I take exception to a recent letter from Mr. Richard Champagne in your April issue and wish to correct many of the factual errors and misleading comments. Un “Manque de leadership?” Never. We have an excellent mayor and co-operative council that worked together for the good and benefit of the town’s population. At no point during my eight years on council did I see anything resembling what you are suggesting. In caucus meetings, Mayor Burcombe is always the last to speak, the sign of an effective leader. Consider what we inherited from a council which was mercifully described as non functional. Let’s review some of the issues:
Foster Dam, uninsurable? Why? Because it was not maintained the Insurance Company would not insure it. Our reaction: fix it, do the maintenance, decision made. Problem solved.
Housing Development. None! Why? Because we were not producing enough water and had to buy $300,000. worth of water to meet demand. The provincial government would not allow development. Our reaction: fix it. Buy better pumps, decision made. Problem solved.
Paul Holland Knowlton House. After years of studies and proposals, supporters were given six months to move it by the new town council. Thanks to Judith Duncanson and her group, the house is now on the museum grounds. Decision made. Problem solved.
West Brome Trailer Park. A water problem was ignored by many administrations. Pressure and coordination from this council and the town’s administration led by Gilbert Arel, led to “problem solved”. Remedial work starts this spring.
Walking paths and bridges. How many years and how many administrations have discussed the Trestle Cove and Quilliams Creek bridge project? Both bridges are now installed and we now connect to the Cross Canada Trail. Decision made. Problem solved.
Sidewalks in downtown Knowlton sloping at dangerous angles when we arrived in 2013 are now repaired or replaced and safe to walk on. Fix it. Decision made. Problem solved.
You talk of lack of “leadership” for the NuHab and St Paul’s Condo project. Both required zoning changes. The provincial government laid down the procedure to be followed and the town followed the rules to the letter. It is not optional. Both projects were supported by council, but it is the population that has the final word. The list goes on and on. Saying that we were poorly led or that we had no vision shows a lack of knowledge of the challenges and accomplishments of the last eight years events.
Ron Myles, Retired Councillor West Brome / Iron Hill
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