Don’t forget to read my blog

For newcomers to our community, or anyone not familiar with my past or my previous writing, I remind you that I have been writing a blog called Scripturient at www.ianchadwick.com/blog for the past decade. At the time of this writing, it had more than 2.6 million words on it. Although its content is wide-ranging, I have written many posts about Collingwood, its council, and local politics over the years. I recommend anyone who wants to know where I stand on local issues, events, and incumbents read it.

I will continue to post on that blog during the campaign and after, although some (or many) of the posts might be duplicates of what you see here. Others may be unrelated to any local events, issues, or politics because much of what I have written on Scripturient is about my personal interests, reading, and hobbies, and not always local. However, I hope you find it at least entertaining. Comments are always welcome.

2 thoughts on “Don’t forget to read my blog

  1. David Fletcher

    Mr Chadwick, I note with interest that your vision suggests you will be a watch dog on council.

    Would you consider yourself to have been a watch dog in your previous years as a councillor?

    Collingwood taxpayers submit a considerable amount of tax money to the 520 million plus operating budget of Simcoe County. How much time do you think should be spend by our elected council to insured good governance and low cost culture.

    Reply
    1. Chadwick for Council Post author

      Thanks for the question. First, the mayor and deputy mayor are the representatives on county council, and the rest of us depend on them to provide information, updates, and to engage council by discussing issues and budgets so our reps can take back council’s collective view. That hasn’t always happened. In my experience, with the exception of Mayor Cooper and Dep. Mayor Lloyd, previous councils were pretty much kept in the dark about what happened at county and seldom if ever asked to comment or provide direction. I cannot recall ever being asked to comment on or provide direction on a county budget. And I do recall back in 2006-10 that when our council did raise a county issue here for discussion, and decided on a course of action, the mayor of the day voted against it at the county!

      Councillors all have to make ourselves cognizant of what is going on at the county so we can bring up any issues or concerns before any vote there. It is even more important today because there is less media coverage of county meetings and affairs than in the past.

      As an upper-tier municipality, the county is responsible for a lot of things, such as affordable housing, paramedics and ambulances, waste pickup, landfill, yard waste pickup and composting, maintaining and improving county roads (such as Poplar Sideroad), immigration, county archives and museums, county planning, and many others. I can’t speak to how much of the county budget is spent on items, but I do know it’s a large budget. And Collingwood has no say as to how much we pay into the county.

      I served as a citizen rep on the county’s museum-archives-library board for four years (off-council) and sat in on county meetings every month. I was surprised to learn how much business they do for the collective municipalities involved. And I got to know several other municipal reps who were always raising issues about costs in those meetings. I would hope that our own reps next term would be as diligent (Fryer, for example, has a financial background as the former CFO of Collus, and Sandberg was an engineer who worked with municipal infrastructure so knows the cost analysis process).

      However, I will work for greater transparency from and engagement with our county reps this next term so that Collingwood council is better informed and able to provide direction where appropriate.

      As for low-cost culture: in my experience both in local media covering Collingwood and regional politics, and my previous terms on council, the lowest bid in a tender not always the best or wisest choice. I’ve too often seen the lowest bids accepted only to have the work prove inadequate and extra costs spent to bring it to standards. Not that the highest bid is the best and may not be any indication of quality, but price alone cannot and should not be the sole deciding factor in any contract or tender. Quality of service and work matter, too; past experience, endorsements, etc. should be considered.

      Council depends heavily on staff to make recommendations on any contract, but it also helps to have on council people with experience in the process.

      And as for being a watchdog: in my previous terms, I always tried to be fully informed, to question and read, to get clarifications, to look beyond our own community for advice and examples, to discuss and debate, and to speak out. I have been and will always be outspoken when the community’s good is involved.

      Reply

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