Feb 21, 2013- 11:21 AM
It would be interesting to know how many of our current city councillors plan on running in the next municipal election.
Elections are typically won by the likability, popularity, and skills of successful candidates. These traits are determined by the electorate through campaign platforms and when applicable, candidates’ track records.
Based on this, how can any one of our current councillors even imagine not being rejected at the polls by a majority of voters in October 2014?
Greater Sudbury’s councillors have been lambasted both by the media and by public opinion since the beginning of this term.
This is a result of a seemingly contentious opinion of our mayor, closed door meetings, uncooperative behaviour, questionable decisions as well as questionable indecisiveness.
And after months of controversy regarding transparency and accountability, on Feb. 12, council held a closed-door meeting prior to their monthly council meeting.
Then at the regular meeting, without mention of it on the agenda, council swiftly passed a motion to remove Ontario’s Ombudsman from the role as Greater Sudbury’s municipal oversight.
It’s not really shocking in its purpose, as this council has opposed the ombudsman for some time, regardless of the public support for this oversight. It’s mostly remarkable in the covert nature and speed this motion was passed.
Historically, this council has employed numerous committees, reports and consultations before decisive action is taken, but not on this major decision.
Certainly these individuals understood that the public would be upset by this. Certainly they are aware of the poor public opinion that surrounded them prior to this latest move. Certainly they must know this would not help.
Perhaps they just don’t care.
But still, why take another step in a direction that the greater community seems to oppose?
John Steinbeck wrote, “Power does not corrupt. Fear corrupts.”
If corruption exists at Tom Davies Square, it seems obvious that the powers that be will do what is necessary to keep that hidden while at the helm, perhaps from fear of exposure.
Maybe few of these councillors are planning a return to office in 2014, but are simply doing what they can to leave office “clean.”
It doesn’t seem that any of these councillors are concerned about romancing the public, as they continue to hide their activities.
Citizens may very well have to wait until next fall before any significant change will take place at Tom Davies Square.
But with almost two years of constant controversy behind them, and no obvious change in course for the next two years, it is likely that any new candidate will appear far more electable than many of our current councillors.
Certainly, these “experienced” politicians must know this.
The 2014 election should be an exciting time for renewal for our city, including its leadership.
Let’s hope the new blood has the talents and transformational leadership to bring our city out of the ditch it is in, and to top of the mountain where it belongs as the City of Greater Sudbury.