Stephanson, Sutcliffe Aren’t Probing LRT Irregularities

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One wonders about the outcome had there been any real investigation into what went on and continues to go on with the various activities of the different companies, politicians, staff and other individuals involved in the light-rail mess that is the LRT.

It is incredibly frustrating that nobody has taken any steps to follow up on the things we know happened let alone the things we aren’t yet aware of. Not the city administration, the auditor-general, the local police, the OPP, the RCMP, the mayor, council, the premier, the provincial government, the federal government, etc. Nobody. Not even a question whispered aloud let alone an investigation,

I don’t know Mayor Mark Sutcliffe or city manager Wendy Stephanson so I have no idea what their moral and ethical standards are but the fact that they have failed to take any action does give some life to the various rumours that have been circulating over the last while .

Sutcliffe is very vocal about not revisiting the past including any previous decisions of council or of his immediate predecessor. He seems content to let sleeping dogs lie regardless of the cost both financially to the city, its residents and disruption to the community of the ongoing failings of the LRT. Given the irregularities that he can’t fail but know of, wouldn’t a prudent person want to look under a few of the rocks, some of which are huge boulders, that are strewn around? Well, most people would want to know one way or the other … unless, of course, there’s a reason you are studiously looking the other way.

As for Stephanson, she’s been with the city in various capacities for more than 28 years and was a member of the city’s senior management team while all this LRT business has been occurring.


She was the city chief financial officer who should have been keeping an eye on the LRT financing as well as informing council of any irregularities. As a CPA, she also has certain professional obligations in relation to ethics and integrity.

We don’t know what her qualities were that got her the job of city manager over other candidates.

If Sutcliffe and Stephanson are right-thinking individuals, they should be anxious to ensure the integrity of the LRT process has been and is being upheld and anyone breaching it is being held to account. They each have a fiduciary duty to the city to do so.

There are, of course, others on council and within the bureaucracy who knew or ought to have known about the many irregularities in the processes related to the LRT over the years who have, for whatever reason, chosen to remain silent. It might be they will find in the end that a special place in hell has been reserved for them. Perhaps they will be condemned to ride the LRT with its quirks and shortcomings for all eternity.

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

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4 Responses

  1. John Langstone says:

    To refresh an old story, Robyn Guest is Mark Sutcliffe’s Chief of Staff. Robyn is Brian Guest’s sister and married to Chris Swail. Both Brian Guest and Chris Swail were very close to the Stage 2 LRT procurement process. Swail, up until 2019 was the senior city staffer who oversaw the planning of Stage 2. Do we wonder that Sutcliffe doesn’t seem to want to re-visit the past?

  2. Peter Karwacki says:

    The right hand knows what the left hand is doing.

    This is a democracy…of course the informed voters gave the incumbents a pass.

  3. The Voter says:

    Peter,

    I think the question is how many voters are actually ‘informed’ and how many have no clue what goes on at City Hall. Many people vote based on name recognition or assume that, since the incumbent has experience, he or she is the better candidate. In addition, of course, we have to look at the scandalously low voter turnout at municipal elections. You would think that people who have to write a large annual cheque for their property taxes or pay their taxes through higher rent would want to know who’s going to be overseeing the spending of their money. That is, apparently, not the case.

  4. Liz says:

    Peter,.,,,,Folks who care have given up or are too busy with jobs, kids and making ends meet. cynicism is high as one Councillor pointed out at the joint committee meeting on the bylaws. Add to this that communities and Councillor roles have been diminished by Fords many bills on housing development.

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