In regard to John Mallett’s letter of January 19 regarding the GERTIE bus referendum.

Tuesday, February 2 2016

As a Mudge resident, John expressed an unwillingness to pay for a service that he will never use. 

A few comments: First, although John may not use the service there are other Mudge residents who do. Second, as tax payers most of us pay for services we may not use, but recognize the broader public benefit — consider hospitals and schools, for instance. 

John also expressed concern that the tax rate would be $25 per $100,000 of assessed value, and I would point out that the immediate impact will be $12.50 per $100,000 with the option to access up to the full amount at a future date. Given that this service is responsibly and prudently managed and will continue to be governed and managed locally, I have confidence that the GERTIE team will be frugal with our resources. The fact that we are creating jobs on Gabriola is, in my mind, a benefit resulting in those wages and expenditures being reinvested in the community. 

And on a final note, I rarely use GERTIE but I am very happy to see that my elderly friends have a way to get back and forth to the Village and that my neighbours at the south end with teenage children are relieved from having to drive their kids everywhere. I’m delighted that the small increase in my property taxes will accomplish all those things. And hats off to the GERTIE team and Howard Houle, our Regional Director, for having the foresight and determination to bring this project to fruition. 

Sincerely, 

Dyan Dunsmoor-Farley