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LETTER: Oak Bay’s infrastructure in critical state

The present council has been in office for 38 months, and the municipal elections are seven months away.

Mayor Murdoch’s main election promise was to replace our “crumbling” infrastructure (roads, pipes, buildings, etc). The infrastructure deficit is estimated at more than $450 million.

The Municipality Finance Authority of B.C. is our lender. The interest rate for a 25-year term was 2.66 per cent in 2019 and today is 3.31 per cent. This is a 25 per cent interest rate increase. Inflation is expected to push the lending rates even higher. Borrowing $10 million today, under the above scenario, would add for the next 25 years approximately $587,000 to Oak Bay’s budget present operating budget of $63 million.

A successful plan, fund and rebuild for our ‘crumbling infrastructure” is an existential crisis. The alternative is amalgamation.

It is only fair and reasonable to the community that council after more than three years in office, and well before the October election, answer some questions. This would include presenting in writing, and at a town hall meeting, a solid 10-year action implementation plan including costing, rebuild steps, and budget implications.

Mike Wilmut

Oak Bay