Craig’s Commentary Volume 2 Number 23


RE: May 1, 2012 Council Agenda

The pdf version of the full agenda package is available on the town website at:

https://southbrucepeninsula.civicweb.net/Documents/DocumentList.aspx?ID= 49138

An Html version is at:

https://southbrucepeninsula.civicweb.net/Documents/DocumentList.aspx?ID= 49136

Following are some comments on a few select agendas items.

Agenda Item 4.3 – Personal matters about an identifiable individual, including municipal or local board employees AND Litigation or potential litigation, including matters before administrative tribunals, affecting the municipality or local board AND Advice that is subject to solicitor client privilege, including communications necessary for that purpose (Sauble Beach Development Corporation)

As usual, council is breaching the Municipal Act by not disclosing the general nature of the matter being discussed “in closed”. I do not believe that there are “personal matters about an identifiable individual”. And I do not believe that there is “litigation or potential litigation” that warrants closed session. And I do not believe that there is “advice that is subject to solicitor client privilege” that warrants closed. The Ombudsman was very clear. The Ombudsman said that council “may” go into closed for “litigation” or “solicitor advice”, but council is “not required” to go into closed for “litigation” or “solicitor advice”. The Ombudsman also said to err on the side of discussing in open, and being transparent. So what is council hiding? Why is that the people of the Town of South Bruce Peninsula are kept in the dark about deals that are being made that affect them?

Rhonda’s lawsuit was made to shut up the criticism. It backfired. This new strategy for curtailing criticism, namely trying to keep the bad deals secret until the deals are sealed, will backfire too. With a vengeance.

Agenda Item – 4.4 Litigation or potential litigation, including matters before administrative tribunals affecting the municipality or local board (Litigation Update)

The same thing applies to this item. “Litigation update” tells us nothing. So what are they hiding?

Agenda Item 8.8 PW18-2012 Donating the Installation of Dog Park in the Town of South Bruce Peninsula

This seems to be a good idea. But some questions need to be answered first. What is the current use of the area under consideration? What are the alternative future uses? How do residential neighbours feel about the proposal and the noise impact?

Agenda Item 8.11 EDC02-2012 EDC Terms of Reference

Economic Development Officer (EDO) Mulasmajic is currently the recording secretary of the EDC. Now the EDC wants more staff resources supporting the committee. The EDC wants the Deputy Clerk to take over as recording secretary, so that the EDO can provide other support. There is already too much taxpayer money being absolutely wasted on this rogue committee. The proposed change should be rejected.

Agenda Item 8.12 EDC03-2012 Chamber Appointment to the EDC

A call for expressions of interest must be advertised. The EDC should not be deciding who sits on the committee. Council should decide.

Agenda Item 8.28 CLK55-2012 Deep Geological Repository, Request for Support

Council does not represent the people of TSBP on issues outside of the TSBP scope. This is one of those issues. Members of council speaking as individuals can take a position. Council should decline to take a position.

Agenda Item 10.3 By-Law 58-2012 Being a By-Law to Authorize the Appointment of the Clerk as Head of the Municipality for the Purposes of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act

I showed in commentary 22 that this by-law is illegal.

Craig

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The Airport Flies Again!


Tis an interesting note that the Town of South Bruce Peninsula is prepared to let the airport go to Georgian Bluffs for a lagoon!

Who says the Wiarton Airport isn’t worth shit??

Georgian Bluffs got 800 acres of land and an International Airport license for shit!!

Yes over the years the airport has cost us all bucks! But to give it away to the Evil Empire for some dirt seems to be a little one-sided for a deal.

Just two years ago Mayor Gwen Gilbert secured an offer of $2,000,000 for the Airport and Georgian Bluffs killed the deal. Gee I wonder why??

Wow 800 acres and a chunk of dirt along Highway 6 with an international airport for a lagoon and highway frontage. HMMMMMMMMMMM! What the hell is our council thinking??

To rent a hanger at Buttonville Airport will cost you about 25 grand a year. Do the math!

