The Council for the Champlain Waterway (CCW) was advocating for the protection and conservation of the Ottawa River long before it became a “cause celebre.” However, now that an active volunteer group has brought the future of the river to the forefront with its drive to have it designated a heritage river, the goals and objectives of the old CCW don’t seem as far-fetched as some once thought they were.
That can be attributed to changing times and shifting priorities, and that is all fine and good. If it gets the job done in the end, that’s the bottom line. But over the course of years, the CCW has been a quiet friend of the river, and its membership is starting to stretch their vocal chords again. Hey, that’s good. The more people getting on side, the better.
But the CCW wants to be more than another voice in the crowd. It wants what it feels is some long-overdue recognition, perhaps even some financial remuneration, to help it continue to operate the tourism boat at the marina that has been there for almost two decades. Who’s to say it shouldn’t get some support from the city it has supported all these years?
However, at the present time, with city budgets maxed to the limit, there is precious little spare change to throw around when streets are crumbling and infrastructure needs renewing.
So the CCW may have to find its own way amid the crowd for a little while longer, but it should be no stranger to that process. It has been fending for itself for 20 years, it can probably get by for a few more. But we would be smart not to forget about it when, and if, the city is in a position to help worthwhile causes once again.
One final note: To the dunderheads who thought it might be fun to break into the CCW boat and vandalize its interior, we feel only pity for your ilk. To have such little pride in your community that you have to destroy the good things in your midst means you will never contribute to positive developments. Some day you might be sleeping under the boat you helped vandalize. That’s a lofty ambition!Article ID# 1030588