letter to the editor290

Wages are the issue   Dan Charlebois, owner of Canadian Tire, was quoted as saying he is 16 workers short, and he will need an additional 40…

Wages are the issue


Dan Charlebois, owner of Canadian Tire, was quoted as saying he is 16 workers short, and he will need an additional 40 workers when the new store opens.

“Wages are not the issue,” he says.

Well, that’s one theory, and theories should be put to a test to examine their validity.

I suggest, as a test, you raise wages to $20 per hour and see how many people apply for a job.

If you are still 16 workers short three months after increasing wages to that level, I will accept the fact that wages are not the issue.

Premier Fentie says in order to get more workers, “We need to remove the pensioners’ disincentive.”

Sure, let’s take away their pensions; it’s easier and cheaper than offering them an incentive to work like higher wages.

Wages aren’t the issue if your other option is starvation.

Michael Purves


Lang loses another vote

Open Letter Archie Lang, minister responsible for Yukon Development/Yukon Energy Corporations,

You know the old saying, “It’s not necessarily what you do, but what you fail to do that will come back to you to kick you in the arse!”

I have a long  list of letters written to you since you were elected and given the ministerial position for YDC/YEC.

You met with members of our organization the first month you were in office to hear our concerns.

You had Peter Jenkins with you as it appeared you knew very little about the issues at hand. Jenkins did most of the talking.

You know the other old saying: “ It is far better to say nothing and give the impression of ignorance, rather than open your mouth and remove all doubt!”

Shortly after that you made two patronage appointments to run your Crown-energy companies.

Review of the governance of these corporations, to make them more accountable and open to the public they serve, was Utilities Consumer Group’s main concern at that time.

Supposedly, you appointed David Morrison as chair and president of the Corporations to initiate this review.

After several letters and requests to meet with you, you finally responded in your March 10, 2004, letter: “ Thank you for your letters expressing your organization’s wish to have input into any changes in governance of YDC/YEC and the Energy Solutions Centre.

“I appreciate your interest and am happy to tell you I plan to hold a series of consultation meetings on this issue before any final decisions are made.”

Not one meeting ever transpired, not even a letter asking for input! Nor were there ever any type of draft proposals prepared by this chair and distributed to interested parties for comment.

Then came the auditor general’s report on the Mayo-Dawson transmission line and the Energy Solutions Centre, which strongly condemned both corporations for lack of public accountability and lack of management skills.

After this timeline, I requested at least four further meetings with you and some of our Utilities Consumer Group’s executive.

You found excuses each time to bypass the meeting requests, even one of our annual general meetings.

So, we have four years of mandate with no meetings, consultation or advisement.

In the meantime, according to the 2005 Yukon Development Progress Report statement in the CEO message: “The past year has been one of internal corporate action of Yukon Development.

“We have taken the results of our structure and governance review and put into place improved mechanisms to increase accountability and transparency.”

What review?

Where were these public consultations which gave the corporation direction for these internal changes?

Your letter to UCG assuring public input and what actually took place are at extreme ends of the spectrum.

Is unilateral action a Yukon Party trait?

It would appear as if there is a new good ol’ boys club in action!

Lang, if this is the way you conduct your constituency concerns, then you would not receive my vote!

An expedited explanation is requested.


Roger Rondeau, president, Utilities Consumers’ Group, Whitehorse

News unfair to NDP

Re Voters face a clear choice (The News, September 29):

NDP platform commitments. Ours are ones that we know we can keep; we are honest with voters about what we can deliver; no promises just to get votes.

Your editorial dismissed a number of campaign commitments out of hand. Instead of objectively examining what all the parties have to offer, you appear crippled by a bias against the NDP.

The NDP has a diverse team of candidates rooted in the community-people who have credentials and qualifications second to none.

Our candidates care deeply for the Yukon and will work hard, with honesty, integrity and fairness. They can govern, and govern well.

The Liberal party talks a lot about ethics and honesty because they just discovered the issue.

When the NDP led the way in the legislature with an ethics package, the Liberal and Yukon parties did not support it.

Our challenge to their leaders is to disclose their personal interest just as our leader has done prior to October 10.

It is less than honest for someone to run for premier and pretend their land interest would not conflict with major government decisions on highly sensitive and controversial issues of land and land policy.

It is less than honest for a leader to suggest he would be able to function fully as premier with interests so extensive.

People have a right to know before Election Day how much public business Arthur Mitchell would have to excuse himself from due to conflicts, perceived or real.

The public has high expectations about ethical issues and Mitchell’s arrogance and lack of frankness is unacceptable.

Who speaks for our party. Parties frequently send candidates to various election forums, for many good reasons.

The fact that our leader has been under medical care for a serious condition seems to also have been lost on you completely.

Todd Hardy has been open and honest about his medical condition, from which he thankfully expects a full recovery.

You seem morbidly eager to write his political obituary. But let me assure you that Todd Hardy is back and prepared to lead a government that will stand up for working families, you can count on it!


Don Austin, past president,

Yukon NDP


Cardiff miffed

It seems apparent the Yukon News is unabashedly supporting the Liberal campaign and, while I recognize the freedom of the press, I would be grateful if you could at least make an honest attempt to get the facts straight.

Twice now it has been stated in your paper that I sat in the audience at the Yukon Chamber (of Commerce) forum while our candidate Rachael Lewis addressed a question on privatization of public services.

First, Lewis was honest about the fact that she wasn’t absolutely sure what the NDP position was, a position which was later clarified by both me and Lewis.

Second, I was never present in the audience at the forum.

I was attending to other duties that evening and I stopped by to thank Lewis for representing the NDP and our supporters for being in the audience.

I later attended the Rock the Vote event held at Zola’s to do the very same thing. I think this shows the hard work, organization and team spirit our campaign has.

It also shows just where you will find a team you can count on.

Steve Cardiff, NDP candidate and MLA for Mount Lorne