Saturday, August 02, 2014

I Need Your Help And Ask For Your Input


Should I Run For A Seat On Nanaimo City Council?

I have been asked by a number of people if I am going to run for city council, which is something I have given serious consideration for quite sometime now. Due to my experience with watching how city council works (or doesn't work) I am under no delusions as to how difficult it is going to be to bring about the much needed changes to take our city forward and fulfill our incredible potential. The fulfillment of that potential will see us hand off a city to the next generation offering the same lifestyle opportunities enjoyed by people of my generation.

It would also ensure that those of us in our golden years won't have to be making the decision between paying our taxes, heating our homes or buying groceries.

I realize this 'part time' job will be far more than that and there will be many challenges to overcome. That said, I do believe it is the duty of each one of us to participate in the democratic process to whatever degree we are capable. That has been the motivator to my attention to city hall and publishing my opinion on this blog, in an effort to inform and engage a greater section of the citizens of our great city.

I am in the position of being able to devote as much of my time, energy and experience as needed to fulfill my duty to my community in the capacity of city councillor. A responsibility I would not take lightly.

I am not naive enough to believe that garnering enough votes to win a seat on council can be accomplished without a great number of people supporting that bid. It takes the organized effort of a small army of people offering not only financial but 'boots on the ground' support to run a successful campaign.

The point of this post is to conduct a 'straw poll' if you will, to see what kind of support I might expect should I decide to devote the next four years of my life to doing my part to help our city reach it's full potential.

You can email your response to admin@nanaimoinfo.com or post a comment on this post using the 'post comment' feature at the bottom of this post.

I sincerely thank you for your input.

Jim Taylor



allvoices

31 comments:

  1. Jim. I think you are just what the City of Nanaimo needs! You know the facts, the questions that need to be asked and how important each tax dollar is. It is better that the new faces we elect in November know the system and most of the players so they can come out fighting for the tax payers from day one! I would be proud to be able to help you in any way I can.
    Terrence Wagstaff

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  2. OF COURSE YOU SHOULD RUN! (It's a no-brainer answer Jim!)

    There is no one better suited to whip the freeloading dictatorial bureaucrats and many bobble-headed councillors into shape. (You just better have a big inflatable hammer you can use!)

    RUN!

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  3. No. You will act on behalf of a narrow set of interests.

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  4. Can I ask Frank Murphy's question of you. Are there three things you think you could accomplish this next term to improve the way this city works?

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  5. THREE THINGS THAT WOULD IMPROVE THE WAY THE CITY RUNS

    1. Help council develop policy which would direct staff, rather than waiting for staff to create policy because they have to function in a vacuum otherwise.

    2. Advocate strongly for openness and transparency, when the legitimate reason for taking a matter in-camera has passed, it must be brought out of in-camera. In all cases the 'vote' must be reported so the electorate know how councilors stand on a contentious issue.

    3. Encourage greater engagement from the public in civic matters. City council and city staff can make far better decisions if they take public input BEFORE they make major decisions.

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  6. Frank Moher considering we have never been face to face, I am curious what you base your opinion upon? I suspect, it is because I do NOT support putting more tax dollars into the money pit at 25 Victoria Road. I do feel a million or so, could be put to much better use to support the arts community in Nanaimo. If I did run for council, and by chance did get elected (highly unlikely the first time out) I would make all decisions based on what I feel is good for the entire community and not just some special interest group. If that is what you consider a 'narrow' set of interests, then we must agree to disagree.

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  7. Very few of us take an interest in municipal affairs and yet the local level is where we actually can make a difference. Those of us who do care about the community but feel we don't possess the skills to run for office, appreciate those of you that do. I encourage you seek a seat on council.

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  8. Jim Taylor or Ted Greves? Jim Taylor or Diane Brennan? It's like asking would you like sunshine or rain! Please run Jim!
    Cliff Marcil

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  9. Go for it. We need someone like you to put the curb on these "politicians.
    J. Moore, Nanaimo

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  10. Yes, please run! This city needs councillors (and a mayor) that will conduct business in the open and ask the tough questions of staff, not rollover to every spending plan that comes along. There's only about 3 councillors that seem to pay any attention to this and it's not enough.
    Robb Barrow

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  11. After googling one of the commenters, Mr. Frank Moher, I see why he would not want you to run Jim: He has been associated with the arts, who gobble up much tax money for their own selfish purposes over the decades.

