"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Saturday, 28 May 2016

IT WAS A PRIVILEGE TO SERVE AND THE ULTIMATE SATISFACTION

It's impossible to list differences between then and now. Or even choose among the major changes. Most obvious ,with widest impact, is development. And money. 

When I became Mayor, the Ontario Water Resources had just ruled the sewage treatment facility 
at capacity. Only twelve more residential permits could be issued. 

Development is the life blood of a municipality. 

At the time, I wondered how OWRC could  be so specific on liters of sewage flow. 

The country was still in the throes of a downturn in the economy due to the oil crisis. Farmers deposited loads of the stuff at the banks. They had taken on debt for modern machinery. Small businesses weren't making enough to cover their over-draft at the bank. Interest rates rose by double digits on debt. The town was hard pressed to keep taxes from rising even standing still.  

We borrowed and bought Jack Wood's farm at the south end and developed a showcase industrial park. It's not exactly how we planned it but the debt got paid in short order. Prestige lots close to Yonge Street could be sold without the profit factor.

In 1969, when County School Boards were created, the town rented Church Street School to the 
Public school board for $1.00 a year. The idea was, when it came time to build new headquarters 
they would be in Aurora. In 1976, election year, the town and board moved into a beautiful new joint administration building on Wellington Street. 

But first, to free up the spectacular location,we  had to move the works department to Scanlon Court. 

The works yard was the biggest  blight in town. A couple of rusty old quantset huts, Piles of dirty, used winter sand, rusty metal collected from all  over and stored until Christmas, and a raggle-gaggle collection of vehicles and equipment. 

So in a couple of years we had a new administration building,a new works building,pre-fabricated,no architect, and oh yes, we tripled the size of the library and started a showcase industrial park. 

Wellington Street was reconstructed by the Region. New underground services,sidewalks, 
lighting and tree planting  were all installed and funded by the town. 

When I was defeated in 1976, my predecessor the late Dick Illingworth  suggested I had gone too far too fast. 

I knew that wasn't the reason. 

What I remember now is the great excitement  of working, staff and council together, and so much accomplished in such a short time. 

In my first term as Mayor ,we completed a Business Improvement Area in the downtown block as well. It was follow through from the intent of the  previous council. Our new planning department was the main resource for that project. That's a story in itself. 

This post took off on its own direction. I'll get back to the difference between then and now another time.

Friday, 27 May 2016

THE PENDULUM STOPPED

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "WHAT YOU SEE ...YOU REALLY

Your wish is my command.

"During your term(s) as mayor of Aurora did council come anywhere near to the stupidity of present day ones?

Or were you and your fellows able to distinguish the nuts from the bolts, the wheat from the mouse poops?

Have times changed that much?

Has human intelligence changed that much?

When I see what is happening south of the border I must say, yes they and it have."

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 27 May 2016 at 07:49

**********************
This is a tall order.

 I was Mayor in a simpler time.The town was small,compact,and the office and Council Chamber were in the middle of the block between Wellington and Mosely.

People paid their taxes in person.They lined up daily for mail at the post office. Once a year,we lined up at Elwood Davis service station next door to Cousins Dairy, south of Mosely. 

Elections were held every year  until the sixties; then every two years.

Nominations were held in Wells Street School and the place was packed. People filled the stairs outside. Candidates had to be moved and seconded and names were written in chalk on a board. 

School boards were local and police departments. The Fire Department was volunteer except for the Chief. 

The Clerk conducted the nomination meeting. Each candidate had three minutes to speak. A small tinkle was the warning to wrap up and a final ring ended each speech. 

I was elected Councillor on my third try. I took  the Reeve's office on my fourth. Reeve and Deputy Reeve represented the town at County Council. I was the Town's last Reeve. 

 I ran for Mayor, in the  first year of Regional government and lost. Came back and ran for Council two years later and topped the poll.

The Mayor had to resign after the first meeting of the term. He had a conflict of interest with his job with the Ministry of Municipal Affairs. I was appointed to the office by a vote of Council.

I was re-elected to the Mayor's office for a second term and defeated along with six Councillors in 
the next election. That was about entitlement. 

In my judgement, a valuable tradition was lost then. 

Conventional wisdom was  to re-elect incumbents ; experience was better than none. 

If  a challenge was made for the Mayor's office, it always came from the Reeve or an incumbent Councillor. 

When the election was over,council was expected to get down to work. New ouncillors learned from incumbents . The Mayor, council members and staff were all extremely helpful . 

