LETTER: The ball is now in library’s court

Weekly letters to the editor from within the Sooke community

Re: Second site mulled for new Sooke library (Online, Feb. 9)

Sooke taxpayers pay almost $600,000 a year for library service and Juan de Fuca region residents also pay their fair share of the Vancouver Island Regional Library’s $35.6-million budget.

VIRL has been saying that a new library for Sooke has been a priority going back as far as 2006.

The District of Sooke worked with VIRL on the land issue because VIRL could not find something suitable. Their request for expression of interest was offered to the private sector to come back with options for a new library that VIRL could purchase.

As nothing that met their needs came forward from the private sector, and the District of Sooke had the opportunity to purchase the five-acre parcel of land in the town core, council offered a portion of the site to VIRL.

If VIRL was prepared to pay the private sector for a construction-ready site, then I believe in all fairness they should treat Sooke taxpayers the same way.

The district supported VIRL’s $6 million borrowing from the Municipal Finance Authority to build the Sooke library. VIRL has stated that the 10,000-square-foot library will cost $3.5 to $4.5 million to build including the cost of furniture, equipment and books. That leaves $1.5 million for other costs that they have available.

Council has made it clear it would prefer the new library be built within the town centre area. The ball is in their court. It’s VIRL’s responsibility and they have the money.

My fear is that Sooke may now get shortchanged and some of that $6 million will be spent elsewhere.

On the bright side, Sooke taxpayers own a prime five-acre parcel in the town core for future use and development. This property was earmarked for development in the Sooke Town Centre Plan done in 2010 and there’s much potential for the vision of council, the private sector and the community.

Rick Kasper


District of Sooke


Just Posted

Large fire destroys Port Renfrew business

A Port Renfrew business that was soon to be opening as a… Continue reading

Six-year-old boy needs $19,000 a month to treat rare form of arthritis

Mother of sick Sooke boy asks government to help fund treatments

Bird watchers gear up for annual count

Count takes place in Langford, Colwood, Victoria, North and Central Saanich

Oak Bay senior boys basketball takes Tsumura title

Junior and senior teams host Gary Taylor Classic starting Thursday

Site C dam goes ahead, cost estimate now up to $10.7 billion

Premier John Horgan says Christy Clark left him no other choice

Youth Against Cancer Club strikes again Island cancer lodge

Oak Bay High students craft decor to outfit the Canadian Cancer Society lodge in Victoria

Liberal Hogg wins South Surrey-White Rock byelection over Conservative Findlay

B.C. riding to be represented by non-conservative for first time in decades

Environmental groups slam NDP decision to continue with Site C

Construction industry, meanwhile, is cautiously optimistic about how the project will look

Be ladder safe both at work and home

WorkSafeBC wants you to keep safe while hanging those Christmas lights this year

B.C. overdose deaths surpass 1,200

96 people died of illicit drug overdoses in October

Crown appeals stay against Jamie Bacon in Surrey Six killings

B.C.’s prosecution service says judge’s decision reveals ‘errors of law’

Feds agree to give provinces 75 per cent of pot tax revenues

Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced the agreement today

HOMEFINDER: Victoria condo project offers investment opportunity

Below market prices at Vivid at The Yates appealed to young Victoria couple

Most Read