Thoughts and Opinions On Today's Important Issues

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Windsor Tales

Here are some more thoughts for you.


A reader scolded me recently:
  • "You have been strangely silent on the contacting out of garbage-recycling."

Frankly, he is right. My defense is that I just couldn't be bothered. I know it is not a good one but that is how I felt.

There was no doubt in my mind what the result would be. How could there be considering what happened with the daycare workers and soon with the Parking enforcement officers.

Where you have a City Council that has to be re-elected based on an anti-Union campaign, there is not much point trying to convince them to do something else otherwise. The workers needed to develop a program to protect their position but I did not see anything that they did to help themselves.

Where you have a City Council that will not give its workers basic courtesy by deferring reports for a week or two so that they can properly either try and work out an arrangement to save daycare or to talk with the County Board or to investigate further into the supposed winner of a garbage RFP, then you know it is all a done deal.

Moreover, I have little respect for CUPE. It has let its members down terribly from its shameful handling of the bad faith claim against the City to its failure to take obvious steps that would have protected both the daycare workers and the garbage workers at least in the short term.

As you know, I have offered suggestions on here as to what they should consider but I've not seen any steps taken by the local leadership to suggest that they want to listen to anything that I have to say.

In the circumstances, there are a lot of other subjects for me to write about and so I have chosen to let this issue go and let others do the work about it.


Whew, it looks like Edgar (aka Eddie) may be a favourite with the Toronto media again. They must have forgotten about the disaster involving the near riot which forced the unfavorable settlements for taxpayers in both Windsor and Toronto with respect to the CUPE strikes.

Ooops, I forgot. We in Windsor believe that the hardliners won the strike.

  • "But Ford’s campaign manager Nick Kouvalis said Green spoke to a couple of city staff, including director of council services Winnie Li, telling them the Ford team was not permitted to have a campaign event in the square...

    No wonder Ford’s promises to protect the taxpayer are resonating with angry citizens.

    Despite Green’s best attempts to thwart the delivery — and the Toronto Star’s weak effort to divert the message with their “smear de jour” — Ford’s proposals respond very well to a public disenfranchised with City Hall.

    His Taxpayer Protection Plan will include opening the $1 billion in major city purchases and contracts to competitive bids and offering protection to those city employees who blow the whistle on waste, abuse and mismanagement of the public purse.

    “Taxpayers have the right to know they’re getting the best value for their money,” he said.

    “Too often ... too many purchases are negotiated behind closed doors without competitive bidding,” he added, pointing to the sole-source contract signed with Bombardier for $750 million in subway cars...

    Ford said he’ll be definitely be looking at contracting out garbage pick-up as well — following a decision by Windsor city council to do so earlier this week.

    Early Tuesday morning Windsor council voted 8-3 to award a seven-year contract to Turtle Island for 100% of its residential curbside garbage pickup. Pickup by the private sector, projected to save $8.9 million, will commence in the new year.

    No wonder Green attempted to shut down Ford on Wednesday."

Is that a Windsor boy who is Ford's campaign manager? If so, I guess there was no work here with no one running of significance yet for Mayor of Windsor.


What a coincidence that Ron McConnell is retiring now that the garbage collection may be outsourced to a private entity. He was one of the management people who was skeptical about private collection. It seemed as if Council was never given the opportunity to listen to what he had to say since more senior people made the presentations about the issue.

  • "Please join us in congratulating Anne Marie Albidone in her appointment to the position of Manager of Environmental Services...

    Anne Marie came to the Corporation in 1995 as a Plant Operator in the Pollution Control area. In 1998, she became temporary supervisor at Environmental Services and since 2005, held the position of Environmental Services Contract and Operations Administrator at Solid Waste.

    In her new capacity, Anne Marie will be challenged with the transition from public sector to private sector collection services and the reorganization of duties of various management staff in the Environmental Services area as a result of these changes."


I see that our Head of the Undevelopment Commission is flying over to England for a trade show. Flying overseas seems to be a tradition for the Undevelopment Commission people. England is so lovely at this time of the year.

However, I wonder how many jobs have been created by all of these wonderful trips.

He may as well go because I am not sure what he is accomplishing in Windsor considering that the Mayor is doing all of the development work without him:

  • "Mayor Eddie Francis returned from a one-day round-trip to Montreal Tuesday saying that progress had been made in an attempt to bring further economic investment to Windsor.

    "We continue to make progress, it was a very productive meeting but we still have two or three steps to complete before we can contemplate any type of announcement," said Francis. "I'm fairly confident it will continue to go well and that we can bring this investment to Windsor."

I see that the Vice-President still does the talking for the Commission.

  • "Our objectives in attending this show are quite simple," said WEEDC vice-president Patrick Persichilli, who will be at the show with CEO Ron Gaudet."

I love this comment as well considering that it is a taxpayer paid trip:

  • "And anytime you get an opportunity to put the Windsor region on someone's radar screen, it's priceless."

I'm shocked that the Mayor did not say so far if he is going over or is he because he's not going to be at the Council meeting I am told on July 26

  • "Attending trade shows of this kind is important if the Windsor area is to stand any chance of becoming a bigger player in the aerospace sector, said Mayor Eddie Francis.

    "It's something you have to do to open up and keep open channels of communication," said Francis."

The next Farnborough International Airshow will be held from 19-25 July 2010.

I should not be so cynical. I guess that they might be following up on the fabulous success with industry members, something we have heard nothing about, during the sessions at the Red Bull air races. You remember, I Blogged about the various sessions held.

Who knows, maybe there is something going on with respect to our air industry since Montréal is a centre of aviation in Canada.


One of my inside moles found this press release in a dumpster at City Hall. I guess someone forgot to shred it. It obviously was prepared for the hugely successful one day trip of Edgar (aka Eddie) to and from Montréal as discussed above:

  • News Release

    Mayor Achieves Huge Result for Windsor, Again
    (Except We Cannot Tell You About It)

    The Office of the Mayor announced today that the Mayor will have an announcement sometime in the future. This announcement has nothing to do with previous announcements of announcements.

    "I cannot give the taxpayers any more details about my trip. At the request of the investor, I cannot tell anyone, including councillors, what I am doing," said Francis. "I would like to thank the Windsor Star for planting this story despite the fact that no one, including many councillors, knew that I was out of town. The newspaper's continued support of me is appreciated."