By Mark Robbins
The Point Roberts Taxpayers Association (PRTA) meets on the second Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. in the community center to discuss local issues and concerns, hear guest speakers on various topics and meet with local government officials. You do not need to be a member to join in the discussions. Everyone is welcome to participate in our meetings and to help make Point Roberts a great place to live, work, invest or visit. The association seeks to promote appropriate economic development and job creation while preserving the social and environmental qualities that make the Point so attractive to residents and visitors.
In 2016, we helped bring to a successful conclusion the cross-border fight to stop the construction of the proposed radio transmission towers, culminating in a final fundraiser at the Reef to retire all outstanding legal bills and debts of the Cross-Border Coalition.
The PRTA advocated for improved community communications, construction of a proper lighthouse in Lighthouse Park, completing the new library project, designating off-leash park space and hours for our canine friends, use of “gas tax” funds for roadside beautification and pedestrian safety, and greater public involvement in finalizing a revised character plan for Point Roberts.
In May, we welcomed Port of Bellingham commissioner Bobby Briscoe to discuss possible support for the lighthouse project. At our AGM in July, we heard from MLA Vicki Huntington on the urgent need to protect the Fraser River Estuary and Pacific Flyway from further industrial encroachment. In August, we welcomed Chief Christopher Carleton to report on the fire district’s budget, accomplishments, and plans.
We also hosted the third annual Open Public Forum with our member of Congress, Rep. Suzan DelBene. At our November meeting, we heard from Burns Bog Conservation Society president Eliza Olson on the ecological importance of Burns Bog. PRTA members served on the Point Roberts Community Advisory Committee (PRCAC), Character Plan Revision Committee, and Ad Hoc Border Committee.