Musings â€” Chris-Takos
There must be million of â€œTwo types of people in the world,â€ but Iâ€™m going to add two more. There are people who pay their bills and people who donâ€™t.
It used to be those who did not pay their bills were soon deprived of whatever those bills were charged for. Now, we meet a new, â€œTwo types of people in the world,â€ at least in Taber. Itâ€™s those that agree with such consequences, and those that think it unkind to deprive anyone of anything. Well, thatâ€™s not entirely true. This latter group has no problem with depriving irresponsible people of personal responsibility.
There are two types of people in Taber â€” homeowners and people who need to rent the roof over their head. Both need and use water, and while water is a necessity, and does fall freely from heaven, it must be bought and paid for.
This brings us full circle to the first two types of people â€” those that will pay and those that wonâ€™t pay. The group that wonâ€™t pay their bills is made up of, you guessed it, the other two types of people â€” owners and renters. Owners that do not pay their bills will be held hostage because their unpaid bills will be added to their property taxes, and thereby be eventually paid. Renter donâ€™t pay property taxes, so how to get around that little problem?
Councilâ€™s simple solution â€” donâ€™t hold irresponsible people responsible for their irresponsible behaviour. Make someone else responsible for them â€” the property owner. They are the one that can be held responsible. After all, he rented them the house. It must be his fault his renters donâ€™t pay their bills.
Landlords are always at risk that a renter might stop paying rent, and now faces a further risk of possibly having to pay for a tenantâ€™s water consumption as well.
This concern was brushed off by one councillor, who suggested landlords can protect themselves against this by adding an additional deposit for just this cause. However, it is against provincial law for a landlord to charge such a deposit.
The Town of Taber, on the other hand, can and in fact used to, in cases where unpaid bills exceeded the deposit, simply stopped supplying the product for which the bills were charged, but now claims this became an inconvenience for town staff. Really? Will it soon become inconvenient for town staff to repair pot holes or broken mains?
There are two types of people in the world, those who are part of the problem and those who are part of a solution. I believe those who remove consequences from personal responsibility and encouraging and perpetuating the problem.
Town councillors will either empower the residents of Taber or contribute to their weakness. Renters are the public too.
They are not untrustworthy threats that have a right to vote but no right to have a water account in their name.