"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

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

See How Blind Mice Run

AnonymousAnonymous has left a new comment on your post "The Story": 


"...getting paid peanuts."

Seems that Evelyn has no problem with her salary. In a later post on this blog she says:

"Do the job best you can and for the least possible cost"

She is happy with her salary!

Sounds to me like a recipe for disaster in the world we live in now. Any time that I go pricing something - home reno projects for example - I throw out the lowest price and throw out the highest price and then work with the ones in the middle, I have not been bitten once.
Posted by Anonymous to Our Town and Its Business at 25 August 2014 15:20 has left a new comment on your post "The Story":

I'll take the bait.

Completing a project successfully  at the lowest possible cost, is not about doing it on the cheap.

In a home renovation  for example, it might mean  doing some of the work yourself.

In a town project it should mean  determining precise needs and maintaining control over the size  of the project.

Eliminating an extra floor of office space for which no need has been determined would  save a
million plus architect fees.

Foregoing tree-planting and grass on the roof and the irrigation system required for maintenance would save upwards of another  million including architect fees.

Office administration  for public works will continue to occupy space in the town hall. But the town hall is said to be overcrowded. We spent  three hundred thousand on plans for an addition that had to be cancelled.,Now we are building  two floors of office space jus up the road from the town hall One of which a need has been identified

Except for maintenance of vehicles , the work of  public works and  parks is done in the community.
So why all that office space ?

The recent audit report showed a greater level of  work  contracted . Why do we need  increased space.

Should space needs not decrease .

If the kids leave home does the family need a bigger house?

An appraisal on development lands in town put  the value  at I $750,000 an acre.The property was offered for competitive bids.

The winning bid was $1.5 million an acre.

The town sold the property on Scanlon Court privately. It was fully serviced in an ideal location  plus a railway easement.

The joint site was amply adequate for public works expansion. It was sold for less than the site purchased in a very bad location that needs two  chess roads and a million dollars worth of remediation.

The  tender call for the new facility  permitted optional pricing. Without vehicle shelter. Without heritage salvage storage.

The contract awarded  excluded both to stay within original  estimates.

I will not repeat my arguments about the calamitous lack of judgement exercised  in leasing the hydro property to the national defence department. Who knows we may yet see it used as a prisoner if war camp for Russians.

 It could have  accommodation  heritage salvage storage and town  archives handily.As well as indoor space for construction of a park furniture. WE have the artisan skills.

In the new facility we will continue to provide free accommodation to contractors and  Oh yes.....instead of the bro Bronze standard of  Energy Conservation  recommended by staff , Councillors went for the gold.

There will be nothing to show by the time of the election.

But ....to the winners go the spoils .

A photo -op has been scheduled   featuring  key staff  members,contractors  and architects . Mayor and Councillors  have been invited  by staff to attend if they so desire.

So there you have it my friends.  A synopsis of  Project  Joint Operation Centre.

With, I suspect the addition to the Town Hal thrown in for good measure. Scanlon Court would not have been nearly so convenient.

Mayor Dawe  and Councillor Thompson were appointed by Council to provide  financial oversight of the scheme.Who else might have been privy is anybody's guess. But we all know how they voted.


Anonymous said...

As individuals we all try to find ways to save money. I once had a neighbour going through a rough period and she concentrated on the residence and left the landscaping undone. That reduced her taxes and sure did not hurt the family.
It would be great if we could see more of that common sense applied to government spending. It truly seem bizarre that the new joint-ops has no space for the heritage collectibles that council keep insisting they be given from those re-doing old properties.
But we have grass on the roof !!!

Anonymous said...

I really can't see that the town is going to get a better work product from a building with a platinum standard of roofing. It didn't make sense when then-Cllr Ballard insisted upon it. Still doesn't IMO

Anonymous said...

If you sign onto a project with all the bells & whistles, someone is going to have to pay for them.

Anonymous said...

You really shouldn't feel angry, infuriated, outraged over decisions made by amateurs when it comes to a professional matter.

That's why government, at all levels, everywhere in the world, doesn't work.

The people elected to public office simply don't know enough - though they think they do. And the staff are always proposing consultants to prepare a study, with which staff makes themselves experts so as to carry the day in discussions with those elected.

Thank back 20 years to one of the funniest pairs of British television series, one that proves what I said above - Yes Minister and Yes Prime Minister.

These two series, in their entirety, should be compulsory viewing for the entire public.

It might give them some idea as to how their hard-earned dollars are frivalled away.

(I know - I invented a new word)

Anonymous said...


I used to frame houses but my age has caught up with me. The family is scattered all over the place.

Last week I asked a carpenter to price a rabbit hutch for our increasing number of bunnies.

I nearly passed out when I heard his price.

Unfortunately I can not do this sort of thing anymore.

And so I am getting prepared to be screwed.

Anonymous said...

That comment about you being happy with your salary was just a rhetorical device -means nothing.

Anonymous said...

No it was not rhetorical.

If she claims that you do the best job for the least amount of money, she should not looking for any pay increases.

Anonymous said...

The Auroran is up - with a bang !!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Mere verbiage & blather. Run for election if you have the guts.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, the former has down-sized. She wants a smaller yacht.

Anonymous said...

You could try talking to staff at the wood place on Wellington or Canadian Tire. There is probably some kid who would love the work. I would volunteer my son-in-law but his do-list is already too long.

Anonymous said...

Oddio ! How could she confuse the numbers so as to be wrong by 90 % ?
What if the town had agreed to settle for what she was demanding ?
Just asking here.

Anonymous said...

Kitchener ?

Anonymous said...

Is our Nigel losing it?

Or has he already lost it?

Anonymous said...

The latter.

Anonymous said...

It seems to hit him every 4 years or so

Anonymous said...

The material in the Auroran is very educational. the quoted e-mails clearly show that the it was not the town that instigated that law suit against the bloggers.

Anonymous said...

This is a great topic. Unfortunately it is still before the courts. So we must wait some more.

Anonymous said...

He is a private citizen, maybe you should keep your comments about "losing it" to yourself.

Anonymous said...

But, he has a public profile from his years on council, which he maintains via his letters to the editor.

Anonymous said...

I wonder how many individuals actually read ALL the articles in the Auroran about that law suit.

Anonymous said...

Nigel Who ?

Anonymous said...

It is the 2nd Auroran article that has the beef. I cannot for the life of me understand why that lawsuit is still in play. How can someone claim ignorance when their paw-marks are all over the thing >

Anonymous said...

I thought they shredded all that stuff, or at least tried to shred it. It is possible a few who were brought in along the way were not aware of the back-room dealing. They could be really sore now.