Islands Trust needs to have greater power
Re: “Development has put Gulf Islands in death spiral,” commentary, August 2.
Thank goodness Frants Attorp has the courage to speak up about the sad and divisive situation on the Gulf Islands.
The Gulf Islands are protected for all of B.C., yet island residents are expected to meet social and environmental obligations with fewer powers and financial resources than urban centres.
In addition to the housing crunch, challenges include spiralling property taxes; bylaw enforcement so weak that zoning is becoming a joke; and clear-cutting that threatens already scarce ground and surface drinking water sources.
If the islands are to be recognizable in the future as a unique and wondrous place, the province needs to step up with funding as it did when the protected area was created half a century ago, and to provide the Islands Trust with greater powers to designate housing for specific local needs and regulate logging on private land.
Maxine Leichter Salt Spring Island