Thursday, August 04, 2011

Democracy Requires Participation

The AAP To Borrow $22.5 Million

Yesterday the city hosted an information Open House at Bowen Park to explain the AAP being used to get the public's consent to borrow $22.5 million to build the new water treatment plant.

The fact that more people were playing lawn bowling on the adjacent court pretty much sums up the interest displayed in the process by the citizens of Nanaimo. It calls to question whether or not the event was poorly publicized (which it was) or whether the general public just don't bother to participate in the process for a variety of reasons (which they don't).

There is the over arching attitude on the part of city staff that since VIHA and the provincial government are forcing us to install this new treatment plant (for which a strong argument could be made against), giving us no choice, they feel that borrowing the money is the only viable option and are simply doing their best to steer the complacent taxpayer to that 'decision'.

 Do We Really Need To Borrow The $22.5 Million?

There is nowhere in their information packages that offers the option of not spending $16 million on the new office for city hall staff and using those funds for the water plant. They could then ask the public if they want to borrow the money to build the new staff office. I can only speculate on whether the public response to that question would be as apathetic.


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