Weekly letters to the editor from within the Sooke community.

Sooke headed in right direction

There has been change for the better in Sooke lately. The long awaited roundabout, sidewalks on Sooke Road, a multi-use trail nearly connecting the Galloping Goose to the Sooke trail network and a horseshoe pitch are in the works. The Sooke Bike Park has also been opened (although in my opinion in the wrong place), and the trail running from Throup Road to Seaparc is a great improvement.

The majority of these items have received opposition from a minority that simply do not want change.

I simply cannot understand why it has been so difficult for the proponents of the horseshoe pitch to have one built. We have received a grant for half of the funds for the new multi-use trail connecting the Goose, yet some people seem to want us to cancel this project and give the grant money back.

How can a new trail for use by both pedestrians and cyclists be a bad thing? What do people in this town have against horseshoe players and cyclists?

It appears there are some details regarding how to route the multi-use trail and where to put the horseshoe pitch that need to be worked out. Sounds like a pretty straightforward and expected process to me.

I urge Mayor Maja Tait and council not to repeat the mistakes of previous councils and give in to the minority that is against change. Keep pushing forward with these long-awaited projects despite the opposition.

Council has done a great job so far this term. I am hopeful that the above projects will be completed, and I look forward to other projects such as completing the connector road and a multi-use bridge across the Sooke River.

Tom Myrick



Second family of three were in fine arts show

Re: Artwork is a family affair (News, July 22)

In addition to your story of a family with three members in the Sooke Fine Arts Show, there is another family with three members: Shannon-john Valentine, his daughter Caprina Valentine and wife Linda Gordon.

Shannon, a long time Sooke resident is known for his guitar playing, wood working and fine detail art. After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease five years ago it made hand-eye coordination difficult.

However, never one to let adversity affect him, he took up using an airbrush to paint.  His entry in the show this year is an abstract called Begging for Change.

His daughter has two of her photographs and his wife one acrylic painting of a flower.

Flowers are a departure for Linda, as she is best known for her portraiture.

Linda Gordon,

Shannon-john and Caprina Valentine



Canada falls behind in helping world’s poor

It’s somewhat of a tradition for Canadian politicians to throw around money at election time, wooing voters with promises of financial largess for themselves and their communities. This appeals to a very low human impulse: what’s in it for me?

For more than 40 years Canada has been part of an international agreement committing to spend 0.7 per cent of gross national income on global development assistance, and we’ve never been further from this goal, currently at 0.24 per cent. Most developed nations are above 0.3 per cent, with several at the agreed-upon target.

Canada repeatedly ranks in the top of all nations in terms of quality of life and standard of living. The vast majority of the world’s people live far below Canadian standards of nutrition, sanitation, clean water and security.

As the election season winds up, with the inevitable promises of more money flying out of Ottawa, I’m waiting for all party leaders to acknowledge the wealthy and enviable position Canada already enjoys, and rather than showering us with more money, affirm their commitment to raising our global development contributions to the long-delayed 0.7 per cent.

Nathaniel Poole



Farmland still needs to be protected

Re: New ‘development’ is a surprise to Sooke mayor (Kevin Laird, July 29).

I just wanted to say that the main way the agriculture land reserve serves Sooke is by keeping viable agricultural land available for farming.

You mention the commission has treated Sooke well in the past by releasing land for important uses like the Sooke Region Museum. I hope it continues to release land that should be released.

But I hope even more that it helps us preserve viable farmland in Sooke. Farmland here will become even more important if California no longer has enough water to be as productive as it has been.

Greg Whincup















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