"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

Thursday 12 March 2015

See-saw... Marjory- daw

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Guest Query": 

Evelyn, land purchases always closed session items? Standard practice or Hallmark is a special case.

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 12 March 2015 at 00:08


Property negotiations are allowed to be conducted in closed session in the municipalities interest. 

Deciding how far to go with an offer or acceptance when directing a third party is not useful when trumpeted abroad. 

When a public agency requires a property, it is not wise to blab. A vendor is naturally likely to up his price if he knows the property is needed.

The Separate School Board assembled several properties for St Max High School site without anyone being aware. Some had noses out of joint about that and there were consequences. 

Town activities when contemplating purchases to develop a Heritage Theme Park was unlike anything ever seen before. Sending an official out to inquire of owners about interest in selling and at what price for the purpose of a university campus was equally bizarre.

The Municipal Act defines authority granted to municipalities by the Province. 

Speculating in land is not one. Leasing a property for thirty years to act as landlords would also be frowned upon. 

A property redundant to town use, it is required to be sold but not before notifying all and sundry  and providing equal opportunity to acquire the property in an open bidding process.

An uninformed Council is generally informed by competent staff.

For the life of me I see no merit in reporting out in public that Council approve a decision made in a closed meeting while keeping the decision secret.

It is tantamount to saying; we did something or we didn't but you can't know what...now and maybe never.

It's a definition a la Dawe and Abel of open and transparent. 

If meaning escapes you, do not blame yourself. You are not stupid. 

I understand the Hallmark Card property is seventeen acres of level land with frontage, access and egress on two industrial roads, a massive warehouse building with offices and paved parking and landscaping.

It was on the market when Council was faced with $26 million in costs to create a level site for the joint facility situated on a hazardous curve on a busy industrial bypass road.

I heard an offer of $11 million was accepted for the Hallmark property.

It seems the deal did not go through.

It appears Council may have been or is now contemplating the purchase while giving no indication of a purpose. The joint facility has been under way for months without supervision.

Nothing we have seen or heard of plans or needs gives an inkling of the new purpose. 

By the way, word is Horton House has been sold. I hear an application for a demolition permit has been made. 

Also, it seems the smelly old shed on the north-east corner of the town park will possibly be used to store museum artifacts. Original idea was apparently an indoor farmers market. But nobody thought to ask the Market people if they would be willing to pay. That was before it was revealed the site is contaminated.


Anonymous said...

Council is fulfilling its mandate for me. It makes excellent theatre of the absurd.

Anonymous said...

Funny thing.

When you go to read this post it is ant-size.

When you go to leave a comment and click on Show Original Post it then displays normal size.

Anonymous said...

Good God...Here comes another bad land/property purchase. Anytime the Town decides to "invest" in an asset, the realtors around town are laughing for a good 2-3 days.

Anonymous said...

That's weird - they report on a decision about land but do not report exactly what the decision involves or how much is involved.
Why bother ? It only causes speculating.

Anonymous said...

Re: Horton House

There is still a Sotheby's For Sale sign out and the asking price is $1,499,000.

Don't know the source of your information.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the town bought Horton and is not announcing it until they get the other ones. I sure hope not. It deserves an owner who would actually enjoy living there & who could afford the upkeep.