How residents feel about Langford's 15.6% tax hike

Plus, St. Patrick's Day events, new burger joint, community clean up, and more

Good morning! 

Luck is in the air with St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner.  Many pubs in the Westshore are hosting special events in honour of the holiday, so make sure to check out our list of pubs and more in today’s edition of the newsletter.


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Langford makes a corrective leap with its 15.6% tax hike

Photo: Shutterstock

On Mar. 4, Langford City Council unanimously approved a 15.6% increase in property taxes for 2024. Signs were coming for the change after Coun. Keith Yacucha and others raised serious concerns recently, about the ways the council had become overly dependent on its amenities fund to offset its reluctance to raise property taxes.

Mayor Scott Goodmanson told The Westshore, “Those who don't like big tax hikes, recognize that we're trying to wean ourselves off of what is most likely an unsustainable, continued use of the amenities fund. Simply because of the new housing regulations coming up, we are being limited in what we can charge for amenity funds and how they can be used with pre-zoning being expected, we lose a lot of that leverage.”

“Property tax is essentially a wealth tax,” said Yacucha. “A 1% reduction in a wealth tax results in a higher subsidy to those with more wealth than those with less. The example I use is that a 1% reduction in tax on $1 million is $10,000 while a 1% tax on $500,000 is $5,000—similarly those with higher property values benefit the most from the use of amenity fees to subsidize taxes, an inequitable approach to taxation,” he said.

Others have argued that the tax hike will mostly hurt residents who are struggling to make ends meet and who will find the increase a real shock to household cash flow. Resident Debora Morwald writes, “The cost of the majority of products has doubled. Taking unnecessary funds from residents at this time is not in Langford’s best interests, as it will have a negative effect on the local economy.”

The argument she is making is that people barely able to pay bills won’t spend their money in town, but many people in BC aren’t even paying their bills.


St. Patrick’s Day in the Westshore

Saint Patrick’s Day is just around the corner, and plenty of Westshore pubs are having special events in the spirit of the holiday. So, pop on some green, grab some friends, and head to one of these pubs.

Six Mile Pub: Enjoy Irish and Celtic tunes while enjoying delicious menu items at Six Mile Pub’s St. Patrick’s event. Featuring Irish specials, craft beer, Guinness on tap, and a live performance from Cookeilidh, Six Mile Pub is fun for the entire family. Book a reservation over the phone to secure your spot. 

Darcy’s Pub: With live music and specialty menu items, Darcy’s Pub is a great place to spend the holiday for adults only. Check out the beef and Guinness stew, or dig into a plate of Harper's fish and chips while drinking a beer and enjoying live entertainment all day long. 

17 Mile House: Head to 17 Mile House this March 17 for its annual St. Patrick's Day celebration. Enjoy a hearty bowl of soup and Irish coffee, or even a tall glass of beer while enjoying live Irish music. For those looking for the classic green-dyed beer, 17 Mile House is also featuring it on the special menu. 

Loghouse Pub: Loghouse Pub is featuring $7 caesars and $9 doubles all day long during its St. Patrick’s celebration this year. Last year, Loghouse offered green beers and specialty menu items, with live music from 8-11pm. They haven’t announced the full list of events for this weekend, but keep your eyes on the Facebook page for updates. 

The Rose Public House: From 3 to 5pm, check out Morien Jones while enjoying Irish drinks and food at the Rose Pub. Featuring specialty items, Guinness, and of course green beer, the Rose is a great spot to stop on Saturday. Seating is first come, first served, so keep that in mind when planning your trip.

What is your favourite part of St. Patrick’s day?

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Around the 'Shore

🔥 Belmont Secondary students help make area fire resilient: On March 11, Belmont Secondary students participated in efforts to make the school grounds and nearby homes more fire-resilient. Students worked to remove invasive plants and clean up the forest, while also learning about wildfires and invasive species. The school hopes to replace the invasive species with native plants once the project is finished. [City of Langford

🏡 Now Selling! Rowhomes at Royal Bay with suites and no strata fees. Discover the advantages of buying at presale prices. Register now.*

🍔 Burger Crush coming to Colwood: The Colwood burger scene is about to expand, with the announcement of a third Burger Crush location coming to the area. The new restaurant will hold around 50 people and is located at Colwood Corners. Burger Crush is hoping to open in late April. [Daily Hive

🚔 Police arrest unlicensed driver in Metchosin: West Shore RCMP caught and issued an indefinite prohibition for a driver who has been unlicensed since August. The incident occurred on March 11, when the driver was charged with prohibited driving and their vehicle was impounded for seven days due to a poor driving record. [Goldstream Gazette

💦 Don’t be afraid to jump in! Explore deeper career perspectives with Continuing Studies at UVic. Adapt to a quickly changing job market with short micro-credentials.*

🏫 Port Renfrew school receives funding for replacement school: On March 12, the BC Government announced that Port Renfrew Elementary would be receiving almost $12 million in funding to create a replacement school. The announcement comes as a part of the government’s seismic mitigation program, and is one of 496 scheduled to be upgraded.

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Community Events

🫖 Tea and Symphony: Enjoy an afternoon of refreshments and music with the Sooke Philharmonic’s tea and symphony event this March 17. Going from 2:30 to 4:30pm at the Sooke Community Hall, listen to live music while being served sweet and savoury treats with tea and coffee. Tickets are available online. 

🌿 FireSmart Community Clean up: Help the Langford community remove invasive species and woody debris while spreading awareness about wildfire safety practices at Porcher Park this March 16. Going from 10am to 1pm, no prior experience is needed to help out. 

🎨 Artist meet and greet: This March 17, meet and mingle with artists in the community at the Sooke Arts Council meet and greet. Going from 12 to 4pm, head to the Sooke Arts Council Studio room and talk about inspiration and art while enjoying refreshments. 

🥘 Voting is now open: Food lovers across the Westshore can now vote for their favourite restaurants in the 2024 Tasting Victoria Best Restaurant Awards. Cast your votes here.

What’s Offshore?

No ships today!

Westshore Snaps

Dock floating in the sky on Finlayson Arm. —Ron Myers, Colwood

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