In CITY FINANCE, CITY GOVERNMENT on July 28, 2011 at 5:00 pm
Ron Bolin: July 28, 2011
Notice of Complaint
On July 13, 2011, Nanaimo City Council approved the use of an Alternative Approval Process instead of a referendum in the matter of “Emergency Water Connection Bylaw 2011 No. 7131” which would provide for a connection between the city’s treated water supply and the untreated water supply of the local Nanaimo Forest Products plant (Harmac).
I find it egregious that the City can use the AAP in a case where a general election is coming shortly and would bring virtually no extra cost to the city, while at the same time loading a very laborious and expensive process onto citizens. It is doubly egregious that the notice for the AAP which was published in the newspaper on July 21 and again today, on July 28, does not, in my opinion, carry the information required by Section 86 of the BC Community Charter, namely:
(2) Notice of an alternative approval process must be published in accordance with section 94 [public notice] and must include the following: Read the rest of this entry »
In CITY FINANCE, CITY GOVERNMENT, PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT on July 22, 2011 at 12:11 am
Ron Bolin: July 22, 2011
There is something for everyone at the Special Open Meeting of Council on Monday, July 25, at 4:30pm in the Board Room at City Hall. It is worth looking at the Agenda and it may be worth your time to attend, despite the strange hour and the cramped board room. The agenda can be seen at:
Among the more interesting items are:
Grants Advisory Committee – Permissive Tax Exemption Policy Review : This will replace the old Grants Policy with a new one though questions remain to be answered, one of which is whether the public has a right to input before a new policy is established. This is your money that is being given away. Is it worth it? Not an easy question. Read the report. Read the rest of this entry »
In CITY FINANCE, CITY GOVERNMENT on July 16, 2011 at 12:48 am
Ron Bolin: July 15, 2011
My internet date calculator tells me that it is now just 126 days before our next Nanaimo municipal election on November 19. It is time that we start to consider our options for this election.
Of course, if we are happy with the way things have been proceeding in Nanaimo –and they have not been a disaster unless you are one of those many citizen/taxpayers who are living on the margin of the economy and personal finance or among the about 15% unemployed here- you can join our City Council and Staff in the slogan, “I’m alright Jack!”, and go back to sleep.
If you are not among the currently impoverished but can see it coming along with the grand insurance and growth plans that the City is undertaking on our behalf, perhaps you should give it some thought. And of course it you already find yourself at or over the economic edge put your thinking cap on quickly. Is there anything we can we do about it at the November election? Read the rest of this entry »
In LETTERS TO THE LOCAL PRESS on July 12, 2011 at 12:53 am
Ron Bolin: July 11, 2011
At its meeting of July 11, 2011, Council backed yet another “Vote to get a Vote” referendum, otherwise known as the “Alternatative Approval Process”, dealing with water. The negative option elector response which will require 6268 signed forms to require a real vote states that:
“I am OPPOSED to the adoption of “EMERGENCY WATER CONNECTION AGREEMENT BYLAW 2011 NO. 7131” which authorizes the Emergency Water Connection Agreement between the City of Nanaimo and Nanaimo Forest Products, without first obtaining the assent of the electors in a voting proceeding (referendum).”
Neither in this description nor in the report that was presented to the public in the agenda, was there any discussion of the costs and benefits of this agreement. While a question from Councillor Pattje elicited the information that at least $4.5 million dollars was involved in capital costs to the city, Read the rest of this entry »
In LETTERS TO THE LOCAL PRESS on July 9, 2011 at 12:23 am
Ron Bolin: July 9, 2011
Re: Blogs not great for information, Diane Brennan, Daily News, July 8, 2011
Unfortunately it is not only blogs that are not great for information. A great deal of the problem with which blogs must cope is the same as that which the public must cope, and, I fear, all too often, City Council. Either that, or Council knows but is, even worse, not talking.
It is deplorable that a former Councillor like Ms. Brennan must, as must the rest of us, try to track down the information which has gone into important decisions at City Hall on her own. It is a mystery why all the information required is not fully manifest in transparent publically available documents which present an unambiguous case for the decision made. Read the rest of this entry »