Godda hand it to Mayor Barfoot, he hooked a live one with the last election in Wiarton. Stupid is as Stupid does!!

The deal is not done but it appears that it is going to be. That is if we let it.
The mayor of the Evil Empire brags about getting Westjet to fly to Wiarton. This will give us benefit. Jobs and tourists and another way to get people here. This is a good thing!

Fact of the matter is that Georgian Bluffs will get the taxes either way.

I think we are missing the boat! The airport is a great asset in the long hall if it is worked properly.
We will get the floor scraps if this deal is completed but I guess that is better than what we get now!

Bruce

Accountability


Maybe I am just getting old and don’t understand the world today!

Accountability is a concept in ethics and governance with several meanings. It is often used synonymously with such concepts as [1] answerability, blameworthiness, liability, and other terms associated with the expectation of account-giving. As an aspect of governance, it has been central to discussions related to problems in the public sector, nonprofit and private (corporate) worlds. In leadership roles,[2] accountability is the acknowledgment and assumption of responsibility for actions, products, decisions, and policies including the administration, governance, and implementation within the scope of the role or employment position and encompassing the obligation to report, explain and be answerable for resulting consequences.

As a term related to governance, accountability has been difficult to define.[3][4] It is frequently described as an account-giving relationship between individuals, e.g. “A is accountable to B when A is obliged to inform B about A’s (past or future) actions and decisions, to justify them, and to suffer punishment in the case of eventual misconduct”.[5] Accountability cannot exist without proper accounting practices; in other words, an absence of accounting means an absence of accountability.

In my world I started a Blog in an effort to post my thoughts and musings.This blog was started as entertainment for myself and others that wanted a means to voice their frustrations, peeves and just to have a little fun.

The politicians and simple serpents decided on day to take things seriously and began poking the cage so to speak. This soon escalated to the point that they decided to sue me and anyone that posted to this page quite simply to shut us up.

Well I don’t take kindly to fascism in what I believe is supposed to be a free and open system.

I went into a variety store today and was verbally attacked as “the guy wasting tax payers money”,
Hold on there Bubba Louie, I didn’t start this! The Town leaders filed an action against me and I have been forced to defend myself.

The Town offered to drop the law suite if I dropped mine and we all paid our own legal fees. Well sorry I am out about 40 grand and I am suppose to walk away. Sorry tha just aint going happen.

The people who instituted this legal nightmare, this financial abbess must take responsibility for their actions.

Yes Rhonda n longer works for the town, but the town has not told us what it cost us as taxpayers to terminate the relationship. In my opinion Rhonda was lied to by the politicians when they told her they would pay her legal fees and then they terminated payment of her legal fees and her job on what ever arrangement they cooked up.

The true instigators of this fiasco in my belief was a few politicians intimidating the green horns with verbal diarrhea. Now, when the few felt the heat of the masses they changed horses and want everything to go away.

I have offered to drop my lawsuit for legal fees spent and a paltry sum for the grief caused and now they have the nerve to suggest that I am the villan here. Get a grip.

You started it now face the music! Admit to your sins and let’s get on with life.

If this litigation goes any further the costs are going to get into the six figure range. I know that the politicians, simple serpents and lawyers don’t care as it is not their money they are spending. But hey I am spending my money because they have an ego problem and deep pockets. Your pockets.

I will not go away! I will not back down! I am sick of this political bull shit! I am tiered of watching the irresponsible wasting of time and money!

I have had enough of their dancing arround.

I do not want to be accosted with regurgitated propaganda seeded by liar’s and thieves!!!

It is up to us to dictate what kind of government we want to live under.

This litigation is nothing more than a white wash of incompetence and we have to stop it!

BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Bruce

Who is minding the store?


To Mayor and Council April 16, 2012

Subject: Who is minding the store?

A number of questions to you that I have already asked are related to the budget of 2012.

The main reason for our concern did not start with this council. The matter of tardiness in getting the TSBP budget tabled and approved in good time has certainly happened with previous councils. Part of the reason for the inefficiency was politics but not all of the reason.

