Civic pride

Resident believes amenities are needed to bolster the economy

Reading Mr. Elmont’s remarks (Vernon city hall) in the Aug. 10 edition, something struck me. Whatever happened to civic pride and a willingness to invest in our cities and towns? Rather than lobbing criticism at any and every development and investment Greater Vernon has made for the past 10 years, why not take a step back and appreciate what has been done for our city?

These projects only add reasons for people to stay here. I’m a born-and-bred British Columbian with little desire to leave home for an oil rig in the frozen north, but this is hardly the case for many of us in our 20s and 30s. What helps keep people from leaving here are “wasteful” things like bike paths, performing arts centres and athletic facilities. These investments add value for so many citizens living here.

Rather than complaining about a $7.5 million running track or arena expansion, why not consider what those developments do for Greater Vernon? Our schools will be able to run more robust track and field programs for our kids once they have access to a proper facility. Our young families will want to stay here and register their kids for hockey and other skating sports if the fees are low and ice times are available. And we can’t forget the ability of these developments to attract tournaments and other events that bring in business for our hospitality sector.

With anti-investment attitudes held by so many here, it’s no wonder Greater Vernon will continue to stagnate and young people will continue to leave, taking with them any hope of future growth or a healthy tax base.

 

Keenan Nurmsoo

Vernon