The Grind

If you actually want to see how your mayor and councillors earn their keep, you really need to tune into the council meeting where they debate and vote on the rate supported budgets for water and wastewater and solid waste. Yeah, I know. You’ve already tuned out. It is a grind. Not just for those watching but for everyone involved.

The thing is, it’s ultimately where a city lives and breathes. How much we pay for the water coming into our homes and the water and waste that leaves them. It ain’t pretty. It isn’t where political careers are made or flounder. Without it, however, little else matters. There’s no glory here. It’s the nuts and bolts of municipal governance.

How much do you think you should pay to have water to drink, to shower, clean your clothes and dirty dishes, to rid your house of bodily effluents and have your garbage hauled away weekly? A buck? Twenty? Fifty? Take a minute. Do the math. What do you pay to have cable TV and internet access?

We elect our local representatives on grand sounding platforms, respect for the taxpayers and such, but this is what it comes down to. The muck and goo of everyday basics. Nobody can emerge from that seeming majestic or noble. It’s dirty work but somebody’s got to do it.

Yes, ideology sometimes enters into it. This time around was no different. Too much time was spent debating the number of environmental days or if certain businesses should be allowed to ignore particular sewage bylaws. Unless we become more perfect beings, that is unavoidable.

Still, right and left, centre and fringe, had to wade through the minutiae and ingloriousness of how much we pay to flush our toilets and to have our garbage picked up and disposed of. We all should take a moment and give a tip of the hat to those we spend much of our time disparaging and denigrating. It’s a thankless task and, having spent nearly 8 hours watching it all unfold, not one you could pay me enough money to undertake.

impressedly submitted by Cityslikr

OK. So I Lied. I Mean, Misspoke.

“No posts this week. Guaranteed.”

Remember when we said that? Me neither. But just in case anybody out there misunderstood what we may or may not have written, what we said or meant to say was that there might not be (m)any posts here this week. Technically, that’s true. But today there is a post of ours over at the Torontoist. It’s really, really good. You should totally check it out.

Otherwise, just pretend we weren’t even here today. Like we said (or didn’t say), we may or may not be making daily appearances. You’ll just have to keep checking back to see.

As you were.

invisibly submitted by Cityslikr

Busy Times. Little Time To Post.

With a budget committee meeting today and council meeting Tuesday and Wednesday, there won’t be very much work getting done around here this week aside from some heavy Twitter output. Given the gathering storm clouds of proposed slashing and burning, I also thought it might be advisable to take some time, buckle down and put the finishing touches on Project 23 so that we can start putting pressure on our council members to do the right thing for the welfare of this city.

So it may seem quiet here for the next week or so but don’t be fooled by appearances. There will be much going on behind the scenes as we gear up for what’s going to be an ugly, ugly budget battle.

Do not despair. We have right on our side.

absently submitted by Cityslikr