Both council and staff need to be better “watch dogs” of how our money is used. We worked to get a new council so we do expect better results. We do not think you, as Mayor, and some of your councillors have taken a close look at the TSBP cheque register. We already know that unnecessary $$$$’s have now been spent for lawyers because of a lack of leadership – most of which has been because of the politics of favouritism.

We now learn that two cheques have been issued for a total of almost $25,000.00 to cover the mistakes of by-laws written in 1995, and compounded in 2011 by three things. A) a further by-law passed by this council in 2011 and B) a misleading statement by the CAO concerning a $1.00 a year lease charge for commercial properties and C) a tax reimbursement to a deceased person for his parking lot.

If this is an example of the actions of what Councillor Turner keeps calling “a competent and reliable staff” then who is minding the store? Why is Councillor Turner always defending staff to the detriment of the taxpayer? Defending all except the Manager of Public Works whose qualifications rate much higher than perhaps he is able to understand. A Department Manager who has had the guts to stand up to our former CAO who has tried to get Dept. Managers to alter their reports in order to suit her personal agenda?

We can be thankful, in my opinion, that this former CAO is no longer in a position to waste taxpayer’s money or intimidate a staff that is simply trying to do a job for the constituents. The question is – where do we go from here?

Question….who has signed or approved a cheque for 19 thousand plus dollars to a deceased Mr. Nixon

Do we re-instate the MPW to get a reality check? Or do we fumble along with two or three more PW Managers trying to find another one that will face reality.

Do we take a second look at why the Municipal Act has been ignored or violated with respect to the leniency afforded to the Wiarton Marina??

In conclusion for those of you who may not be totally familiar with the Municipal Act, please take a look at Section 106 (1) and (2) which prohibits Municipalities from directly or indirectly assisting any Manufacturing Business or other Industrial or Commercial Enterprise through the granting of bonuses. Prohibited actions include (among other things)…..”Giving a total or partial exemption from ANY levy, charge or fee.”

We will continue holding your “feet to the fire” and hope that you do the same to each other until we get the Town Budget reduced……regardless of what numbers are approved or revised on April 17/2012.

Respectfully,
Gordon M. MacDonald
Impatient TaxPayer

Craig’s Commentary Volume 2 Number 22


RE: April 17, 2012 Council Agenda

The pdf version of the full agenda package is available on the town website at:

https://southbrucepeninsula.civicweb.net/Documents/DocumentList.aspx?ID=48843

An Html version is at:

https://southbrucepeninsula.civicweb.net/Documents/DocumentList.aspx?ID=48841

Following are some comments on a few select agendas items.

8.1 TURNER02-2012 BASWRA and Waste Diversion

Report Turner 02- 2012 appears to be discussing whether to increase the number of different materials picked up for recycling, and whether to increase the diversion rate. What is presented is the implication that increasing capture rate and number of materials could increase costs per household from our current $25 per household per year to the Owen Sound level of $200 per household per year.

What is needed is some proper analysis of different alternatives, that analysis to include cost savings resulting from less material going to landfill.

8.15 CLK40-2012 Head, Freedom of Information

The proposal is to designate the Clerk (the office, not the person in it) as the TSBP Freedom of Information official, and the Deputy Clerk as alternate.

The Municipal Freedom of Information Act does not allow for this.

The Act allows council to designate a person (e.g. Angie Cathrae) as the freedom of information official, but does not allow designation of an office (e.g. clerk).

Similarly, the Act allows the Freedom of information official to delegate part or all duties to another person (e.g. Wyonch), but not to an office (e.g. deputy clerk).

This is a simple matter of changing a few words in the proposed bylaw to make it compliant with the Act.

8.16 CLK41-2012 Appointment By-law

This bylaw proposes removing Councillor Matt Standen from the BIA Board of Management, and replacing him with Councillor Thomas.

This by-law should be dropped for two reasons.

First it is unacceptable bullying of councillor Standen by the Wiarton Chamber of commerce and by any councillor that supported the Chamber’s request to remove councillor Standen.

