What is the cost of vandalism, and who pays for it? Every year, senseless damages are inflicted on both public and private properties, putting a blight on the community, a black eye as it were, and rarely are the perpetrators ever caught and made to make good on their hooliganism.
The answer to who pays is simply, all of us, all who comprise this community of Weyburn and area, and as such, all of us have been subject to the whims of vandals who imagine that what they're doing is somehow amusing or worth of notice.
Some go to the extent to be as shocking as possible, such as last year's vandalism to the cenotaph war memorial, shortly before the community paused to pay tribute to those who sacrificed their lives in the Remembrance Day ceremonies. There were political slogans spray-painted onto the cenotaph, but the disrespect shown to the Legion, the city and the honoured war dead was unimaginably horrible.
This year, among other forms of vandalism in and around the community, somebody (or a group of culprits) thought it would somehow be funny if two different fire hydrants were opened in the early morning hours of Apr. 29; the result is about one million litres of treated water was wasted, blown out onto the street, and the city came very close to having another boil-water advisory put on. After suffering through two of them already this year, it would have been more than many people could bear to have a third, caused not by micro-organisms or turbidity, but by unthinking vandals.
Make no mistake, this was a deliberate action; it takes a very large tool and a lot lof muscle power to turn on a fire hydrant; was it worth it, to bring the city close to having a boil-water advisory, with all the cost and inconvenience this would have brought city-wide to residents and businesses and institutions alike?
The estimated cost of this prank was about $10,000 to the city (which means all who use city water are paying for it).
Also recently has been a spree of arsons, of garbage or other debris set on fire in various places around the city. The dangers of fire surely do not need to be spelled out, as this could easily end up costing a life.
Residents of all ages and walks of life need to be vigilant around the city at all times of the day and night, and if someone sees an action where damage is being done, call the police immediately.