posted May 14, 2010, 9:52 PM by Cheryl Hollows
updated May 14, 2010, 9:56 PM
April 16, 2010 - CottageCountryNow.ca
This is in response to Mr. Gord Zulak's tirade against seasonal residents (Don't live here? don't vote here letter to the editor published in the April 2 Beacon Star). Mr. Zulak, my family ran a resort here on Georgian Bay for 57 years. During the first three decades we were only here during the summer. My dad was pretty handy, and in his time did a lot of work for seasonal residents and we still have friends who are seasonal residents. So I have had some personal experience with seasonal residency. My best description of the emotional attachment this area has for seasonal residents is that, although their body has to work in the city, their soul lives here. You believe that such people should have no say in the affairs of a place that is so important to them.
You believe that it is unfair for people who, for part of the year have another mailing address, to vote. Well, I believe that market value assessment is unfair. Market value assessment is a wealth tax on one specific asset class. One can have billions of dollars worth of stocks, but pay no annual tax on their market value. In principle, municipal taxes are supposed to pay for services provided by a municipality, and not be a social tax. Most seasonal residents own waterfront homes, and their taxes may be four to five times higher than a comparable household on an interior road, even if they are only here to use those services about 20 per cent of the year.
Apparently you don't regard seasonal residents as people, you see them as livestock. After you have finished milking the tax dollars out of them, you want to send them back to the city to get you more money. Mr. Zulak, you complain a lot. Why don't you come live in Carling where your presence might decrease my market value assessment.