There were no Pollyannas but everyone was civil, respectful and welcoming. 

A position or comment made that was clearly political would be greeted with a good-natured groan.

Council meetings were not televised. 

Staff lived in town . The clerk-treasurer managed the operation with the help of Dorothy Wardle ,
Treasury clerk and Colleen Gowan  administrative clerk. 

There was a succession of deputy clerks . 

The Supervisor of Public Works , Angus McGregor had a work force of fourteen. He lived  in Holland Landing. It was a source of  disquiet that he took a Town vehicle home and it sat in a Holland Landing driveway for all the world to see. 

There was no shortage of conduits for public opinion .

George Timpson took the Mayor's office after my defeat. George was very keen to be popular. He didn't learn much in his first two terms. None of the new Councillors had municipal experience but they had lots of confidence. 

The two surviving incumbents did not complete their terms. Staff influence was substantially reduced. 

Tradition ended and never returned.  

Four years later, I was re-elected to Council and found a very different atmosphere. 

It wasn't about Councillors being less intelligent. It was about being more focussed on themselves
and less on the community they served. 

Collegial is the word used in academe. 

Something Indefinable but valuable had vanished.  

It didn't get better . When I ran again in 2003, I hoped I could make a difference. 

I kept hoping. 

THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "WHAT YOU SEE ...YOU REALLY DON'T": 

We see that the Deputy is front and center of a music event.
The Mayors clique also has used that facility for concerts.
Take your pick. 

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 27 May 2016 at 06:13

************************************
The Ipad is a wonder but too often my fingertip hits the wrong spot. The comment was deleted in error.  

Theatre Aurora is not the only theatre group in town . A couple of commercial entities have been established. 

I was never a member of the organisation but family members, particularly my late husband,
 were heavily  involved. I was a follower though and  many friends' lives evolved around the 
organisation. Grand -daughter Stephanie helped out back-stage in a recent production. 

My son Frank was Aunt in Charley's Aunt in the play that opened the new premises.Theresa was one of a group of kids dressed all in black, who silently changed sets in darkness because there were no curtains. 

The play was on at Shaw Festival Theatre in their almost new facilities in Niagara-on-the-Lake. 
We all  hopped in a bus and went  to see it before our first night.

It was excellent. Ours was infinitely more fun and exciting .

The many shows and talented individuals who found satisfaction, stars,directors,producers,will forever be the high point of our lives. No professional theatre surpassed them. 

Fiddler on the Roof. My Fair Lady, Oklahoma,The Boyfriend, A Man For All Seasons, The Lord High Admiral of the King's Naveee. ..there was little they did not dare.,

Actors  ,doing hum-drum jobs by day and shining stars at night would be too long to list and  I would be afraid to leave anyone out. There were so many. They  were so great. Norma Dover as the little French maid with a feather duster. It was magic.

An unlikely thespian in the Odd Couple was Ron Wallace, engineer of the little newspaper that could ...The Auroran 

Were I  asked to enumerate Council accomplishments during the time I was Mayor, the building that gave theatre their own home in Aurora, would be high on the list. 

We didn't build it. Nor finance it. Neither did we breathe life into the performances. 

We merely had the privilege of  helping to make it possible.

Opportunity presented and we snagged it without a moment to lose. 

We had many such moments. 

Over the years ,Theatre Aurora has  not been greedy. They have shared building and all they created from their labours. Winter Blues Festival  was performed there recently and I know other groups have had access. 

They participated in Town events. Floats in the July 1st Parade, a Council skit in one celebration and  lent their many skills in other areas. 

All of it volunteer, unpaid labour, week-ends and long evenings ,after and over and above normal working hours. 

Craig Kamke a former teacher at St Andrew's College offered Children's Theatre several summers. 

In every way, It has  been a success story. The community has been enriched and completely  supportive. 

For Council to even think of taking from them, that which is not Council's  to take,  is unthinkable. 

Only people with no idea of town history or what it takes to provide community theatre,would even contemplate such a thing. 

And sadly, we know the very group. 

WHAT YOU SEE ...YOU REALLY DON'T

NmAnonymous has left a new comment on your post "ANOTHER BITTER BETRAYAL": 

It was telling that the director doing the hardball negotiations, making unreasonable demands, was absent from last night's council meeting. The mayor struck a conciliatory tone, and informed the Theatre Aurora supporters that the CAO will now be in charge of the issue. 

