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HAVE YOUR SAY: Kudos to Alice Munro, not Margaret Atwood

Two summers ago I was working at Abraxas Books on Denman Island.

Two summers ago I was working at Abraxas Books on Denman Island. A small woman with a big purse walked into the store just before closing time. Recognizing her, I said, "I think I know who you are." Alice Munro replied, "Well, I'm NOT Margaret Atwood!" Congratulations to Alice Munro for winning the Nobel Prize in Literature.

With regards to the CVRD's attempt to start a mandatory garbage service, I find that it appears that Big Brother is taking away my right to choose. I prefer to make my choice of which service provider I wish to use and the frequency with which to use it. I have chosen to have weekly pickup because it is convenient although I normally have less than 40 litres of garbage. This costs me more than $200 but I don't feel that someone else should be subsidizing my choice. Some people choose a less-frequent service, some choose to share one pickup with one or two neighbours and some choose to handle their own garbage. If every household is mandated to weekly pickup, the possibility of an increase to the landfill exists. (If you have to pay for it then you might as well use it. The old axiom Nature Abhors a Vacuum comes into play). If you want to reduce impact on the landfill, providing good, convenient recycling would be a good start. The big box stores and malls should be mandated to provide recycle facilities as that is where the overpackaging causes most of the recycling. Some information as to what happens to everything after it hits the recycle bins would be helpful. I fear that the referendum will pass because the majority of regional residents in higher density areas who already have service will see it as a saving while those who don't need it will be forced to subsidize me.

I would like to thank everyone who stopped on Anderton  in Comox, and helped me back into my chair on Wednesday, Oct. 9. Having missed the jump up on the curb I managed to fall out of my wheelchair. Many people stopped and aided me to get back in the chair. Thank goodness I live in such a caring community!

This is a big beef to the democratic process in local governments. What could be more important than water? The democratic process. We in the Comox Valley on the Comox Lake system enjoy unlimited use of water at a relatively low cost. User pay makes sense, but Courtenay and Comox councillors are behind the times on this concept — way behind — it could stall development. They are not the only disconnected, out-of-touch politicians. Some CVRD customers have been concerned about mock bills. Not the user pay aspect, but he multiple tiers that bring tears to those who see simplicity as less expensive, and equity as the guiding principle.

So, rural residents proposed a backyard, hometown solution to interim water costs, since the Valley politicians are like the Hatfields and McCoys on this issue. Hometown, backyard BBQ folks and neighbours are open and trusting — we did not expect the CVRD administration to talk about 18-cent water — low blow. Bruce bought this line not thinking that CVRD conservers will pay much more per litre of water than Union Bay, where he lives. Edwin says he voted on the maximum benefit to conservers, forgetting that the resident's proposal would benefit 90 per cent of metered CVRD residents. He liked the surcharge on big users, but he voted against the proposed surcharge in the residents' proposal. Jim say there is just nothing that CVRD area directors can do about inequities because Courtenay calls all the shots on water. In other words, user pay only applies to CVRD metered customers until the sun sets on all of us. Local politicians simply need to do much better on such an important resource. Stay tuned, the hometown folks and their neighbours are not going away.

Correct me if I am wrong, but this is what I gathered from a writeup in Have Your Say last week. You think deer are a huge expense because they deliberately damage your vehicle (couldn’t possibly be due to bad driving), cougars are to be feared, and bears are not allowed to eat what you are too lazy to remove from your trees.  Your Out of the Box solution to this is gathering and herding them all up to the north end of the island into a fenced wildlife park to keep them contained. OMG! Did you actually read what you wrote before you sent it off? Has your brain gone on vacation without you? You moved to an island where believe it or not, animals were here first. We are encroaching on them. If you can’t handle the awesome wildlife on our beautiful island – I have a solution for you – move – go back to the largest city you can find and surround yourself with the concrete jungle, neighbours’ homes two feet apart, traffic, and crime. Please make sure you give up your driver’s license and take transit because I think the root of your problem begins with bad driving.

It is a good thing to support local museums, history and local arts. Some taxpayers don't mind helping out. However, we note it will cost $5,000 a year to administer this program. More than most grants! We also be asked vote on a universal garbage service, that will commit every CVRD taxpayer to a likely large CVRD administrative cost. You can bet that the present waste collection companies do not pay huge salaries and benefits for  administering this service. Recently at a public meeting, many Area B residents asked the CVRD why we will pay higher costs for water, than Courtenay and Comox — the answer implied that CVRD costs are higher. More overhead for few customers. Residents proposed annual billing for water — saving many thousands of dollars in CVRD administrative fees. Area directors rejected this cost-saving initiative. What happened to cost effective delivery of services? Our area directors seem unconcerned about cost of local government.

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Do you have somebody to praise or something you have to get off your chest? Have your say by submitting to Please focus on people's ideas rather than speculating about their character. You can also get a written submission to 765 McPhee Ave., Courtenay, B.C. V9N 2Z7 or fax to 250-338-5568. If you wish to talk to the editor, phone Mark Allan at 250-338-7816, 2309.