"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

Sunday 26 July 2015


Following the links to the July meeting ...reading the agenda....continuing on to reports....the museum 5 year plan ... the municipal radio station.... reminded me of regular summer exasperation. 

This July agenda was 279 pages long. Several important issues listed.  Each deserving a separate meeting for thorough discussion and analysis by Council before making a decision. 

So much is regularly  crammed on to a single summer agenda, important issues never do  get the attention fthey deserved. 

From a staff perspective .....I couldn't help wondering. 

Regular town business was heavy enough workload for part-time Councillors without seriously entertaining opportunistic ideas from outside. 

Yet it keeps happening. Like there's an invitation outstanding. Like Aurora is known for it. 

Ten year Capital forecastes are updated every year. 

Official Plans,Master Recreation Plans, Strategic Plans, Emergency Plans, and now something called Master Cultural Plan are the staff workload that generates a hefty payroll that produces little real substance.

Every need  that can be planned ....is. Price tags are fastened and eventually automatically realised.

 Without ever having been seriously analyzed in public or the ability to pay determined. 

Like a juggernaut it advances. 

And Still, will-o'-the-wisps like a university, incubator lab, heritage parks and now a radio station are frenetically chased by air-heads anxious to leave a lasting impression. 

None of these projects ever appeared in any ten year capital forecast. 

The radio station boondoggle might have passed  at that Council meeting without garnering any attention.

The Mayor and others might have been counting on that.

Had it not  been called for discussion, approval would have slipped along unimpeded.

But it was called. 

The  $240,000  price tag stuck out like a sore thumb and that's where it stopped.  

Plainly, up to that point, the project had been fostered,nurtured and ushered along by the Mayor. It was his resolution with nine whereases    that brought it to the table with a recommendation. 

And suddenly it was  abandoned.  The Mayor reversed himself. 

Deemed it to have been miscommunication that the Mayor never intended it to cost public money. 

Yeah Right. 

Like how does one get to be President and CEO of a radio station that doesn't exist without a penny of private investment.  

Funds to process a Licence application from a $1000. grant from the town and $3,500. from the Mayor's Charitable Golf Tournament;  a decision made by himself alone. 

We should talk about merits and otherwise of that tournament one of these days. 


Anonymous said...

It almost did slip by. And only 2 councillors were willing to deny the $10;000. So it did slip by

Christopher Watts said...

Watching that item unfold in person was like watching an amateur magician fail in performing a trick. It isn't the first time. I recall watching the Cultural Services Agreement item being called for a vote and then a dramatic twist with Clr.s Humfreys, Thompson and Dawe advancing an Amendment out of nowhere.

I 100% believe that item was on that agenda, in the summer months, so it could be slipped through, because how else could anyone justify such an expense. When it was called there was immediate back peddling and how a $10,000 amount was arrived at from a $220,000 to $250,000 amount was never explained.

Providing space at a town address for purposes of groups to obtain grant funding was a stage set by SportAurora. If its okay for them, why not a radio station?

As a whole that agenda was ridiculous. The meeting went past midnight with every intention of pushing through all the business so as to avoid a meeting this week....because, hey Golf. But I notice that a Special Meeting is now in place for this week, so items that were rushed could have had the opportunity of being shifted to this meeting for proper exploration. Luckily some councilors, and members of the public are keeping eyes on agenda items and are not consenting to whatever is shovelled onto the pile.

Anonymous said...

The frightening thing is how serious individuals are about these big-buck dreams. Those working for the Heritage Park were completely committed without there being any financial feasibility to the concept.
I have no idea how much enthusiasm there is/was ? for the radio station.
Maybe just the mayor and a few trailers. It cost the town real money though.

Anonymous said...

But Aurora did give some guy from Bradford a room of his own in the Leisure Centre ??????? For a year ?????????

Anonymous said...

I would still like an explanation as to why a town radio station was deemed to be a necessity. What is its purpose? Will it be commercial and sell advertising slots? Who will be the voices? Friends of councillors? There are simply too many questions and there is no rationale.

Is a municipal council not supposed to be responsible, accountable to its citizens and transparent in its actions?

I see none of these three things, It's as though a drunken moonbeam wavered off course and struck the mayor in the middle of his forehead and this caused him to scream "EUREKA - a radio station, but of course, just what we need to advertise my golf tournament."

Anonymous said...

One thing of note is the citizen who spoke up against it.

Good on them.

Anonymous said...

The "guy from Bradford" said that he lived in Aurora for 27 years and raised his family here - so not the interloper as some are trying to portray him.

Anonymous said...

Cllr Gaertner voted against the funding too. Her reason given was that she did not want to tie up that room in case space was in short supply in years to come. Wish she had thought about that when she voted about giving the Museum space to the Centre but later is better than not at all;.

Anonymous said...

Mr Watts,
No one is going anywhere they do not have to in this heat.
If the SC is not streamed, it will vanish without most residents even knowing it even took place.
That is to be expected from our communications gurus.
Maybe by the Mayor too

Anonymous said...

Why is there this need for streaming? 10 years ago nothing was streamed and it was just as hot. If someone REALLY wants to get involved they will. Don't blame it on lack of streaming.

I have a real problem with this Mayor's golf tournament. It is held at Silver Lakes golf club which is north of Queensville Road on old Yonge Street. Why does the AURORA Mayor tournmanemt have to be held 30 minutes from Aurora. Considering the number of golf courses inside the limits of Aurora. You would think that they could support a firm that pays Aurora taxes.

Anonymous said...

v Been involved - didn't like it a bit.