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water and sewer plant

Do as I say, not as I do – The curious tale of Randy and Scott

Over at Cowboys for Social Responsibility, the author has commented on how a local council has reacted to Federal and Provincial interference in the planning of an important local infrastructure project.

Folks in Lanark County are well known in Eastern Ontario for their Back Off Government signs dotting farms and villages throughout the area. They aren’t too keen on politicians of any stripe – most of all, outsiders. In general, they find a home under the vermin-infested ReformCon tent hearkening to the small government rallying cry that is popular among their adherents.

Conservative MPP and former Ontario Tory leadership candidate Randy Hillier and his pal Tory MP Scott Reid have found themselves in some political difficulty at home by interfering in a Council decision on how to upgrade the local sewer and water system.

Hillier and Reid are proposing a make-shift and cheaper plan.

It’s an option doesn’t satisfy the township council or the district health unit. They say it doesn’t not address the sewage half of the problem or guarantee all residents potable water.

The Randy and Scott Show want to install filters on the pipes of affected households water pipes. Really? Why not just buy each household a jug of Javex?

Furthermore, they are calling for a community referendum to force the duly elected Council into changing their plans.

Whatever happened to Big Government butting out, Randy?

This is a really good example of how political this whole infrastructure thing has become.  It really hits the fan at the local level where the local councillors, by and large, honestly do want the best for their constituents and don’t try to play a partisan game. Yeah, yeah, I know that pork-barreling is part of the game regardless of the party in power.  But interfering in the local decision-making process has not been part of this dance in the past with other parties.

Remember how John Baird interfered in Ottawa’s transit plan?

I can relate to all of this.  While a municipal councillor in Ontario during the Harris years, I and my fellow Councillors were quite worried about saying anything that would piss off our PC MPP.  Don’t upset the apple cart or else that funding promised to upgrade the boards in the hockey rink? Well, that may just not happen.

Wink, wink.