This page contains the direct responses and/or conversation summary from all the Ward 1 and Councillor at Large candidates related to the questions posed to them from the BLA. Any “first-person” references made are relative to Dave Roberts – author of this webpage and interviewer.
Councillor at Large
The following is my response to Tammy regarding her boat launch financing concerns expressed:
Hi Tammy. Thank you for your response, and I’m not disappointed at all! Your concern with the use of tax dollars to solve this issue is not something that has been lost on us. That’s why we’ve proposed multiple options to fund this without any base tax dollars to Council on several occasions – going back years. For me that’s been the single most frustrating thing about working with staff and Council all these years – they get hung up on costs but won’t consider the alternative funding models that we’ve presented! Take a look at the attached PowerPoint with some basic material around this and let me know what you think.
The following is a summary of my conversation with Tammy on October 4th:
- Tammy appreciated all the thought the BLA has put into alternative financing options for our boat launch. In fact, Tammy has experience with Local Improvement Charges through her 39-year career in our local municipal government. She also provided some insight into Minden Hills’ Shoreline Road Allowance Reserve Fund that I wasn’t aware of – covering both forms of alternative funding models we’ve proposed.
- Tammy’s long and vast career experience across various Haliburton municipalities is a real asset – she knows how all the departments work and the “art of the possible” around what can be done!
See Mike’s direct response to our questions here. Mike has no website or campaign material to share.
The following is a summary of my conversation with Mike on October 4th:
- Mike read a great deal of our boat launch background, and in particular the latest report from the CAO report delivered to Council this past March. Points of concern he raised about that report include:
- Believes the engineering cost estimate is grossly over inflated (based on his 20+ years with his construction business), and recommends getting direct bid/quotes from local contractors – he even offered to help facilitate that by leveraging his relationships!
- Was very concerned with how the CAO shutdown our efforts, concluding that budget needs to be directed toward maintaining the existing public boat launch that are already in a state of disrepair – an admission that the township is not doing the job they should be around maintaining public boat launches. Stating that additional monies needs to be spent on existing public boat launches suggests they are in important asset for the Township – why then dismiss the reinstatement of a Bob Lake public boat launch, particularly when the BLA have presented alternative funding models to make that happen (which have been largely ignored)??
- Mike questions if the Township is not legally obligated to restore a public boat launch on Bob Lake given that it existed and was maintained by them for decades, with some properties having this fact included in their deeds.
- My conversation with Mike was very consistent with the messaging he delivered to The Highlander that is available in their podcast recording. Something he said a few times (he “Has the right to remain silent but not the ability to!“) rang very true!
- Mike was very committed to helping us resolve our boat launch situation. Some specific things he offered:
- Leverage his close relations with local contractors (ex. Prentice and Hawk River) to help establish a realistic construction cost.
- Willing to attend face-to-face meetings with BLA and any effected land owners to mediate discussions on potential solutions – leveraging his construction and municipal dealings experience. That offer is extended regardless of if he wins the election or not!
- Win or not, he owns an excavator and other heavy equipment that he would be willing to operate at cost to help with construction (provided that he was permitted should he win).
My commentary regarding Shirley:
- I met with Shirley at my cottage for over an hour on August 16th. She was extremely personable and open – a great listener without prejudice. A good portion of our meeting was focused on discussing our boat launch situation on Bob Lake – both the history (what happened and our efforts to date) and our plans/options for moving forward. Without question she was very supportive to help in any way she could to solve our boat launch issue – whatever that may entail.
- Shirley made a point of calling out our Bob Lake boat launch issue in her Highlander interview.
- While Shirley doesn’t have a lot of experience in Municipal politics/processes, and her nerves impacted her performance at the Oct 3rd “All Candidates Meeting”, I got the sense that her commitment to advocate on behalf of her constituents was strong and genuine.
The following is a summary of my conversation with Richard on October 4th:
- He’s been very vocal about resolving our boat launch issue, as he was when I spoke with him during his 2018 election campaign. Richard is on record speaking about our Bob Lake boat launch situation in both the previous election and this one – you can see that documented in his Highlander interview, and mentioned during the Oct 3 “All Candidates Meeting”.
- Richard prides himself on his mediation skills and experience that he gained throughout his career in working as a mediator for many different union labour negotiations. He believes that will be a major factor in resolving our long-standing boat launch issue that spans the past two Councils.