In the mid-1980s, New Zealand was faced with an economic crisis, the incoming government had little choice but to bring in radical and far-reaching changes both at the macro and micro levels.
One important change was the requirement for all village, town and cities alike to implement GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) as well as complete reports available to citizens on all projects so that when you began comparing performance you were comparing apples to apples so to speak.
Saint John doesn’t currently have GAAP in place. Remember the Frontier Groups review of 133 cities in Canada (2008) that placed Saint John in last place in terms of financial transparency and accountability?
Perhaps if we were to have in place measures similar to those deployed in new Zealand at the height of their crisis we could avoid the following situation.
The attached is a correspondence forwarded to me by Brian Stone regarding the recently paved Brookview Cres on the West side that strongly suggests, anecdotally a lack of transparency and accountability.
Mayor Mel & Councillors. Attached are copies of my original email plus the 2 page reply to you from Bill Edwards.
For Mr Edwards to imply that I had some personal motive in raising this matter is beyond the pale.
I am proud of my reputation as an honest, forthright, straight shooter. I take grave exception to the questioning of my motives and the unfounded and wilful attempt to besmirch my character.
I am simply a citizen doing his duty and should not have to tolerate such treatment.
Be assured that, unless I receive a prompt & unequivocal apology & retraction I will not hesitate to pursue this matter legally.
That is probably right because they know it is a waste of time. When was the last time any member of city management was ‘disciplined.’
4. If the criteria for a full repaving job on Brookview Cres was that, as Mr Edwards states, it had‘deteriorated to such an extent that pedestrians were subject to tripping hazards,’ this would apply to 90% of the roads in the city.
Most of them are significantly more highly travelled by the general public than this purely residential street. It strikes me that the major hazards that occurred was from the residents’ falling over themselves to thank Mr Thibodeau, as he has been prone to brag about to all and sundry.
5. I have it on good authority that this street was way down on the paving priority list and due to have some patching work, but was suddenly raised to the top and totally repaved. (This, I am sure, can be substantiated by looking at the records)
6. I am quite aware that the city has over 600 employees, incl management. I never suggested that all work done to the roads on which they live is ‘innapropriate.’ That would be stupid. Doesn’t that, in fact, attach more credence to the concerns in this particular case.