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Halifax's snow job on citizens 

Our grandchildren will bear the financial burden of this city's decision into infamy.

I am a lifelong resident of Halifax, born, raised and educated, retired for the last 10 years after 35 years of service with the Department of National Defense as an electronics tech. Presently reside in Williamswood. - SUBMITTED
  • I am a lifelong resident of Halifax, born, raised and educated, retired for the last 10 years after 35 years of service with the Department of National Defense as an electronics tech. Presently reside in Williamswood.
  • Submitted

After listening to all of the conversations surrounding the poor snow clearing jobs after the recent snow/rain storms, I have come to the conclusion the public is getting a snow job from our elected representatives when trying to explain why we are getting such poor service. Every time, when asked about improved services, the first thing every councillor and the mayor will say is that taxes will have to be increased, instead of really taking a hard look at the millions of taxpayer dollars being wasted on projects that benefit only the city core and interest groups like the Cycling Coalition, Ecology Action Centre, It’s More Than Buses, the new HRM Centre Plan and developer subsidies for cost overruns like the new YMCA, Ramia’s Convention Centre, Armoyan’s Arts and Cultural Centre, the $10 million streetscaping for Spring Garden Road and $50 million for tearing down the Cogswell Interchange.

One councillor, claiming to be a steward of taxpayer money, suggested the responsibility for clearing sidewalks should go back to the residents with the reasoning that the city would save $4 million. A very noble statement, to say the least. Mayor Mike Savage and several other councillors, possessing self-described, great business backgrounds, had indicated HRM would receive great economic benefit from new revenue that would be generated by all of the new developments and huge influx of newcomers and immigrants. However, when I asked the councillor where this new revenue was, he stated I should ask the mayor, as he didn’t know. Being a steward of taxpayer money, I would have thought he would have an answer. As fate would have it, I received my answer from Tim Outhit, another councillor with a business background, when he was being interviewed on the Rick Howe Show. He was one of the councillors I was referring to who previously claimed revenue would be generated from newcomers and new development, but in this instance stated it did not materialize as the new development was creating a vacuum in other parts of the city causing a revenue-neutral situation.

It appears to me these astute, stewards of taxpayer money talk from both sides of their mouth when it comes to explaining the poor services the public receive. They have been featured as guests on the Rick Howe Show spinning a yarn of how great a stadium would be for the economy, stating that they don’t want to be the owners of a stadium or use taxpayer money to support it. But in one way or another, either through tax concessions, infrastructure or some other deviate scheme the taxpayer will, in the end, be the ones holding the bag for a new stadium. They are the same people who should be scrutinizing the poor wording of contract negotiations with contractors and hold them accountable. Instead of firing the poor contractors, they are fined as many as six times and allowed to resume the poor job they were hired for.

The same bureaucrats and councillors who are responsible for the inadequate job of hiring contractors who only do half the job of snow clearing are the ones signing off on the business plan for the new stadium proposal. Our grandchildren will bear the financial burden into infamy.

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Voice of the City is a platform for any and all Halifax individuals to share their diverse opinions and writings. The Coast does not necessarily endorse the views of those published. Our editors reserve the right to alter submissions for clarity, length, content and style. Want to appear in this section? Submissions can be sent to voice@thecoast.ca.
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