Results 1 to 100 of 100

Thread: City council needs an attitude adjustment

  1. #1
    Becoming a C2E Power Poster
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    172

    Default City council needs an attitude adjustment

    City council needs an attitude adjustment and I want to help make that happen. That's one of the major reasons I'm seeking election in Ward 11 on Oct. 18.

    Like many people, I believe most politicians say one thing when campaigning, then change their tune once elected. I've seen it happen countless times and it makes me as cynical as anyone.

    It's galling when candidates campaign on a platform fiscal responsibility then vote for tax hikes two or three times the rate of inflation. It's equally galling when those professed protectors of the public purse wind up voting for schemes and projects that waste tax money.

    There are countless cases. Years ago council spent millions to tear apart what was a rather nice park in Churchill Square and build a concert nightmare that's hardly ever used by citizens. Edmontonians didn't want a concrete-and-paving-stone civic square, they wanted a park with grass and trees like the one they'd enjoyed for years. A city council committee recently approved funding a statue that would be a memorial to homeless people who died. That'll cost taxpayers about $36,000. It's no wonder people become cynical about politicians and politics.

    Perhaps that helps to explain why only 27% of eligible voters bothered to cast a ballot in the 2007 civic election. Citizens just don't think the people who wind up elected have any common sense. Approving the homelessness statue doesn't help voters to change their cynical view.

    As a candidate in Ward 11, I want to prove a member of council can have common sense -- that it's not sucked out of a person's brain the moment they're elected.

    I have been a keen observer of local politics since 1985 -- including many years at city hall writing about civic issues.

    I have received tons of feedback from citizens during that time that has helped shape the platform on which I'm running.

    -- I believe the voter is ultimately my boss once I'm elected. Many politicians forget who got them there and don't give a damn what the public thinks.

    -- Citizens are shocked and appalled at the level of violent crime in this city. We need solutions. We have a right to feel safe to walk the streets day and night. Edmontonians have suggested that could be achieved, in part, with more police officers walking the beats, additional transit police and expansion of Neighbourhood Watch programs, among other solutions.

    -- City Hall has to hold the line on taxes. We should never face property tax hikes that are more than the rate of inflation.

    -- We have to prioritize the way City Hall operates and get back to basics -- good core services including roads, transit, police, fire and garbage collection. Citizens also deserve well-kept parks and vibrant recreation facilities. That's just common sense.

    While I have plenty of experience delving into civic politics as a trusted civic affairs columnist, I admit it feels different on the other side of the microphone. I'm now the one who has to answer the tough questions. As a politician, I open myself up for criticism from anyone who has an opinion. That's democracy.

    A case in point? A few people have criticized me for daring to sue my former employer, the Edmonton Sun. I invite anyone to go to my website to get the full story on why I was forced to take legal action. Please go to www.kerrydiotte.com and follow a link where I answer questions.

    The bottom line: I'm not a person who backs down in the face of injustice. I'm a fighter -- and that will serve you, the taxpayer, well once I am elected to city council.

    I welcome the chance to be your voice at City Hall -- and, if I ever forget who's my boss, kick my butt out of office. But, trust me, I've got a good memory. Once elected, I won't forget who calls the shots.

    I can only hope more than 27% of eligible voters show up to do their democratic duty Oct. 18.

    If my views resonate with you, I welcome your help as a volunteer, a financial supporter and, most importantly, a voter.

    (Kerry Diotte is an award-winning journalist and City Hall candidate in Ward 11)

    -- Kerry Diotte
    Last edited by NoreneS; 03-07-2010 at 01:52 AM.

  2. #2
    C2E Continued Contributor
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Meadows
    Posts
    1,976

    Default

    I'm voting for anyone of a sound mind who can get the LRT done by 2016. (N, W, SE)
    $2.00 $2.25 $2.50 $2.75 $2.85 $3.00 $3.20 $3.25

  3. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by NoreneS View Post
    City There are countless cases. Years ago council spent millions to tear apart what was a rather nice park in Churchill Square and build a concert nightmare that's hardly ever used by citizens.
    I have a friend who sold some items she made at "the works" festival currently on. If you took the time to attend this festival, you would know the statement above is completely false. All we need, is more events like the Works, and then you won't see the concrete, you will see the people and the market. I don't want to see a suburban park in the cities most central space.

    Anyway, good luck on your candidacy. I don't have an issue with some fiscal discipline, as long as it doesn't come at the cost of having a vision to make our city greater, to which we need key things, like LRT, incentives to fill the hole in our growing donut, and a limit on endless sprawl.

  4. #4
    Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    656

    Default

    Citizens are shocked and appalled at the level of violent crime in this city. We need solutions. We have a right to feel safe to walk the streets day and night. Edmontonians have suggested that could be achieved, in part, with more police officers walking the beats, additional transit police and expansion of Neighbourhood Watch programs, among other solutions.


    yes! Make this your number one theme!
    BobinEdmonton

  5. #5
    In Guantanamo (Banned)
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    2,064

    Default

    Other than shock at crime -- which Edmonton has had a-plenty for decades, without going hysterical over it -- Diotte is able to enunciate nothing except the usual sentimental platitudes.

    In this environment it's either costs and taxes, or services. Simultaneous low costs and high services, and a fixed-tax promise is irresponsible demagogy. His platform is garbage for neo-cons with consumption needs.

    The more he talks about common sense, the less I personally believe him.
    Last edited by abaka; 03-07-2010 at 10:24 AM.

  6. #6
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    While I agree that council should be fiscally prudent, there will be some big ticket items coming up. Even without Expo or an Arena, Edmonton needs to build the LRT, and this will be our opportunity.

    Part of the rising costs is the result of our city having to expand its infrastructure and services over a wider area, and we are getting near the point where Edmonton can no longer afford to keep up with urban sprawl. If we don't do something to improve our transportation infrastructure in Edmonton, there will be no incentive for urban renewal.

    Mr. Diotte, the problems that Edmonton has are complex, and we need leadership that can address these challenges.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  7. #7

    Default

    Well Norene, while I admire your wish list I just wanted to remind you that you will
    only be ONE vote if you get elected.
    No matter how noble (and let's face it, politicians think they are noble) your cause
    to get it to pass you have to have the majority of votes.
    As for the statue/monument for the homeless. The money has already been allotted to the organization that wants to make this statue/monument. I should imagine the only way you would be able to stop things like this happening is to stop funding these organizations altogether. That would cause an even bigger commotion in some circles.
    Having said that, I look forward to a bit of a shake up in the next election and I wish you well Kerry.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  8. #8
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Edmonton (belevedre)
    Posts
    6,484

    Default

    it is hard to vote the right councillors because all councillors have different opinions and thoughts.

    it has nothing to do with their attitudes.
    Edmonton Rocks Rocks Rocks

  9. #9

    Default

    Ha! Kerry Diotte will solve violent crime at the municipal level.

    In my opinion the bulk of violent crime caused by organized drug rings in the form of territory defense or the aftermath of people getting hooked, which will likely never go away. The next most common source of violent crime is natives, and we screwed that up by putting everything involving them into the constitution, so expect a lifetime of throwing money at a problem that can only be solved by forcing them to adapt to modern life.

    As for core services, I think the city has a handle on that. Current council is doing its best to take us to the next level. I take it from your platform that your plan is to forget the next level, and make us the best darn lame city ever.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  10. #10

    Default

    I don't think you'll have a choice but to change your tune if you get elected. The big ticket projects ahead of us have already been mentioned - If it costs us less to, say, build the LRT extension now than it would in the long term, then "tax hikes two or three times the rate of inflation" may well be fiscally responsible in the long term. And then there's the title you've chosen... it really resonates against wanting to work with the rest of council. We don't need another Mike Nickel.
    "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines." - Frank Lloyd Wright

  11. #11
    C2E Long Term Contributor
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Downtown
    Posts
    30,627

    Default

    I wonder if the SUN will be backing Diotte despite the lawsuit?
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  12. #12
    Partially Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Westmount
    Posts
    125

    Default

    Guns and hoses. And garbage. Maybe potholes. Is Diotte living in 1955?

  13. #13

    Default

    Once these diligent and focused candidates get elected, then the dark shadow of ADMINISTRATION casts its shadow. The alderperson is advised/told how things work with Administration doing the research and providing the reports to city hall (of course slanted the way Administration wants, so the obvious decison for city hall to make is the way Administration wants it). If the Mayor and Administration think and operate the same way then things are seamless.....but if there is a problem and discord at city hall......then the desenting alderperson(s) get pushed out on their own piece of political melting ice or are threatened to be. They soon fall in line with the will of the unelected Administration.

    I wish there were more elected politicians who WOULD stand up for what they beleived come hell or high water. But the money and perks being given all our levels of government Alderpersons/MLAs/MPs which just makes them want to hold on to their office no matter how much they have to compromise themselves and not representing their voters.....while giving phoney noble excuses. This is not Democracy at work, it leans much more toward Dictatorship with the pawns falling in line continuously.

    Elected officials are sent by the voter to represent our interests, not to have the elected officials come back to their constituency and tell the voter what the govenment has decided therefore the voter will have to adapt themelves.
    Time will tell on this new Alberta Government.

