I want to redress the balance in the reporting of the recent public hearing for the Fairwinds Lakes District official community plan amendment.
I would like to point out that the majority of those supporting the amendment and sporting the “Yes” stickers were carefully orchestrated Fairwinds residents who represented less than 25 per cent of their community and were certainly not representative of wider Nanoose Bay.
As someone who sat through the entire meeting it seemed to me that many of those in favour of the development were quick to make comments undermining those who offered different perspectives. However, most of those who offered differing perspectives were aiming to be constructive and saying very clearly that if this amendment is to be agreed and the development go ahead, then it is critical to take as much time as is necessary to get the environmental details right.
I was therefore surprised at the lack of courtesy and shocked that so little regard was given to respected professionals who expressed their concerns that the fragile ecosystems that comprise the Lakes District were still not sufficiently protected. It was, after all, a public hearing and each speaker was surely entitled to be treated with respect.
Presumably the people who cheered when some speakers’ times were up are of the same ilk as the person who suggested that should the current siting of the proposed transit road drive the beavers away from their long-time habitat it might actually be a ‘good thing’ (thereby preserving trees that might otherwise be constructed into beaver dams).
An unknown author once said “The human spirit needs places where nature has not been rearranged by the hand of man.”