Despite overwhelming support (71% in the nonbinding 2014 CVRD referendum) for a small property tax to “establish a service…to address homelessness,” valley residents are being asked to go to the polls again Saturday, November 28. This ballot will, officially, approve (or disapprove) a property tax ($6 on a $300,000 home) to provide $165,000 annually to address Comox Valley homelessness.
One would think that with 71% support in the 2014 election, a referendum for $6 a year would be a done deal, but it may not be so easy.
If you want to see this referendum pass, you need to get out and vote.
On November 28, 2015, any eligible—not Comox– voter can vote between 8 am and 8 pm at any of these voting places:
• Union Bay community hall, 5401 Island Highway South, Union Bay
• Royston elementary school, 3830 Warren Ave, Royston
• North Island Distance Education School (NIDES – formerly Tsolum elementary school), 2505 Smith Rd, Courtenay
• Cultural centre Moncrief hall, 2674 Dunsmuir Ave, Cumberland
• Courtenay elementary school, 1540 McPhee Ave, Courtenay
• Queneesh elementary school, 2345 Mission Rd, Courtenay
• Living Waters church, 2222 Regent Road
Advance poll November 25, 8 am and 8 pm, CVRD boardroom at 550B Comox Road, Courtenay.
Despite the support in the 2014 referendum, Saturday’s ballot is not a foregone conclusion. For one thing, this referendum is not being held along with a municipal election and thus the turnout will be much—MUCH– lower than 2014. It will take many fewer no votes to defeat it. There is a concerted effort to get out the no vote. Already I have heard several reports of a behind the scenes get out the no vote campaign. It seems this no money for the homeless campaign realizes that a public no campaign would trigger the yes side to launch its own get out the vote effort and is thus quietly mustering their vote.
If you want to see this referendum pass, you need to get out and vote, but if you really want to support a Comox Valley function–however minimal it may be—to address homelessness, you need to call, email, talk to all your friends and acquaintances(hey! talk to strangers you pass on the sidewalk). Tell them, if they care about improving the plight of the homeless in the Comox Valley: Get out and vote Yes, Saturday, November 28!