  14. #14
    C2E Stole my Heart!!!!
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ozerna, North Edmonton
    Posts
    8,961

    Default

    He wouldn't get my vote......

  15. #15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilman View Post
    He wouldn't get my vote......
    Ditto

    I want someone with vision for this city.
    youtube.com/BrothersGrim
    facebook.com/BrothersGrimMusic

  16. #16

    Default

    > -- We have to prioritize the way City Hall operates and get back to basics -- good core services including roads, transit, police, fire and garbage collection. Citizens also deserve well-kept parks and vibrant recreation facilities. That's just common sense.

    What is your position on Edmonton's urban sprawl? Do you support the city's Environmental Strategic Plan, "The Way We Green?"

  17. #17
    First One is Always Free
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Sask. Drive 101st
    Posts
    94

    Default ^Diotte

    I think that the council that we have is pretty good other than Cantera and Lebovici which both should be turfed.
    I think that its this guy and his feckless and dated neo con platform than need the attitude adjustment.
    i would never vote for this spineless malcontent

  18. #18

    Default

    He would do well in some backwater west Texas desert hick town of 200 people
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  19. #19
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Edmonton (belevedre)
    Posts
    6,484

    Default

    city councillors has to do is no more sit back and stall on city downtown development planning, they need is get up and get to work harder to finish the job ! other thing for them is no more debating for too long over many important projects.
    Last edited by jagators63; 03-07-2010 at 08:01 PM.
    Edmonton Rocks Rocks Rocks

  20. #20

    Default

    Why would I vote for someone who was demoted from his job because of poor work performance.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  21. #21

    Default

    Council has lost sight of its main responsibilities - pave the roads, police the streets. It's refreshing to hear someone come out and stand up for these things. They have the same priority now as they did in 1955, even though some of the streets haven't been paved since then.

  22. #22
    You registered but never posted. username to be deleted.
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    134

    Default

    ^I think the city has done a pretty good job with road work in the last few years (outside of 23ave/Calg tr. dithering). Seems every year is a record road maintenence budget (doing whole neighbourhoods each year.) Unfortunatly we got a lot of roads.
    Last edited by ZiZiPop; 03-07-2010 at 11:20 PM.

  23. #23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DowntownDan View Post
    Council has lost sight of its main responsibilities - pave the roads, police the streets. It's refreshing to hear someone come out and stand up for these things. They have the same priority now as they did in 1955, even though some of the streets haven't been paved since then.
    the city is so much more than road pavers... get a clue
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  24. #24
    C2E Super Addict
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    NAITSA Advocacy
    Posts
    1,347

    Default

    I appreciate Mr. Diotte's desire to improve Edmonton. Perhaps he may even be a good councillor. But there are a few things that he states in his column that I take some issue with for being either simplistic or unrealistic.

    Take the idea that tax hikes should never increase more than inflation. Does that mean that the cost of municipal services only increase at the cost of living? I assure you that they do not. There are some more complex factors that contribute to how much it costs to remove your snow, sand your roads, treat your water and run your transit. Take Edmonton's population density. Edmonton has one of the lowest of a major city on the planet, and in a winter climate. With fewer taxpayers per square kilometre and many more square kilometres to service, pressure on taxes will continue to be upward.

    But of course, the heavy pressures on our taxes don't come from $36,000 statues, do they? They come from, as mentioned, snow removal, road sanding, transit, police, road repairs and the management and upkeep of municipal services. Saying that we need more cops, but we're only holding the line at inflation doesn't seem well thought through as it will result in you being painted into a corner at some point. Bank on it.

    Now look at the $36,000 for that statue. Now, you may have an issue with having a state to commemorate homeless people who have died (or a statue about anything else), but public artworks are most often paid for by the taxpayer. And if you're against tax dollars going to things that make our surroundings more pleasant, then I will respectfully disagree with you.

    Finally, I think that anyone who is elected to council needs to be willing to work closely with their elected colleagues. Saying that a council you may have to work with needs an attitude adjustment just isn't smart. Not professionally. Not politically. Furthermore, there are many of us who believe that this Mayor and council, while not perfect, are the first group in years who really get it in terms of a good vision for the city. This council has made several bold choices that should have been made years ago. The new municipal development plan and transportation master plan, closure of ECCA, LRT, and the downtown development plan come to mind.

    I wish Mr. Diotte good luck. If he is to serve Edmonton in an elected capacity, he will find that things are more complex than allowed for in populist rhetoric.
    Last edited by JasonR; 04-07-2010 at 08:55 AM. Reason: spelling

  25. #25

    Default

    I'm guessing diotte was seeing a pink slip soon at the sun so he decided it was time to be a loud mouth somewhere else. I see his platform seems to be build around common theme found in the sun crime homelessness and potholes! Any word on where he stands on the real issues that face this city and how he would attempt to solve them?

    (attracting flies (voters) with dung in other words)
    Last edited by Medwards; 04-07-2010 at 08:55 AM.

  26. #26
    C2E Long Term Contributor
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Downtown
    Posts
    30,627

    Default

    I'm not against having a fiscal watchdog on council like Diotte - I know he's railed against bureaucratic/administrative "empire-building", waste and inefficiencies. If there's a way of doing something cheaper and more efficiently, it needs to be considered (case in point: LRT extension).

    But what I don't want is City Hall becoming nothing more than a snow removal/pothole repair service. Yes, the core services are indispensable (and must be done efficiently), but investing in the big vision stuff and in the little things (such as public art) are also important.
    Last edited by Sonic Death Monkey; 04-07-2010 at 05:11 PM.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  27. #27
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    Kerry, if you say that council needs an attitude adjustment, then tell me which councillors.

    To me, your comments sound like some candidates who run for a college or university Students' Union. "We're going to change the system." or "The current leadership is a bunch of incompetents." I respond with two comments. First, the system takes time to change, and with the support of the bureaucracy, and the public. Second, people will respond to (and support) candidates who will provide a voice to their cause. Based on your comments, I'm not sure if you represent either.

    If you wanted to represent candidates, you could talk to people at the Community Leagues, or dig even deeper with respect to budgeting, and look for ways where money could be spent more efficiently. Until you do your homework, I think that your comments remain generalizations.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  28. #28

    Default

    ^ I agree.. pushing the whole.. "I want to change everything because the current council sucks" agenda only works when the majority wants mammoth change. All in all most of Edmonton is pretty happy with City Council. It's not like when Bill Smith was bout to be voted out. You could feel the change in the air then.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  29. #29

    Default

    ^ Actually Jan Reimer's council would be a better example.
    Edmonton first, everything else second.

  30. #30
    grish
    Guest

    Default Check the name

    Norene is the person who posted the letter from Kerry Diotte. Diotte is the person you need to be addressing...

    Quote Originally Posted by Gemini View Post
    Well Norene, while I admire your wish... I look forward to a bit of a shake up in the next election and I wish you well Kerry.
    and you know that by your closing...

    Anyway, this letter remaind me of the politics of fear practiced in the US. Elect me or the [... insert something scary like a terrorist or a child molester or a tax and spend lefty... ] will get you. Sure it may get the votes... actually, I am pretty sure this is all about getting the votes and not about continual building of the city.

    Good luck. You're lucky that I am not in that part of the city. I would be voting for someone else.

  31. #31
    Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    568

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    it really resonates against wanting to work with the rest of council. We don't need another Mike Nickel.
    Au contraire...council could use a few dissenting voices, as opposed to the groupthink we're currently stuck with.

  32. #32
    In Guantanamo (Banned)
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    2,064

    Default

    Nah, Leibovici and that other guy do a wonderful job playing up tea-party individualistically responsible... nonsense.

  33. #33

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    it really resonates against wanting to work with the rest of council. We don't need another Mike Nickel.
    Au contraire...council could use a few dissenting voices, as opposed to the groupthink we're currently stuck with.
    Group think actually comes up with better solutions and in a quicker fashion. There are studies on it.
    Last edited by edmonton daily photo; 05-07-2010 at 02:40 PM.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  34. #34
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    To give credit to the current council, they have dealt with a lot of issues that were tough to deal with, and have taken a lot of necessary risks with respect to regional cooperation, downtown development, LRT and other issues. Yes, the city needs to manage its finances, but there is also the need for investment in our civic infrastructure.

    The city is gradually rehabilitating older neighbourhoods, LRT is being planned for other parts of Edmonton and downtown is looking towards a long-term plan, issues that have been deferred for years or even decades.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  35. #35
    Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    835

    Default

    ^ Well said, The_Cat. We have a deficit in maintanance and infrastructure. Either we catch up on that or continue to let the city crumble. We need to recover from low taxation policies, not go through another round of cuts.

    The lack of vision in this article is discomforting.
    http://www.twitter.com/ckls

  36. #36

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    it really resonates against wanting to work with the rest of council. We don't need another Mike Nickel.
    Au contraire...council could use a few dissenting voices, as opposed to the groupthink we're currently stuck with.
    Mike Nickel was a few notches past the "dissenting voice". Differing opinions are good... never agreeing with the majority is not, especially when the majority has already ruled.
    "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines." - Frank Lloyd Wright

  37. #37
    First One is Always Free
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    83

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    Why would I vote for someone who was demoted from his job because of poor work performance.
    I think that is an unfair post. The issue is being litigated. For all we know, they had different visions/perspectives.

