The mayor’s newsletter

Another e-mail from another resident. [It’s nice to be getting more residents’ attention and opinions expressed here these days!]
Larry Lynch questions, as we did, the timing and content of the recent glossy Town “publication” -i.e. the mayor’s newsletter. We copy below his mail to us in full with his permission [format may differ from the original].

Have you read the Mayor’s (fall 2008) snooze letter? My first observation is that it’s so, well, timely. With the municipal election just around the corner what can it be other than a campaign leaflet for the mayor’s benefit.

Let me ask, how much is Mr. Stead contributing to the publication and mailing costs? This information really must be made public and I challenge him to do it now, right now. What were the total costs and how much did he contribute? The leaflet is, it appears, an expensive three colour production and the reporting is so one-sided as to render it useless and a waste of money as a balanced information source for the residents. But they were the ones to receive it in the mail.

I would like to know how much the leaflet cost including its distribution and how much the mayor contributed, because again, it is titled The Mayor’s Newsletter. I happen to know the councilors were not even consulted. It’s an expensive promo issued for election purposes with significant facts omitted and I want to make it clear that I object that any of my taxes should go to paying the cost, this waste of money which so clearly intends to aid the candidacy of Mr. Stead.

If no appropriate contribution has been made to the costs, and publicly declared, then the leaflet is just more proof that the leadership of the town doesn’t value the term “prudent spending” nor does it understand the term “moral example” nor how to find and then draw the line between one’s own election promotion costs and the public purse.

I said above that reporting in the “newsletter” has been one sided. Just look through the long glorifying section on the MPS. Do you see any mention of the stealthy run on by-laws relating to R-1’s homes, particularly Mr. Zimmerman’s last minute attempt to slip something through when all the R-1’s had already left a key meeting with the feeling a commitment had been given? Thank goodness that outrage was stopped.

Do you see anywhere any comment in the Mayor’s Letter about the strong objection of R-1 residents to the proposed by-law changes which adversely affect the value of the single biggest investment of a life time of hard work and savings? The mayor certainly thought the R-1 protest was significant. He said the fabric of the town had been torn. But nothing was mentioned in the newsletter.  All I saw in the leaflet was sweetness and light.

Too much like an election brochure, right?

Larry Lynch, Wolfville resident and taxpayer

We wanted to include a link to this town publication here so those who might not have received one would understand why Mr. Lynch might be upset and we were going to suggest to residents that they express their feelings about it (pro or con)  on the new Town website which allows comments for some material they have posted there, but alas the latest newsletter is not available via the website. There is a link to the spring newsletter [we challenge you to find it – we finally did after considerable casting around] but the link doesn’t work -it leads to this page which says:

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And there is no option to comment there. We will be charitable. Perhaps the webmaster is working on it as we speak.
There are lots of questions to be asked about the newsletter beside this one of insensitive timing, some of which we here at ww have asked before. Such as: Does a town this size need one? If so could it be included in our tax bills instead of being distributed separately? Need it be in colour? Who writes it? Is the content vetted by Council or just the mayor? etc. etc.

One response to “The mayor’s newsletter

  1. Heck, I’ve got a better idea — send the newsletter and forget about the tax bill.

    Seriously, why not have all matters that will be voted on by Council posted on a Council blog site before decisions are made (think of it as a more accessible Community Circle). Frankly, I’d be pleased not to hear from the present Mayor — but things might get better….