Council blowing smoke

City council wrong to use the RCMP to ticket people caught smoking on the beach

I realize city council needs to hear from residents in order to properly represent us and follow our wishes, so here are my concerns on two issues.

In the past few weeks, the Penticton RCMP Drug Task Force has busted a number of drug dealers, all carrying concealed weapons. One on Main Street had a concealed machete. City council wants to use the RCMP to ticket people caught smoking on the beach. Am I the only one to think it is a really bad idea to use our police force to ticket a European tourist enjoying a coffee and a smoke on the beach, rather than getting armed thugs off our streets? Am I the only one that thinks this is the wrong reallocation of police resources? Am I the only one in town that isn’t high?

For the record, I don’t smoke (anything), and in all the decades I’ve enjoyed our beaches I have never been bothered by others smoking. The only thing that really stinks about this is it appears to be a thinly veiled attempt by us to force people to quit smoking. Their lifestyle choice is not my business (or yours).

The second issue, Coun. Hopkin has decided to champion the cause of photo radar in school zones. Mr. Hopkin, one thing we found with the last photo radar experiment was that it ticketed the vehicle’s registered owner, not always the person driving at the time (friends, family, employees, etc.).

Each day tickets are written that have the potential to suck thousands of dollars out of our local economy and send it to other levels of government. Can we really afford that? Will it have solved the problem? Speed bumps would slow people down and probably cause the majority to find alternate routes to avoid the bone-jarring commute. It would also leave the cash in Penticton’s struggling economy, rather than throwing it into the Christy Clark/Adrian Dix black hole.

George Murai