Taxpayer dollar in a black hole

Dear Editor:

At last week’s afternoon session of city council a valuable lesson should have been learned, but, alas, it seems that it wasn’t.

In times of finding funding for infrastructure, how many more taxpayers’ dollars will pass through the Trio Black Hole? When will COP realize that the holes in the money sieve are too big to stop the amounts of Trio-bound dollars from going through? Based on their recent performance, probably the 12th of never!

Unlike a water tap which has water as long as the supply is there, the flow will continue and wells will continue to support the flow. On the other hand “the greenie faucet (money faucet)” only has so much pressure and so much supply as it is not easily replenished.

It is now common knowledge that COP has sidelined the proposed Trio Skaha Park waterslide project. It’s about time! One would almost think that a case of financial reality had hit COP. However, apparently it has not!

Although the waterslide is now off the table, COP is now proposing a new Trio deal. The question here is, at what cost? Really, does it matter? I guess that COP has suddenly become flush and hasn’t told the taxpayers yet.

Obviously there are some costs involved to put this new deal with Trio together. Let’s look further:

Cost to dissolve the first Trio Deal: $20,000

Trio payback for needed dock repairs: $20,000

Trio design /architectural costs: $?

Yearly taxes waived: $38,601

Approximate subtotal: $78,601.00 + $? + legal fees

It seems somewhat strange that monies would be spent to get nothing in return, don’t you think? Who knows what other hidden costs there might be for this boondoggle! How often would you go into a store; select something; pay for it and then leave it on the counter and walk out? COP did.

Now we are told that a new deal has been proposed. On examination we might ask, what, other than the waterslide aspect has changed? Apparently, not much!

The new agreement does allow Trio to maintain some of their interests contained in the previous agreement as well as the option of proceeding with marina and concession enhancements in 2018. Trio will also have the option of pursuing an in-lake play structure in 2018, as well as first rights to propose other possible park amenities in 2019. The lease period involved: 29 years. Different? Really?

Ron Barillaro

Penticton