Despite municipal boundaries we share many things.

Second, when one submits their name for consideration on the ballots at election time, we do so because we feel that we have something positive to offer.  We want to make a difference now, and for our future generations. We want to make sure that our kids and their kids can enjoy a good life, HERE, in the Lower Columbia as we do.

For the most part, the majority of us get along quite well.  We spend countless hours together, establish great relationships, attend many meetings together, and share an understanding and respect for each other’s opinions at the regional table.  At this time, while our respective recreation programs are the focus of local attention, I am reminded of Einstein’s words, that “from discord, find harmony [and that] in the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”  In seeking harmony and looking for opportunity, I am curious about some things.

I wonder why three separate councils, and an electoral area director have decided not to renew recreation agreements with the City of Trail?  As has been consistently reported, the same reason seems to underlie all four decisions to not renew recreation agreements. That reason is the lack of accountability and responsiveness on questions specific to recreation contributions, which have been put to the city on numerous occasions.

Also consistently reported are the questions from the three councils and area director that remain to be answered.  Specifically, in the spirit of transparency and accountability:   How are all the funds “held” by the City of Trail allocated and spent?  What do our individual (municipal) tax contributions for recreation return to our municipalities and residents, in other words; what is the actual usage of the TRP cards? Our taxpayers have a right to know.

Each of the elected representatives have clearly demonstrated fiscal responsibility in asking these questions, and ultimately, in deciding to withdraw their contributions.

Without an accounting of how municipal and resident taxes are spent, the three councils and director were left with the difficult choice:  continue submitting annual contributions, no-questions-asked and no accounting for spent dollars, or, to take a stand and insist on an account.

Two meetings between the Beaver Valley and the City of Trail permitted the BV representatives to explain their position, which was to continue with a resident reimbursement program, develop our own data base, and then find a fair and accountable contribution amount for a future council to consider.

I am also curious, and pose the question to Trail City Council, “Can you provide the information that we are all looking for?”

Ali Grieve is the director of the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary’s Area A, which includes the rural areas bordered on the west by the Columbia River, on the south by the Canada / U.S. Border and on the north by  Champion Lakes.

Just Posted

Free Family Day fun for Greater Trail

Public skating in Rossland and Trail are a few of the free offerings for families this weekend

Province announces $23 million for upgrades at Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital

West Kootenay-Boundary Regional Hospital District Board has yet to review the provincial proposal

Rossland library gets rave reviews on renovation

A lot of hard work led to this day, says a library board member

Tell the Times

Web Poll: Do you stay in town or leave for holidays like Family Day?

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

East Kootenay illicit drug overdose deaths lowest in B.C.

Local expert credits harm reduction efforts; declares support for legalization of opioids

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

B.C. couple attacked with acid, slashed with knife in Vietnam

Warning, graphic images: Man has burns on 80 per cent of his body, slashed with knife

Northern B.C. First Nation clan says ancient tools found at pipeline work site

Archeologists from the Smithsonian Institute estimate one of the stones found dates back up to 3500 years

Names keep adding to vaccine petition started by B.C. mom

Maple Ridge mom started campaign to make vaccination a condition of attending school

Most Read