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Category Archives: Mediocre Crap
I don’t seem to have the energy these days to rail against the Ontario Liberal Party as I once did. Truly, how much time can be spent writing about more lies, scandals, exorbitant debt and deficit figures, boondoggles (remember E-Health, ORNGE?) and ‘politically motivated’ schemes to ‘move’ gas plants for the sake of a couple of Liberal seats in the legislature?
Seat-savers, as Kathleen has realized much later than the rest of us, are never as appealing when you read the fine print, whether it be in the airline business or the business of swindling the electorate.
But then the electorate didn’t vote for Kathleen – only the Ontario Liberal Party was entitled to that privilege.
Kathleen Wynne, that ‘Revenue Tools Woman’ who inherited – and contributed to – the collective fiascos of her predecessor, Dalton-I’m-Outta-Here-McGuinty, was so swept up in the campaign to be the first female and ‘openly-gay’ premier, discussing such important matters as pant suits or dresses, that she neglected to see the writing on the wall that the rest of us saw aeons ago.
Didn’t take a brain surgeon and all that…
So, now she sits front row, centre, evading questions as only a politician can, convinced the electorate just might buy the fact that she knew nothing, NOTHING at all, about that dirty gas-plant business.
I was almost expecting to hear her deny it was really her signature on the documents, weren’t you?
And where’s Dalton in all this? Will he magically appear, as he magically disappeared before proroguing the legislature when the flames started lapping at his backside? Will he take the blame and allow Revenue Tools Wynne to move along with the ‘new’ OLP?
Dalton take the blame?
Just a minute… Ahahahahahahahahaha!!!
I don’t think Wynne, with all her expertise in double-speak, can weasel her way out of this one.
Of course, if she follows precedent, she could fan the flames and prorogue the legislature, but that would be a copycat procedure and it was, after all, pulled out of the hat just recently.
On the other hand, it’s going to be an interesting couple of months to see exactly how this all plays out with the real electorate. It will also be interesting to see how the teachers’ unions, the OLP’s strongest foes just weeks ago, align themselves in the next (hopefully soon) election. We know how they voted three times this past decade. Let’s hope their collective memories aren’t as short as we think they are.
Ms. Revenue Tools just might find herself tossed to the curb, or at least tossed Dalton’s way.
Re: St. Catharines City Hall, Lincoln County Humane Society, Marineland, Niagara Falls, and the Ontario Liberal government (BSL).
It is now almost the end of March 2013 and I continue to write of acts of moral turpitude in the Niagara region, as well as Ontario (as it pertains to the OLP’s policy of seizing and euthanizing dogs.)
Frankly, I’m getting really bored writing the same schtick over and over again. The only reason I do is that if you stop reminding the public and the schmucks who are leading us up the proverbial garden path then the corruption continues. As one radio talk show host who emailed me this week wrote,
“…they do it because they can, because no one questions them.”
Quite a week here in small-town southern Ontario. No longer do you have to look to Hollywood for rancid political drama, one only has to look in one’s own backyard. In my case, St. Catharines city hall, the Lincoln County Humane Society over on Fourth and Martindale, and the cesspool known as Marineland in Niagara Falls.
This week, the Lincoln County Humane Society amended its already controversial by-laws. In a show that would rival an opening night performance of a Barnum and Bailey Circus, the directors arrived with a lawyer in tow and proxies in hand to overthrow the ‘extremists’ (read: animal lovers) who were apparently leading the way to the ‘…third coup attempt in twenty years.’
Hang on a minute while I stop laughing…
By the way, those same ‘extremists’ want to stop the high rates of euthanasia at the LCHS. The only attempted ‘coup’ that Strooband described was the one he led himself with the able and ready hands of city councillor Joe Kushner and LCHS Board president Anne Davidson.
At the end of the night, the amendments to the by-laws were passed. People who walked in as lifetime members, volunteers, donors, all walked out with nothing. Everything had been stripped from them by three or four directors who’d rounded up enough (come hell or high water) proxies to win the night.
If you understand the expression, ‘the carpet had been pulled out from under them,’ then you’ll have a clear idea of what transpired. Those lifetime members, volunteers and donors were sewered within a course of minutes. The only voting that exists now takes place by the directors, who also happened to vote themselves in for life, instead of a term of office… or two.
Sound like an ‘extremist coup’ to you?
More like the LCHS Barnum and Bailey Circus I mentioned earlier.
So, councillor Joe Kushner, yes, a city councillor, is allowed to pull these stunts under the blind eye of mayor Brian “Charlie McCarthy” McMullan, who, for reasons unknown to anyone with an ounce of intelligence, allows this to continue. He actually allows the official City of St. Catharines representative on the LCHS Board to run amok, while St. Catharines’ citizens are stripped of their rights to hold a membership to the local humane society, or any “open membership” as deemed by the City just weeks ago.
