This area near Philips and Sooke roads is a smelly mess, say Coun. Brenda Parkinson. The land owner is the provincial government. (Sooke News Mirror)

Sooke councillor cries foul over ‘disgusting’ smell, garbage

Coun. Brenda Parkinson says it’s an easy fix: move rocks

Sooke Coun. Brenda Parkinson is calling for action to be taken over foul smells and garbage that have taken over a parking area owned by the provincial Transportation Ministry at the corner of Phillips and Sooke roads.

“It’s disgusting,” Parkinson told council last week.

But, she pointed out, it’s an easy fix: remove the rocks.

Eight rocks around a kiosk sign at the site are the source of the mess, and it’s where squatters and others congregate.

The municipality placed the rocks there several years ago to protect the kiosk from vehicles.

“There is so much garbage that it’s disgusting,” Parkinson said. “There’s litter, even human excrement.”

Parkinson received support from Coun. Rick Kasper and Kevin Pearson on her request, but three others – Mayor Maya Tait, Coun. Kerrie Reay and Coun. Bev Berger – weren’t so keen.

Berger felt by removing the rocks, the problem would move to another part of the property.

“I’m not certain that will solve the problem,” she said.

Another problem is the municipality would need to get approval from the Transportation Ministry before they could remove the rocks.

Tait said a clean up of the area is needed, but the district’s hands are tied because it’s private property.

“This is where we have the nice signs that say welcome to Sooke and then we have the worst place for garbage,” Parkinson said, adding the parking area is used extensively by the museum and SEAPARC patrons.

“I was extremely surprised council wouldn’t want to do something. I would have thought would want to clean up the entrance way.”

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Transportation told the News Mirror Friday ministry staff would be willing to work with the municipality to address the issue.