Here is a submission as received from Lutz Becker on what has been known as Clock Park but which might now find itself tagged with a new name.
The “TROJAN HORSE” a reality for Wolfville?
Lutz E. Becker
During the Council meeting on January 18, 2010 the motion for the transfer of the Clock Tower property from Irving to the Town was carried by a majority of Councillor votes.
Councillor Keith Irving and Councillor Jim Laceby voted against the motion. Both expressed their concerns at the table due to the fact that the actual risks involved were not assessed by the Town or a neutral expert/specialist. All other Councillors and the Mayor seemed to rely on a letter from the Department of Environment & Labour to Irving Oil Ltd. dated November 19, 2007 and stating that “no further remediation is required on this site” while it can be used as a PARK.
The Department letter reads as well that no responsibility by the Crown and/or its employees will be taken “because of any matter arising out of the acknowledgement of remedial activities completed on this site” and that “the Department has not supervised the work undertaken at the site” and that it does not assume any responsibility or liability for the work done. Councillor Keith Irving tried to make it clear to the Mayor and his fellow Councillors that such a letter is useless and cannot serve as a basis for such an important and perhaps dangerous decision for Wolfville residents.
When Deputy Mayor Simpson spoke a second time like during the Jan. 04-meeting about a generous gift from Irving and that it would be an advantage and benefit to the Town, I felt the urge to find a bucket again. In the early January meeting he had called the property transfer a “gift horse” which reminded me of the siege of Troy which eventually was destroyed after accepting the gift of the “Trojan Horse”. Deputy Mayor Simpson may not understand the content or meaning of this ancient story or being unable to learn from the past.
For Irving the transfer is obviously a winning situation. It won’t have to pay the yearly property taxes which amount at the moment approximately $11,000.00. Furthermore, it will not have to maintain the “park” any longer.
What will the Town and the Wolfville tax payer “win”? A loss of the yearly Irving taxes plus non-assessed potential risks for future generations to come.
Congratulation Mr. Mayor and Councillors!
Is this your idea of responsible governing?
And under the assumption that we really need an additional park the Town Administration will have to spend tax payers’ money to maintain this park.
The $125,000.00 allocated for years to the “Trojan Park” in the Reserve Funds can now be used for Mayor and Councillors are unable to find any other and more important uses for this money.
The agreement between the Town and Irving has not been made public. Irving wanted to keep it confidential. The public was not involved or even asked prior to this “done deal”. So much for the strategic goal of public participation!
A FOIPOP request is on its way to make the agreement public knowledge.
Wolfville mothers: Would you like your children playing at the “Trojan Park”?
This item and the post which preceded it by David Daniels are published in the January 2010 issue of the Mud Creek News