Pitt Budget decisions too tough, then wrong job

Council jobs require members to be professional and have fiscal responsibility.

Editor, The News:

Re: Zero tax increase ‘unpalatable’ (The News, Nov. 1).

The emotional and defensive behaviour of Mayor Deb Walters and Couns. Tracy Miyashita and Gwen O’Connell was not only unprofessional, but unproductive.

Their jobs require them to be professional and have fiscal responsibility.

Effective fiscal responsibility cannot be carried out by those who are emotionally attached to certain causes, nor is it productive to be defensive when discussing these important matters.

It is concerning that my tax dollars are managed by people who cannot seem to separate emotional, feel good, practices from the important core services of our community, especially now, when citizens are begging for tax increases to stop.

Tough decisions have to be made during the budget planning process and I expect professional leadership from the elected officials in my community.

If making these decisions is too difficult for any councillor, you are in the wrong job.

Bravo, Coun.  Janis Elkerton, for speaking up for the people of Pitt Meadows.

Thank you for listening to our concerns and doing your job.

For this to be characterized as “grand standing” is nothing short of ignorant.

A wage increase is a wage increase no matter how you slice it.  It flies in the face of tax increases and the resistance by council to stop increasing taxes.

Donating it to charity, although an admirable idea, doesn’t cut it either; it’s still our tax dollars going out the window.

Mayor Walters insists core services will be affected by a zero budget. This is nothing but fear mongering and rhetoric.

I worked at BCIT for 25 years. During the past few of my employment, we had a zero percent budget imposed on us by the government.

Yes, tough decisions were made across all departments, but they were effective.

Some of these included a freeze on wages and hiring; no overtime, no conferences and associated travel expenses, to name a few.

There is no reason why Pitt Meadows council cannot adopt some of these cost saving ideas.

To spend money on gifts of appreciation to staff while my taxes are being increased is unacceptable.

It’s time for our elected officials to take a professional and responsible approach to budget restraint and leave emotion out of the equation.

Leslie Colquhoun

Pitt Meadows

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