Howling at the Moon – Decisions, decisions.

Filed under: Opinion |

by Sylene Argent

Nobody has ever said being a decision-maker was easy. No matter what, the resolve upon which a local dignitary arrives will never satisfy every one, which could create some tension or heat.

For many decision-makers, a lot of research and advice-seeking is done before making a public stance. And, once a decision is made, the often just-as-difficult work of defending that position begins.

I think the correct decision was made on Monday evening when the majority of the current Council members voted to move forward with a by-election in Ward 3.

The remaining Council members did have a difficult decision to make on the situation. Though appointing a rep for Ward 3 would have been quicker and cheaper, I am always a fan of letting constituents have their say.

Yes, this comes with a cost, of course, and there is going to be added stress on the Town staff, too.

It is estimated the by-election could cost around $15,000, but we did learn there will be cost-savings of not having a Councillor sit at the decision-making table until likely November.

Councillor Steve Bjorkman was in favour of appointment at the regular Council meeting on July 17, and not necessarily through results of the 2014 election, but possibly through a selection process that could be spurred on through interested individuals of that area putting their names forward. His fear was that a new rep would not be voted in until after the majority of decisions are made for 2018 budget-wise.

I get why Bjorkman brought this up, and this demonstrated great thinking ahead. I’m just not convinced it would be the fairer route.

Though not everyone will be happy with this process, I think it was the right one to make. It was the most democratic and transparent way to handle a tricky situation. Is it a perfect solution? Of course not, nothing is perfect.

Would Council have appointed the same person to be elected at a cheaper rate with less stress on staff?

Possibly. No body has a crystal ball, however. It is best to leave the process in the hands of the voter.