What gives? Why is Kushner given free reign to act in such a manner that flies in the face of democracy?
Keep in mind that this is the same Kushner who introduced this past Monday’s Motion for free food (paid by St. Catharines’ taxpayers) for all councillors and all senior staff. The same Brock University professor Kushner, also part-owner of well-known St. Catharines restaurant, Cat’s Caboose.
And mayor Charlie McCarthy of the puppet dynasty, St. Catharines City Council, says and does nothing about all of this.
I’m just a’shakin’ my head, let me tell you.
And while we’re still shopping around in the corruption department, let’s head on over to that hideous cesspool, Marineland, in Niagara Falls.
Yet again, the mayor of Niagara Falls, Jim Diodati, who has stated in the media before that he patronizes Marineland with his family, prefers to do little to absolutely nothing about the place that also has Ontario traffic signs leading to the “attraction.” Diodati never fails to conjure up useless excuses when pressed on the subject of Marineland and its self-proclaimed ‘animal-lovin” owner, John Holer. In typical political fashion, both Diodati and Holer skirt the issues as best they can. In anyone else’s eye, the excuses are abysmal.
In a word, Diodati does nothing to help the animals in captivity at Marineland and, honestly, he never will, for he enjoys the $$ it brings to “Niagara Tourism.” God forbid we should lose tourist dollars at the expense of ocean mammals swimming circles in backyard swimming pools.
Another slap in the face to animal rights.
And while we’re still on the topic, let’s give unelected premier Kathleen Wynne a shout out for continuing Dalton McGuinty’s legacy of death to any dogs that resemble ‘pit-bulls.’ Not only do we have to contend with the LCHS here in St. Catharines, and the disgusting Marineland in Niagara Falls, we have an unelected premier who doesn’t have a clue about animal rights, nor does she care to. One of her biggest supporters, the spineless senior MPP Jim Bradley of St. Catharines continues to also willingly vote to euthanize dogs in Ontario. Bradley and Wynne, like McGuinty and Michael Bryant before them, are an embarrassment.
So there you have it, folks. Animal abuse and corruption – hand in hand in Niagara and Ontario at large.
And they call us the extremists!
My neck is sore from shaking it in disbelief at some of the antics going on ’round these parts. Antics performed with all the polish of pros, those who’ve had years of honing their political skills and talking out of two sides of their mouths.
Crikey, where do I begin?
You want another rehash of greedy St. Catharines councillors acting like pigs at the taxpayers’ trough, another rehash of the Lincoln County Humane Society’s Board of Directors’ underhanded tactics collecting proxies to overthrow its dedicated group of dwindling members, volunteers and donors? Take your pick, folks, for we’ve got it all in St. Catharines, for the Gravy Train of Corruption is in full working order.
I send emails to our mayor, Brian McMullan, and his councillors, regularly asking for answers, but in typical fashion, only the usual councillors answer, though Dawn Dodge did write a detailed, “Thank you for sharing your thoughts.”
Hell of an answer, I know, but it wouldn’t live up to Kathleen Wynne’s expectations of having a “conversation with a smile on your face,” the new Liberal party motto. Much prefer Andrea Horwath’s retort, “How ’bout a little less conversation and a little more action?”
Can’t get either from St. Catharines City Council or the LCHS.
See, I can’t figure it out. Brian McMullan and Joe Kushner’s names keep popping up when it comes to both these entities.
If you’ve read the St. Catharines Standard article re: the LCHS AGM meeting Wednesday evening, you’ll see how twisted and absurd the entire process was. I was in Toronto at the time, but had a few people telling me about the goings-on. You can read the Standard’s article for yourself, because if I re-write it here, you wouldn’t believe me, anyway.
So, the bottom line, and one that I’ve been asking myself for months now, is, why is the mayor allowing councillor Kushner to remain on the LCHS Board as a City representative when everything just, well, stinks?
McMullan reminds me of Charlie McCarthy. It’s as if Edgar Bergen has come back from the dead and has his hand up McMullan’s jacket, only I see Joe Kushner playing the part of Bergen.
Any self-respecting mayor would have said something to the effect of, “Hey Joe, what the hell you playin’ at over there? Doesn’t look good, councillor. Some might call it, ‘conduct unbecoming.’”
But no, Charlie McCarthy allows this to continue.
If it weren’t so farfetched, it’d be creepy.
It is creepy.
What a week.
Started off with comedy hour down at City Hall where the Gravy-Trained councillors decided to give themselves – actually RE-instate – $4,000.00 so they could have catered meals before each and every council meeting. All senior staff gather ’round the feeding trough, as well, under the guise of, “This is a very important time for all of us to discuss very important matters before comedy hour begins.”
