20 Questions

twobits
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by twobits »

Julius Bloomfield wrote:
clouseau wrote:
Julius Bloomfield wrote:
As for the cake and eat it comment - we are all neighbours and whether we live in or out of the city we are linked economically, socially, in education, health care and all service industries. Many people working in those industries servicing the city live in those outer areas. The tourists that come and stay in Penticton hotels and eat in it's restaurants and spend in the shops come to see the lakes, the trails, the golf courses, the wineries and the farms, many of which are not in the city limits. The financial benefits of being in or out of the city works both ways. So we are neighbours in more ways than one and we should respect the choices each individual makes as to where they live. I live in Naramata because I found a wonderful piece of land there to build my dream home. If that piece of land had been in the city limits I would now be living in Penticton.
Thanks for reading.





I often hear this argument being put forward by RDOS rural directors. Apparently because RDOS residents shop in Penticton this somehow makes up for not contributing to Penticton amenities. This thinking ignores the fact that residents of Penticton ALSO shop here but still must pay property taxes that support community amenities used by those living in the RDOS areas.

I note that at least the Westbech community contributes some token fees towards the use of Penticton recreational amenities and also I believe they pay money for the Penticton library. I have asked this question of you before and would like a more candid answer, if you were Mayor of Penticton would you create an agreement for Naramata residents similar to the Westbench agreement that provides some contributing funds into Penticton for use of our recreational amenities ?


It's not just that RDOS residents shop in the city, asI tried to explain inmy previous post they are a much larger part of this community than that. I know that in the past the city explored the issue of charging RDOS areas for the use of city facilities and I heard that the RDOS director for Naramata agreed to that, but then the city decided not to charge more for non-city residents (I was at that council meeting and remember that decision). As I have said before on other posts, I have no problem in paying more on my taxes for the facilities and I will certainly bring this up if elected, if agreed to by council then we can approach the RDOS. However we will have to look at all the areas and not just Naramata.


My recollection of the two tier pricing system was that it was feared the system would be too cumbersome and confusing with identification and the expense of administration could outweigh the revenue. I always thought that a bit of a cop out. My solution would be to jack all of the prices 25% and provide a 25% discount to those that provide proof of residency via gov't or city provided ID. Just call it a Resident Taxpayer Discount rather than a Non Resident Surcharge and put the onus on people to bring the proper ID in order to take advantage of the discount.
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steadyeddie
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by steadyeddie »

I too am enjoying the 20 questions although I hope the questions get a little more thought provoking such as:

1) How do you plan on dealing with the projected $1,500,000.00 deficit in the 2012 City of Penticton budget?
2) The SOEC management contract is due for review in 2 years, in light of the performance of the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre and the SOEC under the direction of Global would you renew the contract with them?
3) Global is an american company paid to run the SOEC taking City of Penticton taxpayer money out of the comunity and out of the country, would you consider publicly running this facility thus keeping City of Penticton taxpayer money in the community and in the country?
4) Would you approve of more City of Penticton owned property to be sold off at 40% of its purchase price, similar to the property located West of the SOEC at a loss of $1,375,000.00?
5) Do you consider being Mayor of the City of Penticton and the Chair of the RDOS a conflict of interest, and if elected would you pursue both positions?
6) Do you think that it is in the City of Penticton's best interest to remain in RDOS considering it costs the City of Penticton approximately $1,670,000.00 per year?
7) The City of Penticton along with Chamber members, through the Chamber of Commerce funds an Economic Developement Officer who answers to the Chamber of Commerce. Would you pursue having this position as a City of Penticton employee who would be adequatley funded to bring new buisness into the City of Penticton and answerable to City Council?
twobits
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by twobits »

steadyeddie wrote:I too am enjoying the 20 questions although I hope the questions get a little more thought provoking such as:

1) How do you plan on dealing with the projected $1,500,000.00 deficit in the 2012 City of Penticton budget?
2) The SOEC management contract is due for review in 2 years, in light of the performance of the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre and the SOEC under the direction of Global would you renew the contract with them?
3) Global is an american company paid to run the SOEC taking City of Penticton taxpayer money out of the comunity and out of the country, would you consider publicly running this facility thus keeping City of Penticton taxpayer money in the community and in the country?
4) Would you approve of more City of Penticton owned property to be sold off at 40% of its purchase price, similar to the property located West of the SOEC at a loss of $1,375,000.00?

