The Farbridge Fatigue Factor grows among voters

Posted May 8, 2014

When it comes to municipal politics, people rarely choose to re-elect a council that has tightly controlled the people’s business for eight years. They look for relief from the drumbeat of spending and taxation.

Enter the Farbridge Fatigue Factor.

Often it’s the accumulation of little things that tick people off and are looking for a better way to run their city.

Starting with not having a voice in the decision-making process. Next in Farbridge Fatigue comes the state of their city: Start with the poorly maintained roads ignored or bypassed particularly on the major arterial routes.

Now consider the main street that cuts through the centre of the city, the one with three names, Gordon, Norfolk and Woolwich. The city started early in the administration’s tenure to reconstruct Norfolk north from MacDonnell to the Woolwich junction.

In its brilliance, during a three-year makeover it inexplicably reduced the four lanes to two causing a serious choke point that jams up traffic throughout the day.

Next the bicycle lobby is pressing to allow bike lanes on Speedvale and Woodlawn. These are major east and west arterial roads that carry a lot of traffic including commercial vehicles. Once again this vocal minority is attempting to demand the unlimited bicyclist’s use of major roads. If council approves spending the mpney to recronstruct the busy roads to allow for bicycle traffic lanes, do expect your street to get rehabilitated and time soon.

The troubling matter is, bicyclists are unregulated. Many riders operate their bikes irresponsibly riding on sidewalks, cutting across intersections against red lights and moms trailering infants as they navigate in the midst of heavy vehicle traffic.

Many streets in the older section of the city are neglected and worn out, dangerously rough and in dire need of reconstruction.

Yet the city plans to reconstruct Stone Road East this summer, a street flanked by property owned by the university with most of it vacant. When you consider the university pays only $75 per student in lieu of property taxes — a total of $1,650,000 — you can imagine that the cost of this project will come out of resident’s tax bill.

Oh, the administration will say that there isn’t any money to fix broken and poorly designed and broken streets.

The facts are that they spent millions building a Waste Resource Innovation Centre that was overbuilt, exceeding the needs of the city for the next 20 years. We are now serving the waste needs of Detroit, The Region of Waterloo, and how many others that the administration never reveals? Also, does a third party sell our facilities to others?

So your money funded this operation so that other municipalities could use it without the capital expenditure needed to build it themselves. Has the Farbridge administration turned Guelph into the garbage capital of Canada?

Think that an estimated $75 to $100 million has been spent on waste management in eight years.

In the process, the city has created a waste management system that fails to serve some 13 per cent of residents because the $15,000,000 cart/bin system cannot be used in most condominium projects.

Is this what you voted for in 2006 and 2010?

Still not ticked off?

Let’s review the Farbridge promises made over her eight years in office.

Two stand out. Building a new downtown main branch library that was promised in 2006. We’re still waiting.

The granddaddy of promises goes back as far as the first Farbridge term as Mayor some 14 years ago. The South End Recreation Centre was to be a priority that became derailed in the wake of spending millions trying to turn the downtown core into a “vibrant” family-oriented place.

The fouling of public area streets, particularly on weekends, has never been solved.

Okay, a few years back, the city tried an experiment by installing temporary pissoirs for males only, collecting 2,400 litres of urine in six weeks.

Now the city is talking about installing permanent pay-toilets downtown.

These are the day-to-day irritations creating the Farbridge Fatigue Factor among citizens.

Space does not provide the countless examples of your money being wasted on pet projects of Farbridge and company.

The list is long but there is remains time to expose them.

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6 Comments

Filed under Between the Lines

6 responses to “The Farbridge Fatigue Factor grows among voters

  1. paul

    Pay toilets downtown will not stop guys/gals from urinating outside once the pubs are closed. And the rest of your comments simply reinforce what an a fool we have at the helm of a once great city.

  2. geo

    Now their recommending the Mayor receive a 22% pay increase. We already pay more municipal taxes then any other city in southern Ontario but they still want more.
    If were increasing the salary of the Mayor by 22% then I want someone financially competent who understands the difference between credit and debit to fill the position, not a failed biologist who takes great joy in brow beating councillors who are making a genuine attempt to represent their constituents.

    • paul

      That is the most disgusting thing I have heard….a 22 percent increase!!!! For what? Interesting that an increase is salary is warranted for incompetence!!!!

  3. Brent

    It’s not hard to become a touch cynical about the game these politicians play….a variant of the chidren’s game LEAPFROG. It must be hard for Mayor Farbridge to see her special pick, CAO Ann Pappert making a whopping $200,000+ when she muddles around under $100,000. Not to pass dispersions on the team that recommended a big 22% for our “UNDERVALUED?” Mayor…but isn’t time to start looking at what these politicians and public servants actually do rather than looking at what someone else down the road is earning to justify the raise (IE LEAPING TOWARD IT OR OVER IT). Judging on the the basis of the public money squandered under the Farbridge Administration’s Elitist goals, naive environmental extremism, apparent negligence, and a perversion of ROBIN HOOD idealism…no raise should be recommended in this case. She should be squeezed of money like the rest of us…maybe donating the proceeds to the charity of our choice.

  4. joe Black

    Not a big pool of choices come election time,I can’t bring myself to vote for either.

  5. Paul I

    joe Black:
    The reason we are in this mess is because less than 34% of Guelph Voters voted in the last Municipal Election. We need to see that number doubled otherwise the Lefty vote is magnified by a low turnout. That is how the present Mayor got in.
    So if you do not vote you are not helping the situation. Actually the best candidate in the last election was Ray. I hope that Ray at least runs in Ward 1 as a Councillor.
    But if you will not vote for a Mayoral candidate, Please vote for CHANGE in your ward. Can you imagine a Council that consists of majority centre and right of Centre candidates and just how frustrated that would be if she was re-elected as Mayor???
    If you snooze – you loose!!

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