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You need to go back and review the history of the company. When the original rights-of-way were granted to the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway that later became the Pacific Great Eastern and then BC Railway, the covenant was to run a passenger service in perpetuity.

In additional to the 729 miles of right-of-way, at 100 feet wide, large locks of Crown Land were turned over to the company; some of it was expropriated.

BC Rail claims the Budd cars are not repairable. Go into any truck building company where diesel engines, automatic transmissions, and differentials are found. This is an insult to the skilled workers of the company.

If the rolling stock plant in Squamish had not been closed down we could be building our own Budd cars.

BC Rail’s media representative claims the company is not making money. What happened to all the profits from the 500 to 700 rail lumber cars a day from January 2002 to May 1 st 2002? That calculates to 60,000 to 84,000 rail cars of softwood lumber! If the company did not turn a profit on this it may indicate a lot of mismanagement, or is this one of the subsidies the Americans are complaining about?

Where did the $16 million come from to buy the Whistler North Wind? Was this at the expense of the Budd Cars?

Why was there a new passenger station built in Pemberton?

Why is a private company planning to build a train depot in Whistler?

I hereby challenge Ted Nebbeling, Dave Chutter and other M.L.As up the line to demand that Gary Collins start a business and financial audit of BCR's holdings.

I have met off and on with middle management of BC Rail and have found them to be very efficient and professional, so where is the fault – too many political appointees?

Laurence C.C. Laursen

Birken

 

Fortunately I ran into Steve Bayley on Friday before reading the Pique, and I was embarrassed that Steve thought he had to defend the WHA because of my letter two weeks ago. I am a huge fan of the Whistler Housing Authority!

Steve, please accept this public clarification, it’s not the WHA I am frustrated with, it’s the current council. The WHA has done an incredible job with the resources they have, I’m frustrated that council hasn’t recognized that affordable housing is a high priority in this community. The WHA set some clear goals, and I’m not convinced that council is doing enough to facilitate the WHA in achieving those goals.

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