  38. #38

    Default

    ^might be unfair but it's naive to think that that he isn't at least partly responsible for his own dismissal. rarley is one part 100% guilt free in these types of situations.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  39. #39
    Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    568

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Adam View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JOA View Post
    it really resonates against wanting to work with the rest of council. We don't need another Mike Nickel.
    Au contraire...council could use a few dissenting voices, as opposed to the groupthink we're currently stuck with.
    Mike Nickel was a few notches past the "dissenting voice". Differing opinions are good... never agreeing with the majority is not, especially when the majority has already ruled.
    You are correct. I think the differing opinions are a bit lacking.

    Group think actually comes up with better solutions and in a quicker fashion. There are studies on it.
    Do singing recycling bins count as better solutions?

  40. #40

    Default

    ^If the singing bins are cheaper in the end than sorting recycling from garbage bins, then yes, they count as better solutions. I don't know whether this is the case, but don't knock it until you have all the facts.
    "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines." - Frank Lloyd Wright

  41. #41

    Default Thanks for the feedback on my column, from Kerry

    Quote Originally Posted by bobinedmonton View Post
    Citizens are shocked and appalled at the level of violent crime in this city. We need solutions. We have a right to feel safe to walk the streets day and night. Edmontonians have suggested that could be achieved, in part, with more police officers walking the beats, additional transit police and expansion of Neighbourhood Watch programs, among other solutions.


    yes! Make this your number one theme!
    ****

    I see my column has sparked some lively debate and that's a good thing.

    I also see there are those who don't agree with my views, and that too, is A-OK.

    That means we've got a good mix of critical thinkers here and I only wish more Edmontonians waded into issues and let their views be known.

    The fact only 27% of people bothered to vote in the last civic election is truly appalling.

    It's great to see all of you people here on this site expressing views both for and against mine. Not to be trite but, democracy is a wonderful thing.

    If you agree with my view we need better core services (including improved public safety) and an end to the waste of tax money, I urge you to check out my website at www.kerrydiotte.com. I'm running for city council because I care about this city. Like you, it's where I have chosen to make my home.

    If you don't agree with my core views, I really appreciate your feedback, in any case. I've been a journalist in this fine city for 25 years and I want to make it even better.

    Thanks for reading, and let's keep the discussion going. As a city councillor, I will have my views, but, ultimately, I work for you. If enough people let their views be known on an issue in Ward 11, those are the views I will take to City Hall.

    This website is a fine community. Get others to wade into these discussions and I will do the same.
    -Kerry

  42. #42

    Default

    I love statements like this...
    "I will push to hold the line on taxes and fight against wasteful spending."

    Kerry.. could you be more vauge. What is "wasteful spending" was the art gallery wasteful? Is building more roads wasteful? How about continuing Edmonton's sprawl and thusly having to build more police stations, more fire departments and more utilities... is that wasteful?

    You might as well just run a wall mart commercial which shoes random number decreasing to other random numbers... at the end of the day your not really committing to anything.

    If you want to freeze spending yet increase policing, road repair and infrastructure maintenance .. where is that money going to come from. Parks and Rec? Our Libraries? The Arts? so again I ask what is "wasteful spending"

    You may feel potholes is a polarizing issue.. but it's not. Have you notice how much road construction is going on in this city currently... There is only so much referbishment that you can do at one time.

    To say that the current administration, which has done SO MUCH MORE than any other council that I have experienced, needs an attitude adjustment comes off as patronizing. I would urge to to modernize your platform as it currently reads like it was contrived in the Mid West USA in the 1950's.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  43. #43

    Default

    Kerry says "I will push to hold the line on taxes and fight against wasteful spending."

    Yet I see a picture of him beside this:


    ...and see him posing in this money draining event:


    Source:
    http://www.kerrydiotte.com/media.html

    You have a lot of explaining to do Kerry.

    Good luck!
    Edmonton first, everything else second.

  44. #44
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    Kerry, I hope that your platform will encompass a wider scope of issues other than "holding the line on taxes" or "reducing crime". My fear about "holding the line on spending" may be a penny-wise, pound-foolish approach. Will you knock LRT because of the $2 billion pricetag, only to find that the cost would be $4 billion in 2020, or that the money will be spent on expanding utilities instead? For reducing crime, will you support the initiatives that the city has taken on reducing graffiti? For snow clearing, that will come at a greater cost.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  45. #45

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    I love statements like this...
    "I will push to hold the line on taxes and fight against wasteful spending."

    Kerry.. could you be more vauge. What is "wasteful spending" was the art gallery wasteful? Is building more roads wasteful? How about continuing Edmonton's sprawl and thusly having to build more police stations, more fire departments and more utilities... is that wasteful?

    You might as well just run a wall mart commercial which shoes random number decreasing to other random numbers... at the end of the day your not really committing to anything.

    If you want to freeze spending yet increase policing, road repair and infrastructure maintenance .. where is that money going to come from. Parks and Rec? Our Libraries? The Arts? so again I ask what is "wasteful spending"

    You may feel potholes is a polarizing issue.. but it's not. Have you notice how much road construction is going on in this city currently... There is only so much referbishment that you can do at one time.

    To say that the current administration, which has done SO MUCH MORE than any other council that I have experienced, needs an attitude adjustment comes off as patronizing. I would urge to to modernize your platform as it currently reads like it was contrived in the Mid West USA in the 1950's.
    I respect your views.

    However I urge you to take a look at the regular Citizen Satisfaction Survey. It's a rather wasteful (in my view) regular study of the views of ordinary Edmontonians.

    The fact you're taking time to comment on this forum tells me that you, like me, cares about this city and are likely well-informed.

    But each year, citizens respond to the survey saying "fix the potholes, plow the streets properly in winter."

    Core services are vitally important. That's not just my view, it's the view of the majority of people who respond to the survey.

    Those are the building blocks we have to get right.

    I'm not saying we should neglect parks, thumb our noses at our arts community and do nothing but basics. I'm saying get the basics right, then we can move on to other things.

    How can we invite the world to an Expo or other such events when our streets are a mess, the public isn't safe on transit and vehicles get stuck in snow on our roads?

    And why do we spend the better part of a million dollars of public money on a winter festival nobody attends? Let's encourage creativity at City Hall, get corporate sponsorship for good events....

    All of that.

    I enjoy the arts, festivals etc. But let's not throw good money after bad.

    I have covered city hall for many years and the rank and file people who work there often have the same beefs everyone does. There IS waste at City Hall and if we encouraged regular folks who worked there to come up with better ways to do things it would be a better city.

    Anyway, I do appreciate your comments. We'll have to agree to disagree on some.

    -Kerry

  46. #46

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ThomasH View Post
    Kerry says "I will push to hold the line on taxes and fight against wasteful spending."

    Yet I see a picture of him beside this:


    ...and see him posing in this money draining event:


    Source:
    http://www.kerrydiotte.com/media.html

    You have a lot of explaining to do Kerry.

    Good luck!
    C'mon, give me a break.

    I was at the Indy as a journalist in this photo. The media were given a chanced to ride in an Indy car. The mayor and most councillors know it's an attractive event. But there's got to be a way to run it more efficiently and that's what's being discussed.

    A full 25% of the costs come because they have to put up facilities that aren't permanent. That's something they're addressing.

    I don't have all the answers to that, but I'm willing to seek them. If, ultimately, it doesn't make financial sense, then let's decide.

  47. #47
    C2E Stole my Heart!!!!
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ozerna, North Edmonton
    Posts
    8,961

    Default

    Your list is missing a few very important issues:

    What is your stance on the municipal airport?
    New arena?

    These will need to be answered before any candidates are even considered in my mind.........

  48. #48

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilman View Post
    Your list is missing a few very important issues:

    What is your stance on the municipal airport?
    New arena?

    These will need to be answered before any candidates are even considered in my mind.........
    My view on the airport?

    Simple.

    Let the people decide on the airport. Add it to the ballot.

    Arena?

    Let's see the specifics. If those were known prior to Oct. 18 it would be ideal to have a vote on that to.

    Power to the People, right on.
    -Kerry

  49. #49
    C2E Stole my Heart!!!!
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ozerna, North Edmonton
    Posts
    8,961

    Default

    Sorry, the people did vote by proxy and shutting down the airport won by a 10-3 landslide. Good luck, you are going to need it!

  50. #50

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilman View Post
    Sorry, the people did vote by proxy and shutting down the airport won by a 10-3 landslide. Good luck, you are going to need it!
    Here's the Wiki version of what the vote decided:

    Do you direct City Council to repeal “The Edmonton Municipal Airport referendum bylaw” (No. 10,205)? That bylaw requires the City to operate the Municipal Airport and promote that airport’s air passenger service.
    A “YES” vote means that the City will promote MOVING scheduled air passenger service to the Edmonton International Airport.
    A “NO” vote means that the City will promote MAINTAINING scheduled air passenger service at the Edmonton Municipal Airport.
    Under both options the City will continue to own and offer general air services (e.g. private planes, small charters, air ambulance) at the Municipal Airport.

