There have been many unfortunate things said and done over the duration of the Trio train wreck. I have even said some of them myself. And perhaps this letter is more of the same. However, I would like to bring forward some questions, and make some observations.
I have read all three versions of the proposed contracts. I can’t claim to have understood them. Could it perhaps be, that among the people who have led the opposition to the Trio deal, there are people with business, legal, and civic government experience who have read and analyzed the proposals and contracts and found things that they believe are not in the best interests of Penticton?
Could it be that there are legitimate grounds for challenging the proposed contracts? Could it be that, even on the third try, council has bought a pig in a poke, and differing agendas may lead to problems down the road?
A few people have made much, in a fairly ugly manner, of the average age of the visible, active opponents of the Trio deal, and how much seniors are anti- progress in Penticton. And yet, I haven’t seen any seniors picketing the new breweries, distilleries, wineries, and commercial developments in town. There are no grey-haired protest lines around the new casino. No blockade of walkers and scooters is preventing construction of the new wing of the Lakeside Resort – which is on private, not public property. There were no blue-haired grannies lying on the ground knitting to stop the developments on Main Street.
According to City of Penticton figures, the majority of Penticton’s population is between ages 18 and 60. There seems to be a convenient reality gap for some people — the highest degree of approval for the original waterslide proposal was 24 per cent in the 18-30 year old population.
The problem was not that seniors were against that proposal — the problem was that an overwhelming majority of Penticton residents were against that proposal. Young and old.
And, many thanks to the seniors and others who took the time to stand up and speak on behalf of the 79 per cent of all ages who opposed that deal. The sooner the senior slammers digest that point, drop their bigotry, and rejoin reality, the more likely we are to see progress in Penticton.