Guess they can’t nip out to Tim’s to grab a sandwich and a coffee one night a week, in the name of saving taxpayers a few bucks… well, more like four thousand bucks, because they’re so darned overwrought and indispensable putting taxpayers’ concerns at the forefront that they feel the undeniable urge to dip yet again into the pockets of those of us who pay their already inflated fees for sub-standard services.
Gee, it was just this week on Tom McConnell’s CKTB radio show that we learned that senior City staff make anywhere between $125,000.00 and $250,000.00, so I can well understand how it would be a burden for them to fork up five bucks at Tim’s for a toasted club on white. Good for councillor Harris to have the backbone to stand up and say what he thinks about the lot of you who love spending other people’s money.
Hmmm, better make that whole wheat at Tim’s, ‘cos it was councillor Secord who declared it to be an ‘unhealthy lifestyle’ if he misses a meal and has to run home for a second one after the meeting.
Good God, the audacity, the stupidity, the gall of these people – most of whom live and work right here within the city’s limits! It’s not as if they all commute to Toronto to work and have a valid reason to swindle taxpayers out of $4,000.00 for catered meals.
I also must admit I had no idea that university professors were paid so little that councillor Joe Kushner felt the overwhelming need to put forth another questionable Motion to have thousands reinstated for grub for the Fat-Cats.
Must be rough for these professionals to cough up money for a meal.
How much do you want to bet that most of them are McGuinty-disciples? You remember Dalton? He’s the one that put Ontario into the worst economic condition in history, then waltzed off when the going got tough and left the province in the lurch for months. Hell of a guy, eh? Dalton would be proud to see that his legacy of spend-until-we’re-broke is thriving down here at St. Catharines City Hall.
As for mayor McMullan, well, I’ve spoken to him on the ‘phone a couple of times and he seems like a decent enough bloke. Trouble is, his leadership skills and politics are, arguably, not exactly cutting-edge, or shining with brilliance, either. We’ve seen that in recent months when he couldn’t find the you-know-whats to yank Mr. Kushner off the LCHS Board of Directors.
Yes, the LCHS… in the news today because the emaciated, skeletal Board has now the ONLY voting rights! That’s right, no-one else can vote, but the Directors. People are ditching that sinking ship faster than you can say the word, underhanded.
But, here in St. Catharines, under the “leadership” of this self-serving council, it’s pretty much the way things are done ’round these parts.
I’ve come to expect nothing more from this bunch – and I’m not speaking of Washuta, Stack, Harris and Siscoe, all of whom do indeed have taxpayers’ interests at heart and are not swayed by self-serving interests first. The rest of ‘em? I think they’re disgusting examples of politics gone awry. If they had any conscience at all, they’d return the $4,000.00 and do something worthwhile with the funds.
I’m told Community Care is looking for donations to feed the hungry in the city, but this doesn’t seem to weigh on the collective conscience of council.
What a repulsive and hypocritical attitude McMullan’s circle of despots displays, and getting small-city power-drunk by the minute.
Further to my recent post about receiving a membership to the Lincoln County Humane Society here in St. Catharines, I thought I’d post this concise and well-written article that was posted by No-Kill St. Catharines on its Facebook page.
It explains in detail how warped the LCHS Board’s thinking really is, as well as the questionable thought processes of Mayor McMullan and councillor Joe Kushner, who, by the way, sits on the LCHS Board and is a city councillor.
As I mentioned earlier today, it’s so absurd that it’s as if someone made this whole thing up. Unfortunately, it’s all true.
LINCOLN COUNTY HUMANE SOCIETY BOARD MOVES TO BAR PUBLIC INPUT ONCE AND FOR ALL
St. Catharines (March 19, 2013) – Two lost municipal contracts. Two municipalities actively pursuing alternative animal services providers. A failed fundraising campaign and a $1.35 million spay/neuter clinic opened only because of intervention by the OSPCA. Since 2004, $4.5 million in taxpayer funding used to kill over 20,000 animals. Over 70% of animals in their trust continuously killed. Horrendous community relations.
A management team with this track record is usually dismissed. The Board of the Lincoln County Humane Society believes they should be rewarded with lifetime appointments for this litany of failure.
On March 20, 2013, the board of the LCHS will seek approval of new by-laws at their annual AGM. The by-laws remove the votes from lifetime members (to be renamed Class C members); give board members an unlimited term; remove the 9 year maximum total time served as a board member; and, relegate donors and volunteers to a non-voting Class B membership. The application process for membership––already the most restrictive in the province––becomes more restrictive by requiring a second board member to sponsor an applicant, and excluding anyone who is a member of another animal welfare organization or has anyone in their immediate family who is a member of another organization.
On January 21, 2012, St. Catharines City Council passed a motion requiring any animal service provider contracted by the City to have an open voting membership policy. The proposed by-law revisions send a strong message that the LCHS board has no intention of respecting Council’s motion. It is simply an effort by the Board of the LCHS to end any hope of community input into the management of the organization it funds.
