Taxes and union stance make vote decision
Less than a month now before we go to the voting booth to cast our ballots in the municipal elections, I urge everyone eligible to participate in the democratic process.
I will cast my ballot bearing in mind the huge tax increases the present Coquitlam administration has imposed on us in the past term of office and who is the most likely to resist tax increases.
With the foregoing in mind, I have already struck two individuals off the list for the following reason: Both Mayor Richard Stewart and Coun. Selena Robinson have made it clear that they intend to push to reduce the required tax payments for businesses in the municipality, which will have the effect of homeowners footing business’ share of the bill.
In addition, I will not be voting for Terry O’Neill, who is running for a seat on Coquitlam council. In a recent newspaper column, Mr. O’Neill attacked public unions and I must say I was shocked at his condemnation of their right to collective bargaining. In his attack, he espouses the Wisconsin union-busting attempt and the Penticton city council’s use of blackmail (my word) in order to achieve a two-tier wage system.
I regularly complain about incessant increases in taxes but I don’t blame the front-line workers for the increases. They have to bargain for any pittance they are able to achieve and I remind Mr. O’Neill that collective bargaining is a two-party system that in this province has been tilted in favour of provincial and municipal employers by the erosion of labour laws. Not so with the city councillors, school trustees and provincial legislators, who ordain pay and pension increases for themselves without the encumbrance of having to bargain for them and they are able to double dip by attending meetings at Metro Vancouver, TransLink, etc.
Henry A. Pritchard, Coquitlam