Preparation was lacking

Dear Editor:

Here we go again.

Another perfect example of poor preparation and planning. The City is saying that they cannot afford pay raises for firefighters.

Our firefighters were granted $1.9 million in retroactive pay, stemming from the fact that they have been without a contract since 2010.

Any leader(s) worth half their salt would have foreseen this arbitrator’s decision as a distinct possibility, and thus would have prepared for it. Now, as usual, we find ourselves in a financial quandary.

I would also like some clarification of a quote from a petition submitted before the courts which states, “The employer submitted that because of poor financial circumstances of the City, the union’s members should receive lower wage increases than firefighters elsewhere, just as the City’s other unions and its management staff had agreed to lesser wages than their counterparts elsewhere for at least the years 2010 and 2011.”

My question is, how do we know management has taken lesser increases than their counterparts, when management increases are never made public in the media?

When union members settle a contract, it is front page news the next day.

Why does this not happen with management as well? I wonder if the information would be available under the Freedom of Information Act. Do we take them at their word? City Hall has never deceived us in the past, have they?

Unrelated, I am happy to still see the letters to the editor with regards to the SkahaPark waterslide affair. Well done folks! Keep up the pressure.

We also need to stop building more high rises, from Vernon all the way to Penticton. We all saw the drought notices posted late summer. If we continue to put a strain on our water supply, and we have two winters in a row with low precipitation, we will be in a world of hurt.

The only good thing this mayor and council have done to date is to fix the school zones so they no longer resemble permanent construction zones. The problem is, the channeling is too narrow. Two large vehicles cannot traverse the speed hump in opposing directions at the same time. There is simply not enough room.

To mayor and council, please get your proverbial you-know-what together.  You have had a year to do it and have failed miserably thus far.

Mark Billesberger

Penticton