There has been a lot of finger-pointing and politics of division aimed at Niagara-on-the-Lake’s lord mayor and suggestions that a councillor’s resignation and some not running for re-election along with some senior staff resignations are a symptom of “poor governance.”
To the contrary I believe the current lord mayor and council have accomplished precisely what they were elected to do in 2018, and more.
NOTL for many, many years was run as an “old boys” network in which councillors and staff were chummy with the development and business communities and paid little attention to the wants and needs of residents.
Immediately upon taking the reins in 2018, this most recent iteration of council passed an interim control bylaw and devised a strategic plan to get a hold of effective planning and produced a new draft official plan to supplant the existing 1994 plan.
It is to the benefit of the town that some of the old guard senior staff made way for new progressive, unaligned staff. It is noteworthy that at least one of those ex-employees is working on the campaign of one of the “old boy” candidates in the current election.
Much has also been said about the council being dysfunctional and unco-operative.
Yes, there have been disagreements and long discussions, but ultimately this council, working through the most significant health crisis in a century, has passed a new draft official plan, established a tree bylaw, begun work on the master transportation plan, instituted a municipal accommodation tax, passed new bylaws to control short-terms rentals and begun a complete overhaul of the zoning bylaws.
No, looking back over the past four years of municipal governance I can honestly say they have accomplished more than the previous two administrations combined and moved the bar on governance to the benefit of town residents and our community’s future.
Bob and Irene Bader