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Will the Progressive Conservatives under Premier King have the resolve to really examine the mechanisms of amalgamation in a rational and transparent way, or will they continue to force amalgamation on unwitting and unwilling communities? If they carefully examine the results of the Three Rivers amalgamation, will they see this as an amalgamation of convenience, that needs a sober second look after eight months of false starts, broken promises and the erosion of community spirit, community organizations and community events. Is this how you grow strong rural communities – by centralizing all activities to the largest partner and creating satellite communities that lose their historical identity?
Will Communities and Fisheries Minister Jamie Fox guarantee Georgetown residents a vote on whether they wish to continue this tentative arrangement that has already seen the erosion of cultural and historic community events – despite strong assurances and agreements to the contrary during the talks surrounding amalgamation? (ever wonder why Georgetown residents were the only ones never allowed to vote?). Is this the future for Georgetown? Is this the future of small, rural communities under the centralization strategy of a previous government.
Amalgamation is a failed process that is 25 years out of date. The only demographic that it appeals to are short-sighted bureaucrats, intent on creating manageable, quantifiable fiefdoms. It is anti-thesis of the kind of policies that foster rural growth and ensure the long-term viability of the “small,” the kind of “small” rural communities that make the Island a unique destination location. The kind of communities that drive tourism and generate revenue. The kind of communities that we all want to live in.
Time to step-up Progressive Conservatives and take a stand, it’s all about people.
Richard and Stacy Toms,