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Qualicum Beach couple stage mini tax revolt

Upset with Qualicum Beach council's 'undemocratic' actions of late, David and Yvette Freeman won't pay this year's property taxes.

David and Yvette Freeman have had it with Qualicum Beach town council, so they're staging a mini tax revolt.

David Freeman told The News he will not be paying this year's property taxes because of his frustration with the council's position on issues like the new health centre and official community plan.

"We're upset with how things are going," he said, calling some of the council's recent actions, undemocratic.

The local couple are upset enough to appear as a delegation to council Monday night and air those grievances publicly.

"The town pays regional hospital taxes, but council has voted away from ensuring the residents get the services they need," he said in regards to council's ongoing support of the new health centre in Parksville.

An opponent of the project, Freeman said he and many other people wanted very different health services there — not the least of which being overnight and emergency care.

"We wanted emergency care — no, not a hospital — but emergency care here is needed."

The town, he continued, has not done its job to bring better health care to the area.

Freeman also told council he is withholding his taxes due to their "three-ring circus" antics over the official community pan (OCP). A once public process, he said, is now being pulled apart — with little information making its way to the residents.

Freeman said he's aware he may face a monetary penalty from the town is he doesn't pay his property tax — yet he's standing by his decision.

"If there were one thousand residents who were prepared to do that, and do it properly, it would have an impact on this council."

Town financial administrator John Marsh said if the Freemans don't pay their property taxes by the first business day in July, they face a five per cent penalty. Another five per cent would be tacked on in October. It would take three years of non-payment, he added, before any property would face the prospect of a tax sale.