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If people building a new home are "sold" on the benefits through positive persuasion, then there will be co-operation not irritation. For example, appealing to their sense of community spirit, enlightened self-interest in terms of revenue, and security and peace of mind by having a local presence in their suite for fire and burglary protection, especially if the owner is a second property owner.

By offering the incentive of adding extra square footage to build the one- or two-bedroom suite, over and above the current square footage allowed for the home, the homeowner does not need to compromise on their own available living space. This approach is a win/win for everyone. The extra building cost incurred by the owner for the rental suite, can be easily off-set and amortized over time by the rental suite revenue.

I would also propose that council consider extending the above policy to owners of existing homes. That is, to permit adding on a one- or two-bedroom rental suite, where space is available. Why not adopt this approach? Everyone benefits.

Unfortunately, the current mindset by city hall seems to be pre-occupied by the power-tripping joys of enforcing compliance through threat of litigation. I see no constructive ideas. The only construction that I see happening is bureaucratic empire-building in the bylaw department. This is a destructive attitude for any community to permit, especially a small community. It is alienating and divisive.

The current negative and punitive attitude of city hall and council needs to change. They must be expected and required to apply a much higher standard of behaviour and set of positive and inclusive community values. Hopefully, the upcoming election will get new candidates elected who can bring that enlightened attitude and style to council. Then council will have the daunting challenge to commence the much-needed civic and civil re-education process of certain bureaucrats in city hall.

Dave Robertson

Vancouver

 

My little contribution to society

September 29, 2002 was a day of wonder. People from at least three different countries came together in the pouring rain to learn a little bit about the Whistler Valley and help to preserve it so that other people can enjoy it for years to come. I’m speaking about the ‘Ghost Town’ on the northeast end of Green Lake, Parkhurst as it was know in its day. Thirty families or so, lived there on the Shore of Green Lake in a little train stop on the PGE railroad originally know as Mile 42.

B.C. Rivers Day brought people from Seattle (whom I had stopped in the street), Japan (Tamwood International College), and Canada, together on one of the worst days of the fall so far. We cleaned up what is known as John’s Garden and the cabin that John lived in for 11 years. Beer cans, part of a couch, lots of glass, and most of a four door Chevette that somehow made it out there. In reality, only 34 people or so trespassed to do their bit.

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