What’s that old saying? Time flies when you’re having fun. I have enjoyed the first few months of this new council and it has gone by so fast, the election seems like only yesterday. Alas though it doesn’t look like our (relatively) new town council are having much fun these days. Trying to get the towns finances back into shape is a monumental task. I hear an average $50 property tax increase is in the works, with more bad news coming next year. Plus it seems every week someone is bringing yet another complaint to the integrity commissioner Robert Swayze. The following is my 100 day report card and commentary on all members of council as follows:
Mayor Sandra Cooper: I actually thought Sandra started very strong and I was pleasantly surprised at what a good job she was doing as our towns chief magistrate. The one thing that has bugged me though and I can’t seem to get beyond it, is the fact that our Mayor out and out lied during the election campaign about the towns finances. What bothers me even more is the people that voted for her either have developed collective amnesia about her Pinocchio nose stretching statements or really don’t give a shit. It seems that our elected officials at all levels of government can say what they like during an election campaign and there are fools in our communities that keep falling for the same stupid nonsense. Sandra would have been a solid C + if she had not lied to us. Alas I can now only give her a D.
Brian Saunderson: Brian would have got an A something if it wasn’t for he and the rest of council not dealing with the Elvis festival file and allowing that particular can to be kicked down the road for another 3 years. I am very impressed with Brian on the whole though, and I am positive he will soon be rating up in the A’s. We as a town are extremely lucky to have a bright, intelligent, articulate guy like him putting himself in the firing line as Deputy Mayor. The problem is with the pittance that we pay our elected officials in this town, I fear that Brian might be a one term wonder. B+
Tim Fryer: Nothing has surprised me about Tim. He has been on the right side of all the important decisions and votes. Has a measured approach to most issues, again I expected more from him on Elvis Festival vote. I thought he out of any on council would have had the cajones to take on this hot potato, and at least try to put and end to our towns open book attitude towards this seemingly untouchable event. B
Mike Edwards: I have been very hard on Mike this past couple of years. The last council term I thought he was just mailing it in, very ineffectual and going with the flow. This term has been a completely different story. He has not always voted the way I would have liked, but he has come to some of his decisions with informed thought and salient commentary. He was MC at an event that my daughter was in and it shed a completly different light on Mike for me. He did a great job was funny and articulate. I hope this new found mojo continues. B
Cam Ecclestone: I have been somewhat disappointed in Cam if I am completely honest. But then again I didn’t vote for him so cannot be held in the least bit accountable for his performance. Every banana skin that Cam has had placed in front of him he has managed to slip on and fall flat on his face. A low point for me was when he said out loud that the Collus report was “way too complicated” for him to comprehend. Plus the stupid sending email fiasco about CEO John Brown. Giving Chadwick and Angry Man ammunition to march straight to Robert Swayze. “Amateur Hour” is how I would describe Cam’s first 100 days, which is rather surprising considering he was town reeve in some godforsaken hell hole up north a few years ago. D+ (and I am being generous at that).
Kathy Jeffery: Again no surprises here. Stoic, measured, informed on the right side of all my issues, does not waste her breath waffling on about anything. She does not say very much but when she does you better listen because she always does her research. In this case I did not expect Kathy to make a big song and dance on the Elvis issue, but I did expect more than what she gave us. That’s why she also gets a B.
Deb Doherty: I think Deb has been a shining star on this new council. I loved the motion to bring Rick Lloyd back on the carpet for his conflict of interest, that the voting bloc very clumsily tried to sweep under the carpet last term. I could see the steam coming from an unmentionable ex-councillors ears from Hickory to Oak St. If I have one complaint it would be that she is a bit of an idealist and might end up sorely disappointed after this term in office. She has been on my side of the issues every time with the exception of the Elvis festival vote, but then again she had an idealistic approach to that when she answered my question on it during the election. So Deb gets an A- (The only person on council that gets an A)
Bob Madigan: Where would VFAN have been this term if Bob (Mad Dog) Madigan had not got himself elected? I am glad Bob is on this council. He started slow and looked like he might be all photo op and no substance. But seems to be finally starting to find his feet. He is a little too close to the Cooper clan for my liking but as he told me last weekend he has been pals with Shawn for years and this does not seem to have affected his voting record. Brash, funny, quick witted are all words I would use for Bob. I am not quite ready yet to say that I was wrong about him last fall, but I am almost there. C+
Kevin (Angry Man) Lloyd: Again where would VFAN be without Angry Man this term? It’s strange Chadwick fails to get himself elected and up jumps Kevin Lloyd to take his place as resident asshole on council. Being an asshole was not a new thing for Kevin Lloyd but this term he seems to have honed that skill to a fine art form. Think of any good just decision that this council has voted in the affirmative on and Angry Man Lloyd has had some long-winded reason to vote against it. I can envision many more wasted complaints to the integrity commissioner at 5 to 10 grand a pop. I also see his blood pressure getting the better of him if he isn’t careful. I have never seen someone’s complexion so consistently on the rouge side of the equation for so long and they are still upright. He is a solid F (If he were a few years younger, we would be talking summer school).