Random thoughts and questions

Frank Murphy — July 14, 2010
We are still waiting for word from the Mayor’s office on the following:

A tantalizing, teasing hint leaked by himself a couple of months ago regarding an imminent announcement of great importance. The Daily News reported that Councilors “in the the know” said all they could say was that it had nothing to do with the NNC hotel. Other Councilors said they knew nothing about it. The announcement itself should be along any day now.

Although there’s been a number of assurances that the details of the financial settlement that sent former City Manager Jerry Berry on his way — with something in excess of a half a million dollars in his jeans — would be made public shortly, we wait. And we wait.

“By the end of the week” is a timeline offered on a number of outstanding issues, most recently the latest developments in the City’s legal action taken against Millennium to cover moneys paid to them for not building the hotel. We wait.

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Matt Hussman’s short term as Executive Director of the Downtown Nanaimo Partnership has come to an end. I’m hearing that Matt and the new BIA board weren’t able to come to agreement on a new contract so both walked away. Too bad. Matt inherited a real mess and was instrumental in undoing a lot of harm done by the previous organization. I know first hand for instance that he got key people to the table, including the Young Professionals of Nanaimo, to get the E&N Train Station restoration back on track. Best of luck to you, Matt.

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I commend the 3 inner city neighbourhood associations who appeared in front of Council and at the Port Place Mall Rezoning Application Public Hearing to make the point in unison that neither the Planning Department or the proponent, First Capital Realty, had done nearly enough to consult and collaborate with downtown stakeholders. Here’s the Daily News coverage.

I wonder if the Councilors, all of whom voted in favour of issuing the Development Permit — though most seemed very confused as to what they were voting on — got the message. They have their work cut out for them between now and the next election to start engaging neighbourhood folks in discussions about the issues that concern them.

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Here’s the latest threat by the cruise industry to pull out of Canada. This time it’s a tantrum about clean air requirements.

Is this the industry we should be investing large sums of public dough in when the industry could simply relocate overnight?

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