You Can’t Trust City Hall Anymore: Stuff



Just to set the record straight, the high-rise and zoning report implementation and process is probably the sleaziest thing I’ve seen in municipal politics since I started covering local affairs in 1998. Just how compromised (or lazy) are the local media that they are not all over this thing. They failed the people of this city miserably. Maybe all these things I’ve been hearing about The Bulldog‘s importance are right. Problem is that I’ve a website to run, write things, handle the technology, edit and contribute to the comments, and run the business (you’d be surprised at how much time I have spent on the new GDPR rules). My lack of time keeps me from doing the thorough job I would like … Trust, trust, trust – trust is everything. You trust when things go wrong you can call a first-responder and those great people will be there soonest. You trust the electricity will run and the water will be clean. But what you don’t expect are politicians, staffers and developers shutting the public out (on purpose) from the discussion about how their city will look. Not the pols’ city, god forbid, nor the staffers, nor the big-profit developers but our city, everybody’s city. Citizens and taxpayers expect to be included in this discussion so we can produce a great city, not a city where pols grovel for developer money, where planning staff grovels for development charges and where only developers, not taxpayers, run the show. Now the City of Ottawa (and developers if they ever had any) have lost our trust. Trust is what makes for legitimate government and without legitimate government, our society decays. Trust, trust, trust. After the high-rise study and process, if city staffers, pols and developers said the sun would rise tomorrow morning, I’d be out on my front step making sure it does. I don’t trust anything these guys say anymore, not a damn thing. Our city hall is rotten to the core and the residents of this community deserve much, much, much more. Trust is easy to lose, but extremely hard to get back. I don’t know if I can ever trust municipal government again … You know I can swear in the most creative of ways and let it be said that I’ve been very diligent in that regard concerning the city’s pols, staffers and developers over the last week. Thank goodness those words haven’t appeared in The Bulldog … Citizen freelancer and former colleague Mohammed Adam wrote a wonderful column on intensification and urban planning recently. His conclusion? “The experts may want change, but it is not coming anytime soon to Ottawa, or a city near you.” Way to go, Mohammed. Good to read an engaged voice in the Citizen again. Once there were many not too long ago. Not now …


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2 thoughts on “You Can’t Trust City Hall Anymore: Stuff

  1. Ken,

    A gentleperson isn’t supposed to swear. We are told to be creative and were taught not to sink to the lowest level.

    I never swear at my wife, my kids, my clients or my friends. Heck, I don’t swear at bad drivers as they pass me using the shoulder. I don’t even honk my horn – – but I once told a councillor that he could go straight to !@## when I caught him pressuring my staff to do something for political/personal reasons. I reported that incident to my mayor and we subsequently held an in-camera session with all of council to set them straight.

    Sometimes people need a scolding.

    To paraphrase a U.S. saying – by the people for the people.

    I am unanimous on that.

  2. Ken. You forgot to mention they do all these things with a smile on their face or act in disbelief and accuse you of being a pessimist. Prior to the 2014 election I noted that Ottawa, what was once a nice city to live in, had started moving in the wrong direction. I’d say the timeframe for skid was about 6 or 7 years ago. I wonder if voters will wake up prior to this election and begin making some better choices or be happy being led down the garden path. It’s only a matter of time before people wake up and realize the mess this city is in and I wonder what it will take to finally shake some sense into all of us.

    By the way, I have no idea how to deal with the issue concerning the journalists who have been given great stories to write and are missing out on the opportunity. Maybe they don’t like rolling up their sleeves and investigating. Too bad that’s where the real satisfaction lies.


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