How could an entire board be so out of touch with reality? The Executive Director of the LCHS would have been dismissed for mismanagement years ago by any competent board. He controls the flow of information to a board that has consistently refused to challenge a viewpoint totally contradicted by emerging facts. When a board is filled with individuals more concerned about their perceived status as board members than their responsibilities, delusions go unchallenged.
What role did councilor Joe Kushner play? Joe Kushner is the City Council representative on the LCHS board. Where was he when the LCHS board was deciding to deliberately dismiss City Council’s motion regarding open voting membership? Did he tell his fellow LCHS board members to ignore the motion? Did he promise he’d take care of it? By allowing these by-law revisions to proceed, it appears that Kushner has declared his priorities: LCHS board member first and elected city council member second. His silence or complicity has unquestionably left the City of St. Catharines in a potentially difficult legal position regarding any future arrangement with the LCHS.
How many ‘proxy’ votes will the Board pull out of its hat? On February 20, 2013, the LCHS board––without membership approval––passed an amendment to its by-laws allowing proxy voting. Members received a copy of the proposed new by-laws along with a form allowing them to give their proxy to Kevin Strooband or Ann Davidson. However, the proxy is not just for the AGM or for one issue––as is the norm. The proxy is for the entire year of the membership and all LCHS business conducted.
The proxy allows board members to recruit new members who never have to appear at an LCHS meeting; never have to hear discussions; never ask questions; nor ever show any interest in the LCHS at all. And, there are no restrictions on the number of proxy votes that can be produced.
How many proxy votes from these phantom members will the LCHS board produce at the AGM to support the by-law revisions?
# # #
To learn more about the mission of No Kill St. Catharines and our proposed community-based solutions, visit the ‘About’ section at http://www.facebook.com/nokillstcatharines. No Kill St Catharines is a compassionate collection of animal-loving citizens who advocate for a better future for our community’s lost and homeless pets! No Kill St. Catharines can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Had an email from councillor Dawn Dodge this morning. It read, “Thank you for sharing your thoughts.”
And apart from councillor Peter Secord’s response to the pigs returning to feed at the trough, that’s about the extent of the concern of the mayor and councillors who voted to put in a budget of $4,000.00 for their meals to be catered before each city council meeting.
Also caught councillor Matt Harris on Tom McConnell’s CKTB call-in radio show this morning. Can’t imagine Matt is too popular with the cheapskates who won’t pay for their own food down at city hall. Matt declared to Tom that he finds it hard to believe that taxpayers have to foot the bill for the bureaucrats’ food intake before each meeting. Matt’s one of the four councillors – the others are Greg Washuta, Len Stack and Mat Siscoe – who voted against taxpayers paying for their catered culinary delights.
The miserly ones who voted to spend taxpayers’ monies for their food are: Dawn Dodge, Mark Elliott, Bruce Williamson, Jeff Burch, Joe Kushner, Bill Phillips, Peter Secord, and Jenny Stevens.
Doesn’t seem to matter to them that they are already being paid to be councillors and they could perhaps pay for their food out of their salaries. NosirreeBob, the expanding waistlines at City Hall are on the increase and there’s a definite thumbing of the collective noses toward Community Care, an organization which works tirelessly to provide food for those less fortunate. And let me tell you, the gang under McMullan’s watch are hardly in the ‘less-fortunate’ department.
This council continues to prove itself unworthy as the weeks go by. Sadly, too many taxpayers are either too complacent or just plain uninformed when it comes to the goings-on down on Church Street.
First, we see Ontario thrown into a financial bottomless pit, now St. Catharines is heading in the same direction with these hungry goons at the helm.
A great gig if you can get it, eh?
Last evening, after I sent my blog post to the St. Catharines city councillors, I received this email from councillor Peter Secord.
For your information, the meals are a way for our staff to stay at City hall after 5 so they can meet with council for the hour or so before the meetings. Typically most of us work and have no time to eat between rushing home and attending Council. It is important time for us to meet. I’m sorry you feel as you do however I must disagree with your perceptions. Tonight I’m just heading home to make dinner. Not a healthy lifestyle! Regards, Peter
If truth be known, my first response was to laugh, which must have precipitated my response to councillor Secord:
Did you actually write that with a straight face?
So, tell me again why it’s necessary to use taxpayers’ monies for these meals. You’re already paid as a councillor by the taxpayer. Spend that.
It’s astonishing to me that while food banks all over the province, including the Niagara region, are always working towards donations of both food and money, we, the St. Catharines taxpayers are doling out cash so that these Gravy-Trained councillors can eat free and avoid what Secord refers to as an unhealthy lifestyle.
