Amherstburg Police Services Board’s Decision Re Cheap Silver Police Retirement Badge

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Mayor DiCarlo confirmed that it was a Board decision to provide a cheap silver retirement badge to Sgt. Jim Saxon and he did anticipate it might be an issue. Nothing changed.

Two sets of badges were ordered – one in silver for all retiring officers in 2013/2014 and another in gold for everyone but Sgt. Saxon.

As of November 18, 2014, APSB members were John Sutton, Frank Cleminson, Pauline Gemmell and Wayne Hurst.

Also posted to bullyinginpolicing.com on the saxon page.

AMHERSTBURG LOSES ANOTHER SENIOR STAFF MEMBER

am800 reports another senior staff member leaves Amherstburg.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo has confirmed the town’s Manager of Planning Services Frank Garardo has resigned and has accepted a position with another municipality in the region.

“These things happen and you kind of roll with it and get on with the hiring process,” says DiCarlo.

Since last summer, roughly 10 staff members have departed from Amherstburg.

It Was The Week Before Budget

This original post is protected by copyright owner, Linda Saxon, the burg watch, and is not to be reproduced without permission.

It was the week before budget when all through the town,
No one was laughing, not even one clown.
The numbers were crunched, with precision and flair
But it was fruitless; the savings weren’t there.

The budget was presented, in a positive way,
Feedback was sought, in the form of a survey,
Who would listen? Who would care?
Surely cuts could be made somewhere.

Are rain barrels needed for the environment?
Of course, they are, says the government,
What about policing? What about that?
No, it’s too late; we’ve a 20-year contract.

The residents readied for impending doom
And waited for the meeting to begin on zoom,
There were no surprises, no good quotes
Taxpayers will react when they cast their votes.

Two Different Mayors, Same Mayor’s Message

This original post is protected by copyright owner, Linda Saxon, the burg watch, and is not to be reproduced without permission.

Mayor Wayne Hurst’s Message in Amherstburg’s Accessibility Plan from January 2013.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo’s Message in Amherstburg’s Accessibility Plan from 2017 but the date remained January 2013 and the mayor’s message was unchanged.

Municipal Election Stats 2018

The Association Municipalities Ontario (AMO) reported on the 2018 statistics:

  • The vast majority of councils are composed of five (5) members including the head of council.
  • representation of at large 59%, ward system 32%
  • incumbency rate 68% new
  • gender 73% male
  • voting method: 42.3% internet (only or optional) 26.6% paper only
  • voter turnout, 43% in 2014.

Amherstburg Chooses In Person Voting 2022

Zander Broekel, am800, reports that AMHERSTBURG COUNCIL STICKING WITH IN-PERSON VOTING FOR 2022 MUNICIPAL ELECTION.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, other municipalities have opted for contact free methods like telephone, internet or mail-in voting, but mayor Aldo DiCarlo says residents have made it clear they prefer to cast their ballot in-person.

“The obvious considerations are mail-in and internet voting as well, but it’s not as secure as people coming in and submitting a ballot right there,” he continued. “For municipalities who have used the internet, there’s been delays in vote counting and questions about the validity of the votes cast.”

Incomplete Committee Minutes Contrary to Accountability and Transparency

This original post is protected by copyright owner, Linda Saxon, the burg watch, and is not to be reproduced without permission.

Blank portions of Committee Minutes approved by council include:

AMHERSTBURG ACCESSIBILITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE: May 20, 2021, June 17, 2021, August 19, 2021, October 21, 2021

AMHERSTBURG ENVIRONMENTAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE: June 9, 2021, September 21, 2021

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ADVISORY COMMITTEE: October 7, 2021

HERITAGE COMMITTEE MEETING: May 13, 2020, June 24, 2021, August 12, 2021, September 2, 2021

INCLUSIVE COMMUNITY PROGRAM ADVISORY STEERING COMMITTEE: May 27, 2021, June 23, 2021, July 28, 2021, September 22, 2021, October 27, 2021

PARKS AND RECREATION ADVISORY COMMITTEE: May 12, 2021, August 18, 2021, September 8, 2021

SENIORS ADVISORY COMMITTEE MINUTES: May 11, 2021, August 10, 2021

ACCOUNTABILITY AND TRANSPARENCY POLICY Approved November 25, 2019:

Accountability, transparency and openness are standards of good municipal governance that enhance public trust and confidence. Through these measures, the Town will ensure, to the best of its ability, that all activities and services are delivered using a process that is open, accessible and responsible to its stakeholders. In addition, wherever possible, the Town will engage its stakeholders throughout its transparent decision making process.

Committee MINUTES 2021 are posted at an external site.

A Third Perspective – TVO Episode

This original post is protected by copyright owner, Linda Saxon, the burg watch, and is not to be reproduced without permission.

