Monday, April 22, 2024

LETTERS: Library value stays a problem for some councillors

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Library value stays a problem

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An open letter to the County of Brant neighborhood:

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Our colleague, Councillor John Bell, not too long ago took the courageous step of placing his identify behind the movement to rethink the proposed new most important library department challenge.

A movement to rethink a choice is a particular movement that doesn’t permit for the everyday dialogue and debate that takes place with different motions underneath regular circumstances.

In consequence, process took away our potential to talk to our motives for supporting the decision and subsequent steps on the particular council assembly on February 1. We’re taking that chance now on this letter to our neighborhood.

Whereas the challenge was accepted by council in precept to maneuver to the detailed design and tender stage, the challenge has not but been given the inexperienced mild to proceed to development. This resolution shall be made as soon as the tendered prices are acquired and offered to council.

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For us, voting in favour of reconsidering council’s June 2023 resolution was not a vote in opposition to the County of Brant Library, nor to promote the Bawcutt Centre. Relatively, we noticed this as a chance to revisit the scope of the challenge to verify council introduced ahead a challenge that stood a stronger likelihood of receiving last approval.

Since June, council acquired the draft Lengthy-Time period Monetary Plan, Asset Administration Plan, and details about our debt capability. Whereas the challenge as at the moment proposed doesn’t immediately draw on the 2024 property tax levy, it’ll have an effect on the county’s potential to borrow cash for different initiatives. If grants and donations fall wanting targets, the property tax levy must make up the distinction.

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All of us contribute to and reap the advantages of the providers, infrastructure, applications, services, tradition, heritage, and spectacular panorama throughout the county.

The three of us additionally come from the farming and rural components of the county, and we all know rural infrastructure wants reinvestment, neighborhood applications and recreation services are at capability, and the broader neighborhood wants a contemporary hospital.

Our job as councillors is to steadiness these competing priorities, and we take the accountability of allocating your tax {dollars} severely.

We wish to see the Bawcutt Centre restored in ways in which greatest profit the neighborhood. We additionally wish to see that the library has the services wanted to satisfy the wants of our rising municipality. We imagine there are a number of methods to facilitate this, however with out reconsidering prior choices, these conversations can’t occur now. As an alternative, the county will incur extra prices to finish detailed drawings that may permit contractors to cite development prices.

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We stay involved council won’t be able to approve the brand new most important library department development contract as a consequence of value, particularly since council doesn’t have an accepted funds for this challenge.

With that mentioned, we do respect council’s democratic course of and can proceed working along with our fellow councillors for the betterment of the County of Brant.

Christine Garneau (Ward 5), Jennifer Kyle (Ward 1) & Brian Coleman (Ward 5), County of Brant councillors

Put public wants over needs

Does the Bulldog workforce’s future keep in Brantford justify one other sports activities palace being constructed by town whatever the value?

The price of the brand new facility is pegged at $150 million or extra. Borrowing the cash to pay for it may value town $50 million extra in curiosity. That’s $200 million to observe teenaged gladiators chase pucks for as few as 36 residence video games a yr? Loads of hockey is on tv.

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What concerning the different 329 days of the yr for this pricey facility? What’s Plan B if the Bulldogs fold or relocate? Reference was made to commerce exhibits. Municipalities with a lot bigger populations already fill that want.

The brand new enviornment may appeal to 5,300 followers to every hockey recreation. Employees on the OHL enviornment in Kitchener mentioned lack of parking is their greatest headache. A great ratio can be one parking area for each two followers. That may be 2,650 areas at Brantford’s proposed facility.

The civic centre solely has 400 areas, a few of which might be misplaced for a brand new construction’s imprint. Proponents hope that followers will use the 900 areas in our perceived-to-be-dangerous parking construction. That may nonetheless go away a 50 per cent scarcity of 1,300 parking areas.

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Certainly one doesn’t spend $200 million on a brand new constructing like this with out sufficient parking. (Whether it is ever affordably constructed sooner or later, a 50-acre discipline may make extra sense). The civic centre website ought to be lifeless within the water for parking deficiency alone.

We’ve got a extra necessary place for $200 million than one other sports activities palace, like Brantford’s 10 per cent share in a critically-needed $2 billion hospital. Whereas three per cent or 5 per cent of the inhabitants will soak up a Bulldogs recreation, 100 per cent of us will most likely want life-or-death help at Brantford Common Hospital someday.

Senior metropolis workers irresponsibly implied that overlaying the BGH $200 million want is not any downside. In that case, why not elevate that cash first?

The present wishful pondering that this newest sports activities palace may spur downtown renewal jogs my memory of the failed Eaton Market Sq. and failed Icomm Centre that we have been instructed would every convey tens of 1000’s of individuals every week downtown.

It’s time to face the actual fact practically all downtown retail has been lifeless and gone for years. Nothing will assist convey folks downtown till a protected atmosphere is restored.

Certainly we’d like higher management at metropolis corridor that acknowledges “wants” versus “needs”.

Chris Brown

Brantford

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