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General News · 8th September 2018
Jack Wills
One of the referendum questions put forth by the SRD is as follows:

“Are you in favour of the Regional District preparing a bylaw to establish a service for funding community halls on Cortes Island on the condition that the bylaw would require the approval of the electors before it is adopted?”

YES...... a YES vote means you ARE in favour of the Regional District preparing a bylaw to establish a service for funding (read TAX) and that the bylaw would have to be voted on before it is adopted.

NO........a NO vote could mean that you are still in favour of the Regional district preparing a bylaw to establish funding (again, read TAX) but that it would not necessarily have to be voted on to be adopted. Or, it could mean that you reject the entire concept of the particular bylaw.
For instance, NO could be interpreted In 2 (or more) ways:
1. I am not in favour of the bylaw being prepared at all
2. I am in favour of the bylaw being prepared but would not require the approval of the electors in order for it to be adopted.

Could be confusing.
There is always the cop out of "that's not what we meant.”
"Why, oh,why cannot the civil servants write a simple clear sentence?

How about this instead:

"Are you in favour of the Regional District preparing a bylaw to establish a service for funding (read TAX) community halls on Cortes Island? FULL STOP! A prepared bylaw would require a vote of approval by the electors before it's adopted."

YES or NO.

If the YES vote gains a majority, then a bylaw would be prepared, We would vote on that bylaw sometime in future.
If the NO vote gains a majority, there would be no bylaw preparation, hence no bylaw to vote on.

The additional Referendum question regarding First Responder Service is similarly worded.

Let's get some clarity in these documents prepared by the SRD. The recent presentation of Bylaw 309 was riddled with confusing sentences, errors, misspellings, as well as being a document that was NOT supported by nearly every speaker at the public hearing.

We are paying for all of this, Let's demand quality results!
Thank you, Jack
Comment by Joan Bevington on 10th September 2018
Thanks for pointing out the ambiguity of that referendum question, for 98% of us busy readers skimming through comments. It reminded me of sneaky English exam questions where you had to learn to pick the real question made up of approx, 9 words, out of 79 words. We must be diligent, and read carefully!
Civil Servants Clarity
Comment by Michael & Heather Bruce on 8th September 2018
Well said, Jack! ....and it is my belief that the reason some civil servants aren't clear is to keep people confused.....and tired of dealing with this sort babble, so they just shut down, turn away and someone else can worry about it, I don't have time." Frankly, WHY is the SRD in the middle of this? Can't Islanders figure this out on their own?

Before someone thinks my comments mean I am against the hall tax, I want to make it clear that I support a small hall tax , because there is a tiny hard working core of people that are trying to keep these halls afloat and these halls benefit all the Islanders, even if they don't use them directly. No one small group should be responsible for keeping a community benefit afloat on their own. Unfortunately, it costs more to do everything these days and that is the reason for the hall tax. Last I heard it was going to be about $75 per property....but that was rumor. Does anyone know what the amount is? there is a vast difference between a $75 a year and $750 a year....