Regarding the proposed Ajax mine presently undergoing a supposed review, I would like to add my thoughts as to the disastrous effects this could have on Kamloops.
I believe, should this mine be developed, it will forever change the character of Kamloops as a desirable community to live. Nothing against resource development in general, just that the idea of an open pit mine such as this in the City of Kamloops boundary is totally insane!
Other people have commented of the negative effects this mine will have on the community, health care, etc., so I would just like to point out one additional negative effect that I haven’t seen mentioned yet. I believe that should this mine be approved there would be an obvious re-adjustment of property values within the community.
It would seem that many areas in South Kamloops would see an eventual reduction in value and consequently many areas of North Kamloops would see an increase in value.
Notwithstanding this adjustment in property values, it may be probable that within Kamloops the result would be a net reduction in overall property assessment values.
I wonder how City Hall would adjust to this. Would they bring in a reduced City budget? Would they lay off staff, maybe our mayor and City councillors would step up to the plate and take pay cuts? I think not.
It seems to me that in the event City tax revenues fall as a result of this readjustment in property values, the probable result is the usual “raise the taxes approach.” In this case, an increase in the city property tax mill rate.
Should this be the case, guess what:
People, most of whom will not derive any economic benefit from this proposed mine, and in fact will suffer from the negative effects — environmental destruction, noise, toxic dust, explosives emissions, exhaust and other pollutants — will in effect, be financially subsidizing this mine. If this is the case, we will actually have the effect of increasing taxes to many citizens of Kamloops without regard to their income.
In effect, we could have low-income families, seniors, and others paying to support a multibillion-dollar international corporation to destroy our city.
Kamloops in recent years has managed to increase its economic base in a more intelligent matter with sports, adventure tourism and other lifestyle activities, and also has promoted itself as a place for seniors’ relocation. Somehow I don’t think Ajax fits into this picture.
I would not look forward to breathing this toxic laden dust in 40 degree, low humidity, summer weather conditions that could, combined with a weather inversion, make matters even worse.