A sign of stupidity
By Liz Dadson



There comes a time when you have to admit that you lost the battle. You came out on the short end of the stick, it's over, so stop all the fighting.

Unfortunately, many in Bruce Township refuse to do that.
More than 10 years ago, the township fought amalgamation with Kincardine and Kincardine Township into what is now affectionately referred to as the Municipality of Kincardine. For months, Bruce Township argued and cajoled that it should not be forced to join with the other two. It should remain its own municipal entity, complete with its mighty Ontario Hydro and its profitable Bruce Municipal Telephone System. It feared being swallowed up by the greatly-despised Town of Kincardine, and losing its identity to the degenerate neighbours to the south.

While other areas of Bruce County were working together to draw up consolidated bylaws, policies and procedures for their newly-formed municipalities, politicians and various others in Bruce Township were using every loophole imaginable to avoid amalgamation.

It went through anyway - or was going to be forced through by the provincial government.
So, there sat the new Municipality of Kincardine, badly-prepared to govern itself, and stuck with Bruce Township as a reluctant and much-poorer partner.

Through the years, concessions have been made - the municipal hall and offices sit out in the middle of a field beside the airport; a municipal office is maintained in Underwood; the water system was extended up the lakeshore; Kincardine continues to maintain a ward system, with representatives at large and for each of Wards 1, 2 and 3; and almost every mayor of the new Municipality of Kincardine has walked on eggshells lest he stir up the ire of the rural area.

Well, Wednesday night was the last straw.
Now, Bruce Township (Ward 3) is demanding that its old municipal signs be left at the three locations where they are, and that the municipality continue to maintain them.

What utter rubbish. You don't see any old Kincardine Township signs anywhere. Or better yet, look south - there are no old Huron Townships signs or Kinloss Township signs. Look north and you won't find any Saugeen Township signs either. All those old signs should be sitting in the Bruce County Museum as part of history.

(next column)

06/08/2009 09:06 PM


A sign is supposed to direct you to something, but as councillor Kenneth Craig said, historical signs are confusing if they say "Welcome to Somewhere" and there's nothing there.

Kincardine's new signage program was intended to help tourists find their way around the area. Therefore, gateway signs are planned for the Town of Kincardine and Village of Tiverton, plus directional and wayfinding signs to help people locate services and attractions within those commercial areas.

The most dismal part of Wednesday night's charade was the performance by councillor Randy Roppel, chairman of the tourism committee (CHAT), who exacerbated the whole situation by ripping holes in his committee's recommendation to adopt the signage program, with the help of members of the Bruce Township Historical Society. It wasn't too long ago that he was slamming his fists on the council table, demanding that the Tiverton Reunion committee's recommendation be adopted because of all the hard work involved in those decisions. Obviously, he doesn't feel the same way about the tourism committee and all the time and effort put into the signage program.

So, for the sake of three old useless signs in Bruce Township, months of hard work and money have been wasted.

That's a sign of sheer stupidity.

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