LETTER: Four good reasons to vote ‘No’ in referendum on June 9

A letter to the editor by Sheena Stenerson

To the editor:

As a targeted resident within the South Cariboo Recreation Boundary (SCRB), I am being asked by the Cariboo Regional District to support a proposal to improve the recreation opportunities located in 100 Mile House through a raise in my property taxes. I have lived here for over 40 years and do not believe that this expansion warrants the spending of 14 million dollars. A ‘mere’ 10 million over the next 20 years is to be shouldered by the owners of those properties unfortunate enough to lie within the SCRB. I envy those property owners who live just up the road and have the option of paying a fee to use the facility. Inequitably, non-resident property owners within the SCRB were not directly notified of the impending referendum.

Here are four good reasons to vote ‘No’:

First, the SCRB is outdated and discriminatory as it is based on location and it assumes probable support for recreation located in 100 Mile House.

Second, the voting eligibility (based on BC Elections) is unfair and biased. Owners of two or more properties inside the boundary can only vote once, yet see an increase in taxes for each property owned. Landed immigrants who have lived here for years on their own properties and have been contributing members of their communities, cannot vote on this issue but renters can vote?

Third, the infrastructure already exists. We have always had access to schools in the past. What about the abandoned Junior High? The circular layout of the hallways provides the possibility for a walking track and the gym is there for the sports buffs. Or, maybe it’s time to tear down the old Junior High and build a new elementary school that has been talked about for years. The old site where 100 Mile Elementary presently resides could be sold and a new facility could be built to address the need for senior housing or assisted living. Seniors could enjoy the walk to get some groceries or browse through the local stores. A new school would attract those ‘sought-after professionals’ to our area far more than the proposed expansion.

Fourth, in reality, either walking court will probably not be used by our seniors. Those that live in 100 Mile might use the court in the winter, but those of us living in the rural areas will opt for our treadmills or ellipticals rather than drive into town under unpredictable road conditions. Who would use this facility to walk around in the spring, summer, or fall when the outdoors beckons?

In closing, the idea that this expansion is better than nothing is not the answer! Please vote ‘NO’ on June 9. Thank you!

Sheena Stenerson

Horse Lake

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