  51. #51

    Default

    ^Hilman seems to be referring to council's vote last year, not the previous plebiscite (correct me if I'm wrong). Given that the decision to close the airport has already been made, holding another plebiscite would be wasteful spending in my opinion.

    Additionally, I wouldn't normally pick on grammar, but you might want to hire an editor to proofread your statements if you're going to say things like "Not to be trite but, democracy is a wonderful thing." The comma goes before the "but".
    "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines." - Frank Lloyd Wright

  52. #52
    C2E Super Addict
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    NAITSA Advocacy
    Posts
    1,347

    Default

    Let the people decide can often be translated as "let me off the hook". One of the burdens of leadership is making tough choices. This council has made several, including to close ECCA. And they had an informed choice to make. They saw through the "people will die" and "it's a gem that business needs" nonsense.

  53. #53

    Default

    Mr. Diotte,

    That's two issues (i.e. the muni and the arena) that you believe are appropriate for public ballots. In your opinion, at what threshold does something become worthy of a plebiscite? Should the Capital Power spin-off have went to the public; what about privatizing public utilities? Should we put alternative LRT routes up to a vote, or, heck, even the concept of LRT expansion vs. ensuring all roads in the capital region are pot hole free before we move onto to 'non-core services'? What about zoning changes for infill development?

    Plebiscites are expensive and time consuming. We live in a representative democracy, not a direct democracy. If you truly want more public ballots, it seems to me you should propose a systemic change that would make them practical, and that would address the potential distortions, such as an imbalance of financial resources on one side vs the other.

    You seem quite focused on snow removal, pot holes, and crime; however, perhaps you could enlighten us on your opinion of other issues facing the city. For example, what are your thoughts regarding the relationship between increasing density in inner city neighborhoods and suburban sprawl? If limiting sprawl can slow tax increases, do you think it is appropriate to provide incentives for higher density living? What is your position on the privatization of public utilities? Recently, council and the administration mused that to get LRT expansion on the fast track, it may be appropriate to delay new major road projects; do you agree with such a suggestion? When it comes to urban development, do you feel Edmonton has appropriately balanced pedestrian focused vs auto focused neighbourhoods?

    Cheers.

  54. #54
    C2E Long Term Contributor
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Downtown
    Posts
    30,627

    Default

    Thanks for participating in C2E, Kerry.

    As a keen follower of municipal politics, you should know that there's other issues you'll have to add to your platform:
    1. Expo bid, or bids on other similar international events
    2. Downtown arena
    3. Municipal airport closure
    4. Indy
    5. LRT/transit expansion
    6. Downtown revitalization
    7. Maintaining good architectural standards
    8. Promotion/marketing of Edmonton to professionals, students, immigrants and businesses
    9. Retaining professionals, students, immigrants and businesses in this city
    10. urban sprawl/densification
    11. homelessness initiatives
    12. your long-term vision of Edmonton in 10 years, 20 years, 50 years, etc
    13. metro/regional issues
    14. Re: your platform on crime and policing, could your past rocky relationship with EPS (the Overtime scandal) become an issue if you were a councilor?
    15. public arts/cultural issues
    16. tourism
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  55. #55
    Addicted to C2E
    Mr. Reality Check

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    11,167

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kerrydiotte View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Hilman View Post
    Your list is missing a few very important issues:

    What is your stance on the municipal airport?
    New arena?

    These will need to be answered before any candidates are even considered in my mind.........
    My view on the airport?

    Simple.

    Let the people decide on the airport. Add it to the ballot.

    Arena?

    Let's see the specifics. If those were known prior to Oct. 18 it would be ideal to have a vote on that to.

    Power to the People, right on.
    -Kerry
    now now kerry...

    hilman didn't ask you how you thought these issues should be resolved, he asked you for your stance or position on them as issues which isn't the same thing.

    besides, if every decision of substance is simply going to be decided "by ballot" and nothing put to "a vote" until all of the detailed "specifics" are finalized, then we wouldn't need a city council at all would we?

    these questions - and sdm's etc. - are meant to solicit your opinions and your preferences based on the same information that is available to everyone else in forming their/our opinions and preferences. if you can't - or won't - offer that, then on what other basis do you expect voters to determine whether your opinions and preferences will reflect theirs if you are going to represent them on council and chart a future course for their/our city that matches their vision for it?

    power to the people??? the people aren't running, you are.
    "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

  56. #56

    Default

    Nice to see you posting as Kerry and not NoreneS doing it for you.
    It helps to know you can post yourself.
    Seems to me you are getting some pretty good questions thrown at you
    from some of the posters.
    I, for one, always like to see a rotation
    on city council. I am not one for any councillor making it their career. It seems
    their best before date arrives way before they are thinking of throwing in the towel.
    There are at least a couple on council right now that need to quit. As always, it's up to the people who they vote for.
    I do wish you well in the election.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  57. #57
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Holyrood
    Posts
    4,846

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gemini View Post
    Nice to see you posting as Kerry and not NoreneS doing it for you.
    It helps to know you can post yourself.
    It may surprise you if you didn't notice the pattern already, but Norene posts all of the guest columns in the Guest Columnists section (probably because they show up on the main page - not something you would want just anyone doing).

    Just thought I'd point that out.
    Strathcona City Separatist

  58. #58

    Default

    ^Yes, it did surprise me.
    I does say 'Guest Columnist' on the top of the page.
    Having said that, if Mr. Diotte wants to be seen as a Hands On' type of
    guy he should have started the thread under his own name. It would have saved
    people like me from being highly.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  59. #59

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gemini View Post
    ^Yes, it did surprise me.
    I does say 'Guest Columnist' on the top of the page.
    Having said that, if Mr. Diotte wants to be seen as a Hands On' type of
    guy he should have started the thread under his own name. It would have saved
    people like me from being highly.
    Just to be clear, I was offered the chance to write a guest column for this and the way it is posted is the way C2E handles it.

    I've responded to some of the comments under my own name from there.

    -Kerry

  60. #60
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Edmonton (belevedre)
    Posts
    6,484

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bobinedmonton View Post
    Citizens are shocked and appalled at the level of violent crime in this city. We need solutions. We have a right to feel safe to walk the streets day and night. Edmontonians have suggested that could be achieved, in part, with more police officers walking the beats, additional transit police and expansion of Neighbourhood Watch programs, among other solutions.


    yes! Make this your number one theme!


    remember there is no safer place anywhere on earth due to violence
    Edmonton Rocks Rocks Rocks

  61. #61

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kerrydiotte View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Gemini View Post
    ^Yes, it did surprise me.
    I does say 'Guest Columnist' on the top of the page.
    Having said that, if Mr. Diotte wants to be seen as a Hands On' type of
    guy he should have started the thread under his own name. It would have saved
    people like me from being highly.
    Just to be clear, I was offered the chance to write a guest column for this and the way it is posted is the way C2E handles it.

    I've responded to some of the comments under my own name from there.

    -Kerry
    Thank you Kerry for the clarification.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  62. #62

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bobs edmonton View Post
    Citizens are shocked and appalled at the level of violent crime in this city. We need solutions. We have a right to feel safe to walk the streets day and night. Edmontonians have suggested that could be achieved, in part, with more police officers walking the beats, additional transit police and expansion of Neighbourhood Watch programs, among other solutions.


    yes! Make this your number one theme!
    Unfortunately that would be a very tall order.
    Medium to big cities all over the world are grappling with the same issues.
    It's not just an Edmonton issue. Short of having a cop on every corner it is way more complex.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  63. #63

    Default

    "City Hall has to hold the line on taxes. We should never face property tax hikes that are more than the rate of inflation."

    Using Edmonton's, Alberta's or Canada's inflation rate?

    Moreover, City salary increases are taxed at the individual's highest marginal tax rate while inflation measures cost increases which you pay after tax. Are the tax system's indexing adjustments compensating for that?

    Also, why not? Is the City's basket of goods and services costs equal to that of the stats Can basket?

  64. #64

    Default

    ^.. That is total BS.

    A) what about all the years where ther was no Tax increase... We are simply playing catch up.
    B) Lets remeber that the majority of property taxes collected is actually for the prov, not the city.
    c) You can't have all your issues adressed, demand more police, snow cleaning and roads without more money.

    What is the REAL rate of inflation...
    Core inflation has key viotile things like food and the cost of energy... Don't you think the cost of Energy may be a very large expenditure for the city. Don't you think that tying taxes to a consumer monitoring system might be different that propperly addressing the buisness needs to the city.

    Tying taxes to inflation rates is jsut like getting "tough on crime" Politically is reads well, but is actually a poor practice out in the real world.
    Last edited by edmonton daily photo; 12-07-2010 at 08:43 AM.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  65. #65
    Addicted to C2E
    Mr. Reality Check

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    11,167

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    ^.. That is total BS.

    A) what about all the years where ther was no Tax increase... We are simply playing catch up.
    B) Lets remeber that the majority of property taxes collected is actually for the prov, not the city.
    c) You can't have all your issues adressed, demand more police, snow cleaning and roads without more money.

