To the Editor,
Re: City aims to solve public urination with restroom, Jan. 17.
In an 8-1 vote (Coun. Bill McKay opposed) council approved an expenditure of approximately $110,000 for a permanent toilet in Diana Krall Plaza.
To this must be added an estimated $10,000 per year, every year, for operation and still more for asset management.
It was briefly mentioned that the facility would be useful to tourists. But don’t we already have open facilities during the day in our downtown conference centre and our library, not to mention our downtown businesses during the day? And don’t our tourists from the cruise ships leave before sunset and those here for conferences have hotels and rooms to go to?
Most of the discussion, quite appropriately, centred on the fact of the drunken habitués of our nightlife who, after closing hours, are indiscriminate in selecting places to urinate or defecate in the downtown.
Council has decided that:
u Rather than imposing fines to hire clean up services or build biffys, or imposing clean up sentences on the miscreants, we ask general taxpayers to cover the expense.
u Rather than asking those establishments which profit by filling their patrons to the point where they must evacuate indiscriminately to pay to handle the problem which they have, albeit indirectly, brought about, we call upon Nanaimo’s general taxpayers.
u Rather than calling upon the Downtown Nanaimo Business Improvement Association, which already receives more than $200,000 a year from general taxpayers and will directly benefit from the installation, we are told that it has other uses for its money.
I, for one, am here to inform council that I, too, have other uses for my money.
I share Coun. McKay’s rage against a general taxpayer expenditure for which there are so many better suited alternatives.