Thursday, October 02, 2014



When Don Graham and myself were first getting the Nanaimo Ratepayers organization started, more than one person I asked to join felt they did not qualify as they were just 'renting'.

I presume it is because the bill for taxes, water, sewer and garbage pickup don't come directly from those people renting, that they forget they are the ones paying those fees and taxes.

As a renter you have just as much at stake in the upcoming election as someone who 'owns' property and pays those property taxes directly to the city.


Whether you rent property, pay a mortgage or own the property outright, what happens at city hall has the biggest impact on your day-to-day life.

While Provincial and Federal politics grabs a lot of headlines and those levels of government are involved in those BIG PICTURE items, the services provided by your City and the cost of those services has the biggest impact on your daily life.

For example, when you got up this morning, when you turned on your tap, water came out provided by your local government. If you flushed your toilet and stuff went away down the sewer that was your local government. On the way out the door you may have put your garbage at the curb to be picked up, courtesy your local government. When you pulled out of your driveway onto the paved road in front of your house on the way to work, you drove on a system of roads provided by local government. On your lunch break if you got out for some air and took a stroll through one of our many parks or trails, that was also provided by local government. If you wanted a work out, swim or to take a few turns on your skates ---- yup, those facilities are provided by your local government. In addition to these core services, your city also provides fire and police protection at levels that make us comfortable that help will be there if needed.

In 2008 Nanaimo residents, and that includes people who are renting, contributed $99,156,628 by way of taxes and user fees to the city of Nanaimo. This is budgeted to increase to $149,732,777 by 2018 and when you factor in the RDN budget by 2018 taxes and fees will be a whopping $170,317,539.

You need to do your part in making sure the people charged with running the affairs of your city are capable of providing sound fiscal management of your dollars you are giving to them at an ever increasing rate.

As a renter, you have just as much at stake as property owners, those increases will show up in the form of increased rent sooner or later and your vote is just as loud a voice as people who own property.


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