Steve asks “What’s the 2014 Patio issue?” Here’s my answer………

……. and it can’t be asked and answered in a survey. It can be summed up by two words “Clean Sweep”.

It’s weird I was thinking about this the other day and bingo Steve’s blog post:

Arrived in my email box.

As many of you know I have been living in Collingwood since 2000. A relative newcomer compared to many of you. In that time I have followed local politics on an on again off again basis with varying amounts of interest. I would say in all that time the least amount of attention I paid to the local political scene in Collingwood was the first 18 months of this current councils mandate. One reason was I had some rather large business issues that I was trying to deal with. But the second and most important reason was I thought that finally the town had voted in a fiscally conservative council that was quick to deal with a couple of my pet issues. Namely the mess on the corner of Hume/Hurontario and the lack of recreation facilities.
I started to have some serious doubts with the councils ham-fisted approach to the soccer dome at Pretty River Academy. Then realized this was the same old fight that has been fought in this town since years before I arrived here. Then I started looking a little closer at the recreation tents decision making process and like pealing the layers from an onion, the OPP investigation, mushroom farm,. As I have said I voted for every member of this council with the exception of Kevin Lloyd. So I thought it was way past time that I went down to town hall and see what I had voted for.
I’m not like some of the folks that I see down there, I go maybe once or twice a month. When I have been in attendance I can quite honestly say that I was shocked by the nepotistic cronyism. I have never seen a political body that constantly ignores the wishes of the people that voted for them, talks so blatantly about openness and transparency and at every opportunity scuttles into the back rooms for “in camera” sessions. Abuses the office by constantly voting as a block of 5 whatever the issue.
So the 2014 “patio issue” is staring all of you in the face. For the first time on the local political landscape you can vote for a slate of candidates that are in some cases new to politics in Collingwood. In other cases not aligned with any of the old protagonists, but most important of all you get a chance for a complete remake of the political scene in this town.

Granted the “Clean Sweep” is not as sexy as a fight between small town governance and the “little guy just trying to make a living”. But I can guarantee the long term affects will be more important than the placement of a few tables and chairs on a sidewalk ever was.


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