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 25 May 2016 at 18:18

***************************************
During the Mormac years,the re-organisation presented by the newly appointed CAO within weeks of joining the administration,responsibility for management of facilities was transferred to the  Director of Environment and Infrastructure. He became responsible for facility leases. 

That's how space intended for heritage got leased to a regional organisation. He had no idea. 

With no other justification, status and remuneration of one director rose and fell for the other. 

It was a tactic.

Not the only one. 

Except for termination of the Town Solicitor, little  changed after the election of  2010. 

The nest prepared by the previous presiding member proved  comfortable for the successor. 

In practice, responsibilities were not so clearly delineated. 

The Culture Precinct project was  a planning responsibility that proceeded  under the  Director of Recreation. Whatever the reason, it's certain the Rec Director did not reach into the Planning Director's territory and scoop up the responsibility

Someone at a higher level of responsibility gave the direction . 

Of all the leases the town is partner to ,Theatre Aurora 's lease for a facility  that was donated for their use, that they created with thousands of hours within forty years of volunteer effort, at no expense to the municipality,was not targeted by the Director of Recreation for appropriation. 

The direction had to come from above. 

My guess is another group wants access to the theatre. 

Either a Councillor or friend of a Councillor.

The truth of it may never be known by the public. 

*************

I've lost a comment about how things compare to the way they were in the seventies. 

I intended to respond. I would like it re-sent if that's possible. 





Thursday, 26 May 2016

HARE-BRAINED HARDLY DESCRIBES IT

The previous post expresses dis-satisfaction over the many hare-brained schemes perpetrated on Aurora citizens after listing the latest from Tuesday's agenda. The list was incomplete. 

A recommendation to award a contract for a special needs playground costing $387,000 or thereabouts was listed. 

It was not approved. It had not been before the Accessibility Advisory Committee. There was a question about adequacy of parking. 

It's three years since the project was proposed. 

Well now, the story about how it came about may interest some. Not least the timing.

 It came forward in the year of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. 

The original idea of tribute from this small community in Ontario, Canada was to rename a park. Possibly plant a rose garden with the assistance  of the Aurora Horticulture Society.

Civic Gate on John West Parkway has high visibility and a cluster of multiple residential buildings 
whose residents might well enjoy such an amenity within walking distance.

There was no budget for the project. No budget was required . No cost proposed. 

It was a simple suitable tribute that could not possibly create controversy.  

But simplicity could not  be allowed. Councillor Pirrie proposed installation of a playground for special needs children. 

No request from the community. No recommendation on priority from the Accessibilty Advisory Committee.No need for such a facility identified in the Master Recreation  Plan. No development charge funding available for an identified need. 

No work undertaken to determine numbers of potential users. 

Town house neighbours were not happy to surrender use for the children of the small neighbourhood. 

Estimated cost of such a facility was not far short of half a million dollars. A normal playground designed to meet the needs of all children costs $75,000. 

Finally , three years later the contract was presented for award on Tuesday. 

The Accessibility Committtee has still not been consulted. They have not determined the project is a priority ? Nor, I venture to suggest, has a budget been created by the committee for the project

Accessibility is the Statutary responsibility of the committee. An annual budget for the purpose is also required by law. The question of parking has not been planned . Disabled parking is larger than the norm.No numbers have been identified. The parking lot accommodates overflow from the town hall. 

Councillor Thompson is concerned that the price might not hold if the award is delayed.

Three years ago the idea came out of the blue. 

Like there was a sum of $400,000. sitting in town coffers crying out to be spent.  

GUEST POST ....THAT'S NOT THE WHOLE STORY

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "ANOTHER BITTER BETRAYAL": 


There are three "serious" articles in this week's The Auroran. They deal with Yonge Street parking proposal hits roadblock; residents demand action to curb speeders on Kennedy and Mavrinac; and town willing to "attempt mediation" over Highland Gate.

All three are ill-considered and lacking in intelligence.

The mayor has a pilot project in his febrile little mind to create a new on-street parking system for Yonge Street from Wellington to Kennedy Street. This hit a road block, as well it should have. Our esteemed mayor wants single lane traffic in each direction on Yonge Street in order to create a "people-friendly space for sidewalk cafes and other divertissements. Read the full article to get a better feel for the idiocy of this scheme.

