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LETTER: City council is wandering aimlessly

'The citizens can swallow a small tax increase if they see real leadership out of this group, but not the way it's going now.'

Is it just me? Am I missing something? Or is this city council so out of touch with reality that they can't even see the glaring hypocrisy in their decision making? The front page of the August 17 edition of The Gazette has a piece that states, in part, "... the initial strategy administration proposed to avoid substantial tax increase predicted for 2023, 2024 and 2025."

Flip to Page 6 of the same edition: "Council approves $1.5 million in funding for twin-rink facility." Wait a minute? What? Keep going. "St. Albert city administration recommended council not put funding toward the facility"

So, who does council listen to? Who does council see using this facility? After eight-per-cent tax increases in 2023, and more in 2024 and 2025, everyone will have moved away. That's seven members of council, in a ghost town, skating in circles on two sheets of ice the city had to take on because the developer can't make money at it.

How did we get to this point? The majority of this esteemed council (five of seven) have been running this city since 2017. How did they not see this coming? l'm not alone when it comes to questioning the fiscal ineptitude of this city.

Bob Russell has it right in his statement from the same edition where he states: "Given the amount of commercial development we have seen over recent years we shouldn't have any increase at all. We need a council to stop spending. Council's spending on the St. Albert Trail has got to come to a grinding halt."

Millions and millions of dollars poured into, what looks like, moving the roadway 100 feet east and digging up the sidewalk we just payed to have built a few years ago. lt seems that is all that has happened. We are heading into a three- or four-year construction schedule on this debacle. I hope this contractor is working on a fixed price, because it looks like they're in no hurry to complete it.

Stop wasting our money, please. Get the house in order and focus on what we need, not what you want. No solar farms, outdoor covered rinks, or further useless studies. The citizens can swallow a small tax increase if they see real leadership out of this group, but not the way it's going now.

Graham Brett, St. Albert


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