Recount On The Agenda

SEPCIAL COUNCILMEETING will be held Tuesday, November 13 and yes, you read that correctly; the typos are contained in the agenda on the town’s link to an external site.

A petition was presented to the Clerk to hold a meeting “that was cancelled by Mayor Aldo Dicarlo, without any discussion or consultation with Amherstburg Town Council.”

A municipality may, by by-law, adopt a policy with respect to the circumstances in which the municipality requires the clerk to hold a recount of the votes cast in an election.

Council should have, but did not, adopt such a policy so now must deal with the consequences.

Town clerk, Paula Parker, attached her Report regarding 2018 Election Procedures, Results and Financial Impact of a Recount to the agenda.

The legislation includes references to ‘shall’ and ‘may;’ to summarize:

  • A recount shall be held when there is a tie;
  • A recount shall be held in accordance with a council resolution.
  • Anyone entitled to vote and has reasonable grounds for believing the election results to be in doubt may apply to the Superior Court of Justice for an order that the clerk hold a recount.

Parker concluded her Report with her belief “that the recount is not necessary and will only add additional budget pressures on the taxpayer in the future.”

Firstly, council decides whether it is necessary. Secondly, taxpayers paid for the most expensive in person voting method that excluded those residents unable to vote yet still saved $50,000.

If there are concerns about taxpayers’ dollars, shouldn’t we examine savings elsewhere? what about outside consultants? online engagement software/companies to conduct surveys? web design companies? public relations? charitable donations? fireworks? parades? and the highest budget item, policing costs? Who was concerned that we might have saved a million dollars annually with the OPP compared to approximately half that with Windsor Police?

A recount at approximately $25,000. is a small price to pay to quell any doubts and maintain democracy.

Amherstburg 2018 Election Results

The new council has been elected:

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo
Deputy Mayor Leo Meloche
Councillors, by votes:
Donald McArthur
Michael Prue
Patricia Simone
Peter Courtney
Marc Renaud.

It will be interesting to see if any of the votes for change will actually result in change.

Unfortunately, since Amherstburg elected a traditional voting method, the most costly and least accessible method, I was unable to vote. And, I’m not optimistic, given the town’s lack of commitment to improving accessibility, that people with disabilities will benefit from increased inclusivity.

In 2014, among then-candidate Aldo DiCarlo’s priorities were: A need for greater transparency, accountability and “Why aren’t we discussing everything openly?”

I wondered why during the 2014 to 2018 council term the council and Joint Police Advisory Committee met in camera to discuss the policing RFP and the Windsor takeover proposal.

I had hoped that with Leo Meloche’s financial acumen, he would have realized the savings through a Windsor Police takeover were minimal, laughable to some, and cost comparisons should have been examined.

Patricia Simone never answered questions about discrimination while she was an Amherstburg Police Services Board member, which I thought was ironic given her speaking about the discrimination allegations against Windsor Police.

I have no knowledge of the rest of the council.

Time will tell.