    What is the REAL rate of inflation...
    Core inflation has key viotile things like food and the cost of energy... Don't you think the cost of Energy may be a very large expenditure for the city. Don't you think that tying taxes to a consumer monitoring system might be different that propperly addressing the buisness needs to the city.

    Tying taxes to inflation rates is jsut like getting "tough on crime" Politically is reads well, but is actually a poor practice out in the real world.
    none of the property taxes that are collected go to the province. the education tax that is collected by the city on behalf of the province goes to the province but they are not one and the same.

    the problem with most of these discussions is that they devolve into simplistic discussions about complex matters. furthermore, what the city collects in property taxes is not necessarily the same as the city's expenses. the city also gets money from other levels of government so limiting expenses may short change the city on other revenue sources. the current level of property taxes also doesn't have to cover the full cost of everything today. that's what borrowing is for. and borrowing is not always "passing the cost on to our children". when it comes to things like transit infrastructure and parks and schools etc. our children will be taking full use of those facilities and it's not necessarily wrong for them to pay a fair share of paying them off, particularly when it means the "cash as you go" option means that would not have those facilities available at all because they won't be able to afford the full cost either.
    "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

  66. #66

    Default

    Thansk for the clarification Kantor.. you worded it much better than I.

    The Mill rate or education portion of our property taxes is collected on behalf of the Prov gov't. This portion = apx half of everyones muni tax bill.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  67. #67

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    ^.. That is total BS.

    A) what about all the years where ther was no Tax increase... We are simply playing catch up.
    B) Lets remeber that the majority of property taxes collected is actually for the prov, not the city.
    c) You can't have all your issues adressed, demand more police, snow cleaning and roads without more money.

    What is the REAL rate of inflation...
    Core inflation has key viotile things like food and the cost of energy... Don't you think the cost of Energy may be a very large expenditure for the city. Don't you think that tying taxes to a consumer monitoring system might be different that propperly addressing the buisness needs to the city.

    Tying taxes to inflation rates is jsut like getting "tough on crime" Politically is reads well, but is actually a poor practice out in the real world.
    A big factor is local demographics which drive a number of different requirements like schools, transport infrastructure...

  68. #68

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KC View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    ^.. That is total BS.

    A) what about all the years where ther was no Tax increase... We are simply playing catch up.
    B) Lets remeber that the majority of property taxes collected is actually for the prov, not the city.
    c) You can't have all your issues adressed, demand more police, snow cleaning and roads without more money.

    What is the REAL rate of inflation...
    Core inflation has key viotile things like food and the cost of energy... Don't you think the cost of Energy may be a very large expenditure for the city. Don't you think that tying taxes to a consumer monitoring system might be different that propperly addressing the buisness needs to the city.

    Tying taxes to inflation rates is jsut like getting "tough on crime" Politically is reads well, but is actually a poor practice out in the real world.
    A big factor is local demographics which drive a number of different requirements like schools, transport infrastructure...

    Hi, Kerry Diotte here....
    I see Ken has cleared up some of these concerns (see above) already.

    But here's one I'd like to address: The constant complaint from bureaucrats and some citizens that somehow the city's budget is radically different than household budgets or the budgets of large corporations.

    City Hall bureaucrats for a long while even had the gall to INVENT their own version of CPI and called it MPI. (municipal price index). It was always at least double the rate of inflation. They stopped that ruse after I wrote several columns about it and other councillors kicked up a fight about the approach too.

    Every other person and corporation has to deal with the REAL rate of inflation, not some higher, fantasy one that will feed their insatiable desire for more money.

    It's easy for the city to hit taxpayers with an 8-10% total tax hike annually (including fee hikes etc) but regular businesses would never DARE hike their product costs so high regularly or they'd drive their customers away.

    I love a good discussion (though I think a few people in here get a little too personal and petty at times).

    . But don't forget, I worked out of City Hall every day for five or six years. I dealt with the bureaucrats, rank and file and city councillors and the mayor EVERY day.

    I KNOW the game. I KNOW there is padding in civic budgets -- money that could be better spent in other ways. City council and the mayor KNOWS that too, but most put up with the game. It's just easier than constantly fighting and clawing for efficiencies.

    We have to re-prioritize and deal with improved core services first -- that means better roads, transit, public safety, recreation facilities and parks, etc. Those are the things I am hearing from people at the doors that they say concern them. I'm hearing that each time I knock on the doors in Ward 11.

    Bottom line? I want to create a BETTER city. ALL OF US in this forum want a better city. We all have our notions of how to get it. There are all kinds of solutions. I feel it's best if we could be more CREATIVE at city hall. Citizens don't deserve this tired mantra from City Hall:

    "You have two choices: higher taxes or cuts in services."

    We can be MORE creative at how we pay for things and run this city. We MUST be more creative. We are, after all, a smart city, right?

    -Kerry Diotte/Ward 11 candidate
    www.kerrydiotte.com

  69. #69
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    I think there are a few issues related to city planning that concern me:

    (1) Why are there some projects where a road will be paved one year, then a couple of years later the road is dug up to add a water line? Is this the result of the city being penny-wise or pound foolish? This is quite often the result of short-term thinking or trying to do a project cheaply, rather than looking at the whole cost.

    (2) Kerry, the city uses a different price index because its basket of goods and services is far different than a household. Much of the household consumption is food (where's the food) and housing (the city has some land assets paid for, but much office space would be leased). Also, the city would have different overheads than a corporation.

    While salaries/benefits can be budgeted in the same way as the private sector, the city has items like computer equipment (replaced an average of once every three years), equipment (city vehicles, including police cars and maintenance trucks) and maintenance/construction (dependent on the bidding on contracts). The increase in costs have also been the result of the growth that the city has seen over the years. Many other overheads have not been mentioned.

    (3) I suggest you review the financial statements of the city before you proceed with the criticism of the city budget. In the past, much of your criticism has been cherry picking, rather than the result of a broad-based knowledge of city budgeting. The city also gets audited every year, and cost overruns or inappropriate spending is highlighted.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  70. #70
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Edmonton (belevedre)
    Posts
    6,484

    Default

    I wanted to see this city councillors

    1) to budget and spend wisely.
    2) stay out of spending on consultants.
    3) don't stall on many projects such like road, sewers etc.
    4) finish building all of LRT tracks that city have approved.
    5) must keep their word to close the airport in stages , starting one of runaway
    be closed and bulldozed.
    6) don't worry and be happy to try using transit services to EIA
    Last edited by jagators63; 17-07-2010 at 12:56 PM.
    Edmonton Rocks Rocks Rocks

  71. #71

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cat View Post
    I think there are a few issues related to city planning that concern me:

    (1) Why are there some projects where a road will be paved one year, then a couple of years later the road is dug up to add a water line? Is this the result of the city being penny-wise or pound foolish? This is quite often the result of short-term thinking or trying to do a project cheaply, rather than looking at the whole cost.

    (2) Kerry, the city uses a different price index because its basket of goods and services is far different than a household. Much of the household consumption is food (where's the food) and housing (the city has some land assets paid for, but much office space would be leased). Also, the city would have different overheads than a corporation.

    While salaries/benefits can be budgeted in the same way as the private sector, the city has items like computer equipment (replaced an average of once every three years), equipment (city vehicles, including police cars and maintenance trucks) and maintenance/construction (dependent on the bidding on contracts). The increase in costs have also been the result of the growth that the city has seen over the years. Many other overheads have not been mentioned.

    (3) I suggest you review the financial statements of the city before you proceed with the criticism of the city budget. In the past, much of your criticism has been cherry picking, rather than the result of a broad-based knowledge of city budgeting. The city also gets audited every year, and cost overruns or inappropriate spending is highlighted.

    I agree, the city is not exactly like a household but it is a corporation and corporations have similar costs yet their boards of directors don't automatically jack up the prices of their consumer product at two and three times the rate of inflation as the city often does.

    We have to seek more creative solutions than telling citizens what city council and admin have told us for years: "You have one choice -- higher taxes or cuts in services."

    Sorry, but to me and many citizens that's not very inventive or creative.

    When the crunch comes at other corporations and they are cash-strapped or losing money, they get very creative and that's what I propose for the City of Edmonton.

    Surely you're not saying there's nothing we can do to improve the way the corporation functions?

    I have indeed looked deeply into budgets at city hall along with some of the councillors and some bureaucrats trying to make a difference and there is waste in the system that can be found. Often, though, council has lacked some political will to re-focus on getting core services right before approving spending on other less-vital areas.

