In a recent Peak article [“Committee recommends rate increase for Powell River’s north harbour,” November 30], Powell River mayor Dave Formosa stated: “We should be getting a return on investment from the marina that goes into general revenue, if not, we are doing a major disservice to the taxpayer.”
In fact, the taxpayers of Powell River have never paid a cent toward the maintenance or construction costs of the north harbour.
In 2018, I looked into this issue after council transferred $66,008 from excess user fees paid by north harbour residents to council’s general revenue account.
Revenue from the north harbour in 2018 was $692,135 that went to pay: maintenance expenses, 275,021; Debt interest on north harbour construction loan, $195,000; Principal payment on loan, $106,981; contribution to reserves, $49,125.
The balance of $66,008 went into general revenue.
The north harbour reserve fund is designed to do two things: namely, provide funds for major upgrades and set aside funds for a future replacement harbour. Close to $1 million has been placed in the reserve fund since 2011 through moorage and power fees.
As it appears that north harbour occupants are responsible for all costs related to the harbour, it is essential that fees they have paid are directed to the harbour, and only to the harbour. We are paying all expenses, all costs related to construction of the existing marina, and probably contributing to a future marina that we will not be here to enjoy. Surely that is enough.
If you are a north harbour occupant and are concerned about this issue, please take the time to contact one or more of your elected officials to express your views. The city webpage has a list of contact phone numbers and emails. It is essential that we do this as soon as possible before a budget is finalized to ensure north harbour funds are not redirected to general revenue and that council establishes a north harbour reserve fund bylaw that clearly states these reserve funds may only be used for north harbour purposes.
Terry Webster, Nassichuk Road
Electoral Area C, qathet Regional District