After looking at this a bit, the lands no longer have the houses on them and a large chunk of the consolodated property was devoted to road easment for Eckhart Ave widening. It is hardly a direct comparison of what was purchased and what was sold. Further, two independant appraisals were conducted and there will also be a public tender. What more would you like to see?

5) Do you consider being Mayor of the City of Penticton and the Chair of the RDOS a conflict of interest, and if elected would you pursue both positions?

I fail to understand how some of you see this as a conflict of interest. I view it as a big advantage. I would rather have a representative from Penticton, the largest financial contributor, to have the big chair. This is just stupid logic


6) Do you think that it is in the City of Penticton's best interest to remain in RDOS considering it costs the City of Penticton approximately $1,670,000.00 per year?

Agree
7) The City of Penticton along with Chamber members, through the Chamber of Commerce funds an Economic Developement Officer who answers to the Chamber of Commerce. Would you pursue having this position as a City of Penticton employee who would be adequatley funded to bring new buisness into the City of Penticton and answerable to City Council?


Not any more. They didn't get the contract
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clouseau
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by clouseau »

twobits wrote:
steadyeddie wrote:I too am enjoying the 20 questions although I hope the questions get a little more thought provoking such as:

1) How do you plan on dealing with the projected $1,500,000.00 deficit in the 2012 City of Penticton budget?
2) The SOEC management contract is due for review in 2 years, in light of the performance of the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre and the SOEC under the direction of Global would you renew the contract with them?
3) Global is an american company paid to run the SOEC taking City of Penticton taxpayer money out of the comunity and out of the country, would you consider publicly running this facility thus keeping City of Penticton taxpayer money in the community and in the country?
4) Would you approve of more City of Penticton owned property to be sold off at 40% of its purchase price, similar to the property located West of the SOEC at a loss of $1,375,000.00?

After looking at this a bit, the lands no longer have the houses on them and a large chunk of the consolodated property was devoted to road easment for Eckhart Ave widening. It is hardly a direct comparison of what was purchased and what was sold. Further, two independant appraisals were conducted and there will also be a public tender. What more would you like to see?

5) Do you consider being Mayor of the City of Penticton and the Chair of the RDOS a conflict of interest, and if elected would you pursue both positions?

I fail to understand how some of you see this as a conflict of interest. I view it as a big advantage. I would rather have a representative from Penticton, the largest financial contributor, to have the big chair. This is just stupid logic


6) Do you think that it is in the City of Penticton's best interest to remain in RDOS considering it costs the City of Penticton approximately $1,670,000.00 per year?

Agree
7) The City of Penticton along with Chamber members, through the Chamber of Commerce funds an Economic Developement Officer who answers to the Chamber of Commerce. Would you pursue having this position as a City of Penticton employee who would be adequatley funded to bring new buisness into the City of Penticton and answerable to City Council?


Not any more. They didn't get the contract



And a sad day for the chamber it is. At least some good people did get the contract. I credit our current Mayor and Council for making a good decision. Too bad that the Chamber didn’t clean up the internal mess and let it get to this point. I suppose when the guys supposedly elected to run the Chamber are too busy running their own political campaigns for council and school board respectively this is what happens instead…
clouseau
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by clouseau »

Julius Bloomfield wrote:It's not just that RDOS residents shop in the city, asI tried to explain inmy previous post they are a much larger part of this community than that. I know that in the past the city explored the issue of charging RDOS areas for the use of city facilities and I heard that the RDOS director for Naramata agreed to that, but then the city decided not to charge more for non-city residents (I was at that council meeting and remember that decision). As I have said before on other posts, I have no problem in paying more on my taxes for the facilities and I will certainly bring this up if elected, if agreed to by council then we can approach the RDOS. However we will have to look at all the areas and not just Naramata.



Thank you for answering my question and I am pleased that you would be prepared to ensure that rural areas start paying towards Penticton amenities.
Julius Bloomfield
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by Julius Bloomfield »

clouseau wrote:
Julius Bloomfield wrote:It's not just that RDOS residents shop in the city, asI tried to explain inmy previous post they are a much larger part of this community than that. I know that in the past the city explored the issue of charging RDOS areas for the use of city facilities and I heard that the RDOS director for Naramata agreed to that, but then the city decided not to charge more for non-city residents (I was at that council meeting and remember that decision). As I have said before on other posts, I have no problem in paying more on my taxes for the facilities and I will certainly bring this up if elected, if agreed to by council then we can approach the RDOS. However we will have to look at all the areas and not just Naramata.



