On December 15th, CVRD Corporate Secretary Joe Barry sent an email to Lynne Smith. In part, Mr. Barry said, “However, if you are still thinking that there might be a referendum regarding the Saltair Community Centre, the Directors do not support holding a referendum.”
Before the property was purchased in 2014, Saltairians asked for a referendum. After the property was purchased in 2014, Tom Hockin offered to pay for a referendum. In 2015 when it was said updating the building could cost $1Million, Saltairians again asked for a referendum. In 2016, when it became widely known the building contained a lot of asbestos and mould counts 55 times higher than normal, Saltairians asked for a referendum yet again. In 2017, when the CVRD obtained the building assessment that indicates maintaining and updating the building over the next ten years will cost $3 Million Plus, 628 Saltairians petitioned the CVRD for a referendum. This is the petition our CVRD Directors have just denied.
Although he CVRD is not required to conduct a referendum about spending Saltair tax and grant dollars on the old school building, its failure to do so in the face of Saltair’s repeated requests is a matter of trust. How can we trust politicians who do not do what the clear majority asks?
Allan J. MacEachen was a long-time Liberal cabinet minister, senator and Cape Bretoner. He died in September 2017 at the age of 94. MacEachen shepherded in medicare, the guaranteed income supplement for pensioners and national labour standards. He once said he thought maintaining trust with the electorate was the “very basis of politics.” Apparently, Director Dorey and his ilk at the CVRD are not like minded.