Friday, December 15, 2006

Insulting the citizens of Windsor

I guess those tasked with running our city just aren't getting the message. The Mayor, Councillors and chief bureaucrats continue to pat us on the head and say that there simply is nothing that they can do.
Council goals set in secret
Mayor defers to city's top bureaucrat -- 'Apparently I have no authority'

Skorobohacz said the open meeting rules in the municipal act didn't apply Thursday because the gathering of the mayor, city councillors and city administrators did not constitute a meeting in which city business was discussed. He described it as a "workshop."
Could someone help me wrap my little brain around this bender?

A Strategic Planning meeting to identify "strategic priorities" during council's four-year term, how their success will be measured and "what does the community say is important for the council to accomplish." - and this doesn't constitute a meeting in which city business was discussed?

If no city business was discussed, why was the meeting held and why are we as taxpayers paying for it?

Mayor Francis' dodge is simply that - a dodge. To imply that he has no authority in this situation is ridiculous, unless he was overruled by a majority of the councillors. Regardless of what CAO John Skorobohacz says, a simple vote by five councillors and the Mayor or by a majority of six councillors and the meeting would be required to be open to the public.

Who is running this city, the bureaucrats or the council?

One thing is certain. Should the Mayor and Councillors continue down this road they will most likely accomplish something that rarely happens in Windsor - a consensus. One that cuts across all party lines, ideologies and interests. The focus is simple and pointed. Stop the secrecy and open municipal government to the people that pay the taxes.

Citizens for Open Government (COG) sounds like a good working title to start with.