A suitable name for that new bridge

Isn’t it time we renamed our wonderful new bridge? Something appropriate to our times like “Reconciliation Bridge” could be considered.

John Lossing
View Royal

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Feeling sad, feeling angry about COVID patients

Re: “Surgeries delayed,” Sept. 22.

Once again I felt so conflicted. I was sad that people waiting for surgeries were bumped by COVID-19 patients, most of whom are unvaccinated.

I was angry at those COVID patients. I was sad for the doctors and nurses and other health-care workers who have seen this time and time again.

I’m conflicted about the story of the mother of a newborn and toddler whose husband is fighting for his life on a respirator because he read something on the internet that told him he should not be vaccinated. The story makes me sad. The story makes me angry.

Personally, I think the next step is to send a bill to all those unvaccinated who end up in the hospital. The next step would be turn them away at the door.

This is Canada, neither would ­happen, but it should. The reality of not ­getting into restaurants or going to movies ­certainly flipped a switch in these ­anti-vaxxers’ heads.

I was fortunate that my cancer procedure was performed before this wave. If it had not been done then, and had been bumped by these protesters, I would not be conflicted. I would be pissed as hell.

Ted Daly
Saanichton

Think of other uses for that golf course land

Maybe if golfers aren’t happy to pay more to play at Cedar Hill, then Saanich could step up and create a proper park for all of us, more than just the skinny three-kilometre trail that wraps around the fairways.

I wonder how many golfers there are in the region — maybe 20 per cent of the population?

Balance that number against the much bigger cohort of folks who walk, cycle, run, kick a ball, fly a kite, picnic, gaze at the distant scenery (insert favourite ­pastime here).

How nice it would be to enter this gem in the middle of Saanich without having to hand over a $46 entry fee.

Norman Gidney
Saanich

From cow pasture to one of the busiest courses

Re: “Saanich looks to raise fees, scrap club privileges at Cedar Hill golf course,” Sept 23.

Cedar Hill golf course was purchased by Saanich in 1967, and Saanich took over course operations in 1971.

Cedar Hill Golf Club is a separate entity from the course, and was incorporated under the Societies Act in 1951, a full 16 years before Saanich purchased the golf course.

When Saanich purchased the golf course, it inherited the existing 600 Cedar Hill Golf Club members. A 15-year ­contract was drawn up to cement the partnership between the two parties. The course and club flourished.

Mayors and councils of the day respected golf and golfers. Those loyal members contributed enormous economic value to the course and profile within the community.

But as mayors and councils come and go, this partnership has made headlines, about every 10 years. And each time it’s over the same thing, more money for Saanich, fewer “privileges” for members.

Now we come to 2021 and a pandemic that has brought out golfers in droves. Saanich sees this as a golden opportunity to make even more money.

Their plan: Raise fees and give the Cedar Hill Golf Club two more years.

What respect and perspective does that show for the loyal clientele that was handed to them in 1967, along with the rich and storied 70-year legacy including donations to the course and clubhouse (essentially donations to Saanich) to the tune of many thousands of dollars, ­producing PGA pros the likes of Jim ­Rutledge and Rick Gibson, and raising the stature of Cedar Hill Golf Course from a cow pasture to one of the busiest golf courses in Canada?

Aki Graber
Author, Cedar Hill Golf Club: A Historical Record 1920 – 2012

Cedar Hill golf course a good deal for Saanich

I have been a member of the Cedar Hill Golf Club for almost 10 years. In that time I have spent about $18,000 for annual passes and as much, if not more, in the clubhouse for lunches and beverages.

I am a member of a group of golfers that Saanich is concerned about. They believe that as I play close to 100 rounds per year, my average cost per round is close to $22. This math is correct.

They do not take into account the equal or more dollars spent in the clubhouse. As such, they want to end the club agreement and only have green fee players paying $51 per round.

This is my recreational centre by choice and I think the Saanich taxpayers should be aware of some numbers.

In October 2019, we were at the Saanich council meeting to query the significant raise to our annual pass that Saanich was proposing. During our questioning, some interesting information came to light.

After Mayor Fred Haynes praised Saanich for being a leading municipality in regards to personal health and wellness with its Commonwealth, Gordon Head and Cedar Hill Rec Centre (not golf course) we discovered the cost recovery for these were at the 61 per cent rate.

This means the taxpayer is subsidizing at a 39 per cent rate. When asked how the course rated, we were told we were at 79 per cent with a 21 per cent shortfall.

I feel like I am being penalized because my form of recreation is golf.

The cameraderie and friendship benefits of any club should not be overlooked. Should people going to the pools or gyms 200 days a year be penalized? If so, I am fairly certain there would be a huge uproar.

Just asking.

Wayne Messer
Saanich

Leave all fossil fuels in the ground

Re: “Facing the inconvenient truth about wind and solar power,” commentary, Sept. 25.

Gwyn Morgan does it again. Conveniently omitting to mention that fracking has produced problems in drinking water in many locations and mild earth shocks in others. Fracking should be outlawed immediately.

His numbers are also misleading. Windmills are now producing 10 mW of electricity, and a 100-mW fossil-fuel power plant can be replaced by 10 windmills, not 20.

Construction of solar and wind farms is an investment. Over the working ­lifespan of these “farms” they will replace many times the cost of this investment.

True, not all locations are suitable for either wind or solar power generation. But battery power is not required either. Excess power can be used to generate hydrogen gas to be used in H2 fuel-cell units.

And the other option for energy generation is nuclear. The Gen IV units now being developed are economical and safe. SMRs (Small Modular Reactors) are available today. X-Energy has a small unit that has piqued the interest of the U.S. military establishment.

Natural gas may be a little less harmful than oil or coal, but it is still a fossil fuel and should be left in the ground.

Evert Moes
North Saanich

Strangers to the rescue on Island View Beach

On Thursday last week I was walking on Island View Beach — as I have done for years — and slipped off a rock I was ­sitting on, landed awkwardly and soon found myself in difficulty.

Unable to get up and, after much struggle, unable to support my weight in the loose sand.

To my rescue came five amazing Islanders, two couples and one guy with a 4X4, all of whom took the time and the trouble to make sure I was OK, if shaken. Finally — it took an hour at least — they got me off the beach, into a car, put me in touch with my family and even drove my car back to the city.

These were acts of exceptional generosity on all their parts — readily given with a smile to a complete stranger. I am enormously grateful to all five of them.

They will know who they are if they see this, and I hope will know how much I appreciate the love and help they so freely gave to me.

Their example shows that genuine kindness and willingness to help others is present in all of us.

Phil Gibbs
Victoria

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