Why aren’t these councillors donating the budgeted $4,000.00 for themselves and senior staff (who I’m told make between $120,000.00 and $250,000.00) to Community Care? Unfortunately, the only councillors who seem to have any principles whatsoever are Greg Washuta, Len Stack, Matt Harris and Mat Siscoe. Just four councillors voted against this Motion, whilst the rest voted in favour of using taxpayers’ money to feed themselves at the trough.
And you wonder where your tax money is being spent.
It was just over a week or so ago that we, the public, learned that the bureaucrats at St. Catharines City Hall were treating themselves to a meal before Monday night council meetings, as well as annual Christmas parties, all courtesy of the taxpayers of St. Catharines.
Original cost? $7,600.00
Eliminate Christmas Parties: Deduct $1,600.00
Councillor Harris succeeds in eliminating “catering budget” of $6,000.00
March 18, 2013: New figure of $4,000.00 for “catering budget” reinstated.
At Monday night’s (March 18, 2013) meeting, councillor Joe Kushner (a university professor) put forth a Motion to reinstate the free (taxpayer-paid) meals to the tune of four grand. Council passes the Motion, save for the same four councillors, the only ones who use any common sense at City Hall – Siscoe, Harris, Washuta and Stack.
Pigs at the trough, folks. Pigs at the trough!
Do these people have any conscience at all? Any regard whatsoever for taxpayers? As they drive to their council meetings on Monday nights, past the homeless or destitute who share the same streets, do they have any twinges of shame, any nagging pangs of guilt?
Instead of earmarking $4,000.00 for their meals, why can’t these councillors and staff donate the $4,000.00 and put it towards a worthy cause? Women’s Place, the Niagara Peninsula Children’s Centre, even an animal-welfare foundation… any number of organizations far more worthy than our fat-cat – and getting fatter by the Monday night meetings- councillors and staff stuffing their faces on a fixed basis.
You would think these councillors and city staff are on the dole; so impoverished that they desperately need taxpayers to pay for their meals. That’s what’s so disgusting about the entire scenario.
They don’t need taxpayer-funded meals, so donate the $4,000.00 to people who DO deserve the help, because you’re already being paid to be councillors!
How many ways can I describe these cheapskate tightwads?
Cheap? Miserly? Tightfisted? Skinflints? Penny-pinching?
Frugal is too kind…
This council, except for the usual four who rely on common sense and decency, is well on its way to spending money the City could better spend elsewhere. But what makes it laughable on this night are the number of organizations pleading for money from the City, each group reiterating carefully in front of council why their association deserves additional money.
Sorry, folks, you just lost $4,000.00 that could have gone to your causes. Instead, it’s buying pizza and wings for these parsimonious councillors, all of whom can readily and easily provide for themselves, but instead want to eat downtown on our dime.
Tough luck to the Niagara Symphony and the others who were asking for funds, eh?
To Mayor McMullan, councillors, and staff, who regularly enjoy meals and drinks courtesy of the taxpayers, you ought to be ashamed of your actions. I know I’m ashamed for you.
I suppose we all reach the point where we begin to wonder about the qualifications needed to become a politician – even those who sit on our local city council.
Here’s a copy of a letter I have just sent off to our mayor Brian McMullan and St. Catharines city council after reading what’s on the agenda at tonight’s council meeting…
Mayor and council,
I have just finished reading Marlene Bergsma’s article, titled, ‘St. Catharines budget debate Monday: $74. hike,’ which appeared in the Standard this weekend.
I am dumbfounded by councillor Jeff Burch’s comment, ‘It’s not how big or how little the tax increase is, it’s what are (sic) you getting in return for your money. With a tax increase under 3%, most people will look at that and conclude council is doing its best to bring in new projects that offer taxpayers good value.”
I think I can speak on behalf of the majority of citizens when I remind Mr. Burch and the rest of you who bandy about our tax dollars that it is indeed a matter of ‘how big or how little the tax increase is.’
What thoroughly stupid comments.
He says further, “Having a zero tax increase this year is not that hard, but you are just going to have to pay for it later.”
Perhaps he should leave the decisions of tax increases, additional spending and other financial matters to those far more qualified. Alternatively, he might find a better fit within the provincial Liberal government as we’ve all seen how well excessive tax and spend rackets have worked for Ontarians this past decade.
As to the farcical “customer service” scheme, frighteningly approved by the City’s budget committee, though thankfully shot down by city council February 4th, I had to laugh at Burch’s comment that “…if the program is explained better,” he’s confident it will gain council’s support.
It doesn’t matter, Mr. Burch, if a dud is explained a thousand different ways, at the end of the day, it’s still a dud.
What concerns me even more is that economic development director David Oakes opines that, “the current system (at City Hall) is a confusing maze.”
