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.