Transparency fails to materialize

How is it that city-owned property found its way into one private developer’s hands with no others considered and no “for sale” sign posted

Three years ago several of the present council members had planks in their platforms centering around (you’ve heard it all before): fiscal responsibility, transparency, accountability and approachability. All of these are planks of merit in principle. However, in practice, somehow the train may have jumped the track in many cases.

There are several questions that I have yet to hear answered honestly and openly. The main question I have deals with land/property issues, re: rezoning etc. While I can appreciate, to some degree, the need for in-camera sessions, I find it extremely difficult to have to “ingest”, if you will, the unilateral, almost dictatorial decision on some of the recent property issues, and some of the proposed changes to such things as road access and egress, beach beautification project proposals and the like. Some of these have come to fruition and others are in limbo or are on the back burner pending the electoral outcome, I suspect.

I would like to know the real answers to the following:

How much real thought was given to the proposed dormitory development prior to re-zoning?

How is it that city-owned property found its way into one private developer’s hands with no others being considered and no “for sale” sign posted if, in fact, the property was considered for sale? (Transparency at its finest, you say, or accountability and fiscal responsibility?)

When was the last time that any of the councillors bought something for a fixed price and then almost gave it away? (Of course they wouldn’t give away anything that they had personally purchased, would they?)

For the record, I am an ardent hockey fan. I played minor hockey as a youngster, coached minor hockey in later years and played adult recreational hockey as well. For the record, I am not, in any way, denigrating the hockey school (a well-established and well-known entity) or its purpose over the years that it has been in operation.

The questions that I have raised will, in all probability, never be answered, as accountability, fiscal responsibility and transparency would seem to be wind-blown leaves. Will the wind change direction? Only each of us can answer that question on Nov. 19.

Ron Barillaro

 

Penticton