Kennedy Street West has three significant speed humps west of George Street and these WORK. They have been in place for over 10 years. Every vehicle slows down crossing these. They make the little ant hills on Golf Links look like mini ant-hills. Install similar ones from Murray to Bathurst and speeding will come to a complete halt. I grew up in North Toronto and there was a street called Duplex Avenue that ran from Fairlawn to Eglinton. It was a speedway. There were about a dozen intersecting streets and to resolve the issue the city of Toronto made ALL the intersections STOP streets. That ended the speeding. Just a bunch of signs. The town has pissed away several hundreds of thousands of dollars on chicanes north-east of Yonge and Wellington that were so unpopular they had to be removed at another huge expenditure. Please read about this. It can be solved and the residents are right to be concerned.

So far as the town "willing to attempt mediation" over Highland Gate, this is a complete farce and a waste of time. Have members of council not the intelligence to realize that the town simply does not have the mental capability to mediate the removal and storage of snow. much less deal with a project with a nearly $100 million price tag?

I am getting sick and tired of having to read about more hair-brained schemes that council wishes to perpetrate upon our town's citizens. And what's the poop on Theatre Aurora?

Does anyone at town hall have the faintest glimmer of a brain?

IT APPEARS NOT. 



Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 25 May 2016 at 22:42

POLLY PUT THE KETTLE ON...SUKY TOOK IT OFF AGAIN

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "ANOTHER BITTER BETRAYAL": 

Is Theatre Aurora not "culture"? I thought the supporters of this board did not want the Town to be in the business of subsidizing culture.

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 26 May 2016 at 07:26

*******************************************

Every now and then I am compelled to publish a comment like the one above.

Not because it makes any sense but because it doesn't. 

Where did that person read that the town is subsidizing or has ever subsidized Theatre Aurora?

Not here. Nor anywhere in the more than fifty years of existence. 

There have been businesses that  helped out . Macdonald's Furniture used to lend used furniture for props.

The building was donated for the purpose of a theatre. The original seating was a gift. A grant and 
volunteer labour made the  clean upand build, stage and back stage and other accoutrements 
necessary. 

Earnings invested eventually  turned the small concrete forming plant,  into a little bijou theatre with curtains,backdrops,sound and lighting and ambiance and proper seating. 

 Never was there a demand for funding from the town. Never any exchange except a contribution to the life of the community. 

People bought  tickets to pay for their  entertainment. Others  bought a subscription for the season. 

Many generations of Aurora thespians,singers, dancers and performers of all kinds have gone to work every day and come home to work long hours at their first love, the  theatre, to fulfill a need within themselves. 

The commenter read all of that and then asks an irrelevant question; 

"I thought this board did not want the town to be subsidizing culture"

One can only conclude a lack of reading comprehension. ..or a built- in bias against anything 
said  on the issue...or just a general lack of intelligence.

Whichever it is...it's the key to our political woes. 

The reason why the citizens  you would like to run for office, don't.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

ANOTHER BITTER BETRAYAL


Regency subdivision was built in two phases.The second after the Feds reduced interest on mortgages to stimulate the home building industry and ipso facto, the national economy. 

In the second phase. Sterling Drug was already up and running. The east a end  of Henderson Drive at Yonge Street ,was intended industrial development. The small building that houses Aurora Theatre was constructed but unloccupied. 

I was Mayor when the land and a farm changed hands and became the town house development ,
a shopping centre and Henderson Drive was opened to Yonge Street. 

Dodie Herskovitz didn't build anything. But she acquired several properties in Aurora and they were developed.no doubt to financial advantage. 

 The factory building and site were not part of the subdivision agreement. 

Taxes were owing. $5,000. was a figure I heard mentioned. 

Theatre  Aurora was a going concern .St. Andrew's College made their auditorium available for shows and  rehearsals. Sets  were built in individual  basements and put together on stage  the week of the performance. 

Labour was intensive but not more than the enthusiasm of the creators  and their audiences. 

Every play and  musical and Doyly Carte opera was well received by appreciative audiences. 

TIm and Jean Baker Pearce made their home available for every need but the cast parties at the end of the run were memorable occasions. Especially after a musical. 

TIm and Jean owned   a little frame house at the top of the hill on Temperance Street. They  added a great room.  HIgh ceiling, field stone fireplace to the roof and flagstone floor. The rafters rang  and floor trembled  in hearty rendition of every song and dance, like  they never  wanted to let the excitement fade. 

Actors  are like that when  deprived of opportunity. 

I never heard anyone give voice to a dream that they might one day have their own theatre.

 RIchmond Hill had the Curtain Club but the Aurora group never spoke of the possibility. 

Dodie  Herskovitz changed that. She gave the little factory to the town for use as a theatre along
with two hundred a fifty seats. 

Theatre props had been stored in the building awhile. She was aware of the need.

