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Letter to the Editor - Resident gives his thoughts on recent decision to proceed with public boat ramp

The recent decision by council to go ahead with a public boat ramp and going against our administration, who cited different reasons primarily excessive cost for capital expenditures which will include the dredging of the channel and parking for 40 cars and trailers. It will be in direct competition with privately-owed marinas.


Asking the taxpayers to subsidize this competing ramp doesn’t make sense, it is asinine to believe that is OK.


In the past, we have used creative financing to justify excessive spending. Adding, stretching and pulling doesn’t change anything. Our administration reports to council with a wish list and a five-year spending plan to which we have already committed all of our projected revenue for the next five years. It seems our administration is finally in control but our political leaders are not.


Given current indicators, our local economy is shrinking. Our revenue will be less. The cost of carrying our debt at a higher rate will add to it. Preparing for this scenario is what good managers will do. Raising taxes is not an option.


We have substandard roads like Concession 6 and Concession 8 of the former Anderdon Township that are not safe to travel on and not paved for probably over half a century not to mention many gravel roads in our municipality. This is an embarrassment to all of us. Our needs shall take priority over our self-interests.


Claiming that we don’t offer access to the waterfront is an absolute lie, with many ways to access by shore or by boat.


The interest of our greater community is best served by finalizing our new Official Plan that has been under study for a number of years. It will take council approval before it is registered into law. This will provide a roadmap to where new infrastructure needs to go. It will draw investments and create jobs.


In the late 90’s, we had over 2,000 manufacturing and industrial jobs. Today, we have less than 500. The expansion of the Howard Industrial Park that is under consideration is a good start.


Promoting ourself as a community worth of investing in is essential.


Our tax dollars should be spent on excellent services to our community like police, fire, parks, roads and infrastructure in addition to safe drinking water and sanitation.


Strong communities are built with jobs and private investors are the key to achieve it.

 

—Frank Cerasa

Amherstburg

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