Posted June 15, 2012
Since the beginning of the year there has been a series of revelations in the management of the city of Guelph that would curl the blood of Rasputin.
The ongoing saga on a $33 million compost plant that is yet to work, is money already spent.
Intrigue and conspiracy floats through the halls of power in 1 Carden Street with the Mayor and her sidekick, Chief Administration Officer Ann Pappert conducting inquiries as to who, how and what is being leaked. The civic plumbers are hard at work.
Meanwhile the Chief Librarian announced that a new downtown library would open in 2017 costing $63 million. Her announcement added that a fund-raising specialist is being hired to raise another $10 million to equip the new mid-town edifice to literacy. Is it perhaps true the ancestors of the Shah Jahan who built the Taj Mahal were hired to design the new library?
Then the Mayor got huffy with Coun. Cam Guthrie, who persuaded his fellow opposition councillors to file a freedom of information request. It started when a staffer refused to give Guthrie a copy of an air quality report from the Ministry of the Environment regarding the new compost plant.
Enter the Integrity Commissioner to investigate how the story got into the public prints. His report was so sanitized as to be laughable. Can you image John Stewart of the Daily Show getting his hands on that situation? The wags at the Hall are speculating on how much the Commish charged for his one-sided report.
Along comes the proposal to create a river side park at the intersection of Gordon and Wellington streets. There are several businesses currently operating on the proposed site including my favourite, Angel’s Diner (the smoked meat is to die for). That proposal is projected to cost $9 million. Lawyers, man your wigs, this is going to be a bonanza for you when expropriations start.
What is it with Mayor Farbridge and her council supporters? They seem bent on calling in the legal beagles when they don’t get their way.
The lawsuit count includes the new City Hall with the fired contractor suing for $19 million; Fighting the Wellington-Dufferin- Guelph Public Health board over spending $10 million (Guelph’s share of the $17 million cost) for a new headquarters on Stone Road; the $233,000 spent on outside counsel to get rid of a lawsuit launched by the relatives of Lt. Colonel John McRae over his World War I medals.
These examples are only a handful of how your money is being spent, or, will be spent. The noose of financial ability of the city of Guelph is being tightened. The collective arrogance of the Farbridge coalition of sticking more than $90 million of added debt on future councils presents unprecedented fiduciary irresponsibility.
Now is the time for good men and women in this administration to stand up and refuse to allow any more reckless spending.
This party’s over.