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General News · 27th March 2023
Christine & Cec Robinson
Hello Mark Vonesch and Cortes Island Fire Fighters Association (CIFFA),

It is clear to us that, while there may always be room for improvement, the Cortes Island Firefighters Association (CIFFA) is in good shape and functioning very well.

One would think the Strathcona Regional District might have recognized that the Ives letter and the Polsom report might both be rather biased, each for their own reasons. Could it be that the SRD has already made the decision to create its regional fire service, and is now busy creating the rationale for their decision?

Fire protection is a huge responsibility that should be held within the community being protected. Our fire chief and any administrative staff should be hired by our own CIFFA Board. Those hired should live on Cortes where they can be involved in our school, and our community associations, and where their wages (our tax $) will support our island economy.

As resident landowner/taxpayers on Cortes for 25+ years, we Robinsons accept the necessary increase in our fire department budget. We expect that our taxes would go up at least as much to fund the creation of a regional fire service administered from off island.

There are important questions that Cortes Islanders should be asking with the proposed SRD model.
What would happen to our dedicated volunteer fire fighters with a paid fire chief and administration being based in Campbell River?
Would fire safety be diminished (or improved) with less input and less control from within our community?
Is this yet one more way that the traditional Cortes community values of rural independence could be eroded in favour of centralized bureaucracy?

We are so grateful for the long-standing protection provided to us by our Cortes firefighters and the CIFFA. What wonderful neighbours they are!

Keep the governance and control of the Cortes Fire Department on Cortes Island.

Best regards,
Cec and Christine Robinson,