24 Jun 2009

Big Vote Today, Big Vote in November 2010

Today Councillors in Durham Region will vote on their incinerator folly, and will anger and alienate even further the majority of their constituents.

Mr. Anderson, Regional Chair, stated last week that he could not believe people would work to put Regional Councillors out of office over one item. Well, think again Mr. Chair. This "one item" is the largest expenditure ever in the history of Durham Region. It locks us into a chemical spewing, ash producing, resource destroying incinerator that few people want and many are strongly opposed to, for 25 to 35 years. This "one item" is one which has brought out more people than any other issue since the landfill wars many years ago. This "one item" has made people realize that their Regional Councillors (most of them) could care less what their residents think, what their concerns are, what their better alternative ideas are. This "one item" has been bought and paid for with our health, our Gas Tax money that should be used to improve and increase our public transit, our roads, our quality of life. Instead this "one item" has been pushed through by this council without the benefit of all the information.

Throughout this process the excuse has been used by Councillors that they were simply voting to approve each step so that they could get ALL the information before making a final decision. Well, that excuse won't work anymore. So many large, complex studies and reports have come forward all at once that there is little time for anyone to read through them all, and we KNOW that most Councillors only bother to read the Executive Summary and nothing more, if that. We also know that ALL the studies are not completed and ALL the Peer Reviews are also not complete.

Yet these same Councillors are now voting before all the information is in, so that lame excuse that no one believed anyway, is now so much junk.

I want to tell you, Regional Council, we resent being treated like dunces. I would submit to you that it is not the residents who are unworthy of being listened to, or unworthy of respect. It is you, those who have lied to residents and who continue to do so. Those who refused to listen to the people who voted them into office.

We voted you in, and we can most certainly vote you out. This Watchdog Blog was active during the 2006 campaign, and will be even MORE active during the 2010 campaign. I won't let people forget, and I am not alone. There are many who have vowed to organize to help in each municipality to defeat those who have betrayed us right across this region. There will be qualified candidates running, with support (monetary and door to door legwork) from those who have been snubbed and dismissed by their regional representatives.

You may see more local councillors moving up to run for regional seats as well as new candidates moving in. There are a number of pro-incinerator (from the start) candidates who are already being targeted and things will only get tougher as next year draws closer.

In Clarington, the choices are obvious. Mayor Abernethy, should he choose to run again or run for any other seat whether at the local, provincial or federal level eventually, will run into a brick wall. His reputation has suffered greatly with his obviously unequal treatment of residents, his lack of understanding of the EA process and of his municipal duties (he thinks he represents the Region first, over and above Clarington, unlike the other Mayors in Durham Region). This man has lost all credibility and is known as one of the most "un-green" Mayors in this Region, and with so many ungreen mayors, that's reaching quite the pinnacle.

Mary Novak has done nothing to distinguish herself from Abernethy - they are voting together (as usual) on this incinerator, although using different excuses. No one has believed she was 'on the fence' or hadn't made her decision early-on as Abernethy did. Her continual denials only convinced people more that she would vote to approve this incinerator. Her acceptance of the Host Community Agreement that was basically blackmail and gives Clarington very little of anything shows her incompetence and her bias. She will never convince anyone she is doing what is best for the community, or that the incinerator has been proven "safe". It has not.

Charlie Trim has sold out his community and isn't worthy of his seat. The buzz is that he's not running again and has given his seat to Councillor Robinson next term. Well you can't do that. Charlie's supporters are not sheep and will vote as they please, and from those I've heard from, very few will even consider voting for Robinson after his total betrayal of the entire municipality as it was his vote that accepted the HCA and gave up the unwilling host status. He single-handedly, in one fell swoop, destroyed any future he may have had in Clarington politics. Or maybe he's been promised an appointment by Roger Anderson. Whatever the reason, no one has any respect for the man any longer. It was a total and blatant betrayal, and one that won't be forgotten. I hope he believes it was worth it.

I hope a lot of residents show up at today's meeting and aren't so discouraged that they give up. There is still much work to do, right through next year's election. I will take bets on how much larger a voter turnout there will be next year, and how many seats we can put new faces into. I do know of 4 seats in Clarington that MUST be cleaned out and re-filled. We won't forget.

Yes I may be a little premature, but I can't seen any of them changing their votes today. I've even heard that at least one municipality won't receive emails from their own constituents, and openly won't listen to them. Why Would We Wish to keep elected officials like that around?

To the good Councillors who have done the real research and have had a very open dialogue with residents, I commend you. To those of you who have listened only to one side of the story and who have betrayed your own residents, I say you deserve what you get next year, which will be a spot in the unemployment line.

And to Mr. Anderson, we will work diligently to make sure that the Durham Regional Chair is elected and accountable to the people.


  1. Can someone confirm what Toronto Star said?

    I read that the Committee as a whole, yesterday after an 15 hour meeting, voted 15-7 to accept the Anderson/Abernathy incinerator.

    Most likely Clarington was 3-0 for.

    Does that guarentee a yes vote at the whole meeting next week?

    And why do I find this on Toronto's newspaper (not front page news), and not newsdurhamregion.com (still not front page news)

  2. Webmaster:

    Regardless of the final vote tally on the incinerator, please publish the names of ALL Regional Councillors who voted in favour of the toxic burner.