It might be wise for all of you looking to taxpayers as an endless source of cash to fund pie-in-the-sky schemes or remedy questionable and inferior administration to look instead toward mayor McMullan and insist that he do a better job getting his civic house in order before adding to the already bloated band of bureaucrats that inhabit city hall now.
Paying $77K to $95K for another one of these bureaucrats – and we all know that’s not a one-time payout – is outrageous. Look to yourselves to bring order to city hall and stop relying on the taxpayers’ seemingly bottomless purse with the idiotic view that spending more money will somehow fix second-fiddle management.
Since Senior MPP Jim Bradley is our local St. Catharines MPP and an avid supporter of BSL (yes, that’s right: Avid supporter of breed-specific legislation) I like to keep track of what Jim’s doing… or not doing, as the case usually is.
I popped over to Jim’s website earlier to read his blog. Here’s the latest:
P.S. There were no events in the Events section, either.
Helluva job you’re doing for us, Jim.
What a week for Ontario politics.
I began the political week on Monday evening by tuning in to our local Cogeco Cable channel 10 to watch the scintillating goings-on down at St. Catharines City Hall. Usually a snooze-fest, or an evening to pat each other on the back – depends on whether or not land developers are present, or cheques are being handed over to the mayor. I was waiting to hear the verdict on councillor Mat Siscoe’s December 10, 2012 Motion – a step for more accountability by City-funded organizations. Specifically, the Lincoln County Humane Society, an organization that refuses to dole out memberships to St. Catharines’ taxpayers for fear of change in the directors’ ranks.
When I tuned in, a cheque for a cool million was being handed over from Hydro. Using a 13 year-old policy, the monies go to ‘operational revenues’ instead of a civic project fund. Councillor Mat Siscoe asked for a staff report as to why dividends from Hydro automatically go directly to operational revenues. (Jeez, what a spoilsport Siscoe is!) Seems mayor Brian McMullan and other councillors were so giddy with excitement (they really were…) that they pooh-poohed Siscoe’s request and carried on with the giddiness.
Gimme that cheque already!
Of course, this might not seem as absurd as it sounds, if it weren’t for the fact that on December 10, 2012, councillor Siscoe’s Motion for, well, animal welfare/open memberships/truth and accountability at the local humane society (LCHS) was sent to ‘staff’ for a detailed report (thanks for that goes to councillor Jeff Burch) while a Motion to look into an automatic deposit of $1M slides right through. Yes, a simple animal welfare issue that only needed an ounce of common sense requires a staff report, but a million bucks? Hell, just hand it over and tell Siscoe to shut up already…
(Of course, I’m being facetious. Councillors Siscoe, Stack, Washuta and Harris are usually the ones who can think on their own – such a refreshing change in any political arena.)
Later on that evening, after too many unrelated in camera sessions, and only by a slim margin, the ‘verdict’ was read and Siscoe’s December Motion was passed. Memberships now have to be part of negotiations… and some councillors had a problem with that!
Two snivelers on council complained like eight-year-olds standing at their classroom desks that they didn’t like some of the nasty mail that they’d been receiving on the ‘LCHS issue.’ It was ‘hurtful, Mr. Mayor.’
Hey, snivelers, how do you think the animals headed for the euthanasia chamber feel over at the LCHS because of your leaden feet? Get a backbone! You’re in politics, for cryin’ out loud. Deal with it.
Give me strength!
But enough of circle time down at St. Catharines City Hall. Let’s pop up to Toronto City Hall…
Rob Ford keeps his seat as mayor, much to the chagrin of many, as well as too many all-knowing lawyers who failed to get that one right. For weeks we’ve been told by those in the legal profession that he didn’t have a hope in proverbial hell. And that included John Tory. They all ate their words Friday morning and Christina Blizzard was given her field day and I, for one, enjoyed every moment.
I find it astonishing that the lefties are falling over themselves taking Ford from Magistrates Court all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada.
Hey, set your sights on the man who’s decimated this province for the last decade! He just walked away scot-free!
We also had to stomach the group of BSL-loving Ontario Liberal candidates plying their rhetorical lines the past while. All of them, once died-in-the-wool Dalton-worshippers, distanced themselves as far as humanly possible right up ’til the convention began and Dalton was within earshot. Immediately, he became the golden-boy, all of them towing the same, failed party line.
Pupatello, earlier being the good girl wanting to work with everyone, suddenly stated she wanted to “bring the opposition to its knees.”
(Put away the knee-pads…)
And by the way, Tim and Andrea want to know if you want your knife back now or later, Sandra.
Wynne, on the other hand, was on a roll playing up the sexual orientation card, not to mention the first-female-premier card. And the media fell for it again, including the chump who interviewed former NDP MPP (also openly gay) Peter Kormos. In true form, Kormos said it shouldn’t come into play whatsoever, and that was not the issue at hand. Good for you, Peter! Kormos said the Liberals have far more important issues to think about than Wynne’s personal choices. And Kormos is right. Why is someone’s sexual orientation making the headlines under Politics?