    Now, because of this reckless tax spending noted above, I would encourage you more than ever to run and cut the cash flow to this special interest group.

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  12. Jim, I have watched you in action at council meetings and I read this blog. Both demonstrate a single-mindedness that would not be a virtue on council.

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  13. Frank Moher, how would you describe my 'single-mindedness', other than a concern for ever-increasing taxes, due in part to questionable spending.

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  14. Jim there is a reason for you to run and a reason not to. I've been asked by a few people to run as well and my answer has been NO every time.

    I'll give you my reason not to run.

    Generally critics make terrible elected officials. Critics are good at pointing out problems and advocating for solutions. When in the system critics find themselves self muzzled by their position. Nanaimo needs Jim Taylor the investigator and reporter that exposes the stupidity of City Hall. What you do on this blog and the Nanaimo Ratepayers Association is more important than what you could do on Council.

    Frankly, if I had my way I'd like to see you as the City Manager instead. There you would have real power to make positive changes.

    Sincerely,
    Devon Kruggel

    PS - If you do choose to run you'll have 100% of my support and volunteer time. Just ask.

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  15. Frank Moher,

    I read the comments on your blog about the Leadercast fiasco. If that's how you feel about that shameful motion / vote by City Council then we need men like Jim Taylor on Council I guess.

    Maybe we need a "single-mindedness" on Council. A single-mindedness for truth, justice, and the values espoused by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and not the bullies that advocated to denounce members of this community.

    Sincerely,
    Devon Kruggel

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  16. Jim, if there was ever a time that this city needs some level headed, intelligent people running for council it is now, Just looking at the numbers we are on the precipice of massive tax increases for our homes and this is going to greatly disrupt many Nanaimo citizens who will be either unable to or struggle to pay their city taxes in the not too distant future. This city needs you and any other individual with the time and dedication to turn this city around.
    Sincerely,
    Mark Jeffs

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  17. Jim,

    I have been a long time reader and your awareness has made me more aware of the problems this city has developed onto it's own. While there will always be the belief that advocacy and leadership are intrinsically opposed to each other, I don't necessarily believe this to be true. Take what you've learned and opined over the years and try it from a leadership approach. Create change. If you feel that council is ultimately not for you, then step back and return to advocating, but with a better perspective on the situation as a whole. While I do not always agree with everything you say, I appreciate that you're trying to improve the direction of the city and create fiscal responsibility. You're always wanting council to be accountable and I do not believe that if you were a part of it, that ideology would suddenly change. If you feel you are up for the challenge and can deal with it from a professional and personal level, then I say go for it. You'd have my support 100%.

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  18. Jim Taylor (soon to be the famous one?) I support your run for city council. You have a handle on how things should be done as well as a finger on the pulse of Nanaimo and if you get teamed up with other intelligent, knowledgeable council members our city could thrive. Our current embarrassingly shortsighted and easily manipulated council (as a whole) need to be upgraded and there is nowhere to go but up from there. I would like to know who you would like to have on the council with you...I don't know who plans to run again but I do have my favourites and some that definitely have to go...I'd like to know what you think, who you could work with. I also think that our new council members all need to be in charge and not take orders from City Staff and it sounds like you are just the man for the job. Good luck to you...Brenda Morris

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  19. Jim,I like so many Nanaimoites are tired of the "before election lip service" that we have been handed by past councilors and Mayor.For example J Ruttan should never be allowed to udder the word "transparency" again as he obviously has no clue of its meaning and had no intention of ever finding out it's meaning.
    Before I decide to throw support behind you I have a couple of questions:
    1.If elected will you continue you engage the public through your blog and social media so people can ask you the hard questions and in return get answers?
    2.If elected will you fight for transparency & openness in council.Espeshaly in regards to the abuse of In-Camera meetings?
    3.If elected will you continue to ask the hard questions of fellow councilors and staff as we have seen you do for years on the other side of the podium?

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  20. Run for mayor! I'm behind you either way willing to help all the way.

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  21. Feel free to run but you won't get my vote. Your mantra about taxes, taxes, taxes is more about what you don't support rather than what you do. If taxes are spent on say, a football stadium/bleachers you are supportive but if it's about the arts suddenly it's a waste of taxes.

    Your tax spending rants are very selective and as such you would be a poor representative of the community at large.

    And the person that wrote it is far easier to criticize than act is absolutely correct.

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    Replies
    1. Bob Loblaw,

      Why should I have to dole out my money as a tax payer to support this theater when I have zero interest in theater? Why don't the people that want the theater support the theater?

