Mayor Wendal Milne is sad to announce that the 2013 Sooke Subaru Triathlon has been cancelled due to lack of highway access in the Juan de Fuca Electoral Area (JDF). Mayor Milne has been advised that the Juan de Fuca Director, Mike Hicks, had withdrawn support for use of Highway 14 in the JDF as a result of complaints from residents in that area.
“This cancellation is unfortunate,” said Mayor Milne, “not only for the triathlon participants, but because, in these times of limited growth, this type of event and the exposure it brings is good for Sooke and its well being.”
Although the District of Sooke does not have economic indicators for the triathlon, it was an event that gained significant TV coverage for the Sooke region through TSN. It brought a large number of visitors to the community for the event and it was also an event that showcased the volunteering in the community.
Last year’s District of Sooke budget impact for the triathlon was $25,000 for the TSN coverage and $8,000 policing, plus some incidental costs. The preliminary 2013-2017 five year financial plan had allocated $50,000 in the year 2013 for the triathlon event. That expenditure would have been subject to Council discussion and approval during the 2013 budget deliberations.
“I have known Bob Saunders and his family personally for 40 years.” Added Mayor Milne, “He has been a big supporter of the triathlon and of our community for many years. This was a big event for him and it will be a disappointment.”