Thank you for answering my question and I am pleased that you would be prepared to ensure that rural areas start paying towards Penticton amenities.


I was chatting with a couple of friends from Alberta last night and we were discussing this subject, they told me there are a couple of golf courses in Kananaskis that are government owned and Albertans pay one fee and non Albertans pay a higher fee. Nobody complains (too much!) which shows that there is a succesful 2 tier system for recreational facilities in other areas.
twobits
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by twobits »

Hey James Millar!!! I know you read castanet. What's with some of the lame and softball questions you are putting out to the Mayoral candidates. With the exception of a few, it's been fluff. I mean really, who cares if they would participate in a Gay Pride parade. Come up with some meat man! Let's see what these candidates know and don't know. If you need help from the public to come up with some serious questions, you have no business being the Editor of the Herald.
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clouseau
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by clouseau »

twobits wrote:Hey James Millar!!! I know you read castanet. What's with some of the lame and softball questions you are putting out to the Mayoral candidates. With the exception of a few, it's been fluff. I mean really, who cares if they would participate in a Gay Pride parade. Come up with some meat man! Let's see what these candidates know and don't know. If you need help from the public to come up with some serious questions, you have no business being the Editor of the Herald.



The one question I would like to see asked…

“What percentage rate of an annual tax increase would be your goal if elected Mayor”

And let’s see who will publicly commit to a number….
XT225
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by XT225 »

clouseau wrote:
twobits wrote:Hey James Millar!!! I know you read castanet. What's with some of the lame and softball questions you are putting out to the Mayoral candidates. With the exception of a few, it's been fluff. I mean really, who cares if they would participate in a Gay Pride parade. Come up with some meat man! Let's see what these candidates know and don't know. If you need help from the public to come up with some serious questions, you have no business being the Editor of the Herald.



The one question I would like to see asked…

“What percentage rate of an annual tax increase would be your goal if elected Mayor”

And let’s see who will publicly commit to a number….


The question in todays Herald was about the tax cut in 2011 and D.A. was the only one of the candidates who supported the tax decrease, though admitting that it only amounted to $10 - $12. Anyone with half a brain realizes that it was done for political reasons only and again - anyone with half a brain will likely use that info to vote OUT the incumbents. If I remember correctly the city treasurer recommended against any cuts to taxes in 2011, yet why did council not heed that warning? Political gain HAD to be the reason; however I think that it will backfire on them. I applaud all the three other candidates for their stance on at least maintaining taxation and not reducing it. We have a lot to pay off and council is already talking about new projects with the sale of city land. The wild spending spree has to stop; and with a new slate of council members in place soon, lets hope that they can stop it. The same question should be asked of the rest of councillors.
DblDwn11
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by DblDwn11 »

XT225 wrote:The question in todays Herald was about the tax cut in 2011 and D.A. was the only one of the candidates who supported the tax decrease, though admitting that it only amounted to $10 - $12. Anyone with half a brain realizes that it was done for political reasons only and again - anyone with half a brain will likely use that info to vote OUT the incumbents. If I remember correctly the city treasurer recommended against any cuts to taxes in 2011, yet why did council not heed that warning? Political gain HAD to be the reason; however I think that it will backfire on them. I applaud all the three other candidates for their stance on at least maintaining taxation and not reducing it. We have a lot to pay off and council is already talking about new projects with the sale of city land. The wild spending spree has to stop; and with a new slate of council members in place soon, lets hope that they can stop it. The same question should be asked of the rest of councillors.


I don't agree with your comment that supporting a tax decrease is strictly a political move. Actually if you'd bothered to read the Core Services Review done by the Helios Group, you'd see they recommended that the City find cost savings rather then tax increases.

"Penticton already has one of the largest revenue streams from property taxes among municipalities its size. Taxpayers have a
lower income than municipalities its size. Therefore, it is even more important for the City to exercise spending restraint and control." City of Penticton Core Services Review, page 12.

I think that the fact that D.A is staying the course and recommending further fiscal management is a good thing. The easy way out would be to tax more or increase fees (water,electricity etc)

I also don't understand how selling City land for fair market value to a private company can be equated to a spending spree. Maybe you can explain that one to me.
XT225
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by XT225 »

DblDwn11 wrote:
XT225 wrote:The question in todays Herald was about the tax cut in 2011 and D.A. was the only one of the candidates who supported the tax decrease, though admitting that it only amounted to $10 - $12. Anyone with half a brain realizes that it was done for political reasons only and again - anyone with half a brain will likely use that info to vote OUT the incumbents. If I remember correctly the city treasurer recommended against any cuts to taxes in 2011, yet why did council not heed that warning? Political gain HAD to be the reason; however I think that it will backfire on them. I applaud all the three other candidates for their stance on at least maintaining taxation and not reducing it. We have a lot to pay off and council is already talking about new projects with the sale of city land. The wild spending spree has to stop; and with a new slate of council members in place soon, lets hope that they can stop it. The same question should be asked of the rest of councillors.


