Dear Editor:

The article that ran in the March 11th issue regarding local trades has done a great job of opening a discussion between local trades, town council and taxpayers alike.

Now that we all know that in fact the valley does have the skills and the capacity to compete with larger centers I pose a question to our community: why are we not able to underbid contractors from other cities that need to pay accommodation and subsistence to their sub-trades and/or staff on most of these bids?

Whatever it is cost of living, gas or materials that is driving up our costs there is still one major point to consider when you are hiring trades to do projects in the valley. People who live and work in this valley have a responsibility to maintain both their personal and business integrity.

This alone insures a higher quality of craftsmanship and a more considerate working relationship. Also the local company you hire is much easier to get back to both maintain and deal with any warranty issues that may arise than someone having to drive in from Kelowna to complete two hours of work.

Hiring locally is also good for our economy as a whole. Hiring locals gives them the opportunity to make money here therefore they can afford to stay here as permanent residents, pay taxes here and support all of our local businesses and material suppliers.

Jessie Blakley

Perrin Structure & Design Inc.