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Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Getting solid numbers makes sense

I recently was directed to read a statement that I had “…put forward a notice of motion calling on the municipality to spend the money to put a concrete floor in the building, without any kind of business case …” That is incorrect. The notice simply asked the town to put out a ‘request for […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Conspiracy Theories: 2014 Update

It’s time to update a piece I wrote in December, 2012, outlining the secret deals, backroom negotiations and “barbecue politics” that our council has been involved in since that date, more than a year ago. So here comes the update, the emperor without his clothes: Secret meetings: none Backroom negotiations: none Barbecue deals: none Sorry, […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Collingwood’s municipal debt and 2014 budget

Tuesday, Council got a combined debt-and-budget presentation that set the stage for the upcoming, fuller 2014 budget deliberations starting next week. CAO John Brown gave us a recap of a report (produced by BMA Management Consulting) about the town’s debt situation and financial wellbeing. It was a mix of good news/bad news. The good is […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Should councillors abstain from voting?

In an earlier post, I wrote that Collingwood’s Integrity Commissioner, Robert Swayze, proposed two changes to the town’s Procedural Bylaw: amending section 13.7 and deleting section 13.8. Last post I dealt with the former; here I will explain my concerns about the latter. Section 13.8 currently reads: 13.8 No vote – deemed negative – exception […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Legal Versus “Personal” Conflicts of Interest

In May, 2013, I wrote my thoughts about Ontario’s Municipal Conflict of Interest Act and the effect it had on the governance and procedural behaviour of municipal councillors. Back then, I wrote, The Act allows no grey areas: there are no “perceived” conflicts in law, only clearly defined legal ones. This is obviously intended by […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Looking back on three years

If you attended the Mayor’s Levee, Jan. 5, you received a small brochure that listed some of this council’s accomplishments to date, as well as our collective plans and priorities for the remaining year of our term. It’s worth reiterating some of those notes. Keeping the public informed was identified by this council as a […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Looking back on 2103

It’s been quite a year, both personally and politically. The best of times, the worst of times, to paraphrase Dickens. Looking back on 2103, it was a busy, eventful, successful, and yet often challenging year. I accomplished many things on different levels – personal and professional – and, I believe, overcame some of the challenges I […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Council’s second strategic planning session

Although there were no media reporters present to cover it, Collingwood Council held its second strategic planning session this term, on December 4. This was an important, all-day session for council because it set priorities for 2014, the last year this term. We also collectively agreed upon a list of our many accomplishments this term. […]

LeDaro: Toronto city council is going to curb Rob Ford’s powers

It is about time. He has proven beyond any reasonable doubt that he is an inebriated idiot.

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Random Acts of Kindness

It goes by almost unrecognized, but for some, it is a special day that reflects the way we should all behave, to everyone, every day. It’s called Random Acts of Kindness Day, and it will be celebrated in Collingwood, on Friday, November 1. Council has contributed by making downtown parking free all day, as we […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: $35 Million Costs Confirmed in Report

I was told recently that the $35 million projected capital costs for the Central Park redevelopment had been called a “red herring.” That’s verifiably untrue. The actual total amount shown in the final report is $35,251,965.11. This isn’t a made up number, an inflated number or an imaginary number. It isn’t a council number, either. […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: An Indoor Year-Round Rec Facility for Seniors and More

Monday night, I asked for a staff report on covering our lawn bowling rinks, and making it into a year-round facility for Collingwood. This facility would provide recreational opportunities for seniors and older adults. It could include other sports like horseshoes, shuffleboard and croquet. Perhaps badminton and a walking area (since we will lose our […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Reflecting on our successes this term

With just over a year left to go in this term, I’d like to take a few minutes to consider all the accomplishments of this council over the past three years. They are not inconsiderable, and worth celebrating, I think you’ll agree. Most recent are the two new state-of-the-art recreational facilities; jewels in our community. […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: What is a councillor’s role?

A question was asked of me recently about the appropriateness of the Deputy Mayor being at a meeting last summer to discuss the possible purchase of the new recreational facility structures. From the question I inferred that the asker did not approve of a politician being there. I disagree, and made my point that it […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: The Enemies List

Canadians barely lifted an eyebrow in surprise when it was revealed that our Prime Minister had an “enemies list” compiled as a warning to newly-minted cabinet ministers laying out who they can’t trust. I mean, we’ve lived with Harper as leader long enough not be shocked by anything that seems petty, autocratic, paranoid or Republican. [...]

Illuminated By Street Lamps: In Brampton, Few Recorded Development Votes After Developers Contribute To Political War Chests

By Joe Fantauzzi@jjfantauzzi Key Findings: 

– The development industry is clearly engaged in the political process at Brampton City Hall.

– 233 development companies and development-affiliated individuals were publicly disclosed to have contributed money to Brampton candidates in the 2010 municipal election.

– Of those 233 developer donors, 48 were discovered to have proposals in various stages in front of Brampton City Hall between December 12, 2010 and May 22, 2013, according to city council minutes.

– The interests of 20.6 per cent ─ or about one in five ─ of the companies and individuals (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Illuminated By Street Lamps: In Brampton, Few Recorded Development Votes After Developers Contribute To Political War Chests

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Casinos redux

First let’s clarify the terms. A “casino” was never really in the discussion, although just about everyone used that term. What the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. (OLG) offered was a “gaming facility” as they euphemistically called it. A gambling … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: A Sneak Peak Inside Our New Fire Hall

Councillor Lloyd and I took a tour through the new fire hall, at the corner of High and Third Streets, today. It’s still under construction, but the main components are finished and the firefighters have moved in. It’s an impressive … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Centennial Pool Gets Finishing Touches

A sneak peak into Centennial Pool a few weeks before it re-opens. Councillor Lloyd and I took a look around today (July 9) at how it’s progressing. We were very impressed. It’s going to be fabulous! Collingwood residents will love … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Troilus and Cressida

I’ve always found Troilus and Cressida a difficult play. The characters all seem jaded, cynical, opportunistic, stuffily sanctimonious, lecherous or simply underhanded. Some are merely unpleasant, others are despicable, reprehensible. All seem self-serving, more concerned with their own gains and … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: The CAO Conpsiracies

Collingwood has appointed an interim CAO, John Brown, former city manager of Brantford, St. John’s and Oshawa, to help the town’s administration and governance during the interim while we search for a full-time CAO. This will, of course, send the bloggers into … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: How should a municipality deal with cigarette litter?

I was sitting on a decorative rock on the landscaping west of Loblaws, this weekend, waiting while Susan was inside and amusing myself at the bad driving habits of our city visitors in the parking lot. I happened to look … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: It’s All About the Money

Almost every council decision comes with the subtext question, “Can we afford it?” Everything not procedural or administrative is usually about the cost. Who pays, whose budget does it come from, is the money in reserves, can we get funding, … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: More’s Speech to the Mob

The scene is a riot, on the first day of May, 1517. It would later be known as Evil May Day,or Ill May Day. An angry mob, mostly comprised of apprentices, marched through the streets of London, their passion inflamed … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Understanding the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act

Another of the Acts that direct municipal governance is the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act. While considerably shorter than the previously-discussed Municipal Act – eight pages, 15 sections and less than 3,500 words – it is of perhaps equal importance. While … Continue reading →