It was hard to imagine a theatre rising from the wreckage.Last use of the building was a factory for concrete forming.

The front fifteen feet was designed  for office space. The rest dropped into a well filled with broken forms and mis-shapen casts. Every window was broken. BIrds had taken over the space,swooping and diving like creatures from another place. Huddled  in a small space cleared for the purpose,Theatre Aurora's shabby little bundle of props.

There never was any argument about accepting the offer. Bud Rogers, the town's Clerk-administrator, lived in the town. HIs wife Judy was an accomplished singer and frequently performed. 

A Provincial Grant was available. To meet a timeline, plans had to be drawn up over a week-end.  

TIm Baker-Pearce,  Harry Shaw,  Barb McGowan's husband and brother and others put the plans together and by Monday morning an application was filed and $21,000 was granted in short order. 

 It wasn't much but everyone who had any skills and others who could just lift and lay ,the job was completed and a skeleton of a theatre came to be.

There was a stage, dressing rooms, lighting booth, chairs on a flat cement  floor,windows were re-glazed, washrooms with plywood doors installed. Norm Weller. the town's solitary parks keeper, always available wherever he was needed, landscaped the front of the building and cleaned up the sides .

There were no lights, stage curtains,sound system , no backdrops. no tiered theatre seating and the washrooms are still  freezing. 

The first play was Charlie's Aunt.  Excitement was high

The theatre has changed since. 

Auditorium space has shrunk in from the sides.Tiered comfortable seating is in place along  with all the accoutrements of theatre. Curtains, flys, lighting ,sound   all huge  financial investments. 

Every year, a  full season of theatre is provided.  

Plays are entered into competition. Awards of Excellence regularly earned. 

Children's Summer Theatre with opportunity for junior thespians is provided.

Real theatre has been created in every sense of the word. 

All funded from earnings from hundreds of thousands hours from generations of the unpaid, passionate Aurora  theatre crowd. 

Now the town wants to take it from them. 

A new lease is proposed that would return  to the days when they had to depend on limited time availability of St Andrew's College. 

For  ten years, Aurora Culture Centre  has enjoyed free use of a building that cost millions to renovate, for one dollar a year rent. All maintenance is provided by the town,plus  $400,000  of funding, rising 
each year.

For two years Petch  House  has sat empty with no use assigned. 

The Aurora Men's Soccer Club has a high visibility real estate parcel for $1 a year rent. THey compete with tax-paying  catering business in town .

A reques to lease a building for million dollar commercially operated sports organizations is being considered. 

Aurora Council has informed Theatre Aurora the facility they created, solely through their own labour,  is no longer theirs to meet the needs of full-time theatre operated completely by volunteers. They take from no-one, they contribute to the community 

They are the targets of a dastardly betrayal of trust. 

Monday, 23 May 2016

HORACE! MY MIDNIGHT PARTNER

A few years ago...no, it was many years...wait a minute...it was longer than that.

had a mouse in my house. He was a field mouse.He came in late Fall and left in Spring.

At Hallowe'en mice scutter about outside looking for a warm place for winter, under cover of dry leaves skirling and whispering in the wind.  

No-one else knew he was in the house. He came out late at night after everyone had gone to bed. 

I knew  because I stayed up long after everyone else . 

Often I crept into bed just before daylight so no-one knew I'd been up all night. It was the only time I had to read, my obsession at the time.  I enjoyed massive tooms best and they took lots of concentration which required complete submersion. I would sit on the couch,under a reading light 
with my feet curled up beside me and enjoy. 

The kids  were small. My five Canadian offspring were born within seven years. People use to say to me." Seven kids ...I would have gone mad"

I would think; "Maybe I went mad and I'm the only one who doesn't realise it" 

It must be said, the house was not always tidy. It wasn't even often tidy.Now,at this distance I can't even swear to it, the house was ever tidy. 

Had I spent time tidying,there would have been no time to read. While I was curled up with a book under a light,the kitchen floor had  a banquet of crumbs  from the day, enough to feed a mouse. 

He would not appear until the house was absolutely still and quiet.  I could see him from where I was though I never saw where he came from. 

He grazed  awhile and then undertook his nocturnal journey.

The sitting room window had three sliding  panels .Each  had or should have had metal knobs on the 
inside and outside panels. They were never in place. They were easily unscrewed. Every time they were replaced, small fingers went to work to remove them again. In the depth of winter,moist,warm air  from the house met sub-zero temperatures and ice would form in the small round holes vacated by the knobs. 

