Why Was The Greenlink Meeting Postponed
There are so many strange things going on at City Hall that I just can't keep up anymore. I wonder if anyone there can.
First, we are told that there is going to be a Special Council meeting on some issues including the border. The Order of Business is posted in the last possible second and the only item is the border. You can see how enlightening it is about what is going to be discussed and who is going to do the presentation.
There is no doubt that it was going to be a big deal since Cogeco was there to televise the proceedings. I had understood that the Parsons Brinckerhoff people were to come here as well presumably, because they are part of the Greenlink team and I assume that they were to make a presentation. It is not known whether David Estrin was to appear but in the circumstances of his lawsuit with the Bridge Company, he would have to be extremely careful.
And then, just as quickly for reasons unknown, the Special Council Meeting is postponed as you can see from this notice on the City's Website.
It must be nice being a Mayor. You snap your fingers once and a meeting is set up. You snap your fingers a second time and the meeting is cancelled. No information is given about the first meeting and no information is given for the cancellation. That’s called Open and Transparent Government, Windsor style.
I do not know about you but if I was a Councillor, I would be rather upset about it. I wonder how many of our Councillors were loopy and knew what was going on. I would venture to guess that there were not too many people in the loop this time around. This whole meeting episode seemed so closely held to the vest.
I have to admit difficulty figuring out what the meeting was all about. We know that there is some kind of a new version of Greenlink out there although we have never seen the reworking of it other than what was told to us by Gord in one of his columns. We also know that DRIC has rejected it. What then is the purpose of doing a presentation about something that is not going to happen? It seems a senseless exercise and an expensive one if people are being flown in for the presentation.
However, if one goes back historically, we now know that the first Schwartz Report was rejected by the Senior Levels and the one that was presented to us in public at the Cleary was a rewrite. This time at least we know that Son of Greenlink was rejected.
If the purpose of it is merely to show us what the new plan was, then what was the need for a Special Council meeting and for television. Eddie could have done another one of his whiteboard Presentations at a regular Council meeting as he did during the WUC matter. That was such a wonderful and unexpected treat that charmed everyone. That certainly was compelling television.
My only thought was that Eddie has to get his own way and that what he wanted was the right at least to threaten litigation or even commence it. As I have said before, it is pretty clear now that Council has not given him the right to do so. In fact, as I mentioned as well, Council Valentinjs has already told us that nothing would happen for months.
Still, why would Gord tell us how fortunate we are to have a weapon of mass destruction like David Estrin and why else would the Star run a big negative story about the Bridge Company that was designed to discredit them? That could only have helped our Mayor by pressuring Councillors.
Perhaps I’m wrong but it seemed to me reasonably clear that the purpose of the meeting was to show us how wonderful the new Greenlink plan was, point out all of the errors that the DRIC engineers were making and then have Eddie give one of his patented speeches telling us why only he could save us from disaster.
Of course, after that was done, one of the sycophant Councillors would remarkably have a Resolution ready giving Eddie everything he wanted. Naturally, the Procedural Bylaw rules would have to be waived so that this Motion could be passed and of course it would be, presumably unanimously so that the façade of Council unity could be kept. Of course, it also meant that Eddie would be able to shove the Resolution in the face of a Councillor if he/she decided to change his/her vote down the road.
Moreover, since the meeting was so structured that delegations could not appear, then there would be no negativity and everything would be just the way our Mayor wanted. Even a Councillor opposed to all of this would he be hard-pressed to dare break the unity of Council and face the wrath of Gord in the Saturday Star for destroying Windsor. Just ask Councillor Halberstadt what that is like at the time when he used the “C” word.
The purpose then was to use Son of Greenlink as another stall tool just the way the Schwartz report was used initially, then full tunneling and then Greenlink. All of this for reasons unknown rather than creating 15,000 high-paying jobs in Windsor.
Obviously though something has gone wrong. Whatever it is was so important that it caused Postponement of the Meeting.
Perhaps, Eddie has won. The Feds especially after the election and the Province may be so intimidated by him that they have knuckled under and are giving him everything he wants. Naw, I don’t think so. The one to be intimidated would be our Mayor if the Senior Levels told him that they would pull out of town and take the jobs with them. Economic meltdown and all of that so that the billions for the border aren’t here anymore.
Perhaps a major error has been found in the work of the Greenlink team or perhaps they are refusing to do some of the things that they are being asked to do so that the Presentation doesn’t work properly. Better to postpone than to look foolish.
Or what about this, as extraordinary as it may sound. The Councillors have gotten some guts. Perhaps Eddie does not have the votes necessary to achieve whatever it is that he wants to accomplish at the Meeting. Perhaps he’s been told that there is no interest in threatening litigation anymore but rather that a resolution of the issue needs to be achieved and needs to be achieved now.
Perhaps Eddie has been told that he may no longer be the Voice of Council if he keeps acting in the manner that he has been conducting himself for so long. It may well be that some of the Councillors were offended by what happened at the Joint Councils meeting with respect to the Manning Road issue.
Eddie is just as aware as I am about March, 2003 and dares not have a vote at Council in public that he might lose. Once that happens, then his control over Council is gone and he will not be able to use the border issue as a hammer to try to keep Council unified and to keep the Councillors under his thumb.
I also heard that there were some angry citizens around who also knew how to read the Procedural Bylaw. They were going to register as delegations and confront the way the meeting was going to be carried on. They had figured out a way to appear in front of Council even at a Special Meeting that just dealt with a Presentation.
From what I have heard, their speeches would not have been too pleasant but rather confrontational. It would not have been something that Members of Council would like to hear nor would the Members of Council like to have members of the Public watch it live on Cogeco either.
Anyway, the meeting is postponed. Until when, who knows. Just another fun day in in camera Windsor.