Letters to the Editor: May 10

Trans-Pacific Partnership; Golf Club Challenge; Fire Reduction

Trans-Pacific Partnership

This is a comment regarding MLA, Bill Bennett’s “3 Facts” about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), recently published in your paper.

Fact #1 states, “On April 14th, the legislature moved to support Christy Clark’s motion in support of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The NDP opposed the agreement for jobs”. In Fact #3 he states that …”our province is expected to gain 2,500 jobs”. However, what he doesn’t tell us, is that all those jobs could be filled by foreign workers!

Under the proposed agreement, foreign corporations will be allowed to import/transfer their own employees to fill jobs here (think HG Mining), without regard to our immigration or labour laws.

Hopefully, this will help to explain one reason why the NDP is opposed to this TPP.

Gary Werk, Cranbrook

Golf Club Challenge

During the afternoon of Thursday, May 5, the Windermere Valley Men’s Club held its weekly competition. Our thoughts were not on golf, but rather on the families displaced by the fires raging in northern Alberta.

At the conclusion of the event, our membership decided to donate the prize money that would normally have gone to the afternoon’s winners to the disaster relief efforts currently being undertaken.

Al Wittke, a longstanding member of our club, also donated $2,000 to the Salvation Army. Al lived in Fort MacMurray in the Beacon Hill subdivision. His former residence has burned to the ground.

The Windermere Valley Men’s Club is challenging men’s and women’s golf clubs across B.C. and Alberta to do the same. Take the prize money from one afternoon of golf to assist our friends and neighbours in the Fort MacMurray area.

Dean Midyette, President, Windermere Valley Men’s Club

Fire reduction

I worked for ten years with environmental land use management.  I look at every place I live and visit from that perspective.

With past and current fire disasters, it is time we paid more attention and action to fire reduction. We have recently seen the Kelowna, North Thompson and Rock Creek fires.  Every forested living place in BC and every forested environment in all of Canada is at risk of fire.  Housing interface with forest is particularly vulnerable.  Surely the cost of loss and reconstruction is greater than prevention.

In Cranbrook where I live there is crowded overstocked forest with huge volumes of dry and volatile fuel surrounding the city.  Live sparks are blown 2 km from the leading edge. Cranbrook is about 2 km from side to side in any direction. We are about 20,000 citizens.

I understand harvesting small wood is calculated in the annual allowable cut and is unprofitable.  Private land is also an issue.  BC has enough foresters, silviculturists, politicians, large companies and communities to recognize the challenges.  We must come to terms with the new reality.  We must manage our forests to protect our people and communities.

Where is the leadership?

Jim Belsham, Cranbrook

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