Peachland News asked the candidates for Peachland council questions about themselves and important issues. Below is a question asked and the unedited answers received.
A. Should council continue to offer potentially millions of dollars of land for the project?
B. Should the matter go to referendum?
|Peter SchierbeckA. This project is to look after those who have built our community, currently our senors are having to move to other communities as they age. This facility will keep them at home close to their families and friends. Peachland has taken the plunge and acquired the real estate as requested by our Provincial and Federal Governments, they are to come up with construction costs. I believe that this will happen in the near future and Peachland will be a much better place for it.
B. A referendum must be held if the municipality is to borrow money and take over 5 years to repay it. There is no requirement for Peachland to borrow money on this project. I believe the majority of Peachlanders will appreciate this facility.
|Ernie HurdA. NO….I think we should sell the land and put the money towards affordable housing…let’s be a leader.
|Eldon KerbesA. Any facility or complex whether it is for recreation or seniors can only be achieved if the land required is donated by the municipality.
B. If borrowing is required a referendum is required by law.
|Eric HallA. The justification for donating such an expensive piece of land must be based on the facility being available to Peachland residents. The project has been handed over to the “Good Samaritan’s Society” without that provision being made clear.
B. We should start with a public information meeting and full disclosure.
|Keith FieldingA. Yes: the project will not proceed without the municipal land contribution. However, the land is will be leased and not “given” to the project.
B. Refenda do have their place but they are expensive and often divisive with win-lose outcomes. My preference is to build consensus through public information sessions and effective community consultation.
|Ken WhiteleggA. Darn you. Seniors housing is certainly one of major dilemmas. What we are talking about is a fair chunk of Land and I for one do not believe the town owes me something if any one does it’s our kids [just a joke] [try and collect that] but I have to say that I have heard people say they would not have gone elsewhere if there was a place to go here. Clearly there is a need but Peachland has a dismal amount of flat land and must be used to its greatest advantage. We have to have significant amount of 20% dollars from the Govt funding there is of course special corporations that handle such development it’s there, we just have to dig for it.. The present approach is being looked at is how can we reduce the foot print and look at something higher the limit of wooden structures is six stories one storey for parking 5 stories above providing beautiful views of the lake even if is set in the back. A very good idea.
B. I believe it should go to referendum after due diligence has been completed.
|Lee SawchukA. I have difficulty in council offering millions of dollars of valuable real estate to a select group at no charge. I believe this particular land should be sold as its prime real estate that could bring much needed revenue into our town. The Senior’s Society project could be relocated on lesser expensive property
B. A referendum is an expensive option, but perhaps a necessity to find out what Peachlanders want . Other options (less expensive) as in mail ballots may suffice.
|Terry CondonA. This is a lease arrangement only so no loss to Peachland. Senior housing will allow residents to stay.
B. Referenda are for issues related to borrowing money, and would not apply here
|Grant EisworthA. Who owns the land? The District, or the Taxpayers of Peachland? Is the district in the business of land ownership or development? Any lands owned by the taxpayers should be used for the benefit of the taxpayers, or am I missing something here?
B. Any time we can get the voters and taxpayers of Peachland to participate in the decisions which affect us all, then by all means. However, we must caution on spending unnecessary funds for the smaller decisions which can and should be made by the council which has been voted in to do just that (and that is run the district on behalf of the voters/taxpayers).
|Lindsay BellAnswers not received.|
|Charlette BroadowayA. The district is not “giving” the land away but the land contribution will ensure the project is even viable. The senior’s need a facility that will allow them to stay in the community. The project is planned to bring a number of service groups and community services for seniors and others in the community under one roof. It will benefit many…not just a small group of seniors.
B. The necessity for referendum is needed to borrow money. We are not planning on doing that. It is clear to me that the public needs more information as to the outline of the project and where it stands currently.
|Cindy FortinA. We have a growing population of seniors and we need to take care of our seniors. We definitely need more senior housing in Peachland and in an area that is not too distant from the downtown. I would be in support of some land contribution in this area, with some assisted living units as well. Seniors should not be forced to pack up and leave their community because they need some support.
B. Referendums are expensive, and I do believe the point of electing council members is for them to listen to the people and then make the decisions. But in this case, where millions of dollars of land is involved, it may be a good idea in order to give a greater voice to the residents and taxpayers of the community. It may be called the “District of Peachland’s contribution”, but in fact, it would be the taxpayers’.
|Vern MobergA. The size of our town if we want to do it know we need a partner
B. No I don’t think it is needed
Answers submitted by candidates after publication will be added to this post.