    That way, everyone will know who voted for higher taxes, lower real estate values, and who obviously don't give a damn about clean air or our health.

    This list will also serve as a reminder of who NOT to support in the 2010 municipal elections.

    The list will also serve notice to those same Councillors that they, along with Chairman Anderson, Jacques Whitford, Dr. Lesbia Smith, Dr. Robt. Kyle, Cliff Curtis, Covanta, and Durham Region will be named in all future class action suits resulting from increased health problems, etc. in a few years down the road.

    Finally, it will serve as a constant reminder as to why we in Durham need an elected Chair.

  3. I will publish their names, over and over and over again.

  4. I'm glad Trim's going to retire.

    However, Robinson shouldn't be moving up.

    Finally Ward 4, for the first time in more then 10 years will be cleaned out if both are not relected.

    As for Roger Anderson, i don't think there's simply enough time to get his position into elected before November 2010.

    Hopefully someone will stand up against him in December 2010, and will be replaced with an elected chairman in 2014.

  5. U people on here just dont want Roger, it is not election at large you want. Besides election at large would give Roger broader powers than he has now. Sometimes the public can be so short sighted. If you want Roger gone, get a member of RC the support to take him out, dont give the public the ability to elect or they will likely choose an idiot.
    Face it, YOU created your own mess electing the Novaks and Neals.

  6. Why would election at large give Roger "broader powers than he has now"??? He thinks he doesn't have to represent the people, being unelected. And we've already seen that more than half the Reg. Councillors thing THEY don't have to do the people's will either. They do Roger's will.

    We need to clean out this council and that includes the Chair and Novak, but not Neal in my opinion. Novak won't be so hard to knock off but some of the others who should be gone will be harder - Johnson being one of the worst. We can get Perkins for sure and I hope Emm. Crawford will be a piece of cake. He lied to people and then turned around and voted with the rest of his cronies who never bothered to do their due diligence. He needs to apologize publicly but he won't.

  7. You wont change 20 percent of Council and you give Roger broader powers under the Municipal Act by election, just wait then.
    Some of the fold you mention are good councillors that you will not be able to unseat on an EFW facility in Clarington when the folk in Ajax or Whitby vote on local matters.

  8. Good points, but question: What "broader powers under the Municipal Act" would Anderson have that he doesn't have now? Please specify so I (and others) can learn. He seems to have all the power he needs right now, so what would be different?

    As for the councillors in other than Clarington, doesn't anyone care that they totally dismissed so many delegations, and many were from their own towns? Doesn't anyone care that they decided it was okay to crush one municipality for the benefit perhaps of all the rest? Clarington should get out of Durham Region when they get a new council, and I have no doubt they will have a very new council next year with at least 4 new members, including mayor and all regional councillors.

    The hoodwinked regional councillors may have thought this new incinerator would be a boon to Clarington, but the residents don't share that vision. We are hopping mad, as are a lot of Oshawa residents.

  9. Very valid points, currently there is a quiet lobby for the "City of Toronto Act" type powers for Mayors and Chairs of Municipalities above 500000 people. Imagine the power then. Veto Powers, Executive Committees, welcome to the City of Durham.

  10. A. Williams, ClaringtonThursday, July 02, 2009 9:18:00 pm

    IF we had a "City of Durham", then that might be a valid fear. I can't see most of the municipalities in Durham opting for that, and the Municipal Act does not allow for Mayor Miller-type powers in any other city in Ontario. There are other cities who might qualify, but we are a Regional Municipality, not a City.

    And as I said, right now Roger Anderson is the King. He makes the sheep following him look like just that - sheep who can't think for themselves or are so afraid of his wrath (and some have already been recipients of it) that they do his bidding no matter what. They are even more afraid of him than of their own residents.

    The Dictatorship of Durham continues. They don't follow him out of respect but out of fear. Give us a quality replacement who isn't afraid of him, along with new Councillors who will represent their residents instead of putting their Region and Regional Chair first, and we could have a real election and a more respected Region.

  11. Let;'s try an tackle more then just one issue. All the councillers have allowed taxes to soar to levels that have forced many people to start thinking about moving out of the unicipaility. Therefore all of the councillers most go.

  12. Clarington Tax Guardian - WELCOME!

    We are still working to stop that $%@#! incinerator from being built... with will be another increase in our taxes. The "Host Community Agreement" gives us next to nothing, although our Mayor seems to think it's a great deal. It's a horrible deal, with Clarington bearing the largest, not the smallest burden. Regional taxes will have to go up, even though Anderson keeps telling everyone that it's "free" because the Fed Gas Tax Money will be used to pay for it. Oh heck - time for another blog to let everyone know about the financial aspect of the problem with incineration too.

    I have added a link to your blog to my LINKS section, and I encourage everyone to visit, read, and comment.

    Time for me to become more active again. And you can be sure I'll be doing my best to make sure most of our councillors don't return after the 2010 Election. And that definitely includes the Mayor!

    People are talking about moving out of the municipality because of taxes, because of the incinerator and health concerns, because of the increasing democratic deficit at the municipal and regional levels here, and the reasons are just growing. Very sad for Clarington.