Editorial: Ballot question will be meaningless

Non-binding ballot questions will cost Sooke taxpayers

We all know we are entering the silly season as the municipal election is just months away and politicians wanting to get re-elected will go out of their way to please all and stay away from any controversy.

Here is the latest example of the silly season at work.

Sooke council has voted unanimously to put the question: “Should Sooke join other municipalities in renewing and restating its opposition to the expansion of oil tanker traffic through coastal BC waters?” on the local ballot for November 15.

Our council, through the mayor, had already sent in notification to Peter Kent, the Minister of the Environment and Prime Minister Stephen Harper in January 2012, that it does not support more tanker traffic in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, which is appropriate. But to duplicate a statement which has already been made and put it on the ballot at a cost of between $6,000 and $9,000, which the taxpayers of Sooke will pay, to appease a small vocal group, is meaningless.  We assume council knew before they voted in support what the cost would be. And the ballot question regarding a multi-use community centre is just about as pointless. It’s not about borrowing money anymore, it’s now about working with the community to get a building. Both are non-binding and a waste of taxpayer’s money.

We are sure that money could easily have been spent on sidewalks, a seniors’ center, downtown beautification or any of the multitude of things that have come before council over the past three years that would have benefited all or many residents of Sooke.

The silly season be damned let’s  keep common sense in our heads and our wallets in our pockets  until after the election.

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