Kirwan Vows To Restore Public Confidence in City Council


Date:                     October 14, 2014

To:                        Media

From:                    Robert Kirwan
                             Candidate for Councillor of Ward 5

Re:                        Kirwan Vows To Restore Public Confidence in City Council

When the new City Council takes office after the election on October 27 the first order of business I intend to propose is that we take immediate steps to regain the confidence of the general public. It is critical that residents of the City of Greater Sudbury have confidence in the people they have chosen to be their leaders, so in order to demonstrate our commitment we must hit the ground running.

I will propose that we take whatever action is necessary to make the Auditor General a permanent position with the City of Greater Sudbury; take steps to hire the office of the Ontario Ombudsman, and; hire an Integrity Commissioner. At the same time we must direct the Staff to come up with an urgent plan to adopt an Open Data policy for the City and be prepared to implement whatever arrangements are required to put this plan into motion.

We must then deal with the results of the Referendum Questions, regardless of the voter turnout. For any of the questions that receive a NO majority, we can simply allow the status quo to continue. For any questions where the majority is YES, we must be prepared to put the question to a motion and approve the decision of the voters.

I will be proposing that the City Staff return to Council with a proposed budget for 2015 that has a zero percent increase and be prepared to begin deliberations for the 2016 budget early in the New Year.

In addition I will be proposing that a full audit of the public transit service be completed by the end of March 2015.

Finally, I will be proposing that we conduct a full review of the policies with respect to the Healthy Community Initiative Fund and be prepared to decide on a manner of administering the funds that addresses the issues of accountability and transparency that have been identified by the general public. If we cannot come up with an agreeable and suitable policy, then the funds should be used elsewhere in the budget.

In my opinion, if we can at least take care of the items I have outlined above, the public will be able to see that the new council means business and is prepared to make some changes that have been requested by the voters of this city. Over time, the confidence level among residents in their municipal leaders will be earned back.

The thirteen members of City Council who are elected on October 27, 2014 have a lot on their plates for the next four years. Each month will be filled with new challenges and decisions can no longer be put off.  And it is clear that we need the support of our entire community if we are going to move forward in a positive direction during the next four years.

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