Letters to the Editor


Baseless allegations and untruths

As one who has had the privilege of being involved in the cultural mapping and planning program since the planting of the first seed, I am angered and offended by the umbrage cast by the salacious and malicious accusation levied by a writer to the Sooke News Mirror editorials, (Project get green light? Wednesday, Jan. 19).

The allegations of the writer are baseless, bear not a word of truth, and serve only to incite provocation. The words are mere assumptions, drawn from false gossip which the writer has contrived and directed at the very groups, mayor and council, the Sooke News Mirror, and the Sooke Fine Arts Society whose vested interest and motivation are to make informed and wise decisions vis-a-vis investment in the arts and culture of our community.

The challenge to the writer should be to expend less energy on unsubstantiated accusations and more on being grateful and thankful to those volunteers and community members who give tirelessly, selflessly and endlessly to bring something valuable to our growing community.

May I suggest that the writer stop rattling skeletons in non-existent closets, take a good long look in the mirror and do something more positive for humanity than wasting energy on a gossip blog. Get a life.

A.L. Cummings


Jamming the gears not necessary

Here is the council perspective to Mr. Arnold’s letter.

I am asked by some waterfront landowners why the district is dumping rock in the harbour without a foreshore lease?

I follow up by asking staff if this is true. I get a response with no answer so I follow up on my own and, indeed, we have no foreshore lease.

I raise this question again and out comes this big excuse that doesn’t answer my question except to say we have written authorization from the Department of Fisheries.

Again, I check the facts and they are not true either.   The fact is I have been complaining about this same type of information for two years and if I don’t act on it then nothing will ever change.

What are my options? It is my job as an elected official to ask questions and I have every right to expect honest answers.

If Mr. Arnold had taken the time to get both sides of the story he would have found out that the grant money is contingent on doing things legally or they rescind that grant money which is paying for most of this project.

As for the great public amenity we will receive, if you count the cost of the property, it will cost taxpayers $2.5 million dollars for 19 parking spots and a boat launch that saves the user $8 per launch.That is a lot of money for the return.

Who is this boat launch really for? All the covenants say it is for the hotel. If my expectations of honesty and trust of public funds are too high then please vote for the person that holds your values.

Herb Haldane


Our community is rich in kindness


One year ago my son had a serious single-vehicle car accident while driving on Gillespie Road. He escaped relatively unharmed, but the car was written off.

While it was a dreaded thing to have happen, our family was treated with nothing but kindness by many people that night.

On behalf of my wife Eila and myself, a long overdue sincere thank you to all those who helped us that difficult night and the next day — the Sooke firefighters, the paramedics, the neighbours nearby, the drivers who stopped, the RCMP, the staff at VGH, Otter Point Collision and my good friend Laurence. All of you reminded us that there is no shortage of kindness and caring in our community.

Mike Kelley

East Sooke

Vigilence and strength

I thank Mr. MacNab for his letter in the last issue of the Sooke News Mirror, in which he  answers my previous letter  by suggesting that some issues currently  vetted  by our Advisory Planning Committees (APC’s) and the Land Use Committee (LUC) could be dealt with by an impartial group. However, I wish to clarify what I meant in my letter to the Sooke News Mirror a couple weeks ago.

My main concern was not with either of these two groups, but rather with the proposals submitted to them. In my opinion, some of the ideas put forth to these two committees have not been well thought out. It’s not just a question  of ‘To Develop or Not to Develop.’ It’s also a matter of the quality of the plan being presented. If changes in our bylaws are at stake, will these changes benefit the majority of residents, or will they benefit one or two individuals at the inconvenience and detriment to the vast majority? Just look around. How many local developments would you deem as having been well planned?

Perhaps the roles of the APCs and the LUC should be strengthened.  Of course, if this were done, then these groups should do less rubber stamping and be more vigilant and critical of proposals presented to them.

Dale W. Read

East Sooke

Privacy law needed

There appears to be either a high degree of tolerance for contravention of B.C. privacy laws as even the local public schools are posting blogs on servers based within the United States and are asking resident to send personal information to these servers.

Has no one discussed the formal process for approval of these Internet-based information gathering companies? 

Typically I would have thought that the Department of Education would have facilitated a privacy impact assessment and the deputy minister should have signed off on them before they were used. This protocol is based of the FOIPP Act and my experience as a privacy and security consultant.

I have also taken note of the schools’ use of the Internet and tolerance for downloading copy from the Internet. Some of the images that children are downloading and copying have a contact code that tracks these images from home to school and anywhere else the child accesses the Internet with these images.

Who’s providing the advice and direction on these risks to the parents and children?

Do you care? Does anyone care except perhaps me? 

Mark E.S. Bernard


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