Development issues continue to dominate Gloria McCluskey's attention. This past year she has decisively sided with neighbourhoods in her district around Lake Banook that are opposing development of residential towers on Prince Albert Road, but didn't show the same consideration for the Gottingen Street neighbourhood when she voted to sell the St. Pat's-Alexandra school site for development of residential towers. (The denial of the Banook towers has been appealed to the UARB.) She also voted to send the Skye Halifax project to a public hearing.
To her credit, McCluskey was a vociferous opponent of the stadium from the beginning.
McCluskey has defined herself as a Kelly loyalist. She wasn't present for the vote to censure Kelly, but surely would've voted against it. And in December she allowed herself to be used in a crass political move to rescue Kelly's deteriorating career by joining the mayor in his call for free bus passes for seniors. The move made no sense and was unworkable in any case, but it appealed to Kelly's base.
McCluskey says she intends to run for reelection, but at some point she should start thinking about her political legacy. There's no question that for the decades she's served Dartmouth---including her time as mayor before amalgamation---McCluskey has been liked and respected, and she has represented her community well in terms of the day-in, day-out municipal frustrations that residents face. It would be unfortunate if that good track record was overshadowed by her loyalty to Kelly.
posted by EVELYN WHITE, Oct 20/16
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