Monday, April 30, 2012

Let the contest begin

I guess someone has to start the worst street for potholes in the city.  I am nominating 1) 8th Street between Lorne Avenue and Sask Crescent West, 2) the road from Sask Crescent West and 8th Street  to Taylor, 3) Taylor Street from Sask Crescent West to Lorne Avenue.  You can't even dodge the potholes and washboard on these roads, although I noted several vehicles veering into on-coming traffic lanes attempting to avoid them. I'm not even sure these can be fixed by the pothole patrol they are so far gone.

A few years back, before this provincial government started putting money into our highways, many felt the broken down secondary highways would be better if they reverted back to gravel.  I'm starting to think the same about some of our city streets.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Burping history?

Wow, today we acknowledge the 30th anniversary of Grant Devine's election as our Premier.  Was it really that long ago?

And we are still paying for the excesses of that era.  According to Murray Mandyrk's column (SP Apr. 27/12) this year's interest on provincial debt is $400 million dollars.  Ouch!  We have paid a lot for that spending era in terms of taxes and loss of services.

Does anyone else see this history be repeated today with our civic government?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

In with the old or out with the old?

I agree with Gerry Klein's column today (SP Apr.26/12) in that Henry Dayday will make this year's civic election interesting.  I also agree that folks who are concerned with the spending in this city by the current civic government should put pen to paper to voice those concerns. 

We should have debate whether Saskatoon's priorities should be more world class facilities - or repair, maintenance and replacement of our basic infrastructure needs.  The recent short-term closure of the Broadway Bridge  will hopefully increase  the awareness of the need for a full-service river crossing as opposed to a cyclist/pedestrian crossing that can double as another festival/market venue.

No matter how creative your accounting skills, this city is in huge debt and planning to increase it.  When the time comes and millions of dollars are needed in the city centre areas for 100-year old underground sewer and water repair and /or replacement, how will it happen when our credit is used up?  Or does a water treatment plant, driveable roadways and underground infrastructure count as world class facilities? 

Although I look forward to the next several months, I do so with some angst as I suspect the cheap politics may override discussion on the real issues.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

This cat came back

I'm back from a month long tour in Asia.  And it appears that I am not the only cat coming back.  Former Mayor Henry Dayday has announced his candicacy for the next civic election.  We will have a race rather than a cornation.  More on that later.

Slowly folks are coming out of the woodwork to challenge incumbents.  Most disappointing for me were the articles on Sean Shaw's purchase of his opponent's domain name.  I know he has apologized and is now willing to transfer those rights to Troy Davies, but it does speak to character.  Although I don't always agree with Shaw, I have come to enjoy his perspective on issues and thus my disappointment.  I thought better of him.

It didn't surprise me that Councillor Darrren Hill thought this move was a great election strategy.  Hill has pushed the envelope on every election he has participated in. But I think his character has already been established - win at any cost.

It will be an interesting year.