      I'm a member of this community and yet I feel completely marginalized by people like yourself when you talk about the arts. Why do I have to pay for your goodies? Frankly I'd rather see more money invested in attracting high-tech businesses to this community.

      I'll add that my property taxes have gone up every single year for 5 years now. Enough is enough!

      Sincerely,
      Devon Kruggel

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  22. Bob, with all due respect, if you are referring to 25 Victoria Road, being a user of the venue, I can see both sides of the debate. I agree that it is a money pit. It's a band aid on a broken arm. However, I also feel this expense is worthwhile for the many arts groups who utilize it. While Jim mentions that he would prefer that this money be allocated in another way to the arts community, he may not know that the arts community doesn't really have a suitable alternative to this venue. Closing this venue entirely would have gutted the arts community here. Closing it would also leave another empty hole in the downtown area that really needs to be revitalized. That said, I still support Jim in his consideration for a seat on Council. It's a learning process and I'm sure he'd serve the needs of the community as a whole with complete and proper information. Really, he can't do any worse than the incumbent. If criticizing is far easier than acting, shouldn't we be lauding him for his consideration rather than shaming him?

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  23. Anonymous, you asked:
    1.If elected will you continue you engage the public through your blog and social media so people can ask you the hard questions and in return get answers?

    ANSWER: I intend to continue the blog and welcome all public input. If elected, the blog might even take on a more interesting 'flavour' as I would have a different view inside.

    2.If elected will you fight for transparency & openness in council.Espeshaly in regards to the abuse of In-Camera meetings?

    ANSWER: I would continually advocate for transparency and would insist that once the legitmate reason for secrecy had passed, that the minutes of an IC meeting be released. I would advocate for the result of the vote be released immediately. If I felt an IC meeting was inappropriate, I would leave the meeting.


    3.If elected will you continue to ask the hard questions of fellow councilors and staff as we have seen you do for years on the other side of the podium?

    ANSWER: Absolutely!

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  24. Jim, please don't! You may take a few votes away from candidates that truly have what's best for Nanaimo and it's people in their hearts. We do not want to import Vancouvers garbage and that is a huge proposal in your mind. Please leave it to the appropriate people.

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  25. Frank Moher, Bob Loblaw and Cinnabar ..... to be clear my opposition to spending hundreds of thousands of tax dollars on 25 Victoria Road has absolutely nothing to do with what the building is being used for. My opposition, is to spending what looks like $1.5 million on THAT building. The building is simply not worth that kind of money. The most recent decision to spend $200,000 on the Nicol St. wall was completely wasteful and does not make the building anymore functional and is only logical if the intent is to spend the nearly $1 million in renovations outlined in the engineers report. I am still of the opinion, that if we are going to put out another million dollars in support of the local arts community, there are far better uses than this building. Not doing the renovations, would not stop the current users from using the building. The old Caprice threatre would have been a far better venue at the time 25 Vic was bought. That building is simply a money pit, which is what I am opposed to, not the use of the building.

    As for not supporting the arts, Mr. Moher, I have published productions, fundraisers and other news about Western Edge since Nov. 2008 on this blog free of charge in the interest of providing support. I extended the same offer to the previous group operating 25 Vic and they simply never took advantage of the offer.

    I also freely promote events for the Fringe Festival and the VISFF as a means of helping promote and grow these members of our community.

    So, to say I am 'anti-arts' is simply not a fair characterization. That said, I still think 25 Vic. is a bottomless pit, where we should not be throwing tax dollars.

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  26. Ron Grychuk ...... you seem to have come to a conclusion based on incomplete information. I do not want to import Vancouvers' garbage. I do however, want to deal with Nanaimo's garbage disposal needs in the most cost effective way, for the taxpayers of Nanaimo.

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  27. I did not say you are anti-arts. Why do you say I did?

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  28. Frank Moher; I ass - umed you considered I was. My mistake. What is the single- mindedness you say I have. An example???

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  29. You appear to be a single issue guy: "Don't raise my taxes!" You would assume what I call the "Dr. No" seat on Council, previously occupied by Loyd Sherry. Sample dialogue:

    "Motion to --"

    "No!"

    "How about if we --"

    "No!"

    "But --"

    "Will it raise my taxes?"

    "Well --"

    "NO!"

    It was amusing to watch Sherry in the position. But running a city requires a more nuanced approach.

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