There is a special public meeting of Council on August 5, 2017 at 11:00 am at the Sauble School to get reaction to the latest Sauble town square proposal. I encourage all residents to attend.
It started out as a sound enough idea. The town owns land near lakeshore and main street. Someone said let’s have a town square there where residents could gather on special occasions.
The cost at the early stage was estimated by some as no more than $200,000.
Then somehow the idea morphed into something completely different.
Instead of having a low cost community town square for the residents, the plan is to build an ugly million dollar rock concert venue monstrosity for the enjoyment of tourists and for the benefit of the tourism trade.
The ugly monstrosity was revealed in the July 18 council agenda at:
In the presentation it was made crystal clear that the town square was not at all a place for residents, but was rather a “bold gesture to reinvigorate tourism”.
The number of times “branding” and encouraging “tourism” was mentioned in the presentation? – ten!. Number of times residents mentioned – zero!
What concerns me most is that taxes keep going up and town roads keep falling further and further into disrepair, yet taxpayers’ money is being gobbled up by the ugly and noisy “town square” fiasco as taxpayers are once again being forced to subsidize the tourism trade.
Proponents are saying that the increased tourism from the square will bring revenues into the treasury. Don’t buy it. Tourists pay parking fees, but the cost burden of tourism is far larger than those revenues, and as a result tourists are a net cost to the municipality.
Proponents are saying there will not be much noise impact because the amphitheatre will be pointed toward the lake.
Don’t buy it. The sound of very loud rock bands will carry for many kilometers in all directions, not just toward the lake. And the current council, a majority of which has total disregard for the rights of residents to quiet enjoyment of their properties and the commons, is geared up to exempt the town square from the TSBP noise by-law. We could have the noise every night of the summer. Confiscation of one million dollars from taxpayers and what you get for it is to be driven out of your quiet home.
Some, including mayor Janice Jackson, have invited tourists to come to the August 5th meeting and have their say.
Do you want tourists to decide how much taxes you pay? Do you want tourists to decide how your scarce tax dollars are spent. Of course many of the tourists will favour a noisy rock concert venue. It costs them nothing. But it will cost the taxpayers a million dollars.
The meeting should only recognize taxpayers. After all the million dollars is your money.
The concept as presented to council July 18th is a monstrosity. It is a cross between 5 storey industrial scaffolding and a scene from Mad Max From Thunderdome.
Is that really what the residents want for Sauble Beach?
Please come to the August 5th meeting. Please say no to the confiscation of a million dollars of your money for subsidization of the tourism trade. Please say no to the confiscation of a million dollars of your money for this inappropriate monstrosity.
Please insist on a low cost town square designed for the residents who appreciate the special quiet rural ambience of Sauble Beach.