It’s as blatant as stating, ’The openly straight, heterosexual male, Dalton McGuinty, is no longer premier of Ontario .
I don’t think any of us care what your sexual preference is! I know I don’t!
Are we that stupid that we can’t see through this nonsense? Well, >2K of Liberal delegates loved it. So, on Saturday night, Ontario voted to elect… oops, sorry, ONLY Liberal delegates at the convention voted to put Kathleen into power.
That’s difficult to write, especially when one considers that she’s been in power for years, right alongside Dalton and his failed policies, lies and scandals. She isn’t new, she’s more of the same, and as she said last evening, she wants to “build on Dalton McGuinty‘s ‘legacy.’”
That’s some legacy! God help us!
All this, just as I was getting over Dalton McGuinty Jr. informing us that Dad’s main objective was to leave Ontario in great shape after his premiership.
And Jr.’s response? ”Mission accomplished, Dad!”
Pass the Pepto, wouldya?
Mission accomplished?? Oh, the idiocy of it all.
And Dalton’s comment? (Yes, he came out of the woodwork again) ”Congratulations to Kathleen Wynne and all the candidates. I’m proud to pass the torch and trust Ontario is in good hands.”
Got news for ya, Dalton… it hasn’t been in good hands for years and that torch petered out many moons ago. The numbers, lies and scandals are proof of that.
On second thought, I don’t think Pepto’s going to be strong enough to last me until February something – the magical date when Kathleen promises to open up the cobwebbed halls of the Ontario legislature. By that time, I’m going to need extra-strength Gravol by intravenous drip.
Well, it seems I, along with many, many other taxpayers in St. Catharines and Niagara, received our Lincoln County Humane Society’s membership application rejection form-letter today.
You really have to take it with a grain of salt, as this Board is notorious for saying one thing and doing something completely contradictory.
The stalling tactic for memberships is another way to not allow taxpayers to hold memberships and therefore, not be able to vote on issues that might upset the Board’s apple cart.
Here’s what it said…
Dear Rosalind Went,
We’d like to begin by telling you that your interest in the Humane Society is appreciated.
We are a private not-for-profit organization that provides services to municipalities on a contractual, fee-for-service basis. We own our property and building, recruit and manage our staff and we depend on volunteers to assist in operating our shelter. During the past year we (staff and volunteers, which includes our volunteer Board) have been working hard at saving lives. During 2012, we have increased cat adoptions by 86%, and over the past 5 years the average save rate for dogs has been 93%.
We are very excited that the Spay Neuter Clinic is now open, as a high volume clinic, and it will be soon be working with managed feral cat colonies and trap, neuter, release programs. As I’m sure you’ll agree, prevention is the answer.
The organization’s by-laws were to undergo a mandatory review after Bill 65, a bill to implement the Not-For-Profits Corporations Act, became law. The Bill, which had already received Royal Assent before the provincial government was prorogued, has not yet passed into law, but is expected to do so in 2013.
We are committed to reviewing the membership component of our by-laws to determine the best way to move our organization forward into the future. We expect this process to take place in early 2013. We do however want to ensure that we are able to implement effective and sustainable programs, and provide a stable work environment to enable our staff and volunteers to focus on providing the best care and adoption opportunities for the animals. We have approved the memberships of all current and active volunteers, but have deferred all other memberships until after we have reviewed the membership provisions of our by-laws. We will post information pertaining to the outcome of our by-law review on our website, at http://www.lchs.ca. Your membership fee, which you paid in cash, is available for pick up at the shelter, Monday to Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The staff and volunteers of the LCHS are all working hard to provide the best outcome for every animal that enters the shelter. Public interest in our organization is welcome. In order to provide the best service to the community there are four ways to help; we invite you to Adopt, Foster, Donate & Volunteer and help make a difference for the animals.
And to you, Ed, I say this: Enjoy your titular privileges while you can, because taxpayers are not going to tolerate this crap.
Copy of the letter I have just now sent to Mayor Brian McMullan and City Councillors reminding them of the LCHS meeting. It will be interesting to see how many of them attend…
Mayor & Council,
I would remind you that the Lincoln County Humane Society’s Board of Directors is holding its “open” meeting this Wednesday, January 16, 2013, at 6:30 p.m. at the Humane Society’s office on Fourth Avenue.
It was just this past weekend that, at last, the public learned the whereabouts of the meeting, since telephone calls and other enquiries were met with lukewarm replies or no replies at all. Apparently, the open meeting is set to be held in the limited capacity room at 160 Fourth Avenue, where only 22 people can be accommodated.
*Keep in mind that the Board might change the location at the last minute without informing the public.
