I’ve marked the comments with interest over the past several council and committee meetings from certain councillors — Ward 3 Coun. Dan McCreary and Ward 4 Coun. Richard Carpenter in particular — claiming their resolutions and their work is unfairly being bashed by their colleagues.
“I would hope that politics aren’t going to creep into this and that we’re not going to see resolutions decided here based on who moves them,” McCreary said during debate on improving bylaw enforcement in the city.
The RogersTV clip of the entire discussion is available here— the bylaw discussion starts at 47:30, McCreary starts speaking at about 20:35 and the jab at politicking comes at around 52:15.
This follows another poor reaction at the May 16 finance committee when McCreary bristled at Mayor Chris Friel’s comment that he didn’t like where a resolution McCreary had moved “was coming from.” Friel apologized in open council May 22 for the misinterpretation, clarifying his unease was over the intent behind the resolution, not its source. Friel did do the “non-apology” Monday— you know, the ones starting with “if you were… then I’m sorry,” but having been in the room for both, I think the good councillor’s skin may be softening.
McCreary’s is usually one of the best-behaved people on camera and in non-televised meetings, saving his politicking for behind the scenes, so these statements were surprising.
The bylaw resolution wasn’t his best work— he wanted better enforcement within existing resources. The resolution itself originally called for a dedicated department. Rather vague as to how that would be accomplished, creating the circumstances where staff members writing the requested report would likely not produce the range of options McCreary was actually seeking. After he made his jab (perhaps in reaction?), McCreary accepted several amendments that made his resolution better.
As passed, council now seeks options on how to improve bylaw enforcement— not through a dedicated department but officers.
Carpenter has complained of late the finance committee isn’t being shown the respect it deserves. Not sure I agree based on what I observe as a regular attendee of these things and having read the procedural bylaw that gives the finance committee its mandate. The committee has fumbled its way through how it can both learn more about how individual city departments operate and try and address issues as they arise and that was also a bone of contention on Monday.
I would suggest a taking a deep breath when one’s resolution is criticized and perhaps not taking it quite so personally.