Wednesday, October 24, 2007


(from the 70’s hit song All Right Now by A. Fraser / P. Rodgers)

Today’s question:

Can Municipal Councillors find more important things to work on then parking rates?


Probably not, judging by the recent kafuffle at Burlington City Council ably reported on by Spectator columnist Joan Little.

I confess to flashing back a year when as a caretaker Councillor I had to deal with the same issue.

Calls and e-mails poured in like seawater through a New Orleans levee after staff recommended implementing a fifty cent per hour (I think) parking rate on downtown meters. The recommendation followed a year of dialogue with downtown businesses, focus groups and work of a paid consultant.

After all of that well … let’s just say in the annals of taxing injustices this one ranked right up there with that tea party in Boston when Sam Adams and wealthy American smugglers rallied against British imperialism.

Your humble blogger/former caretaker Councillor got caught up in this and (worse perhaps) another later debate over the necessity to purchase “historic looking” parking meters that could better fit into a heritage neighbourhood.

Let’s face it, it is hard for any Councillor who claims to be responsive to public input to ignore constituent concerns.

But there are more important issues.

How about the fact that all Ontario Great Lakes municipalities including ours aren’t meeting legislated reporting requirements on the health of public beaches? (see for more)

That might be worth some consideration and debate.