Letter re: Dec. 3 editorial, “Put the rail system out of our misery”

Monday, December 10 2012

Hi Derek. I disagree with your synopsis re the E&N rail system upgrade.
If we are to remotely begin to address our “global warming” issue surely public rail transit plays a serious role. Rail traffic is, as I understand it, by far the cheapest, most environmentally friendly land based method of moving people and goods, and so needs to be encouraged and supported. The E&N rail is our only rail link between the major cities on Vancouver Island and I, for one, would love to see it upgraded and eventually have the “people moving” part enhanced. It’s a great ride. It is, I admit at this point in time, a fairly tenuous link between places on Vancouver Island, but I believe it would be a serious error to simply let it slide.
While I disagree with Director Houle’s vote regarding this issue (perhaps I don’t have sufficient information) I wholeheartedly embrace his belief that “... if we are going to do this the taxpayer needs to be informed and have a say” (i.e. a referendum?).
Once again we are left discussing a major tax issue after it is implemented. At least with the raised possibility of a bus system on Gabriola we are going to get a chance for lots of community input before it goes forward – and it looks like this is something you and I strongly agree on. My latest rant.
~ Bob Andrew