I would expect that with the now months-long media spotlight still shining on this issue that all of you will be in attendance, since the mayor and councillors – save Siscoe, Harris, Washuta and Stack – think everything’s A-OK over there at the Humane Society and prefer to turn their gaze elsewhere. Either that, or you have no interest in this matter at all and don’t want to become involved, in which case, I’d remind you that you’re all responsible for taxpayers’ monies funding the LCHS.
We can also all witness councillor Joe Kushner representing the City and its taxpayers in professional fashion, as most of you have no doubt that Mr. Kushner strives for professional conduct at all times.
I look forward to a very productive meeting and that after all the hoopla that has surrounded this organization, St. Catharines and Niagara taxpayers can hopefully gain the memberships that are well overdue. If not, Thursday should be an interesting day.
LCHS Board of Directors Meeting
Wednesday, January 16, 2013, 6:30 p.m.
160 Fourth Avenue (at Martindale Road) St. Catharines
Yes, it has taken up until this weekend to find out exactly where this secretive Board is holding its “open” meeting. Numerous calls to the Lincoln County Humane Society to enquire as to the location were met with… well, nothing.
It’s since been determined that the meeting will be held at the Lincoln County Humane Society’s office on Fourth Avenue (at Martindale Road) in St. Catharines on the 16th at 6:30 p.m., not the usual 7:00 p.m.
The dilemma here is that there will be far more than twenty-two people in attendance, which is the limited legal capacity of the board room at the LCHS.
So, here we go again, folks. More shenanigans, secret missives, questionable ‘tactics’ by this Board to deter the public from becoming members of the local humane society!
I am so tired of writing these – surely – inane reports to anyone outside St. Catharines and Niagara, who must think we’re twerps of the highest order to tolerate this for so long.
You see, all we can do is write blog posts and spread the word of the shady dealings going on over there on Fourth, inasmuch as memberships are concerned.
It will be very interesting come Wednesday evening when I have no doubt that the Board of Directors will deliberately shut out taxpayers.
Let’s hope that Mayor Brian McMullan and all City councillors make an appearance at this meeting to see exactly what they’re getting for taxpayers’ monies. I will be writing to them after I post this to remind them that they have an obligation to see what really goes on. It will also be a reminder to them to see exactly how one of their own, City of St. Catharines councillor and official City of St. Catharines Board member, Joe Kushner, conducts himself at these meetings.
From notes that I have kept, I see that I submitted my membership application to the Lincoln County Humane Society on November 5, 2012, along with $50. cash.
*Apparently, no other humane society/animal shelter in Ontario has such high fees – the LCHS takes the biscuit.
I was told by the LCHS receptionist that the application and my fees would be submitted to the Board for review and I would hear “sooner rather than later.”
It’s now the very end of December 2012 and I’ve heard not a whisper.
Though, speaking of whispers, this is how the Board’s directors prefer to converse at public meetings. Think I’m kidding? Uh-uh. Nooooo.
That’s how Board President, Ann Davidson, LCHS Executive Director Kevin Strooband, and other directors have chosen to converse, you see, so that the audience – the public – can’t hear what’s going on.
(I can’t begin to tell you how foolish I feel just writing this. I swear to the heavens that this is what occurs. Apparently, it’s the Board’s ‘tactic’ to carry on their public meetings (when not in camera) in order that the public can’t hear all of what transpires.)
And if you think we’re all idiots here for tolerating this childish behaviour (endorsed by our City council, by the way, which has done nothing to change any of this) I know that I, for one, feel like an even bigger idiot for having no recourse, but to tolerate it.
As taxpayers, forking over $500,000.00 to the LCHS annually, we have a City council which refuses to step in and do anything about the way this organization conducts its business, but the City keeps on funding it, nevertheless.
All in bed together…
I’ve written about our spineless mayor and equally spineless councillors who refuse to stand up to the City’s official puppet-master and the LCHS Board in a post below.
So, as I sit here on the last Sunday morning in December, I’m wondering what my odds are of Ann Davidson and her incompetents bestowing a membership upon me.
Pretty slim, I’d say.
This Board conducts its business by selective emails – and by that I mean it deliberately excludes certain Board directors who don’t agree with Davidson’s methods – which was also written up by the newspapers and discussed on radio talk shows just two weeks ago. Grace Pang and Tom Manney, two directors who didn’t agree with the secrecy and back-room shenanigans, were ousted, kicked out, booted from the Board. Current LCHS member and animal advocate, Julia McLaren was unceremoniously thrown out with them, as well.
So, like Julia, I’ve been blogging about all of this, so I can’t imagine that I’ll be getting a membership as a new year’s gift, do you?
But they keep hanging on to my $50.00 cash.
Anyone with an ounce of common sense, an ounce of decency, would describe all of this as corruption. And that, folks, is what we’re trying to rid ourselves of here in St. Catharines.