Letters of the week – jan. 28

Bike lanes and tipping culture piqued the interest of Alberni Valley readers this week.

Time to take training wheels off

To the Editor,

Re: Bike lane, truck road top engineering wish list, Jan. 21.

I am tired of hearing this “old-guard” attitude from people such as Coun. Jack McLeman, who argues that we don’t need bike lanes because he believes there are not a “whole lot of bikers in Port Alberni.”

Rather than getting with the times and seeing our town as an innovator or a leader, these people think that if we can just return to the glory days of resource extraction, people will flood into town to occupy all of those empty houses.

I guess these people don’t get out much. From Squamish and Victoria, to France and Colombia and Australia, local governments are promoting cycling paths and encouraging residents to become active in the outdoors.

Creating more and safer cycling routes in Port Alberni would serve many goals:

• Make the city more attractive to new residents and tourists (good for the economy).

• Get more people biking to work or for errands (good for residents’ health and fitness).

• Reduce car use (good for the environment).

Even if we could get that heavy industry back, it would not make this town an attractive place to live. But that’s not realistic anyway.

How about a realistic industry for our times? There is no reason that Port Alberni could not be like Squamish—an affluent and desired tourist destination. We have all of the same natural attributes: mountains, rainforest, salt water, beautiful clean lakes. We are close to two major cities, much more accessible than Tofino.

Focusing on these natural attributes would also attract new residents: people like myself. We work online or we commute. We don’t come for a job, we bring our job. We choose where to live based upon affordability and quality of life.

These notions of keeping cyclists off the streets, or keeping the kite-boarders as out of sight as possible, are ridiculous. Stop clinging to the past.

Jacqueline Windh,

Port Alberni

 

Ticked off over tips

To the Editor,

So I am just wondering how long I fell asleep. Seems like I just woke up and found out that the food industry is charging at least 15 per cent gratuity, without informing the customer, regardless of service or quality. Since when do I not have a choice of giving a tip?

Forgive me for not staying quiet about this, but this is my choice, not theirs. It is not up to me to help subsidize  employees’ wages.

I will  always leave a tip for good service and good food, but do not think I should pay for bad service or bad food.

Milt Levins,

Port Albern

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