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However, reading the background info on the survey, I noticed that the projected revenue for the lots is $1,000,000, down from an originally projected $2,000,000.

Checking through the municipal budget figures, I noticed that the amount deferred from the budget for "repayment of capital related to the debris barrier and parking lots" is $983,000.

That means that the municipality, after all the work, studies, staff time and damage to the business community, is going to come out $17,000 ahead of the costs this year (providing they don't defer the capital repayment).

Even the municipal calculations only show the revenue going to $1,375,000 if lots 4 and 5 are brought into the pay-parking fold.

Next year, the contribution to the capital costs on the lots is going to have to cover both this year's (the deferred $983,000) and next year's, presumably something in the neighborhood of $1,900,000.

That's a shortfall in 2011/2012 in parking revenue of $525,000, if we're lucky.

Personally, I think deferring the capital repayment this year is a very poor move.

It's being done to help keep the 2011 property tax increase to four per cent, so it's basically a political choice, not a financial one.

All of which brings us to what to do in the long term with the parking lots.  The problem with infrastructure is that it can't be un-built.  Even with all the lots pay parking; it's not much of an earner, if at all.  If we make them free, then the capital repayment, $983,000 a year, will have to go on to our property taxes.

David Buzzard


"The Locals' Club"

In response to the letter posted in last week's Pique , I believe this might be a good time to take a hard look at the Elitist Locals' Club in Whistler.

While I still haven't picked up a 40-something cougar from the new Dusty's, I could still answer "yes" to a few of the questions listed.

However, while entertaining and creative as the Locals Test was, I started wondering what the criteria really should be for being a local?

Is it really being able to answer questions about where you've been drunk, the popular characters you knew/know, and who you've picked up at a bar, or should it be more about what is actually in your heart?