My opinion in response to the TVO episode featuring Richard Peddie and Lauri Brouyette, introduced as CO-CHAIRS of Thrive Amherstburg, is a third perspective.

It wasn’t clear if they were representing the group or speaking as independent investors. In response to Ashleigh Weeden’s comments, Ms. Brouyette said ‘We actually did bring in the community with us. We formed a group that we call Thrive and it looks at housing, it looks at healthy living, and everything that we want to be able to offer our community as a large group as a whole. Not just Richard and I. That’s not even close.’

An individual annual membership to join Thrive is $50.00. The THRIVE Board of Directors selected 9 placemaking initiatives and submitted White Papers to town council, one of which was Open Air Amherstburg, a contentious event that creates barriers to persons with disabilities when hair salons, banks, or the post office can’t be accessed due to street closures and almost 50% of the downtown businesses objected to.

I agree with Ms. Weeden: who gets to have a say is really important. Despite the input from persons with disabilities regarding the lack of on-street parking and public consultation of it, and the pleas of some retail establishments, Amherstburg town council will go ahead with Open Air again in 2022.

Richard Peddie’s and Lauri Brouyette’s Restorations On TVO

Richard Peddie and Lauri Brouyette, introduced as CO-CHAIRS of Thrive Amherstburg, appeared on the Restoring Rural Ontario TVO episode that aired December 8, 2021.

After Peddie and Brouyette promoted their restoration projects and shared the architectural history, Ashley Weeden, a PhD candidate in Rural Studies at the University of Guelph joined the panel, “I simply don’t believe in benevolent capitalists. It just doesn’t exist.” She shared her observations on outside wealth, colonialism and the focus on tourism and its largely cyclical benefits.

Peddie seemed peeved and countered her criticism with, “First of all, we’re not trying to look European” and “We’re also helping the town council think about what this town should do and reach out to be a better place to live for everyone.”

Brouyette’s answer, in part, was, “We formed a group that we call Thrive and it looks at housing, it looks at healthy living, and everything we want to be able to offer our community as a large group as a whole, not just Richard and I; that’s not even close.”

RelatedPeddie cash: What happens when a philanthropist tries to build ‘the best small town in Ontario’

Reality To Counter Accolades – Open Air

I would like to counter all the accolades with a dose of reality.

Shame on Anne Rota for recommending a report for adoption that omits compliance with provincial legislation.

Rota’s Report referenced under-utilized parking for employees but plans to continue offering those spots. However, the alleged under-utilized accessible parking in the King’s Navy Yard Park lot will be reduced. The rationale for this differentiation was unclear, until the council meeting when Ms. Rota stated this reduction would allow for a turn around to be created instead. Further, the plan is to add three accessible parking spaces in three locations at the outside perimeter.

Shame on council for approving a plan that fails to meet its obligation to consult with the public.

Mayor DiCarlo advised, in April 2021, the Amherstburg Accessibility Advisory Committee was not consulted with respect to Open Air Weekends and only one person with a disability was consulted in the design of the footprint.

It is mandatory, pursuant to O. Reg. 191/11: Integrated Accessibility Standards for the town to consult on the need, location and design of accessible on-street parking spaces and shall do so with the public and persons with disabilities as well as its Accessibility Advisory Committee.

My submission to members of council, prior to the council meeting, wherein I asked if the town would discriminate against persons with disabilities, quoted the provincial legislation regarding public consultation, and objected to the arbitrary placement of accessible parking spaces, especially in a distant perimeter, and accessible spaces that cannot be accessed due to road closures, was ignored.

Given council’s duty to represent the public and to consider the well-being and interests of the municipality, I must question the $90,000. taxpayer funded expenditure that creates barriers to persons with disabilities.

Commentary by Linda Saxon as published in the River Town Times December 1, 2021

Windsor Police Reject Freedom of Information Request

The Office of the Chief of Police Windsor has rejected a Municipal Freedom of Information Request for general records related to policing costs and service for the Town of Amherstburg.

There was no letter, just a Notice of Application Fee that highlighted, “Attach a copy of two pieces of identification.” The cheque with the appropriate fee was returned.

All the requirements of the provincial legislation were met:

Access Procedure Request

(1) A person seeking access to a record shall,

(a) make a request in writing to the institution that the person believes has custody or control of the record, and specify that the request is being made under this Act;

(b) provide sufficient detail to enable an experienced employee of the institution, upon a reasonable effort, to identify the record; and

(c) at the time of making the request, pay the fee prescribed by the regulations for that purpose.  1996, c. 1, Sched. K, s. 14; 2017, c. 2, Sched. 12, s. 6 (1).

An Appeal will be filed since provincial legislation allows institutions to request verification of identification for requests for personal information.