Second, it would be unwise to proceed given that an application has been made or will be made to a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to sanction several members of the board for violating sections 5 (1) (a), (b), and (c) of the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act regarding the matter of moving, debating, influencing and voting the BIA motion to request removal of councillor Standen from the BIA board.

8.20 CLK45-2012 Bruce County Housing, Letter of Commitment

The proposal is to use TSBP residents’ scarce and hard-earned taxes to support the Bruce County Housing initiative. The initiative is noble, but the people must have a choice of whether to support the program.

9.1 By-Law 48-2012 A By-Law to Implement a Sewage System Re-inspection Program and item10.1 By-Law 48-2012 A By-Law to Implement a Sewage System Re-inspection Program (Third Reading)

As indicated in previous commentaries, the Ministry has published a guideline for conducting septic system inspection. The TSBP proposal, which I have called “Wayne’s Rule”, is for an inspection protocol that goes way beyond the ministry guideline, and in my view would be costly, invasive, unnecessary, and unacceptable.

The CBO has steadfastly refused to acknowledge the existence of the Ministry septic system inspection guideline.

I believe the refusal to even look at the Ministry guideline, and the proposal for the costly, unnecessary Wayne’s rule, has roots in the 70 million dollar Sauble Sewers proposal.

Wayne’s Rule is developed so that if an inspector finds anything that he or she decides is a flaw in the system, an order can be made to have the system dug up and replaced. The system could be doing a perfectly good job and could be easily meeting the ministry guideline, but if the CBO is willing to say he is not perfectly happy with the system, under the proposed by-law he could order anything up to a full system replacement costing tens of thousands of dollars. With the very subjective Wayne’s Rule, hundreds of perfectly good septic systems could be deemed “flawed” and be ordered replaced.

So maybe the motivation is to make the costs of having a Sauble septic system so high that people will get concerned about the costs of septic systems and switch to supporting the 70 million dollar plus sewers system for sauble.

People should not fall for this trick. The ministry inspections guideline is perfectly adequate for finding and fixing the septic systems that are truly problematic. And it is fair because it will only result in orders for repairs or replacement where necessary.

Furthermore, the proposed by-law is illegal in that it gives trespass powers that are contrary to the section 8 charter right “to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure”.

Also the two bases for trespass without warrant to conduct inspections are absurd misreadings of the law.

The two bases provided are:

“WHEREAS the regulatory power to trespass on private property is given under Section
15.9 (1) “Inspection of an Unsafe Building” in the Ontario Building Code Act (OBCA);

AND WHEREAS Section 15.10.1 of the Building Code Act allows an inspector to enter
upon land and into buildings at any reasonable time without a warrant for the purpose of
conducting a maintenance inspection;”

The first does allow for trespass without a warrant, but only to determine whether or not a sewage system is not maintained or operated in accordance with this Act and the building code. This means, in my view, that it’s OK to trespass to do an evaluation pursuant to the ministry guideline, but not to Wayne’s rule.

The second does allow for trespass without a warrant to do a maintenance inspection, but it is only for mandatory maintenance inspection programs as defined by the Building Code Act. So the allowance applies for only about 150 properties in all of TSBP.

Council should defeat the by-law and replace it with a program that uses the ministry guideline.

10.3 By-Law 53-2012 Being a By-Law to Authorize the Mayor and Clerk to Execute a Lease Agreement with M & M Rinehart Holdings Inc. (41-02-580-002-05400)

The town made a lease agreement in 1995 for the land that form the back of 559 Berford Street, and supposedly the land is for municipal parking.

A new lease has been drafted for a potential new owner of the property. The new lease is not the same as the old, but has new benefits to the lessor (the owner of the property).

Council should not be in a hurry to sign this lease. The old lease was very costly to taxpayers, and may not have been in the public interest. The proposed lease is less is less in the public interest than the old. The town as the lessee may have some liability for the lands if the soil is or becomes contaminated.

Council should have a good look at the public costs and the public benefits before entering this lease.

