City council’s patience with Black Street residents is running thin.
The local-improvement project got a public hearing at city council Monday night, but Councillor Ranj Pillai suggested shelving it.
Facing Nathan Millar, one of the project’s strongest opponents, Pillai put his hands up.
“At this point I agree,” he said to Millar’s request for a revote. “I think we’re improving the street, but if people don’t want it then…”
Millar was joined by neighbour Carol Smith, who raised concerns the road would be narrowed, leading to parking problems.
“I will have to park on another street unless I make a driveway to my house,” she said. “This is becoming a quite expensive endeavour.”
As well, the interest rate the city is charging residents would be higher than average, she said.
But the loudest complaint was that people are being asked to vote on something they know little about.
The final cost and details about the above-ground improvements have been a little fuzzy.
Even the cost estimate is two years old.
And residents are responsible for improvements in their homes – upgrades may be needed to tap into the city sewage lines.
Finally, they don’t like the voting procedure, which counts people who don’t vote as endorsing the project.
“Whether people like it or don’t like it, I didn’t make up the municipal act, but that’s what we try to follow,” said Buckway. Should we change the municipal act – absolutely. The municipal act has to be reviewed every number of years.”
There’s $6.2 million for the project over the next four years. If residents don’t want it, there are other projects to build, she said.
“The money would be reallocated to something else and then that money would not be available,” she said.
And costs go up. It could cost residents more in the future, said Pillai.
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