Tewin Issue Sparks Bulldog’s Largest Readership Day

People who think that the Tewin question isn’t capturing the interest of Ottawans would be wrong.

Coverage of the controversy last week resulted in the largest Bulldog readership day in its 14-year history on Friday.

The issue sparked 67,724 pageviews over a 24-hour period or roughly half a week’s readership in one day.

Surprisingly, the other media in the city have not picked up on the issue for reasons best known to them alone. It’s shameful. But that’s OK … more happy customers for The Bulldog.

The issue revolves around the City of Ottawa turning over much city oversight of the new east-Ottawa suburb to the Tewin builder, allowing that firm to second staff from the city for the project and allowing the builder to fund and hire city employees. It assumes oversight from the city over itself.

Prior to The Bulldog obtaining the memorandum of understanding outlining the serious compromises the city had made, the project had been walked onto a council meeting much to the surprise of councillors and staff and was roundly condemned for creating much urban sprawl in the east end of Ottawa.


The last seven days or so have been time from hell for myself. The Bulldog website was badly damaged and fortunately much of that didn’t show up front but some of it did and for that your agent apologizes. I’m firing the entire Bulldog technical and maintenance department. But though it is still being pieced together by elves behind the scenes, it appears to be slowly thriving again.

The last thing The Bulldog needed last week was someone saying “I know you are busy but you should know this.” And I was told the saga of the Tewin memorandum of understanding. The issue is bigger than the light-rail fiasco, hard as that might be to be believed, because it gets to the root of our municipal democracy, the rule of law and an ethical bankruptcy that is frightening in its significance and shocking in its immensity. It begs the statement … if this can happen on this project, how many other developments have been fraught with this flouting of the people of this good community who deserve much, much better government than this.

I hope to live long enough to see an end to this kind of crass skullduggery but I fear I might not. I cannot say strongly enough that it is time for the provincial government to get involved in this issue and the non-functional city because this Ottawa municipal government cannot and will not heal itself. The problem is much too deep and culturally ingrained. The city staff must be torn from stem to stern and rebuilt on the simple and vital foundations of democracy, honesty, caring, openness and goodwill. Residents must encourage better candidates to run for council and take on the daunting task of running this broken machine. I am ashamed of my municipal government and its moral vacuum.

It wasn’t always like that.

Once again, many thanks from the staff and management here at Bulldog World Headquarters for your continuing patronage of The Bulldog. And deep gratitude to Dan Stankovic, Ron Benn, The Voter and all the people who helped piece together this wicked puzzle of a story behind the scenes. I am forever indebted for this and so many other things.

This publication owes its success to the readers, commenters and contributors of this website. Your participation is greatly appreciated.

Ken Gray


2 Responses

  1. Jane Keeler says:

    When I wrote my first Bulldog comment recently, I added the name of ReImagine Ottawa— I was NOT speaking on behalf of that organization.

    For several reasons, I am wishing I had been more limited and moderate in my comments about the Tewin MOU. Councillor Leiper has almost reassured me. As well as the missteps at city hall, there are daily attempts to enact ethical, thoughtful, transparent decisions on behalf of all of the people who live here.

  2. Ken Gray says:

    Jane:

    Leiper hasn’t reassured me at all.

    Cheers

    kgray

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