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Letters Nov. 17: Dangerous path for housing policy; weatherproofing our highways; support the carbon tax

B.C. Premier David Eby speaking at a press conference at the legislature in October. CHAD HIPOLITO, THE CANADIAN PRESS

With housing policies, Eby on dangerous path

The province’s theft of municipal authority, its heavy-handed, over-ruling of official community plan zoning across the province and its meddling in private property is proof that Premier David Eby lacks respect for us, the electorate and for democracy.

It’s a clumsy ill-considered attempt to address housing. This confirms my June letter in the Times Colonist that warned of the province’s troubling autocratic shift — a lack of consultation.

Eby doesn’t recognize the real issue: housing supply cannot keep up with uncontrolled growth and flow of people seeking to live in B.C.

Yes, there are limits to growth and until this issue is somehow managed, there will never be an equilibrium; rather an unrelenting unresolvable imbalance in housing.

Tried elsewhere, Eby’s ideas didn’t work, so why here and why ruin existing neighbourhoods with excessive infill.

This premier is travelling a dangerous, ill-considered path, inconsistent with Canadian democracy and property aspirations.

Eby’s true colours are indeed “autocracy,” not “democracy.” Shame on a formerly democratic party.

Rick Lee


‘Axe the tax’ slogan might sway next election

Re: “Leaders should be honest about the carbon tax: It works,” commentary, Nov. 15.

A problem with our election system is that there is no requirement to have any knowledge of how Canada works. This opens up the opportunity for politicians to exploit voters using slogans, rhymes and earworms.

Thomas F. Pedersen points out “axe-the-tax” is one such phrase. Stringing those together is a stroke of (evil) genius.

It simultaneously eliminates any requirement for understanding, but provides an incentive to vote. (And doesn’t work in French.)

Watch the next general election campaign and see how much the slogan is used. It may produce our next prime minister.

Joe Harvey


Support the carbon tax, go for that extra cash

Fighting climate change is not going to be easy. But it’s a British Columbia-proven good strategy. The carbon tax affects those who waste or use a lot of carbon, causing unnecessary pollution. Ordinary folk get more cash back than they pay in carbon tax.

It does seem like a lack of communication. It would be good to see a table of where my income would fit and how much I would get back.

The other problem I see is the looming federal election, where the Conservatives or the Liberals will make the climate change laws.

The Conservatives have a simple slogan, axe the tax. I’m quite sure the wasteful and excessive people will be happy. But our children won’t. The ­Liberals have a carbon tax in place and it is sort of working, but a working framework is in place.

We need to step up and start the conversation, the carbon tax works. You can axe the tax but the carbon tax works. The carbon tax works but it’s hard work against axe the tax.

Climate change laws need our help. Our help is simple, vote to support the carbon tax, which works and puts extra cash in our pockets.

Jim Shortreed


More information, please, on carbon tax

I wonder how many of our leaders understand the carbon tax well enough to be honest about it, or even explain it. I doubt if Pierre Poilievre even wants to understand it let alone be honest about it. Not on his agenda.

It would be helpful if the carbon tax rebates were more obvious to everyone. I’m not sure how the individual rebates are worked out, but an item on tax assessment forms would be a start.

Even better would be a cheque, however that would just create more bureaucracy.

John M. Neilson


Holocaust education is in the B.C. curriculum

When my kids attended our neighbourhood school years ago, they first learned about the Holocaust in elementary school (as well as in our home), and it was a constant topic of study throughout middle school and high school.

A quick check indicates that it is still part of today’s curriculum, beginning in Grade 5.

In announcing that the Holocaust will become part of the curriculum, either Premier David Eby is brazenly trying to score cheap political votes, or he’s blatantly ignorant of our provincial curriculum, which his government is responsible for. Why is that?

Either scenario speaks volumes of our current inept leader, who’s more interested in creating cheap soundbites for a blasé populous, rather than providing leadership in any capacity.

It’s shameful, yet here we are.

Tara L. Houle

North Saanich

Parksville vacations coming to an end

I didn’t think too much about the controversy over short term rentals. I don’t own a home with a rental suite attached.

Then it struck me. Our large extended multi-generational family rented a home every year for our summer holiday in Parksville. It was perfect; large kitchen and dining room, bunk beds for the kids, close to the beach.

None of the resorts or hotels offered the amenities of this large house. But abruptly our 10 years of beach time together has come to an end.

Our rented house falls under the STR legislation and won’t be allowed to be rented short-term anymore. Well, we’ve had a lot of years of wonderful holidays there and I’m grateful for that. But it’s over.

Parksville will now have one more unit added to its housing supply. I know how I’ll be voting in the next election!

Mike Lane


All that inflation helps the rich, hurts the poor

Cowichan-Malahat-Langford MP Alistair MacGregor said recently that the reason he got into federal politics was because of policies that were “hurting my community.” Pray tell, which were those? Couldn’t have been the disability savings accounts which were brought in by the late Jim Flaherty, who was motivated by having a disabled son.

By voting for harmful policies enacted by the Liberals, he has done the same, particularly with the one which puts excessive restrictions on natural health products. The NDP should have pushed back against it because you’d think the NDP wouldn’t be for something like that, but here we are.

Allowing the government to print money far in excess of what the economy could bear is also a deeply harmful action that made housing and food costs skyrocket. The Weimar Republic called, they want their wheelbarrow of cash for a loaf of bread policy back!

Does MacGregor not realize that ­enabling such inflation helps the rich while harming the very poor he claims to champion? If he wants to talk about policies hurting this community today, he’d better take a look in the mirror.

April J. Gibson


Embrace the bike lanes, they help everyone

All I see lately is complaining about the new bike lanes from drivers who have the idea that cars should be prioritized above all else.

When writers complain about the Fort Street bike lanes and say families with young children and the elderly can’t bike, do they realize there are many who can’t drive? Who are the families and elderly I see using the bike lanes daily, if they are so useless?

It’s time for us to move beyond prioritizing the car above all else. Families can bike, and many are — myself included.

The Fort Street bike lanes use a fraction of the street space we dedicate to cars and are being embraced by many as a way to safely move around without being shackled to a car.

We should celebrate alternatives to driving, because every person that chooses to bike is one less car sitting in traffic for those who want to drive.

Owen Williams


Malahat fix is great, check other areas

It is good to see that the provincial government has finally repaired the atmospheric river damage to the Malahat Highway. However, has it identified the other vulnerable sections — potentially weakened by the same river — and does it have a plan to remediate, or will it be “surprised” again and have us wait two years for reaction and resolution?

Roger Love



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• Mail: Letters to the editor, Times Colonist, 201-655 Tyee Rd.,Victoria, B.C. V9A 6X5

• Aim for no more than 250 words; ­subject to editing for length and clarity. Provide your contact information.

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