Letters of the week – March 10

The end of an era and Thunder in the Valley sparked letters to the editor this week.

Farewell to unassailable Richard Berg

To the Editor,

Richard Berg died the other day after a short illness. Sadly, he will be missed.

We came to know him through his letter writing and his participation in common causes.

Richard lived in a world of ideas, some of which became those causes for which he liked to take up arms. He wrote and talked about these with intelligence and force, sometimes offending the very people he wished to influence, including us. He had character and was fervent about his causes.

Even though we often disagreed we found him stimulating and welcomed his participation in our discussions.

Richard loved the arts and enjoyed all types of music, and liked going to the theatre: local and out of town. At one memorable luncheon we compared all the big swing bands that we had seen live, and we got excited with our memories.

Richard was an important friend to our community and to us. He shall be missed, by us and many others.

Robert Gunn and David Stern,

Port Alberni

Was $93K necessary?

To the Editor,

So the City of Port Alberni has approved $93,000 in projected costs to hold the drag races on Stamp Avenue. Good idea? Bad idea? Do the people have a say? Is this the mandate voters thought they gave Mr. Ruttan and council when they elected them?

The dividing islands will be removed, barricades purchased or borrowed and installed, and new lines painted. Then  run the two-day event and then restore the road back to operational standard. How many days in total will the driving public be detoured around the ‘drag strip’?

The “Thunder in the Valley” management states the increased insurance is more than they can afford to host this event on our city roads.

But city officials say that’s OK, the taxpayer has a lot of available money.

Isn’t this the same group of bureaucrats that cried about not having enough money to service the city’s existing infrastructure a few weeks ago? Now  we can splurge on drags that can’t pay for themselves?

Is this just more of that, “alternate approval process” situation giving bureaucrats full licence to spend millions without any referendum vote?

The proposed  construction of our new and improved airport means it may not be available for the drags. The regional district did not want to mandate that the contractor work around the Thunder in the Valley event. Yet as of today we are weeks away from even tendering the project.

Even now, it would still be possible to add a clause to the tender document to ask for a window to run the drags at the airport. And at this time there’s  no assurance the airport runway will be closed in August.

As someone who spent a good many years making construction changes in operational industrial facilities without interrupting production, I find it hard to understand that construction can’t accommodate the drags for two days in August. Surely the cost of having the drags at the airport would be less than the $93,000 to hold them in town.

Or is this just disregarding public inconvenience as we witnessed when no one could predict road closures some years back when the ministry of highways decided a median would be good at the bottom of the hump?

Gary Seinen,

Port Alberni

 

‘Mary Jane’ has good long history

To the Editor,

Re: Bowing to the power of judges, BC Views, March 1.

Tom Fletcher missed the bullseye regarding marijuana, implying it’s an “inconsistent” herbal remedy that hasn’t been studied much because it’s been illegal.

Government subsidized prohibitionists in North America have hindered research progress, however, the plant has been documented medically for more than 5,000 years without a single death.

That’s safety and consistency on a biblical scale.

Stan White,

Dillon, Colorado

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