by Nelson Daily staff on May 13 2013
by Adrian Barnes on May 13 2013
Advanced polling turn-out mirrors 2009 numbers in Kootenay West/ Kootenay East boasts better numbersby Kyra Hoggan on May 13 2013
by Nelson Daily Sports on May 13 2013
Slocan Valley Vendettas knock off Salmo to register inaugural victory; Rossland/Trail too hot to handle for Castlegar Dam Cityby Nelson Daily Sports on May 13 2013
by Kyra Hoggan on Monday May 20 2013
by John King on Thursday May 16 2013
by Kyra Hoggan on Wednesday May 15 2013
by Andre Carrel on Tuesday May 14 2013
by Charles Jeanes on Tuesday May 14 2013
EDITORIAL: City Hall is broken. Who will fix it?
Councillor Kathy Wallace is on the public record as saying the following with reference to the now-famous meeting at the Seniors’ Centre about the Jason Ward Affair:
"I think there is an assumption on Coun. Moore's part that the people who were at that meeting were representative of the community. I do not agree that they are. I am hearing a very strong voice from this community that they do not like the media attention that this has generated, and et cetera. When I hear this presentation that 'We've let the community down,' there are a lot of people in this community who don't hold that perspective."
I’m sure Ms. Wallace is right as far as her thinking goes. But unfortunately, her thinking doesn’t go very far.
I’m sure Ms. Wallace’s circle is unhappy about all the stress she and the other members of council have been put through recently.
But, to put it bluntly, so what?
It’s not the job of a mayor or councillor to do some sort of magic math (‘15 friends and 12 people in Ferraro Foods agree with me and I bet there are hundreds more and only 70-80 people showed up at that silly meeting’) and decide whether or not to listen.
Decisions should be made based on rational arguments, not on ad hoc assessments of ‘a very strong voice’. I’m hearing voices as well lately, believe me, and every last one of them is in utter agreement with the views expressed at the meeting and since in these pages: that we must get to the bottom of this disgraceful situation. And that the investigation must be independent of both staff and council. And that the investigation will both clear the innocent and punish the guilty.
So whose voices are right? Mine or Ms. Wallace’s? The answer is this: neither.
Democracy isn't a popularity contest (except at election time). We don’t make major decisions based on popular sentiment when the objective case is clear: bad things happened at City Hall and they appear to have been allowed to happen as a result of either A) incompetence and/or B) corruption. In either case, an investigation is absolutely necessary. Not desirable or undesirable, not popular or unpopular. But necessary.
So why isn’t it happening?
Many at City Hall clearly hope that this issue will go away if they ignore it long enough. We won’t speculate as to why they hold this hope.
We have elected, I’m now forced to say, a bunch of jokers to council who have no interest whatsoever in process or procedure, but who care only about their popularity and the voices of those near them who agree with them. It’s our bad--the rest of us didn’t run and we now have the government we deserve.
However, it’s not too late to begin to fix things.
Council is broken, perhaps irretrievably broken. City Hall is broken. How will we begin to repair the damage, Rossland?
Adrian Barnes is the editor of the Rossland Telegraph and president of Lone Sheep Publishing.