  72. #72

    Default

    I find it hard to pay more in taxes when the cost of labour on projects has gone down.
    Another thing, people tend to forget that the provinial and federal govt. fund a fair amount of capital projects in the city and yet taxes still go up.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  73. #73
    Addicted to C2E
    Mr. Reality Check

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    11,167

    Default

    ^^

    welcome back kerry...

    i have to agree with you that the city has to contol its expenditures but i'm not quite sure i agree completely with your comparison of a municipality's options to those of a corporation. there are options available to a corporation that are not available to a municipality. when expenses go up or revenues decline, a city can't stop plowing its streets or running its buses or fire trucks or police cars. a city can't suspend its dividends or defer its taxes or lay off staff or drag payments to its suppliers. a corporation can downsize and outsource and "reinvent itself" in ways not possible for a municipality. a corporation can borrow monies both short term and long term and it can dispose of assets either outright or on a leaseback basis.

    having said that, if you are saying that there are areas where the city has "lost focus and direction", where there could be better accountability, where the objectives of senior management don't always make it down to the "line staff" who have to implement them... good luck and more power to you.

    i'm also still interested in knowing what you would choose to do if there aren't going to be referendums on the city centre airport and on a new downtown arena if those decisions were yours alone to make.

    ken
    "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

  74. #74
    C2E Long Term Contributor
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Downtown
    Posts
    30,627

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cat View Post
    (1) Why are there some projects where a road will be paved one year, then a couple of years later the road is dug up to add a water line?
    This happens quite often.

    road = city
    water line = EPCOR
    -> Two separate entities that don't co-ordinate their infrastructure repairs.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  75. #75

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cat View Post
    I think there are a few issues related to city planning that concern me:

    (1) Why are there some projects where a road will be paved one year, then a couple of years later the road is dug up to add a water line? Is this the result of the city being penny-wise or pound foolish? This is quite often the result of short-term thinking or trying to do a project cheaply, rather than looking at the whole cost.

    (2) Kerry, the city uses a different price index because its basket of goods and services is far different than a household. Much of the household consumption is food (where's the food) and housing (the city has some land assets paid for, but much office space would be leased). Also, the city would have different overheads than a corporation.

    While salaries/benefits can be budgeted in the same way as the private sector, the city has items like computer equipment (replaced an average of once every three years), equipment (city vehicles, including police cars and maintenance trucks) and maintenance/construction (dependent on the bidding on contracts). The increase in costs have also been the result of the growth that the city has seen over the years. Many other overheads have not been mentioned.

    (3) I suggest you review the financial statements of the city before you proceed with the criticism of the city budget. In the past, much of your criticism has been cherry picking, rather than the result of a broad-based knowledge of city budgeting. The city also gets audited every year, and cost overruns or inappropriate spending is highlighted.
    food is not included in core inflation rates actually.
    "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

  76. #76
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    I stand corrected, EDP.

    I think, though, that there is a difference between saving money by examining areas where money can be saved, and dismissing any kind of spending as "bad". If it hasn't been implemented already, I'd like to see the city give incentives to employees to suggest where savings can be realized in various departments.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  77. #77

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kcantor View Post
    ^^

    welcome back kerry...

    i have to agree with you that the city has to contol its expenditures but i'm not quite sure i agree completely with your comparison of a municipality's options to those of a corporation. there are options available to a corporation that are not available to a municipality. when expenses go up or revenues decline, a city can't stop plowing its streets or running its buses or fire trucks or police cars. a city can't suspend its dividends or defer its taxes or lay off staff or drag payments to its suppliers. a corporation can downsize and outsource and "reinvent itself" in ways not possible for a municipality. a corporation can borrow monies both short term and long term and it can dispose of assets either outright or on a leaseback basis.

    having said that, if you are saying that there are areas where the city has "lost focus and direction", where there could be better accountability, where the objectives of senior management don't always make it down to the "line staff" who have to implement them... good luck and more power to you.

    i'm also still interested in knowing what you would choose to do if there aren't going to be referendums on the city centre airport and on a new downtown arena if those decisions were yours alone to make.

    ken
    Ken:

    I think the answer is referendums on major issues. There were many in the 1970s and I think we should have more on big issues like these. I believe in direct democracy on big issues.

    As it stands now council has decided to close the City Centre Airport so that's out of my hands but I welcome any group that wants to push for a referendum on the issue on the Oct. 18 ballot. It's a daunting task to get 80,000 or so signatures but I am glad there are citizens out there who care enough about an issue to try to get it on a ballot.

    On the arena situation ... same thing. Once all the official details and proposals are in, I believe it's a major issue on which citizens should have a direct say.

    Historically, we only get 25-30% of people voting in an election. That's shameful. It soars when there's a referendum attached to it. I support anything that will get people interested in civic affairs and get them out to vote.

    I only wish there were more people out there like you who take an interest and examine the issues.

    If I had to decide both of these issues myself, I would want to be presented all of the information council has or will be presented before making up my mind.

  78. #78

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Starter Wife View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    Why would I vote for someone who was demoted from his job because of poor work performance.
    I think that is an unfair post. The issue is being litigated. For all we know, they had different visions/perspectives.
    Thanks for standing up for fairness and balance in this forum. You are correct that I am letting the courts decide that issue.

  79. #79
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    Kerry, if you get elected, your job will be to show leadership for your constituents, and to make the call on various issues. Also, you will be called to work on various city committees. What experience can you offer to the various city committees?
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  80. #80

    Default Kerry Diotte response

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cat View Post
    Kerry, if you get elected, your job will be to show leadership for your constituents, and to make the call on various issues. Also, you will be called to work on various city committees. What experience can you offer to the various city committees?
    As a civic affairs columnist for six years I had the inside look at how the Hall operates. I've covered scores of council meetings and committee meetings.

    I've built relationships with councillors, the mayor and top-level bureaucrats. I pride myself on the fact I had a good working relationship with most everyone at city hall even if we had to agree to disagree at times.

    My job was to ingest this information and make an informed opinion on the goings on.
    I did that to the point that I had a whole lot of readers. Many agreed with my take on things, some did not.

    Unless someone was being personal or obscene, I made a point to respond to virtually all emails I received. I welcome debate because that is the basis for our democracy. I enjoyed it when people said they agreed with me, but I welcomed it when they'd make a reasoned argument against my points. Sometimes, they made such good arguments, I changed my opinion in later columns.

    I would bring that background and expertise to any committee I was assigned to at city hall. I really do care about my adopted city. I have chosen to live here and have done so for 25 years. I think this is a great city but I also think we can do better by doing a better job on core services such as streets, transit, taxation etc. and being creative and innovative.

    I think this forum is a great way to engage discussion and I really very much appreciate people like you who take their time to participate. I am grateful the forum's founders gave me the chance to do a column here and discuss the feedback to it.

    I am accustomed to working very hard as a journalist and I am eager to do the same as a city councillor.

    Thanks for your comments and please do get others to wade in here as well. We all might have different opinions, but the way to build a better city is to participate. Thank you for doing that.

    -Kerry Diotte
    - Ward 11 city council candidate.

  81. #81

    Default

    Kerry,
    Would you support referendums in off election years or would they only be held the same time as the civic election?

  82. #82
    C2E Junkie *
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    13,703
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Kerry,

    Thank you for taking the time to answer the questions provided. It is sincerely appreciated.
    Since calm logic doesn't work, I guess it is time to employ sarcasm. ...and before you call me an a-hole...remember, I am a Dick.

  83. #83

    Default

    Historically, we only get 25-30% of people voting in an election. That's shameful. It soars when there's a referendum attached to it. I support anything that will get people interested in civic affairs and get them out to vote.
    You read the comments in the paper you used to work for, and in competing papers, right? You can't honestly tell yourself or sell it to us that any good quantity of eligible voters actually know what the heck they're talking about, do you?

    I met a guy the other day that said he was going to sign the petition to keep the airport open because Mayor Mandel was, and I quote "a conniving Jew that owns part of that land and is gonna get rich selling it".

    If that's the kind of person we desperately want to dredge out of the gutters and shuffle into the voting station, we're doomed.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  84. #84

    Default

    kerry, you should know direct democracy doesn't work. look at the state of california. when you give the people a chance to vote on everything, nothing gets done. the job of a politician is to make a decision, even if it might not seem popular, and deal with the consequences.

  85. #85
    Becoming a C2E Power Poster
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    369

    Default

    Kerry. I think you need to get your facts straight before you go very much further in your election campaign....

    Tax hikes = Inflation. No very likely.

    City tax income grows only two ways. Increases in the tax base from new taxable properities and increases in through setting the mill rate.

    • City tax income does not go up with wages like the Province and feds
    • When the city borrows money for capital projects it has to pay the principle and intrest back through increased taxes
    • If new capital projects come on stream there are operating costs. If the City chooses to build today because of a lack of building years ago there is a price to pay
    • Union contract settlements above the inflation rate don't help

  86. #86

    Default

    Good luck Kerry....would LOVE to see you get elected!

  87. #87
    Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    871

    Default

    My opinion on anyone who runs for public office.
    If you are intelligent enough to run for Council, you have the intelligence to know not to run.
    The mistake too many people make, is that they run for their own personal benefit or gain, but someone who is running for the right reasons is running for the greater good of the community, and truly believes that they can make the right decisions for the betterment of the community - even if it means not getting re-elected.

  88. #88

    Default

    ^Usually the greater good for the community means the greater good for that candidate me thinks...

  89. #89

    Default

    The taxation questions doesn't have to be over-complicated. Yes, the city will claim that it is a special case and has higher fuel costs than an average business, etc., etc.

    Bottom line? My belief: Private enterprises and individuals must make do with increases in their budgets that are usually around the rate of inflation. They can't simply wave a magic wand and extract two or three times the rate of inflation from their bosses or customers.

