It’s Nobody’s Fault At City Hall: THE VOTER

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This current Ottawa City Hall crisis, like all those that have gone before, will not have any effect on the long-term career plans of anyone, whether elected official or member of staff.

Ain’t ever happened in the past so why would things change now?


Ottawans are notorious for re-electing people regardless of what major screw-ups happened on their watch. Just look around the current Ottawa City Council table and ask yourself how many of the present crew were up to their necks in the LRT fiasco in all its iterations.

A prime example is Kanata South Councillor Allan Hubley. How did he get re-elected?? Ex-mayor Jim Watson walked away but I wouldn’t have bet the farm on him not being re-elected had he put his name forward again.

As for senior staff getting the chop, that’s also not likely to happen. First, council has taken no visible disciplinary action against anyone who was involved in any of the previous rounds of LRT troubles. City manager Wendy Stephanson’s  fingerprints are all over previous financial reports and she’s been part of the senior management team for years. Her reward for such ‘meritorious’ service? A nice promotion and a very healthy salary increase. They really told her, didn’t they?

The two who went for a walk in the snow and decided to move on, OC Transpo chief John Manconi and city manager Steve Kanellakos, were both allowed to slip out the door with nicely padded wallets. Manconi headed to a VP position with a company in the train business and Kanellakos went off to retirement. For both of them, it was their own decision rather than any consequences visited upon them as a result of their performance in the city’s employ. Had they not fallen on their own swords, what would have happened to them? Probably not much. By engineering their own departures, they controlled the way things played out.

So don’t hold your breath waiting to see anyone held accountable for the ongoing saga of the LRT, Lansdowne or any other mismanagement or lack of oversight by the upper echelons down there at Laurier Avenue.


There are dozens of city employees who were a part of the planning and development of the mess that passes for a transit system in this town who are still ensconced in their comfortable offices at city hall or over at OC Transpo and continue to work on the LRT and other council-approved catastrophes. We don’t even know who they are and probably never will but they have a continuing role in delivering various substandard services to Ottawa residents.

Consequences? Responsibility? Accountability? Not at Ottawa City Hall.

The Voter is a respected community activist and long-time Bulldog commenter who prefers to keep her identity private.

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3 Responses

  1. Diane Zarnke says:

    And we taxpayers, who can see the mess these folks have made, so our support for improvements doesn’t even count.

    We have the honour of continuing to pay for these massive mistakes as well as the reward packages of these people who just skip off with no punishment.

    Unfortunately even in democracies…..the ruling class is free from punishment and the regular folk bear the burdens.

  2. sisco farraro says:

    The blame really falls with the voters (note the small “t” and use of the plural). We’re the problem because we’re the ones who mindlessly re-elect the same councilors term after term. If there are no consequences at the top then nothing will happen in the direction the shite flows.

  3. The Voter says:

    Sisco,

    Thanks for the clarification!! I think at least some of the blame may rest on the shoulders of those who don’t vote. I’m pretty sure that group doesn’t include the majority, if not all, of The Bulldog’s faithful readers.

    I’m of two minds about encouraging non-voters to vote. Some may not be voting because they don’t follow civic affairs and so wouldn’t necessarily cast an informed vote. Some don’t vote in any election at any level of government because they don’t see their vote making any difference and/or they don’t want to offer politicians any ‘encouragement’. There are those who are uninformed as to voting in general and why they should be participating. Others just simply don’t care.

    Knowing that many younger people get their information from the internet in various forms doesn’t help me sleep at night. First of all, they are more likely, if they hear anything about government, to only hear about levels of government higher than the municipal level. Second, it’s very difficult to filter the information you get to determine its validity and worth.

    I’ve often wondered what would get these various groups out to the ballot box. Would an education campaign of some kind reach them? I know people have to take a half course in Civics in order to graduate high school in Ontario but it’s a pretty insubstantial course and spends next to no time on civic responsibility or electing representatives.

    Maybe an incentive would encourage them to vote. Give them $50 off their taxes or something if they vote. The problem with that is they would still be unlikely to inform themselves and their vote might do more harm than their non-vote did.

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