"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

Tuesday 29 October 2013

The Argument is Not Going Away Any Time Soon

In the Annual Report for the Culture Centre ,there's  an explanation of a substantial reserve..

It provides for the Board to wind up  Centre affairs if the town exercises  it;s authority and give six months notice of  the  agreement's termination .

There's an  itsy bitsy  detail that  prohibits a Council  from tying the  hands of a future Council.

It makes the argument about winning and losing and accepting defeat and  being a bad loser
and all that organic matter   a tad ridiculous.

The new agreement is something else accomplished by the current Council.

A great deal of work went into it. The town's interest is protected. To an extent.

This week a decision has been handed down from the  court establishing Councillors serving on the board will not incur a Conflict of Interest  by voting  on a matter  related to the Centre's finances.
That's a plus.

There is an outstanding question still. An elected member is bound to deal with  town business in public, with few exceptions. The exceptions are not about covering political posteriors.

In the negotiations for the new contract , the board  refused to agree to open meetings.

Council appointees to the Board will not only attend closed meetings, they will be bound by confidentiality of the board's deliberations.

There is little point in  Council having representation on the Board if they can't keep Council informed.    It's not like the Library Board whose meetings are also required to be public.

Like Thomas Mulchair I will keep hammering home the point.

If  an  arm's length board  is not charged  with operating the Centre like a business , on at least a break even basis,   the board has no  reason for being.

 Simply as a matter of equity between users, Church Street School should be like any other facility the town owns and  operates.

Programs are provided.

User Fees are charged.

Facility rentals produce revenue .

Sponsorships  solicited by staff  and generously supported by local business help to keep fees affordable.

The town's recreation has an annual budget of $5million and revenues of $5 million.Why do we need to mess with success?

Programs  cited in the  the Centre's Annual Report  were previously held  in the Aurora Seniors Centre; built for the purpose.

How many venues do we need to have a forties sing along and an annual  Horticultural Exhibition
and Sale.??

How many glossy publications, web sites, promotions, etc etc ????

Town facilities  and programs are  available on Statutory holidays

The question is---what is the Culture Centre doing that could not be done  as effectively, efficiently
and more economically under the  jurisdiction of the town's administration?

If it;s a question of winners and losers, the taxpayers are clearly losers.

As  a person elected to represent the taxpayers  interest, I am  not prepared to accept .

We are mad as hell and we are not going to take it any more.

At least not quietly.


Anonymous said...

I agree with you, Councillor Buck. But we have seen their tactics before in spades. They will stack the council chamber with loud out-of-towners and intimidate the councillors. Anything different would be atypical.

Anonymous said...

Another Production By Susan Walmer

Anonymous said...

Good grief, woman. This was supposed to be your night off !