Re: View Royal on the wrong path, Letters, June 22, 2011.
I wish to bring to your readers attention a different view than portrayed by a recent letter on a number of subjects.
Library services and View Royal Reading Centre:
The letter claims that the community library was evicted from available space at the town hall.
It is hard to claim eviction when in 2007 the 10 year lease expired. By that time our population had almost doubled and Town hall space was required for operational purposes. During the following two years, our local library operations continued occupation at town hall on a monthly basis until alternative space was found at Admirals Walk. That’s not eviction.
View Royal has provided some $140,000 through annual support to the Reading Centre as transitional funding, in the form of rent support, operating costs and the purchase of books.
During this same period, the casino funding agreement that required View Royal’s participation as a member of the Greater Victoria Public Library system. GVPL reports there are now more than 4,300 View Royal members of the GVPL. Our annual costs for GVPL services run to some $372,000.
Community halls in View Royal have lost some of their eligibility for permissive exemptions as a result of occupancy by commercial for-profit private enterprises. Permissive exemptions are governed by legislated rules, and commercial operations are excluded from eligibility.
It is not correct to say that small amounts of park land were exchanged for density.
The zoning already permits the subdivision of land. The legislation requires that where three or more lots are created, five per cent of the land must be dedicated as park or cash in lieu of land provided to the Town.
Where parkland has been created through the rezoning process we have achieved large parkland donations, including at the corner of Burnside Road and Watkiss Way and throughout the Chilco area. We also have Centennial park and we are full partners in West Shore Parks and Recreation.
There are some road ends on paper that have never been constructed in View Royal. Some of these road ends beg to become park to preserve the current use and to provide neighbourhood amenities.
The Town has permitted and continues to permit property access including those provided through agreement with BC Hydro. We welcome community involvement and encourage our residents to express concerns about actions contemplated by council.
As council members, we too live in the community. As five individuals elected and joined through work, we continue to act in the best interest of our community. Sometimes decisions are difficult, divisive and on occasion will have an adverse effect on a few while overall creating greater benefit to the community.
It is inappropriate, misleading and perhaps even self-serving to disparage successes of View Royal when incorrect or incomplete information is used to beat a well worn, tin drum.
Mayor, View Royal