By Kelsey Verboom
Often in our community, stories come about that leave me scratching my head and thinking that a lot of situations could be avoided if people just talked to each other more.
The days leading up to the vote on June 25th that will address the communitys water needs and ask Windermere residents to say yes or no to hooking up to Parr Utilities have been a bit chaotic. A group of residents have come forward with an alternative plan for a standalone water plant, vastly different from the one the Regional District East Kootenay has spent 10 years researching, and an informal meeting was held to discuss the plan and encourage people to vote no on Saturdays ballot.
Introducing a new possible plan just days before this long-standing issue goes to a vote is a mistake. Regardless of the technical details of the proposed solution, throwing a last-minute proposal at an issue that has spent years and years unfolding interrupts an important political process that is in place for a reason.
The proponents of this plan have had ample time to review the Regional Districts plan, and come forward with ideas and suggestions the water issue certainly isnt a recent development. Should residents be involved in the political process and contribute their own ideas and viewpoints? Absolutely, without question. But is this the right time to put forward new ideas? Definitely not.
Perhaps if the proponents had sat down with the Regional District and discussed grant funding, the reasons behind certain decisions, and the technical details of this third option, the upcoming vote would have had different options on the ballot. Instead, the vote swaying that is currently occurring is corrupting the voting process.
We elect our government officials. Its their job, in consultation with municipal and district staff, to find the best possible solution for residents. Its our job to trust their reasons and decisions, instead of creating animosity towards them, as evidenced by this weeks Letters to the Editor.
As always, communication is the key.