    Of course there are some special pressures for cities when it comes to this which is why I believe we as a city must be more creative rather than simply upping fees and taxes far higher than the rate of inflation (as determined by gov't surveys for Edmononton.)

    I have seen city hall from the inside for many years in my work as a journalist who had an office there.

    Often, many of the more free-spending-minded councillor didn't ask the tough question re the admin's budget -- they didn't ask the tough follow-up questions and simply accepted claims in it at face value.

    Unlike federal or provincial governments there is no opposition whose job it is to dig up waste. And believe me, there is waste. Ask the city auditor about that.

    I know waste at city hall is a huge issue with the taxpayers I am meeting at the doors while campaigning for city council in Ward 11. It is one of three that is most often mentioned: Taxes/waste, crime, condition of roads in the summer and winter.

    People demand good core services and I intend to push hard for those once elected.

    Of course there are other big-picture items -- arena, transit etc., but if we can't get the basic services right, how can we expect to do well getting the big, visionary items right?

    For instance, speaking of visionary items.... how well have we done to this point on LRT? A billion dollars spent for 20 km of track in one direction. Tons of money wasted tunnelling, future routes changed on a whim by various councils. And ridership is still abysmal when compared to other cities including Calgary that spent the same money on its system and has two or three times as much track and two or three times the ridership.

    As usual, I enjoy your intelligent observations and I know that you, like me, cares deeply for the city. We'll just have to agreed to disagree on the taxation/spending/waste issue.

    Cheers,
    -Kerry


    Quote Originally Posted by kcantor View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
    ^.. That is total BS.

    A) what about all the years where ther was no Tax increase... We are simply playing catch up.
    B) Lets remeber that the majority of property taxes collected is actually for the prov, not the city.
    c) You can't have all your issues adressed, demand more police, snow cleaning and roads without more money.

    What is the REAL rate of inflation...
    Core inflation has key viotile things like food and the cost of energy... Don't you think the cost of Energy may be a very large expenditure for the city. Don't you think that tying taxes to a consumer monitoring system might be different that propperly addressing the buisness needs to the city.

    Tying taxes to inflation rates is jsut like getting "tough on crime" Politically is reads well, but is actually a poor practice out in the real world.
    none of the property taxes that are collected go to the province. the education tax that is collected by the city on behalf of the province goes to the province but they are not one and the same.

    the problem with most of these discussions is that they devolve into simplistic discussions about complex matters. furthermore, what the city collects in property taxes is not necessarily the same as the city's expenses. the city also gets money from other levels of government so limiting expenses may short change the city on other revenue sources. the current level of property taxes also doesn't have to cover the full cost of everything today. that's what borrowing is for. and borrowing is not always "passing the cost on to our children". when it comes to things like transit infrastructure and parks and schools etc. our children will be taking full use of those facilities and it's not necessarily wrong for them to pay a fair share of paying them off, particularly when it means the "cash as you go" option means that would not have those facilities available at all because they won't be able to afford the full cost either.

  90. #90
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    10,719

    Default

    Building the LRT saves in so many other areas Kerry. For residents, it's possibly the cost of a second car. A 15 km trip, times 2, times 250 days is 7,500 km. At 50 cents per km, that's $3,750 per year. Add $100 a month for parking, and it's about $5,000 per year for the second car. The cost of a bus pass runs around $1,000 per year, and a 17% tax credit means $830 for the year. That's close to $4,200 in savings!

    Even with the $2 billion price tag for LRT, that's about $2,500 per resident, or about $83 per year over 30 years. It's too bad that you only think of the short term Kerry.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  91. #91
    grish
    Guest

    Default

    kerry, transit is the basic, core service.

    with all due respect for a person willing to work in public life, this "waste" talk is a waste of time without spelling out what you consider the priority and what you consider fluff spending. until then, all this talk sounds like a person using buzz words desperately trying to get elected not like a person who has any vision or ideas on how to run the city well.

  92. #92

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Cat View Post
    Even with the $2 billion price tag for LRT, that's about $2,500 per resident, or about $83 per year over 30 years. It's too bad that you only think of the short term Kerry.
    In fairness to Kerry (although I'm sure he can comment himself), his comparison is between our LRT and Calgary's and how much Calgary has (in terms of ridership and track) compared to us for a similar spend - i.e. that previous Councils wasted too much money tunneling and similar on the line we have. I think there is some truth to that, although I think current Council has recognized that truth with the new plans for WLRT / Millwoods LRT.

  93. #93

    Default Our transit can and must be better by Kerry Diotte

    The city auditor is one of the bureaucrats who is actually trying to save money and is an ace when it comes to finding waste. I'm looking forward to spending a lot of time working with him.

    And yes, as a core service, we MUST get that right too. Are you telling me it's a superior system to Calgary's or Ottawa's? Well, why can't we work to make it be so?

    Have you researched transit in those cities? Well, I have and so has Maclean's magazine last year. I want our transit to be the best in the country. But we can't do it with poor planning, squabbles over routes and short-sighted, knee-jerk cures.

    Edmonton must look at those better systems, get more people on transit and do thing by using performance measures. Let's get on it and built the country's best transit at the best possible price. It's just another key way to make our fine city a great city and that's what I want to do!

    Cheers,
    -Kerry

    Quote Originally Posted by grish View Post
    kerry, transit is the basic, core service.

    with all due respect for a person willing to work in public life, this "waste" talk is a waste of time without spelling out what you consider the priority and what you consider fluff spending. until then, all this talk sounds like a person using buzz words desperately trying to get elected not like a person who has any vision or ideas on how to run the city well.

  94. #94
    grish
    Guest

    Default

    what I am saying is that, first of all, I object to this line:

    People demand good core services and I intend to push hard for those once elected.

    Of course there are other big-picture items -- arena, transit etc., but if we can't get the basic services right, how can we expect to do well getting the big, visionary items right?

    unless you have misrepresented your own position, you are placing transit in a category of things that you don't consider to be a basic service. It is. Any councilor the city of edmonton should elect should understand that basic idea. No matter the amount of "studying" you do.

    Now, in terms of your posts... Please, don't ask us rhetorical questions. I, for example, am not the one running for council. I want to hear your answers. I am not "telling you" anything other than contrary to the way you come across, I place transit as one of the core city services.

    I also don't buy this "better than Calgary" or "better than Ottawa" cheerleading. And I don't buy the "MacLeans magazine study" thing either.

    What are your ideas? The actual ones. Beyond "I will spend a lot of time with the city auditor". What are you going to discuss with the auditor?

    Specifically, what short-sighted, knee-jerk moves would you work to avoid. What "poor planning" are you trying to fix. You are not running against council who made the choices to send the LRT underground through downtown. You are not running against council who didn't build a ring road through 75 street. And on and on...

    You are running against council (and you are running to join the council) that has approved and started construction on the NAIT LRT. Approved wLRT and SELRT. Voted to close down the city center airport. And so on. How are you goind to improve THIS council? Not the one from 2 or 3 decades ago. What are these people not doing right? What have they done that was good? Are you going to work to reverse any of their achievements?

  95. #95
    First One is Always Free
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    Posts
    6

    Default

    Kudos to Kerry for stepping into the fray. If he manages to get in, I challenge him to continue participating on this level.

    I've long-been an "emotional bettor," meaning that I will ultimately give in to my emotions when I make a decision, because I truly believe that the best decisions are made intuitively. There are a few things that are weighing against Kerry IMO.

    One: the postulation that his knowledge of the city's inner workings (based on his six-year tenure on the city hall beat) will make him a better candidate. I can't cotton to this one. Closeness to a process does not imply competence to run it. His mandate as a reporter is to get people to buy more papers, which will get advertisers to spend more money. The proximity of being a city hall reporter means that he developed an awareness of what fulfills the paper's mandate (ie. doing his job), and he developed an understanding of which issues became popular with readers, irrespective of their relative importance to the actual health and welfare of the city. This may make him more likely to be elected, or more likely to be a successful politician, but it does not make him a better candidate. If someone had broad and deep experience within their own community, would that not actually make a better candidate? Community involvement, volunteer work, demonstrable engagement within the community? There may be things that I don't know about here, but I can't see any evidence of this kind of involvement on kerrydiotte.com, or anywhere else. The great thing about community involvement and engagement - you can't make it up. You did it or didn’t.

    Two: perceived arrogance. In one of his posts, Kerry indicates that he’s looking forward to working with the city auditor a lot. I find this arrogant, assuming that, like many people he may have spoken to, that he’s a shoe-in for council. He doesn’t refer to a unique or different strategy on council working with the auditor, merely says he looks forward to a lot of work with the city auditor. I’m not at all sure what that means, except that he has assumed victory.

    Three: lack of vision. While there are plenty of missives about things done in the past, there is precious little in terms of what the future might be like, with people like Kerry in Council. We can interpolate that there will be a whistle or two blown about over-spending somewhere, and that really big things should be dealt with through referenda. I don’t see much of a stake-in-the-ground there, from a policy point of view. I’m sure it’s a very challenging thing to do, when we vacillate between potholes and airport-debates, but that disparity in issues is what requires clarity of vision...so how does he see Edmonton, post-Diotte-as-councillor?

