Wednesday, February 28, 2018


Well was my prediction in yesterday's posting here in the Advocate right on the money? What I didn't predict was how blatant and obvious the whole circus was going to be. This Council couldn't even orchestrate a credible charade. As far as Julie-Anne Herteis's performance, it rivalled her four years on Council it was so lame. After the meeting the words being tossed around in the gallery included circus, gong show and sham.

Ten candidates were listed although only nine were in attendance. Even then only eight of the nine actually showed up to speak to either council or the public. Other than Julie-Anne the others all spoke either professionally or at least competently about their credentials and resume. They spoke from the heart about wanting to serve their communities. They sincerely put themselves out there and demonstrated long term interests in their community as well as their educational and work backgrounds.

Julie-Anne advised us that she had no university degree which coincidentally is in line with most of our past and current councils. She further advised us that she was resting upon her experience on Council between 2010 and 2014. I was present for many of her public council experiences and they varied from sad to embarrassing. She was so far out of her depth that she and everyone else on council, staff and in the gallery all knew it. Until last night I had been told that she attempted to pull a Scott Hahn once during her time on council. Last evening I was advised that in fact she twice tried to quit and both times former mayor Todd Cowan convinced her to finish her term.

The calibre and experience of the field of candidates to fill the council vacancy was astonishing. There were two former professors, a former school Principal and Superintendant, an emergency services worker, an owner of an environmental company, a woman with extensive professional municipal experience and so much more. All eight of the serious speakers last evening were from qualified to incredibly qualified. Then there was Julie-Anne who couldn't even be bothered to write a short speech. She didn't tell us about her work experience. She didn't tell us about her commitment. She showed up with a sense of entitlement which was soon clarified by our council who barely were able to keep straight faces.

I feel sorry for Councillor Patrick Merlihan. How he is able to continue to deal calmly and professionally with that pack of hyenas is beyond me. Whatever tiny, naive spark of respect that I may have had left for any of them (other than Patrick) is now gone. The rest of Council couldn't even accomplish raising last night to the level of a circus. Credit goes to the Municipal Clerk and Council's lapdog, Val Hummel. She at least sounded authoritative and sincere in her explanation of the voting procedure. She did her best to at least seriously pretend that the whole thing was a legitimate picking of the best candidate for the job. It wasn't.

This Council, less Patrick, lied to nine other candidates by telling them that this process was to choose the best candidate to fill the vacancy. They lied in both the best candidate matter as well as the fact that they had chosen Julie-Anne weeks ago. As Councillor Merlihan suggested the best and most appropriate appointee should have been the runner-up in the last election namely Dr. Dan Holt. He received 1,036 votes from the citizens in Ward 1 plus four council votes over two sessions. Julie-Anne received three votes last evening.

This council have publicly, shamelessly lied to nine citizen candidates as well as to the general public yet again. Those that run for council this fall deserve denunciation at the polls.

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