EDITORIAL: History repeats on waterfront

No one should surprised that Port Alberni city council's decision to sell the former plywood lots has the public upset.

It should surprise no one that Port Alberni city council’s declaration last week that they want to sell former plywood lots A and B to Canadian Maritime Engineering has upset the masses.

Residents opposed a similar deal two years ago, when the city leased the land to the Port Alberni Port Authority, who in turn were unsuccessful in securing a deal with CME, who was looking at building ships with its Port Alberni branch, Canadian Alberni Engineering.

The land sat unused for almost a year, until the public cried loud enough that the city cancelled the lease.

Everyone thought that ship had sailed—until last week, when council all of a sudden announced the pending sale, minus the middleman.

Land discussions typically take place in camera under the Community Charter, and there will still be a public hearing process. But the lack of transparency in this case is glaring.

One has to wonder whether the land will sit empty again, while taxpayers and council engage in a dust-up.

When one of council’s own publicly pans the decision-making process, as councillor Chris Alemany has, you’ve got to wonder.

The selling price is low, but the remediation costs will be high, as will the cost of public opinion. The city has chosen a marine industrial direction for the land: let’s hope something actually happens on the site this time.

Optics mean everything in this city. A decision such as the one surrounding the sale of the plywood lots causes one to question whether city hall is wearing blinders.

— ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS

 

Just Posted

Vancouver Island pharmacist suspended for giving drugs with human placenta

RCMP had samples of the seized substances tested by Health Canada

Port Alberni cyclist collides with passing car

Cyclist received minor injuries

Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations receive grants to bring ancestors’ remains home

Grants are part of the Royal B.C. Museum’s new repatriation program

Get ready for a week of sunshine across Vancouver Island

Environment Canada is forecasting temperatures in the high teens all this week

North Island Tour De Rock rider Benjamin Leah leads team to Port Hardy

“You don’t have issues and problems when you look at these kids and how much they’re going through.”

Video: Flyers new mascot ‘Gritty’ a bearded, googly-eyed terror

The Philadelphia Flyers unveiled their new mascot Monday, and as one would expect of the team that gave us the “Broad Street Bullies,” he’s far from cuddly.

Vancouver Island designated as foreign trade zone

Designation simplifies importing and exporting and provides duty relief

Edmonton cannabis company revenues more than triples to $19.1 million

Aurora Cannabis revenues more than triple in fourth quarter

Seattle one step closer to NHL after arena plan approved

Seattle City Council unanimously approved plans for a privately funded $700 million renovation of KeyArena

Harvest Moon to light up B.C. skies with an ‘autumn hue’

It’s the first moon after the autumn equinox

Hockey league gets $1.4M for assistance program after Humboldt Broncos crash

Program will help players, families, coaches and volunteers after the shock of the deadly crash

Canada has removed six out of 900 asylum seekers already facing U.S. deportation

Ottawa had said the ‘overwhelming majority’ had been removed

North Island Midget Eagles bit by Alberni Valley Bulldogs, hammer Nanaimo Clippers

It was a bit of an up and down rollercoaster ride of a weekend for the North Island Midget Eagles.

Most Read