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John Luton’s Second Letter

[I received this lengthy reply from John Luton a while ago now. Many interesting points.]

Hi again Saren,

Although the issues may be moot after the counter petition submissions are counted, here are some additional responses to your points.

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What’s next for the Blue Bridge

[Recent letter to the TC Update: Printed!]

After the success of the recent counter petition process I hope there is now time to do a proper analysis of the seismic liabilities of the Johnson St Bridge compared to the cost of a seismic upgrade. I wonder if the referendum would reduce this liability by constituting the city’s due diligence.  According to The Law of Canadian Municipal Corporations (Rogers 1971), the standard of care for municipal roads is dependent on the economic means of the municipality and the requirements of the public (see page 5).

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Reply to Councillor Hunter

Dear Lynn,

Thank you very much for the response to my letter. I appreciate you taking the time to address my concerns.

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Reply from Councillor Hunter

Dear Saren,
Thank you for your letter on the topic of my decision in favour of the replacement of the Johnson Street Bridge.

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Reply to Councillor Luton

Hi John,

I thank you for taking the time to respond to my letter. I really appreciate you addressing my questions and concerns.

If I could summarize your response it would be that the city is progressing well, were it can, on the other issues I raised such as homelessness, sewage upgrades and other earthquake assessments but regardless of that the bridge must be upgraded due to significant liability issues. You also bring up interesting topics such as climate change, oil dependency and the previous referendum on sewage treatment. I will address these other topics first then discuss the liability issue..

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Reply from Councillor Luton

Hi Saren,

Thanks for your letter on the Blue Bridge.

With respect to the issue of the project being a vote determinant for any individual, I am sure you can appreciate that we must base our decisions on the information presented to council and our assessment of the best course of action to serve the broader public interest rather than the mere gauging of public sentiment alone.  Many people I have spoken to strongly support replacement and choosing between the two mutually exclusive perspectives is impossible.

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Letter to Victoria Councillors re: Johnson St Bridge

I am writing you to express my position on the replacement of the Johnson Street Bridge.

There are many reasons I feel this is a bad decision for the city of Victoria. Obviously the cost of replacement is of significant concern. This sort of debt could hinder the city in the future should unexpected issues arise. From a priority perspective I fail to see how this project should supersede other important problems. In my view these problems include: homelessness, low-income housing, sewage (both the outfall and the limited overflow capabilities of the current system), the quality of our streets and sidewalks and our lacking preparedness for a major earthquake.

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