I can already see the wind out of the sails from some members of council. There will be a few who will not be running next year, and a few who will who shouldn't.
Posted by Anonymous to Our Town and Its Business at 1 May 2017 at 13:20
Again my finger didn't tap precisely. The comment was rejected though my intent was to
publish. I hope the writer didn't mean to suggest Councillor Mrakas should not be a candidate.
He works hard at the job and he's the only one who puts himself out there on Facebook.
Every time he does and I engage with him, his friends think he needs to be defended. I think he's perfectly capable of holding his own.
I have to say this though. When I was a new Councillor, only myself and Pete Miller were new and
sat at the bottom of the table. Bill Johnston had been clerk/treasurer forever. When he told council what we could or could not do, there was never any argument.
He sat at a small separate table. If council was going down the wrong way he slipped a note across to Mayor Clarence Davis at the time.
We soon learned decisions were not made based simply on personal opinion. Principles and
precedents and policies were regularly cited and respected and judgement exercised.
Staff provided the continuity that made sure lessons learned in the past were remembered and applied.
If a bylaw was proposed, Bill Johnson knew if it had been tried elsewhere and whether or not it
had stood the test of a court challenge. There were many times more municipalities in
Ontario than now, and municipal staff kept in touch.
There was no shame in being a new Councillor and needing time to learn. Everyone was helpful.
The community was encouraging. They had made an investment.
Former Councillor Grace Marsh asked once how a Councillor was supposed to know all
that was needed . I answered it was not possible and one had to rely on staff for guidance.
It was true at the time.
One by one experienced professionals who had kept the municipality on an even keel were replaced.
Council no longer functioned as it should. Recommendations from staff took a circuitous route. Councillors no longer had the benefit of referral to policies, principles and precedents, Municipal Act regulations and their intent on the decision-making process.
Decisions were made, then council was informed.
It continued beyond the Mormac regime. Councillors are at an extreme disadvantage. For the most part it suited the new Head of Council just fine.
He needed to win the trust and earn respect of Councillors at the outset. He didn't even try.
He didn't even try.
I note he often finds himself in a minority of two.
Now he pays the price.
Unfortunately the town also pays a price and is equally poorly served.