Ken Grant’s answers are:
3. Support Full Independent Audit
I would fully support a full financial audit. Unfortunately I believe without a full audit we may never know “why or where” the money was spent. For them not to do an audit shows disrespect to the residents. The big question that I keep hearing is “What are they hiding?” We have some insight on what went wrong from the recent financial review but it still doesn’t answer all the questions that residents want and deserve to know. I believe the new council should continue to pursue for those unanswered questions while they continue to implement the 41 recommendations brought forward by the financial review. Financial restraint will be the key to recovery for Amherstburg.
4. Increase Time To Study Agenda
I agree council has a large amount of information to digest before each meeting. I would like to see council receive their packages at least 5 days prior to each meeting. This will allow each member of council to digest the information and do any inquires and/or research on a particular agenda item. Being fully informed would allow the meetings to be productive, transparent and educated decisions. To change this process would have to be a collaborative agreement amongst all council members.
8. Curtail Spending; Pay Debt; Reduce Budget
Getting the debt under control should be on of the most important accomplishments of this town council while to continue to move our town forward. Council must look at the root causes of debt and high taxes. Council needs to provide better service and more accountability, that means greater corporate stability. I would like to see a “pay-as-you go” approach to spending and a zero-based budgeting process. Applying these principles could make a significant difference in spending while continuing to provide the basic infrastructure and core services. At this moment I would refrain from answering whether I would eliminate jobs before I do my due diligence. I will support to re-examine the town’s administration and town services to ensure the effective, efficient and safe delivery of our municipal services. I would support asking each department to prepare a base budget, every line of their budget will be analyzed and approved separately for its needs and solid cost. Further cuts may be inevitable if the total department budget is not satisfactory. But keeping in mind that there is a basic core service that resident expect and deserve.
All answers to date are also on the candidate answers page.