Sunday, June 4, 2023

Responsibility Versus Rhetoric – Your Aurora Town Council

By Matt Maddocks. After the municipal election in 2010, do you ever check in on your elected representatives to see if they are living up to the promises and commitments they made while campaigning for Aurora Town Council? They have a responsibility.

It seems to me, that a certain few who occupy those honoured council seats are thumbing their noses at their original commitment to serve. Of the nine Aurora citizens who have been charged with the highest responsibility at the municipal level, there appear to be the same 2 or 3 who are working against, rather than for, the good of the town. Truly disheartening, is that this bad behaviour is still allowed to occur at the Aurora Town Council, now a full 2 years into the current term. It has been rightly stated that all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. For the rest of Aurora Town council to capitulate to this unprofessional conduct is not only an affront to the promise and oath each swore, but council as a whole is being tarnished by the silly petulant behaviour of a tiny group.

They have a responsibility.

Of prime example; the orchestrated mayhem that Cllrs Ballard, Gaertner, and Gallo brought to the debate over the recent notice board contract and tennis court issues (Aurora Town Council meeting Sep 11). While not an Oscar-worthy performance, it certainly appeared to be staged and rehearsed; designed for disruption rather than stewardship of the towns business.

“IT HAS BEEN RIGHTLY STATED THAT ALL THAT IS NECESSARY FOR THE TRIUMPH OF EVIL IS THAT GOOD MEN DO NOTHING.”

Credit to Cllr Mike Thompson, who did a fine job of challenging Cllr Ballard when the latter appeared to deliberately mislead the debate by cherry-picking sections of a staff report. Cllr Thompson stuck a pin into the balloon of Cllr Ballard’s hot air by insisting the councillor read the entire passage, and in doing so put the report into the proper, and quite correct, context. Odd too that Cllr Ballard would get his knickers in a knot over what he sees as a lack of council oversight regarding an efficiently-run staff project totalling $50,000 (the tennis courts), but at the same time is quite willing to hand over $500,000 of our tax dollars to a privately-run group with no oversight (the cultural centre). The hypocrisy is stunning.

Despite the best efforts of such small-minded councillors, it should never be forgotten that it is we, the voters, who will decide the future of our town and our lives in it. As concerned citizens we should be asking more of certain councillors, as their very position demands that they serve. If Cllr Ballard had displayed the same level of outrage over the lack of council oversight at the cultural centre as he did regarding the tennis courts, there may have been some measure of believability to his actions. But as it stands, his credibility is sadly lacking.

So how do we the citizens go forward as the true decision-makers in our town? Do you feel our current council are making decisions based on the good of the town and all of its citizens? Do you feel some councillors are making agenda-driven decisions that favour a select few at the expense of the majority? Are you surprised by the actions of some councillors who you felt were going to do the right things, and have now let you down?

Every week, our Aurora town council meets to make important decisions that will affect the lives of Aurorans for years to come. As such, every four years we owe it to ourselves to elect the best representatives we can, as we place our trust in them to help protect and enrich our lives. To gain some perspective for 2014, I encourage every concerned citizen to look to our current Aurora Town council to help decide what you want for representation, and just as importantly, to see firsthand what you don’t.

Matt Maddocks
Aurora, ON

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