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MK Bay Marina work boat, 27 Feb, 2011, small financially, but the environmental issue is hard to quantify
CONTRIBUTION · 4th March 2011
Michael D Graham & Doug McLeod
Open Letter to the Board Chairman of the Regional District Kitimat Stikine
Dear Mr. Nyce,

I’m writing this letter to express my profound disappointment in the performance of the RDKS Function Committee, the group of Directors that oversees the operation of MK Bay Marina. I am an annual moorage client at the marina, and have been for the past decade. I, along with all other clients and customers of the facility, are faced with spiraling and continuing cost increases in every aspect of operation including moorage, electricity, haul-out charges, dry land storage, vehicle parking, trailer storage, boat launching fees and even camping fees.

The 2011 budget approved by the Board on February 25 shows yet another increase in moorage fees and service rates by a stunning 18%. This is on top of last year’s 10% and a previous 10% in 2007. Nonetheless, the nearly $500,000 deficit incurred some years ago remains virtually unchanged. The Function Committee, under the guidance of your administrator seem unable to control spending at this facility.

Litigation initiated as a last resort against the RDKS and the marina manager by the tug boat owner could likely have been settled with a handshake a few months ago, if not for the unyielding arrogance shown by the manager and the autocratic attitude of your administrator. I notice from the monthly RDKS cheque register posted on your website that legal fees paid to date have already reached more than $50,000. As well, the 2011 budget shows $80,000 set aside for “professional services” (up from $2000). Does this mean you expect to lose? Are boaters and marina clients expected to pay for this boondoggle as well?

The disregard shown by the Board and members of the Function Committee towards your fiscal duties and responsibilities at this facility is very distressing. Despite many requests, your Function Committee has refused to consult with or communicate in any way with customers. All discussions about marina finances have been held out of the public eye “in camera”, as it seems are all other marina issues.

Imagine if the people of Terrace, Kitimat and the other villages of the region were faced with property tax increases in the order of what we are facing at the marina? Do you think taxpayers would allow you to take the same approach?

We are the people directly affected by your decisions and bare the full impact. As our elected representatives we deserve much more.

Michael D. Graham

The Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine Fails MK Bay Marina Users
By Doug McLeod


Here is why all MK Bay Marina users should speak out now!

Every person is to be treated fairly with applied democratic principles of openness.

Fairness is:
- having a chance to give information to those in government who are making decisions that will affect you

- being provided necessary information and in an understandable form

- decisions made within a reasonable time

- giving reasons for decisions

- being treated with courtesy.

The public is entitled to:
- be invited to participate in the planning of and the review of programs

- know, from the beginning, how decisions will be made

- information needed to evaluate and improve government agency performance.

Unfair public agency administrative decisions or actions, including delay, rudeness, negligence, arbitrariness or unlawfulness needs exposure and investigation.

Citizens are entitled to expect senior government authorities to ensure and promote fairness in public administration. These expectations and considerations are detailed on the BC Ombudsperson web site at www.ombusman.bc.ca.

The Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine (RDKS) is not meeting obligations and expectations. A citizen’s duty is to insist that agencies like the RDKS and public services like MK Bay Marina comply.

It could be concluded the RDKS administration and directors have little respect for the Ombudsperson Office. That conclusion might easily be drawn considering the following:

July 2010 the Ombudsperson advised the RDKS administration that there was a complaint about them.

The Ombudsperson was investigating and expected a response from the RDKS Administrator August 2010.

February 2011, seven months passing and still no response by the RDKS.

The Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine Fails MK Bay Marina Users
The RDKS has failed to provide information needed to evaluate and improve MK Bay Marina.

Eg. The RDKS administration and directors have failed to provide information, in the form of an independent audit of MK Bay Marina. That audit was asked for over a year ago by the RDKS committee of elected directors that oversees the marina service and RDKS administration has not done it.

Read More Here

The RDKS lacks consideration for the public directly affected by their decisions. The RDKS administration and directors have failed to seek or to allow input from individuals or organizations directly effected by RDKS decisions.

eg. RDKS directors passed rate increases two years in a row without seeking input from the public directly affected.

The RDKS administration and directors neglect regularly to respond to correspondence and to citizen presentations, let alone to do it in a timely manner.

eg. The RDKS meeting chair promised April 2010 that they would respond to the Marina User Group presentation at that meeting. Nine months have gone by without a response.

The RDKS intends, likely arbitrarily, to make you pay more and more to cover the marina deficits and ongoing mismanagement:

$489,450 deficit in 2010. Revenue was $786,696 in 2010.
$408,887 carry forward deficit in 2011. Anticipated revenue $637,713 in 2011.

We need all MK Bay Marina Users to take a stand now. Your executive is being ignored by the RDKS. Make some phone calls, write your letters and emails and send MUG a copy. Ask others affected to do the same.
page 51 of the RDKS draft 5 year financial
page 51 of the RDKS draft 5 year financial
12 volt battery submerged 27 Feb 2011.  Both batteries were in that condition 22 Feb 2011.
12 volt battery submerged 27 Feb 2011. Both batteries were in that condition 22 Feb 2011.
Ed/....
Comment by Steve Smyth on 7th March 2011
I don't disagree with your comment. Government of any political stripe do not usually bring any management skills to the party, no matter what the project.
Too Bad.
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 6th March 2011
When Rio Tinto Alcan caused the closure of Moon Bay Marina, I had to search for moorage elsewhere. It was about the time that some of the criticism of MK Bay was starting. That along with the high fees and the very long wait-list convinced me that as much as I wanted my boat, the hassles in keeping it might not be worth it.

It is a shame really that a recreational facility can not be better run. There is tremendous potential in Kitimat that is undeveloped and, based on this article. maybe undervalued.

It all makes me glad I sold my boat even though I really miss the time on the water of the Douglas Channel. At this rate there will be others having to make the same difficult decision.
steve...
Comment by ed on 6th March 2011
gordan campbell for example
a cautionary tale
Comment by Steve Smyth on 6th March 2011
For those of you out there that want the "Government" to plan and run everything. If this was private sector, anyone causing this much crap and bad publicity would probably be long gone by now.
Fees
Comment by Scott McGinlay on 5th March 2011
I purchased a launch pass for the new year at a coat of $160 and find out after that it doesn't include parking. I find that disgusting as I now need to pay for parking to. I fish there alot throught out the year and the parking fee is outragous I already pay to use the launch, now I have to pay again to use the parking lot. Do I need to start paying to use the bathrooms now to? Where does it end? There is times that we need to " log out" the launch as it is full of trees and logs before we can launch. Do I get to send them a bill for labour?