Sitting in the council chambers this past January 21st, I was taken aback when a staff recommendation to accept a proposal for Integrity Commissioner services submitted by Mr. Robert Swayze did not pass muster with Sarnia City Council. Mr. Swayze was the lowest bidder of four identified proponents for the position, with the highest evaluation score.
Tragedy has struck within the walls of our Sarnia City Hall. Tragedy that should not have occurred, save for the misguided allegiances formed with Mayor Bradley. Those alliances that had no basis for their existence. They were built on misleading and erroneous information about our staff and the then City Council.
Over the past several weeks, I have had the opportunity to work with Anne Marie Gillis on her election campaign for mayor. I found the experience rewarding and interesting. While the outcome was not what we’d hoped, I watched Anne Marie tirelessly and relentlessly campaign, all the while attending to her duties as a member of City Council and her position as the Intermediary between the City CAO and Mayor Bradley.
On September 11th, I attended a Q & A at the Dante Club, hosted by the Rotary Club of Sarnia, on behalf of the Mayoral candidates in the upcoming Sarnia elections. As of the writing of this column, this has been the sole opportunity to meet and ask questions of the candidates.
Many people in Sarnia, including myself, wish to move on from the past four years that have plagued our municipal government. Unfortunately, due to the constant banter of the Mayor, and those that align themselves with him, moving on does not seem to be an option. The on-going, disparaging comments about some members of our present council, our CAO and our Administration in general are unprofessional, acidic, and in many cases, misleading to the general public, having no basis in fact.
Here are some hard facts…
In a few months, Sarnia voters will take to the polls in an exercise that at the end of the day may result in many changes to the present makeup of our City Council.
Recently, a concerning tale of punished individualism sprung out of the halls of our Federal Government, led by our Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. PM Trudeau, who seems to enjoy his position as PM spends much of his time in transit, flitting from one country to the next in what he would deem appropriate, with the allegations that he is engaging in talks and visitations to improve the economy of Canada by talking business to the representatives of other countries. He is very fortunate to have the freedom to do so, even though he does it on our dime.
On March 19th, last, I attended the City Council meeting and was impressed with the abilities of council to proceed with the utmost professionalism and respect for each other as they addressed the issues in the agenda. And they have, as in the past, brought many positives to our City despite some obstacles that have been constantly on their minds, and that they would like to see addressed and corrected.
Our society is headed into a downward spiral unlike we have never seen before. Where we are headed will make the Great Depression seem milquetoast by comparison. We are losing more and more jobs, government policies are killing business, folks are struggling to pay utility bills...and nothing is being done to truly answer the problems. Governments can’t fix it; they have caused so many of the problems. They won’t because then they would have to admit to their myriad mistakes.
In a one and a half page expose seemingly designed to emphasize the trials and tribulations of Mayor Bradley since being found responsible for the harassment and bullying of three former employees of our City, and the present CAO, I find the article lacking in substance considering that there has been no input provided by three of the targets of Bradley’s bullying/harassment, nor the councilors involved. The Observer, through reporter Tyler Kula, somehow found it prudent to interview mayor Bradley, resurrecting the results of financial penalties and other sanctions placed