Re: Commuter resents mayors’ implications (Letters, Oct. 3)
I am a resident of Esquimalt, and while the reader may resent our mayors’ implications, I resent his resentment.
It is a fact that Victoria is the downtown for the entire region. VicPD must deal with everything, including parades, protests, festivals, rowdy bar crowds, homeless people, drug addicts, thousands of cruise ship passengers and other tourists all at once, marathons and the traffic and accidents caused by “two-thirds of the population” being down there each day.
How many of those issues does Saanich face? Esquimalt has been forced by the province’s incompetence and political cowardice to remain the only municipality helping Victoria with these costs, so if anyone is justified in being resentful, it is us.
Esquimalt regularly gets shafted by both the province and the Capital Regional District. There are 33 parks and trails in the CRD, and only one of those – the incomplete and barricaded E & N Rail Trail – is in Esquimalt.
Saanich, by comparison, has five regional parks and two trails. Yet we, in Esquimalt, pay for those parks in our taxes because we might one day venture up to Saanich and use them.
In fact, by my calculation, Esquimalt pays more to the CRD per capita than any other municipality in the region and gets little in return. Oh, and we may soon get the privilege of dealing with everyone else’s raw sewage, to boot.
So while I am sure everyone appreciates the few fractions of a cent that might make it into the VicPD budget from the reader’s $3 coffee purchase each day, that just doesn’t cut it. May I suggest that he park downtown illegally instead? The Commissionaires will then ensure that he makes a much more generous contribution directly to city coffers.