With less than 10 months to a municipal election, it's time to call for
candidates who want to work together in the best interests of the entire
Municipality of Kincardine.
We have suffered through a decade of turf wars - councils that were torn
apart by old battles, struggling under excess baggage, and worn out by
the mistrust and anger between urban and rural that just refuses to die.
While Kincardine has a mayor, deputy mayor and three councillors elected
to represent the entire municipality, there continues to be four elected
from the former wards - two for Ward 1 (Kincardine), and one for each of
Wards 2 and 3 (Kincardine Township and Bruce Township). And that's what
continues to tear things apart.
The councillor from Ward 3 insists he is representing the fine people of
Tiverton and Bruce Township - and apparently, that's all he wants to
represent. This is where protectionism comes into play. Whenever the
fine, upstanding representative of Ward 3 believes something is being
done to malign his precious territory, he plays his hand in such a way
as to bring the wrath of his constituents down on council.
All that does it continue the mistrust that has existed between
Kincardine and its rural neighbours for hundreds of years.
Not only do we need municipal candidates who want to work
together, we need the electorate of the Municipality of
Kincardine to have the intestinal fortitude to actually
elect these candidates. We have wasted enough time upholding
the fine tradition of Ward 1 versus the rest. Now, we need
to emulate other municipalities, such as Huron-Kinloss and
Saugeen Shores, whose councils discuss the issues, make a
decision, and then support that decision and each other.
It's also time to change the committee system Kincardine has
in place which has council members micro-managing everything
from roads to tourism, rather than placing their trust in
the staff they have hired to do their jobs and bring
reliable information back to the council table. Other
councils hash out the details at a general committee
meeting, with all of council present, and then bring the
issue back to council for formal approval.
Their system seems to work. We should do likewise.