I submitted 21 questions to the mayor and council. So far, the mayor has answered 12 of them. Some of his answers involved non-disclosure excuses.
After considering the new agreements offered to Trio, it is my personal opinion that this whole issue will blow up in our faces again in 2018/2019 because Skaha Lake Park’s green space is not protected from commercialization. What will Trio propose — any guesses because that’s all we’ve got. Trio will have full monopoly of the park and beach, jeopardizing local concession operators and vendors, the dragonboaters, along with their 2,000-participant festival, along with public access in general. Council has shown no proof to the contrary or agreements with the dragonboaters.
We know the local concession and vendors will be out. The mayor’s answers show these deals have been biased to ensure Trio succeeds in taking over the park by lowering their costs, increasing their profit and extending their deadlines.
According to the mayor’s email to me, while negotiating these new agreements, Trio claimed that, without the waterslide, the old deal’s percentage rate would undermine the economic viability of the project, so city negotiators cut the percentage rates. Trio claimed that they can not improve the marina without revenue from the park. To lower costs Trio no longer needs to replace the Rotary splash pad. City negotiators are bending over backwards to sweeten the pot for Trio.
The mayor admits that the city is not looking into whether the city can terminate the Trio deal on the grounds that Trio does not have a formal lease with the B.C. government (Herald, Nov. 14). Why not? What else is the city overlooking? Has Trio secured financial backing from an approved financial institution? Is this business even viable?
It is the mayor and council’s job to examine all possibilities to protect the taxpayers’ assets.