Writer hopes lakeside development becomes election issue

Re: Deep concerns when developers take control, Dec. 20th issue.

Dear Editor,

Re: Deep concerns when developers take control, Dec. 20th issue.

Mr. Dressler has expressed himself very well regarding the concerns all of us should have about access to our lake.

I admit that my only knowledge of the moves made to the lake front came from our local paper. Thank you for keeping us informed.

As I understand, council originally turned down the upper class expensive lake side condo project, and were quite within their right to do so. Within a very short time, the matter was recalled, and at the encouragement of the mayor, was voted in. As I understand a condition for approval was continued public access to the marina. Perhaps council should have included a condition that launch fees would not be increased by 150 per cent. It appears council got played for fools for not including a limit to the gouging that occurred.

Mr. Dressler qualified himself in his letter stating that he didn’t want to sound like a communist. Why, as Albertans, do we always feel the need to ensure everyone we are not communist when we call on our elected officials to protect us from greed?

A viable, affordable marina in the most beautiful lake in Central Alberta is vital to all the local businesses in our town. If people can afford to launch their boats at, say Gull Lake, they likely will. I don’t think anyone wants to see our downtown core get any emptier.

I am not sure how much money goes into municipal coffers from building permits, and if I am wrong in assuming that our property taxes make up the bulk of municipal revenues, forgive me.

I think our town council has let us down badly on the issue of the marina. I do think our town council has a greater responsibility to the people of Sylvan Lake, and indeed the people of Alberta when it comes to lakefront development. Might I suggest that Council consider a 90 per cent gouger’s tax for developers who raise access to the lake by 100 per cent or higher. Lakeside development may very well be an important issue next election. I hope so.

Ian McLean,

Sylvan Lake