Horace the mouse ,would leave the kitchen, scutter to the wall against which the couch was 
placed... where I sat with feet up...made his way along the wall to the window wall and I watched the curtain move as he climbed up inside to the approximate location of the absent knobs where he would transfer to the window sill and stay awhile.Then  he would climb back down the curtain and return to his lair. 

He was dark brown, a little larger than a domestic mouse and with his penchant for fresh air, that's  how I knew he was field mouse. 

We shared our adventure a couple of winters. He was never in the house during the summer.

 Then he didn't come back. 

Years later the refrigerator had to be replaced. I discovered where Horace had been living. 
The workings of the frig were enclosed in a dome shape underneath. Traces of a mouse's lengthy 
stays were evident. 

I told the story of my house guest to very few

I never told his name. 

I may have been thought mad. 
 

Sunday, 22 May 2016

GUEST POST ON HAZARD

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "RAPUNSEL, RAPUNSEL,LET DOWN YOUR HAIR": 


In a lengthy article in the New York Times dated May 21, 2016 and headed KEY G.O.P. DONORS STILL DEEPLY RESIST DONALD TRUMP'S CANDIDACY, one frequent donor states:

...he considered Mr. Trump a dangerous person.

"He's an ignorant, amoral, dishonest and manipulative, misogynistic, philandering, hyper-litigious, isolationist, protectionist blowhard." He said he might give to Hillary Clinton instead, describing her as "the devil we know."

"I really believe our republic will survive Hillary.

Charles G. and David H. Koch, the country's two most prolific conservative donors are not expected to back Mr. Trump, and their advisers have been scathing in private assessments of Mr. Trump's candidacy and his political agenda.

Walter Buckley, who said he would be willing to contribute to the Trump campaign or to a super PAC supporting him, said he remained upset about Mr. Trump's mockery of Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, for having been captured in Vietnam. 

"I don't think anything that anybody's ever said on the political front has bothered me more than that," Mr. Buckley said.

It is mind-boggling to understand how Trump can be a serious contender for the position of Miss Universe judge after the above damning description, and he owns the pageant. 

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 22 May 2016 at 09:52

Saturday, 21 May 2016

RAPUNSEL, RAPUNSEL,LET DOWN YOUR HAIR

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "OH DEAR ,WHAT CAN THE MATTER BE? JOHNNY'S SO LONG ...": 

Nothing with saying or quoting means the've already decided. 

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 19 May 2016 at 22:33

*********************************

There's a plaintive tone to the comment.  It suggests error. No decision has been made.

There's no misunderstanding. It was precisely my point. 

After reading the Auroran account twice on line and once in print, no step forward was discerned. 

My perception is validated.

There was a lengthy  round of talk and talk and more talk and nothing done at the end of it. 

Aimless meandering through highway,byway and layby, leading nowhere at all.

A figure of $10 million to be siphoned from the Hydro Reserve to do what exactly?

Seems Council agreed with no idea what.

A consultant report on re-purposing of a library building replaced twenty years ago at a cost of millions
and currently requiring refurbishing at a cost of millions suggests questionable re-purposing.

Councillor Mrakas appears confident demolition, not re-purposing is the ultimate intent. 

Unless demolition and building a parking garage is the same thing as re-purposing, that cannot be.

It's all very confusing .

Aurora  Lions Club sold their facility. Like  they didn't need it any more. Now they lay claim to space 
in the old library because they helped raise funds from and with the community to build  an extension forty years ago. Not likely the current members.

Nobody, it seems, has any concern about demolition of  the old firehall. It's providing  a 
program for children so severely disabled, no place exists for them in the school system. 

The lease has always been on a month to month basis. They  have no expectation of 
permanency.  And obviously  no advocate with a claim to the moral righteousness in their cause
either. 

In  Council ,authority to bring debate to conclusion rests with the presiding member. From start to finish, the Auroran story records no input from the Mayor. 

There could be one or more reasons :

1.There was none. 

2.He didn't hear it and needs to read the debate. People often have the impression the Mayor 
doesn't  listen. May be he doesn't hear. 

3. He didn't agree with direction of the debate and chose to sabotage.     
 
Since returning  to Council in 2003, I have taken the position,major issues cannot be handled  as 
an item on a Council agenda. 

It's not fair to Council and it's no way to run a railroad. 

It's the reason for endless, futile, repetitive discussion that goes nowhere. 

Also the reason for poorly thought out  decisions. 

Leadership and guidance are essential for a productive Council. 

We are not getting what we are paying for.