Category Archives: Transparency

Conflict over Kitchener councillors’ potential $55,000 lawyer allowance

Read it and weep as council strums the budget blues During recent sessions, councillors faced the unpleasant but necessary prospect of raising costs of storm water by 9.2 per cent, sanitary/sewers by 10.8 percent and water by 7.6 per cent. … Continue reading

Posted in Budget, Perks and Expenses, Transparency, Ward News | 1 Comment

Instead of demolition, use Victoria Park homes for low-cost housing

For at least a decade, Waterloo Region has had 3,000 names on a waiting list for affordable housing. That’s more than 8,000 adults and children desperate for low-cost shelter in one of Canada’s wealthiest regions. Which makes me wonder why our … Continue reading

Posted in Low-Cost Housing, Neighbourhoods, Regional economy, Transparency, Victoria Park | Leave a comment

Kitchener homeowners should learn more about RIENS

Intensified attention. That’s what I believe is necessary for anyone living in an established area of Kitchener, including residents in heritage areas. Homeowner attention is vital for an ongoing planning study known as Residential Intensification in Established Neighbourhoods (RIENS). I … Continue reading

Posted in Greener City, Heritage, Neighbourhoods, RIENS, Transparency, Victoria Park | 4 Comments

Kitchener councillors political art of public appearance

If you care about creation of a downtown arts-culture facility in one of Kitchener’s few city-owned heritage buildings, I would suggest you speak up at Monday’s June 6, council meeting. The session starts at 7 p.m. and you can register to … Continue reading

Posted in Arts & Culture, Heritage, Light Rail Transit, Mayfair Hotel, Transparency, Vibrant Downtown | 1 Comment

Council transparency: Appearance or substance?

When it comes to efforts by Kitchener council to improve accountability and transparency, appearance of change is not enough. Such efforts must have clear, meaningful results and a motion from Coun. Scott Davey last night achieved no such thing. The motion … Continue reading

Posted in Journalism, Perks and Expenses, Transparency | Leave a comment

Too little, too late in non-creative CEI spat

The average artist in Waterloo Region lives below the poverty line, earning $25,000-$30,000 a year. Tonight, at Waterloo Regional Council, Creative Enterprise Initiative (CEI) — a group supposedly formed to help those artists and small arts-culture groups — will ask … Continue reading

Posted in Arts & Culture, CEI, Journalism, Transparency | 1 Comment

Last gasp efforts to save Kitchener’s Mayfair

Kitchener’s former Mayfair Hotel is on life support. And, during this weekend, there have been a few commendable last-minute attempts by heritage supporters to have a heritage-restoration expert examine and possibly save the historic downtown building. First failed attempt to delay … Continue reading

Posted in Heritage, Transparency, Ward News | Leave a comment

Non-elected board will spend $8-million of taxpayers’ cash

So much for voter accountability, government transparency and the public’s right to know how tax dollars are spent. Kitchener council last night (Feb.9) approved an economic report from staff that recommended council allow a non-elected board of directors to spend at … Continue reading

Posted in Budget, Democracy Ward 9, Jobs, Regional economy, Transparency | Leave a comment

Public deserves more budget information

“Public engagement is a key component of the annual budget process.” So reads the high-flying introduction paragraph on a 2015 council document distributed last night at a public-input budget meeting staged by Kitchener Council. At the end of the meeting I complimented members of … Continue reading

Posted in Budget, Centre in the Square, Leisure activity subsidy cards, Low-Cost Housing, Perks and Expenses, Transparency | Leave a comment

Front-porch politics in Kitchener’s vibrant Ward 9

Your vote counts. That’s the powerful lesson learned when I was elected by a single vote in 2010 that I would like to communicate before tomorrow’s election. And, based on subsequent conversations with hundreds of people convinced that they each cast … Continue reading

Posted in Arts & Culture, Democracy Ward 9, Giving thanks, Heritage, Jobs, Light Rail Transit, Low-Cost Housing, Neighbourhoods, Perks and Expenses, Transparency, Vibrant Downtown, Voter Turnout, Ward News | 2 Comments