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Letters Jan. 23: Tree protection in Langford; enjoying roller derby; praise for health workers

Langford City Hall on Goldstream Avenue. DARREN STONE, TIMES COLONIST

Langford offered many chances for public input

I would like to clear up some misconceptions surrounding Langford council’s decision to enact a tree protection bylaw.

Above all, we feel that there is overwhelming public support for this bylaw. People have voiced their support for this measure at recent council meetings, and individually I and other council members have heard from the public on numerous occasions requesting this kind of action.

Council chose to work swiftly towards adopting a bylaw simply because there were a few situations of unauthorized tree removal. Inclement weather and scheduling conflicts in the days leading up to Christmas were factors that determined the dates of the council meetings.

Regrettably, some have taken issue with the nature of the tree-cutting bylaw and have spread what we feel is deliberate misinformation about the bylaw’s legality.

We have heard these concerns also, and out of an abundance of caution staff gave this bylaw a second look and presented council with a slightly reworded tree protection bylaw last Monday.

Similarly, others have suggested that the bylaw was rushed, and did not provide an opportunity for public consultation, yet everyone who wished to address council on this matter was afforded an opportunity to be heard during the past three council meetings and may again address council on this matter when it comes forward for adoption in February.

Again, the public support for this initiative has been overwhelming.

Council last Monday also initiated a plan to develop an overarching urban forest management strategy for Langford. We expect that this work will include opportunities for public input. When the tree management strategy is completed, it is expected to replace the current, and recently adopted, tree protection bylaw. We expect that the strategy will be completed by the summer.

Scott Goodmanson
Mayor of Langford

Cruise ship benefits might be incorrect

I am definitely not against cruise ships docking in Victoria, having been fortunate to be able to disembark from a couple of cruises in Victoria rather than Vancouver and having to then take the ferry back to the Island.

I do, however, question how much value cruise passengers bring to our fair city. Both last year and this year, the cruise ship schedule shows many cruises arriving at 7 p.m. or later and then departing around midnight.

I imagine that it takes close to 90 minutes for the ships to dock, passengers to disembark and then make their way downtown.

This doesn’t leave much time for people to spend money here. I would just like to know how the benefits are calculated.

Alanna Wrean

What rules of the road? What traffic signs?

The drivers of the Amazon delivery trucks racing around our city streets must be pressed and stressed to get the job done.

Otherwise why would they be speeding in both directions up and down my one-way street each day? Or perhaps when you are as big as Amazon, such local trivia as traffic signs don’t apply.

Just honk and drive, baby.

John Fry

More high praise for health-care workers

Having spent the night of Jan. 13 in the emergency room of the Royal Jubilee Hospital, I have a greater understanding of, and sympathy for our health-care workers.

It was overwhelming to witness what they have to deal with on a regular basis. It was impossible for them to deal with the every need of every patient.

They did their best from the nurses, orderlies, cleaning workers and many others. I also felt sorry for the many vulnerable, sad cases that I saw there. No one should have to wait hours and hours with very little attention or info, as to what is going on.

One young woman was passed out for over and hour in the washroom before someone told staff. I was thankful to be healthy enough to endure a rather uncomfortable night in a chair recliner, when others were in much worse shape.

I am praying for a government that has integrity and empathy for the people in our fast declining Canada.

Jean Noone

Aiming for the big prize in a brilliant plan

Let me congratulate former premier John Horgan on his courage to commit 16 billion of our tax and hydro-rate dollars to completing former-former premier Christy Clark’s Site C dam.

Both had courage to ignore First Nations complaints about treaty violations (of course we violate treaties — duh) and even rebuked the UN High Commission on Human Rights when they said they should stop and ask First Nations.

Where does the UN come off telling us what to do? Best of all, they ignored the whiners who thought money should be spent on health or housing or education or other silly frills.

Now Premier David Eby will realize the big prize. Using Site C to subsidize LNG? Well that truly is the big prize, only we’re not supposed to say it out loud.

So we’ll talk about the prize of flooding the Peace Valley, finally ending foolish talk about B.C. food security. We get our food from California. Yes, they do sometimes have dry spells and sometimes it rains, but we have faith: Trust the market.

Finally, if anyone thought we might get food from the Fraser Valley, forget that. Our LNG export, supported by Site C, will help destabilize climate, wiping out the Fraser Valley. And scorching the Okanagan, by the way.

This plan is brilliant on so many levels.

Greg Holloway

Nothing better than watching roller derby

Re: “Teen picked for national roller-derby squad inspired by graphic novel,” Jan. 15.

I absolutely loved the front-page article on Naomi Morrell and roller derby.

Our daughter, “Sweet Sufferin,” skated with Rink Minks out of Courtenay for many years. We attended many derbies at Archie Browning arena in Esquimalt and others at Fuller Lake, Nanaimo and Comox.

Over the years we met such wonderful people as “Jack Widow,” “Goody 2 Shoes” (R.I.P.), “Kitty Glitter,” “Rainbow Fright” and many others, from refs to event announcers. As well, some of the fans are an event unto themselves.

Nothing melts my senior’s heart more than a tattooed female on eight wheels with a smile.

Naomi, you have chosen a most wonderful sport, where the sportsmanship, camaraderie and mutual respect is something to behold.

“Go Go Rollergirl …”

Joe Hronek

That five per cent makes it tough for the rest

Re: “Most dog owners will respect the rules,” letter, Jan. 11.

Yes, they will.

The reality is that there is always five per cent of the population that makes life miserable and nasty for the majority.

Whether it is negligent dog owners, truckers shutting down the capital, road-rage folks or problematic employees at a workplace, they will continue to be a presence in our day-to-day lives.

Sadly, education, legal admonishment and other societal norms are simply ignored by these folks.

John Stevenson

Another view of the Sussexes’ visit here

Re: “How Vancouver Island escape led to Harry and Meghan’s split with Royal Family,” Jan. 11.

As a North Saanich resident, I was, like almost every sentient being on the Peninsula, aware of the royals’ stay here. Your own editor wrote a letter to his readers reminding us that even if we knew where they were staying, to leave them alone. I think we did as requested. And I know of people who had fun directing the hapless paparazzi to far-off sites when they asked for directions. We were all in on this one.

Again, your own paper reported that Captain Miles Arsenault, owner of Bay to Bay Charters, refused a nice chunk of change to take a few American and Japanese reporters over to get a good shot from the water of Mille Fleurs, the estate where the Sussexes were staying.

He was just starting a business and could have used the money. He said of the couple, well, “maybe they’ll call and say, ‘Hey let’s go for a ride’.” Don’t think they did.

Deep Cove Market posted a “press-free zone” so that media from Italy, Japan, the United States and Britain would leave her customers alone. She thought the British reporters had been “very nice” to her staff as well.

Notice that these are not just British media making life difficult.

And finally, thanks to the Canadian Taxpayers Federation and the CBC, we finally learned that we (the taxpayers) were responsible for nearly $334,000 in security protection for Harry and then Meghan, covering his trips to see her in Toronto and their short stay here in North Saanich, a Christmas gift from us to Harry and Meghan for a cool $93,000.

I don’t remember them thanking us. They left as quickly as they came.

Virginia Watson-Rouslin
North Saanich

Plenty of time for Pluto and for Greater Victoria

Re: “Let’s give Pluto its proper place,” letter, Jan. 12.

I’d like to reassure the writer, who worries that the planets will amalgamate before Pluto regains its status.

Even if it takes a Plutonian year for our solar system to unite, that time span equals 248 years on Earth, which should coincide with the event of Greater Victoria getting its act together.

The celebration of both miracles will be nothing short of galactic.

Kate Soles


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