I don't agree with your comment that supporting a tax decrease is strictly a political move. Actually if you'd bothered to read the Core Services Review done by the Helios Group, you'd see they recommended that the City find cost savings rather then tax increases.

"Penticton already has one of the largest revenue streams from property taxes among municipalities its size. Taxpayers have a
lower income than municipalities its size. Therefore, it is even more important for the City to exercise spending restraint and control." City of Penticton Core Services Review, page 12.

I think that the fact that D.A is staying the course and recommending further fiscal management is a good thing. The easy way out would be to tax more or increase fees (water,electricity etc)

I also don't understand how selling City land for fair market value to a private company can be equated to a spending spree. Maybe you can explain that one to me.


Exactly...excercise restraint; this applies to ALL capital projects that are not absolutely necessary, period; now and in the future until city debt is paid down. I didnt refer to the land sale; thats another topic; meant other projects like the Ashton Alley sidewalk and the Vassalaki Marina. Enough is enough. Somehow the city thinks only of cutting "operating expenses" and still can't get capital project spending under control. A new council will have a different approach; lets hope, anyways. Also cutting taxes by 0.5% was nothing BUT a political move; Ashton even admitted that Penticton was the ONLY municipality in BC to do so; and WHY? Is it because we are in such good shape? Not a chance; quite the opposite. That $10 - $12 is sure to help out old age pensioners; they might even be able to buy a half sack of brewskis. Give me a break.
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by fluffy »

This morning's question tackled the issue of candidates who live outside Penticton, not a new one for sure. I liked Katie's take on it, that as long as provincial legislation remains unchanged that it is what it is, and the decision sits in the hands of the electorate. Mr. Powell on the other hand, would have the decision taken out of our hands completely and legislate against out-of-town candidates. Pretty ballsy statement coming from a relative new-comer to the area who, when you come right down to it, has made less of a contribution to Penticton than either of the two out-of-town candidates.
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twobits
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by twobits »

-fluffy- wrote:This morning's question tackled the issue of candidates who live outside Penticton, not a new one for sure. I liked Katie's take on it, that as long as provincial legislation remains unchanged that it is what it is, and the decision sits in the hands of the electorate. Mr. Powell on the other hand, would have the decision taken out of our hands completely and legislate against out-of-town candidates. Pretty ballsy statement coming from a relative new-comer to the area who, when you come right down to it, has made less of a contribution to Penticton than either of the two out-of-town candidates.


So then does a vote for Katie imply a vote of disapproval for the Provincial legislation rather than a vote because she was the better candidate? This should be a vote for the best candidate and not a referendum on legislation. If there truly is a grassroots desire to change the rules, it should be debated at a UBCM convention and presented to the Provincial gov't if there is a majority opinion. Until then, the people should be voting for the best candidate else it is a potentially wasted vote.

Edit to add- Mr Powell, with some of his answers, is realy prooving to be "rather out there". You can almost feel the cut and dried military attitude come thru in his responses. Not nearly the entertainment value of a Benny.
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by Captain77 »

If majority vote at UBCM can effect change in the municipal election legislation with regards to the eligibility of out of towners to run for office, then who do you suppose is more likely to vote for change? I'm not saying I agree/disagree - at the end of the day, the electorate is the ultimate authority.
twobits
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Re: 20 Questions

Post by twobits »

Captain77 wrote:If majority vote at UBCM can effect change in the municipal election legislation with regards to the eligibility of out of towners to run for office, then who do you suppose is more likely to vote for change? I'm not saying I agree/disagree - at the end of the day, the electorate is the ultimate authority.


I hear what you say but we have a long history of having far more resident mayors and councillors than non resident and was the issue brought up at a UBCM convention? I still maintain that while the rules are what they are, this should be a vote for the best candidate, not a referendum on residency. If someone of the calibre of say Jim Pattison where to run for Mayor of Penticton, would people not vote for him because he was non resident or would that be secondary to the man's obvious brilliance as a forward thinker and administrator?
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