Dear Mr. Horgan and Mr. Weaver, as I am sure you can imagine with all the chaos of this election being over, the people of the north wonder where they stand on many important issues. We all watched as you championed for the coast, the mainland and the island. With being such a blue (federally) and red (provincially) region we understand why you did not pay us a visit at all during the 90 days around the election. However, in the coming weeks and months, it may be a great time to plan a trip in the north.
Did you know we are light out until midnight during the summer months, and light again by 4 am? I have found living here my entire life, with my family dating back to 1927, it is perfect for working in industry. Now yes, my family came here for the farming, and the ability to work in the light until midnight and go again at 4:00 am had some huge advantages, the four months of summer weather however offered the equal disadvantages. So when the oil and gas industry started to prove a great economy in the 1960's, we stayed and enjoyed an agricultural economy in the four months of summer, followed by an industry of oil and gas in the other eight months of the year, we will just call not summer.
Here we are 90 years later as my family marks it 90th birthday in Fort St John, the same year Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday and as The Alaska Highway celebrates its 75th.. yes we came a decade and a half after the highway was built. Fort St John and area is a very unique part of the province that not many people in the south get to experience like we the locals do. Just like everywhere else we complain when its to hot (which is over 25 degrees for us), and we complain when its to cold (which is under -25 degrees for us), but we show up in both of those seasons, we work hard so that the citizens can enjoy a great quality of life, and so that other parts of the province, country and hopefully soon the world can power there homes, heat and cool there offices, and enjoy the luxuries that 2017 has to offer.
The City of Fort St John is known as The Energetic City, where families grow and businesses flourish. Times have been tough for Fort St John and area families the last year and a half. With the downturn economically on natural resource prices, we have all felt the sting of what that is like once again. Fort St John has a very promising future ahead with the right aid in governance on industry happenings. Besides the fact we complain a complain a little when its hot or cold, and that we still show up and believe that we are making the world a better place, what this little corner of the province can bring to the entire province is huge.
We have only longed for one thing and that’s to be accepted and included in a province that is very different not only between the north and the south, but region by region. Yes our fracking and exploration appear in TV shows and sitcoms about how dangerous they are. The extremely controversial Site C dam is under a constant microscope that leads the 2142 workers to question what’s going to happen day by day. Oil and gas exploration and transportation that people don’t who have never been parts of it, just don’t understand the importance. I was fortunate to grow up in an industry town in which when I turn my light switch on, I don’t need to question it because it comes from an hours drive. When I go to a locally owned gas station, I don’t question whether or not I will be able to fuel my car, I have seen it being made. When the temp drops cold enough, the furnace needs to be used (usually October for us), I know that gas that’s heating my kid’s home is from this region.
You see, I am proud to be from the North, I am proud to be from BC and I am proud to be a Fort St John local. So although this could have been a lot shorter in order to get to the question I am going to ask.. I felt you needed to understand some of the way we live and look at things in this part of such a very different province. We don’t have to all live in the same area to want the same things; we don’t have to have the same political colors, or cultures.. We all just want the same things. Your desire to have a great quality of life is no different then mine, your desire to have easy access to medical parallels mine, the need to see your children and grand children grow in this beautiful province is also something we can share in common. The great Rocky Mountains may separate us, but they don’t make us different, just unique.
So I would ask to the both of you, please take the time to understand the North and the important role we play in this province and can continue to play for all the people of British Columbia.