  96. #96

    Default Kerry Diotte responds

    I appreciate your comments. There do seem to be a fair number of people here though who don't really appreciate talk of fiscal responsibility and I believe, from talking to many, many people at the doors that that is what average people want.

    We must be efficient at City Hall so that we can best deliver the valuable services people want. We must be creative and find better ways of doing business. We must be open to new ideas and I believe we need to make progress there -- and we can. One main way is giving front-line City of Edmonton workers more of a voice.

    My tenure at city hall gave me the chance to see things from inside the pyramids. Community involvement? Surely you must know journalists cannot be volunteering for community projects while still reporting on them or giving opinions in columns. That is simply not ethical. (By the way, my job at city hall was an opinion columnist, not a news reporter. As an opinion columnist I was tasked to study issues, come up with an intelligent opinion and write it.)

    The way I gave back to the community was listening to people, addressing their concerns and writing about them.

    On a wider level I was a national director of the Canadian Association of Journalists, an organization that promoted the public's right to know. We lobbied hard when governments were secretive or wasteful. We got status as intervenors in Supreme Court cases. We did everything in our powers to serve the public by promoting world-class journalism and I'm proud of the national directors I worked with on that board. I was honoured to work hand in hand with some of the best journalists in Canada -- people from the Fifth Estate, The Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, Sun Media, you name it.

    We did it for the good of journalism, the good of the Canadian public.

    I am on this Connect2Edmonton site because I believe in the free exchange of ideas. I am growing a bit weary though because some contributors seem too willing to take personal potshots.

    I welcome other civic candidates and incumbents to share their ideas here and listen to this key segment of the Edmonton public. Listening and healthy debate are important for good politicians. Where are they?

    I won't be drawn into character attacks. I'm always willing to listen to good arguments about the direction of the city. Let's exchange those and work together for a better city.

    I have been very lucky in my campaign to have built a team of supporters from all political stripes. All of us on the team believe in a better city for everyone. I admire anyone who participates in the political process and exchange of ideas, regardless of their stripe. I'd welcome anyone with ideas to join us to make a difference or join another candidate who's working equally hard.

    I admire people like that because they don't simply ***** or take potshots, but they participate. Those are the real winners -- the true people of vision -- and the people who will make a difference in this city.

    -Kerry Diotte/Ward 11



    Quote Originally Posted by edmskid View Post
    Kudos to Kerry for stepping into the fray. If he manages to get in, I challenge him to continue participating on this level.

    I've long-been an "emotional bettor," meaning that I will ultimately give in to my emotions when I make a decision, because I truly believe that the best decisions are made intuitively. There are a few things that are weighing against Kerry IMO.

    One: the postulation that his knowledge of the city's inner workings (based on his six-year tenure on the city hall beat) will make him a better candidate. I can't cotton to this one. Closeness to a process does not imply competence to run it. His mandate as a reporter is to get people to buy more papers, which will get advertisers to spend more money. The proximity of being a city hall reporter means that he developed an awareness of what fulfills the paper's mandate (ie. doing his job), and he developed an understanding of which issues became popular with readers, irrespective of their relative importance to the actual health and welfare of the city. This may make him more likely to be elected, or more likely to be a successful politician, but it does not make him a better candidate. If someone had broad and deep experience within their own community, would that not actually make a better candidate? Community involvement, volunteer work, demonstrable engagement within the community? There may be things that I don't know about here, but I can't see any evidence of this kind of involvement on kerrydiotte.com, or anywhere else. The great thing about community involvement and engagement - you can't make it up. You did it or didn’t.

    Two: perceived arrogance. In one of his posts, Kerry indicates that he’s looking forward to working with the city auditor a lot. I find this arrogant, assuming that, like many people he may have spoken to, that he’s a shoe-in for council. He doesn’t refer to a unique or different strategy on council working with the auditor, merely says he looks forward to a lot of work with the city auditor. I’m not at all sure what that means, except that he has assumed victory.

    Three: lack of vision. While there are plenty of missives about things done in the past, there is precious little in terms of what the future might be like, with people like Kerry in Council. We can interpolate that there will be a whistle or two blown about over-spending somewhere, and that really big things should be dealt with through referenda. I don’t see much of a stake-in-the-ground there, from a policy point of view. I’m sure it’s a very challenging thing to do, when we vacillate between potholes and airport-debates, but that disparity in issues is what requires clarity of vision...so how does he see Edmonton, post-Diotte-as-councillor?

  97. #97
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Westmount, Edmonton
    Posts
    5,004

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kerrydiotte View Post
    I appreciate your comments. There do seem to be a fair number of people here though who don't really appreciate talk of fiscal responsibility and I believe, from talking to many, many people at the doors that that is what average people want.

    ... I admire anyone who participates in the political process and exchange of ideas, regardless of their stripe. I'd welcome anyone with ideas to join us to make a difference or join another candidate who's working equally hard.

    I admire people like that because they don't simply ***** or take potshots, but they participate. Those are the real winners -- the true people of vision -- and the people who will make a difference in this city.

    -Kerry Diotte/Ward 11 ...
    Yes, there are indeed many here who don't appreciate fiscal responsibility. I'm sure you're hearing something much different at the doors. I suspect many people just don't know what to say at the door, and fiscal responsibility is the default position.

    I do appreciate fiscal responsibility. I also appreciate a strong positive vision for what Edmonton can be. Sometimes the two don't seem to mix well, especially from up close.

    I think I'm the lone "pothole guy" who believes the infrastructure needs to be considered first. But I've been convinced by some people who do have a much greater vision that it doesn't need to be one way at the expense of another, and indeed, some investments not remotely connected to "potholes" ultimately serve to help build and maintain infrastructure.

    Which brings me to a personal investment issue (sort of connected to "potholes") - bike paths, and the proposed bike plan put forward last year. I'm a full-time bike commuter, and the streets work pretty well for me as it is. What I'd really like to see is many more people using bikes as a primary form of transportation, and many more people out on their bikes, period.

    The current system doesn't work well for many less confident potential cyclists, and I believe the plan, as I'm familiar with it, would really serve to boost the number of people willing to forego the automobile, at least occasionally, for a much more socially responsible (and fiscally responsible) form of transportation.

    I'd really like to see a strong committment to funding the bike path plan. I'm convinced, however, that funding for the infrastructure needs to be complimented with an educational component. Education (cycling awareness, rules and responsibilities, best practices, better driver training that includes focus on bikes) is the key to getting more people to make the switch from cars to bike, safely. It needs to be pointed out (again, I know) that, without effective education, more bike paths may actually lead to more injuries, as the perception of safety goes up while the reality doesn't change.

    I'm pretty sure funding the bike plan would be fiscally responsible. And it's going to play a lot better to the crowd (voters) than it would have even a year ago, thanks to the efforts of people like the Edmonton Bicycle Commuters, who I see have an advocacy site up for the election. I haven't checked the site out yet (but I will).

    What is your general position on bikes and bike commuting in Edmonton, and specifically on funding the bike plan?

    Thanks Kerry.

    PS: Some of those who talk the most, here, participate the least. But there are some who really do get involved. They've certainly made a difference, and continue to contribute. I appreciate their contribution, and yours.

    And, btw, I don't see all that much wasteful spending here, and I like the current council.
    Last edited by Jimbo; 20-09-2010 at 09:49 AM.
    aka Jim Good; "The sooner you fall behind, the more time you have to catch up." - Steven Wright

  98. #98
    First One is Always Free
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    Posts
    6

    Default

    "I am growing a bit weary though because some contributors seem too willing to take personal potshots."

    I have looked through this thread at least, and I can't find much in the way of "personal potshots." If you're weary of that at this stage, you'll be beyond exhausted a month from now. What I see here are people who give a s**t about something, granted, some try to squeeze their agenda into almost any discussion, but I didn't really see anything inappropriately personal or pot-shotty. I would say if you're going to call someone out for potshots, give a quote so we know who you're talking about. If you're referring to my critical assertions about your candidacy, I can't really see anything in there that meets my criteria for "personal," nor "potshots." Critical, yes, but that's what you get here - a community of somewhat-engaged people, who think and respond critically to (everything). Used properly IMO, this could be a good place for you to elevate your game, advisors you neither have to pay, nor convene, and advice you can get, but never have to take.

    BTW, I'm so with pothole guy. The pothole-repair crew seems like a half-baked band of soldiers, trying to overtake a castle with leather armor and pea-shooters. Dropping tar in a hole and sprinkling it with rocks...well...need I say more?

  99. #99
    grish
    Guest

    Default

    Kerry,
    You have identified infrastructure as a primary need. What do you include in your version of infrastructure? How would you like to see budgetary priorities of the city adjusted as compared to what is done currently? What do you see as a worthy investment into infrastructure? Maintenance and/ or expansion. If you would like to see expansion, in what way and what areas of the city? Can you name specific projects that you would like to see movement on (pun unintended).

  100. #100

    Default

    Moved discussion on feasibilty of cycling infrastructure to this thread:
    http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum...ead.php?t=8087

    Also closing this thread; Kerry's election forum thread is here:
    http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum...ad.php?t=18591

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •