Open Letter to constituents regarding decision on Jumbo Glacier Resort

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For over twenty years, Kootenay residents have been clear about keeping Jumbo Glacier wild. Through petitions, letters, rallies and your elected representatives, you have been clear that a resort for this part of the region is undesirable.

The Ktunaxa Nation, in a rare event for them, recently shared their spiritual traditions about the area when they released the Qat’muk Declaration. Biologists and hockey legends alike have asked the BC government to reject the proposed resort in favour of protecting grizzly bear habitat. Local businesses who live in our region have also said no thanks, preferring to build a locally based tourism industry that celebrates our natural environment rather than destroy it.

All of this was ignored on March 20, 2012 at 11:00am when the Liberals announced that they would approve the Master Development Agreement for the year-round Jumbo Glacier Alpine Resort.

Like many Kootenay residents, I was disappointed to learn that the Liberals chose to ignore us and our vision for our region. A decision was finally made, and it was the wrong decision.

However, at times like this, I hold Jack Layton’s parting words very close. So when it comes to keeping Jumbo wild, “don’t let them tell you it can’t be done.”

We still feel strongly that a year-round luxury resort housing over 6000 beds for staff and visitors on a glacier is not suitable for our area. We still feel strongly that it is not in the public’s interest to foot the $200 million bill for road construction to the proposed site. And we still feel strongly that our vision of building a diverse local economy in conjunction with protecting our natural environment deserves respect.

That does not change despite the Liberals making a jumbo mistake.

In the days ahead, we will learn about ways we can keep Jumbo wild. To start, please go to CBC’s online poll and let them know you do not support the Jumbo Glacier Resort.  You can stay updated with news on this issue by visiting my website, www.michellemungall.ca. And continue talking with your neighbours and friends. It is essential that we are all aware of the need for a Jumbo wild.

Along with Adrian Dix and the entire NDP team, I will continue to hold Christy Clark and the Liberals accountable for their decision. We will ask questions in the Legislature and speak out wherever we can, and we will be working with you on the ground to protect our region’s interests.

Together, we will refuse to be ignored.

Keep Jumbo Wild!

Michelle Mungall

MLA Nelson-Creston