Letters to the editor.

Why are we being charged a 0.5 % Climate Action Energy Plan tax in North Cowichan?

Other spending actions under the EAC questionable

Did you know North Cowichan council has been issuing a 0.5 per cent carbon tax for nine years since 2014?

There is no end date for this unusual tax. Supposedly the goal is to reduce emissions in North Cowichan. How so with a Trans Canada Highway right through North Cowichan which we as taxpayers have no control over.

Council has in two years hired two additional costly environmental staff, consultants, studies and reports, frequent environmental committee meetings with municipal directors of planning, engineering, finance, CAO to push the new priority for North Cowichan.

Why are we being charged a 0.5 per cent carbon tax?

The 2019 Climate Action Energy Plan Reserve Fund showed a balance of $494,610 and the CAEP Reserve Fund in 2020 grew to $542,814.

There’s much more to this story with the new list of plans to spend, spend.

The Environmental Advisory Committee listed nine recommended CAEP actions and implementation (but you can actually count 13):

1. Create a transportation planning program with dedicated staff (1a. Implement a smarter travel choices program; 1b. Establish a taxi-bus rural public transit system; 1c. Increase community biodiesel purchases and require municipal fleet biodiesel use; 1d. Join Project Get Ready and transition the municipal fleet to electric vehicles).

2. Ensure Strict implementation of OCP development guidelines (environmental lens).

3. Employ municipal energy policy mechanisms.

4. Implement a Home Energy Program.

5. Establish a community energy organization.

6. Reduce municipal building energy use.

7. Create an Agricultural Development Centre.

8. Increase North Cowichan’s forest area.

9. Establish a Green Revolving Loan Fund.

An Environmental Advisory Committee of 12 members has an ambitious spending task creating new models of municipal government services beyond water, sewer, roads, garbage, public safety – fire and police. Tax and spend with no limits, who knew? The actions, spending and direction this special committee has and is taking are astounding.

Spending tax money for what? We do not know.

Joyce Behnsen,

North Cowichan

Letter to the EditorOpinion