Other comments are on the Blog at:

https://bruceonthebruce.wordpress.com/2012/04/

10.4 By-Law 54-2012 A By-Law to set and Levy the Rates of Taxation for Town, County and School Purposes for the Year 2012

This by-law would accept the proposed budget and all of its components. Two components, namely the $50,000 grants to the chambers are in contravention of section 106 of the Municipal Act. This makes the by-law illegal.

Council should not pass an illegal by-law.

Once Upon A Time….


Bruce the Blight

in a place not far away, just east of the sun and west of the moon, there was a kingdom where all the Plovers had free rein and the peasants worked to provide for the kingdom and all was well.

The kingdom was ruled by the round table of lords appointed by the worker drones of the community and they were trusted by the masses for the lords were there to protect their interests and manage the kingdom.

The lords were presumed to be the pillars of the community for they were wise and educated and with their combined wisdom and that of their appointees all would prosper and things would be good.

The market square was quaint and pleasant and the vendors sold their goods, paid their taxes and beamed with pride at the community they had built. But alas they were so successful that the square was so busy that there was no where for the people to park their chariots and this was cause of great grief.

The lords of the day pondered the problem and on October 30, 1995, the lords entered an agreement with a Baron of the kingdon (Mansil Nixon) to rent some land from the Baron to provide parking for the chariots and all would be well.

The Barron, a wise man agreed to rent the land to the kingdom for $1.00 per year provided the kingdom would assess the land at nil during the term of the agreement and so it was written and proclaim as law and marked as By-Law 1995-40 and once again all was well in the kingdom.

The lords in their wisdom decided to write agreements with the adjoining landowners to protect the kingdom. So the lords went forth and entered into an agreement with Globe Realty Holdings Ltd.(Royal Bank) and they would pay the $1.00 and the property would be assessed at nil for the purpose of taxation. And so it was written as by-law 1995.43 and all was well.

The chariots were parking and the everyone smiled until one day when one of the merchants said gee I would like a lease as well and so the lords in their wisdom wrote a new agreement with the merchant Sun Media (Wiarton Echo) on June 28, 2011, and they to would pay $1.00 and the property would be assessed at nil and it was proclaimed as law By-law 48-2011 and so it was written and all was well.

But yet another merchant Sarah Hamilton and Timothy Panchyshyn (The Green Door) declared that they too should have an agreement at $1.00 per year and an assessment of nil and yet again the lords in their wisdom agreed and it was proclaimed as By-law 48-2011 on April 26, 2011 and so it was written and all was well.

But yet again another merchant came forward and demanded an agreement M & M Rinehart Holdings Inc. (Rankin Trading Post) and again the lords declared it fair and reasonable and declared it to be law however the lords in their wisdom decided to rebate the taxes paid to the merchant as part of the agreement and so it was written and proclaimed as By Law ops no by-law on April 3, 2012. however it was reported and so it will be written we think.
And all is well in the kingdom.

But alas the peasants got restless and noted that the Kindom had paid to Mansil Nixon on March 1, 2012 $19,751.98 as a rebate. But wait a minute Mr. Nixon is deceased. How do you pay a dead man a rebate??

And oh wait a minute a further sum of $4,155.21 was paid to Bowes Publishing Limited as a rebate on the same date. HMMMMMMMMMMM wonder who that is as we have no agreements with Bowes!!!

Regardless the merchants in Sauble don’t get rebates or free parking nor do their customers but yet in Wiarton they get free parking and we paid 20 grand to provide the free parking on a contract that says the taxes are NIL!!! What is wrong with this picture???
Guess I missed that creative accounting class!!!

Mayor Close must have stayed up late to make this one dance!!! So in Sauble the tourists pay $15.00 per day and the merchants pay their taxes and in Wiarton they don’t pay nor does anyone else except the taxpayers who it appears are getting ripped by paying taxes that were not assessed to a dead guy and a company we do not have an agreement with.
Guess they could blame Rhonda oh but she doesn’t work here any more! Maybe it was the Manager of Public works… oh she doesn’t work here either!!!

Is all well in the KIngdom???? NOT!!!
BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Bruce