LETTER: City adds insult to injury

By Contributor
November 28th, 2014

Dear Editor, 

We got a letter in the mail Tuesday, Nov. 18th, signed by both the City of Grand Forks and Neptune, “Final Call for Water Meter Installation.” When you read it, it seems that if you want a free meter you have to book an install appointment by Dec. 1. Then it says meters are mandatory and that you may be subject to a $2500 fee for a pit meter if you don’t comply. 

We are seniors, just common folk, who don’t understand complicated language, like many others who got this letter. (Apparently something like 280 of these letters were mailed)

It sounds at first reading like “Dec. 1 is the deadline; which if you miss, you will have to pay $2500.”  I think most people who read it will understand it that way. 

You have to read the letter a few times to see that it seems carefully worded to sound that way, but it just sort of avoids saying it specifically. But it does sound threatening. 

We’re not lawyers or anything, but all we could find in the water meter bylaw 1973 that has anything at all to do with installation deadlines is … “The City will provide a water meter free of charge up until July 31, 2015.” A friend gave us a copy of the bylaw, it’s right there on the City’s website. So, by what we understand, the bylaw says you have until July 31, 2015, to get a free meter. If you can find anything in the bylaw that says we have to get a meter installed by a certain date, please let us know. 

This is a low thing for the City to do. To mislead us into thinking we only have until Dec. 1 by sending out threatening letters. It’s not appreciated one bit. Add this to the whole undemocratic mess that mayor and city council have put us through, and it shows a very shabby lack of respect for the citizens. 

Well, look what lack of respect for the citizens has gotten Mayor Taylor and his crew … they are gone. They intentionally ignored the wishes of the majority for the people. Disgraceful. It was actually embarrassing to have them in power, to represent us. Didn’t they take some sort of oath to do their best to represent us? Well, they have betrayed us, betrayed our trust, and the people have spoken. 

We are really happy to see a new mayor and council (can’t wait for Dec. 1) and are very much looking forward to a democratic government, mutual respect between government and citizens, and finally some real progress for our fair city. 

Elaine Lea (Grand Forks)

PS. And on it goes … the City just put an ad in the Gazette Nov. 19, stating “…Bylaw No. 1973 calls for all installations to be completed by July of 2015 …” and you know what? We can’t find that anywhere in the Bylaw! Why aren’t they being honest with us? 

Submitted Friday, Nov 21 to the Boundary Sentinel

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