Wascana Calls Back

I took a call from Wascana’s CEO who explained their position on spending $193000 to expand the parking lot[PDF] at Candy Cane Park. Their view is more cars that already park illegally on the street will use it, and as a result kids will be safer because they won’t run out between illegally street-parked cars, presumably.

Can’t say that’s how it will work, I said “mark my words, there will still be spill-over onto the street, and more cars overall”. She had to concede at busy times, that’s how it will go. It’ll take more than my voice to end this #strandedasset project. Oh, it also increases runoff by replacing soil with pavement, reducing the water quality in Wascana Creek.

It’s 2017, and if we don’t limit air pollution quickly, our kids will have a rough go of things. Putting a dollar more into auto infrastructure before cycling and pedestrian infrastructure makes kids less safe, not more.

On the upside, Wascana is putting some trails through the arboretum near Wascana Rehab and Hillsdale St.

Also they will now consider manually clearing Broad St. Bridge which wasn’t being swept clear of snow like everything else the last two Winters. I explained that the City of Regina builds nothing for cyclists, so it’s really up to Wascana Centre to provide cycling infrastructure for Reginans.

Added two more important points:

#YQRcc Thinks You Need No Additional Rights

Our City Council is being awfully stingy with your rights. They don’t think you should have a right to a clean environment, so are delaying a non-binding commitment to support the Blue Dot movement calling for a Canadian constitutional change. They are literally more concerned with the supposed costs to the City, than about your health and safety.

Regina members of the Blue Dot movement, which is seeking to get the right to a healthy environment added to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, are frustrated by delays at City Hall and councillors wanting more information on what they consider a no-brainer.

Six months after the local chapter of the Blue Dot movement called for such action, and for the city to pressure the provincial and federal governments to recognize this right, too, administration has reported back that it wants to do more research on the matter.

“At this point, what further information is needed?” asked Blue Dot organizer Kelly Husack at Wednesday’s executive committee meeting, stressing that the declaration is non-binding.

She added that “one should not pretend this motion matters to Regina City Council if it does not.”

It doesn’t matter to most Councillors, obviously. And that is shameful for Regina.

Friend Jim on Radio for Heroic Water System

Consider that Regina and area is prone to droughts that can last more than a decade. The last century has been mercifully wet.

Jim Elliott’s living off the Regina water grid in Broder’s Annex. He’s buying drinking water (brought by cargo bike), but his other water needs are met through efficient rainwater use.

Wascana and Upper Qu’Appelle Watershed #WUQWATR

The group taking responsibility for the safety of Regina and area’s watershed, met last week at the Wascana Centre.

I went to the meeting to learn about the group, and present an idea for municipalities to require more greywater use in new homes.

Continue reading

Back To Blue Dot

Adding to earlier discussion about the Blue Dot movement’s appearance at City Council last month, there’s an article by Fingas in the Leader Post.

Paul Dechene also unloads on Council’s hypocritical messages sent by their focus in the meeting.

…our city council postponed signing onto a declaration saying that a healthy environment is a human right because they needed to get a report from administration about the possible implications from being party to such a declaration. You know how it is, signing on to a non-binding feel-good doc like that isn’t something you leap into recklessly.

…fleet additions he argued against.

Too late.

No Environment? No Problem. Blue Dot Doesn’t Sway #YQRcc

There are times when I get very disappointed with our City Council about their lack of leadership and failure to do the right things. Instead of passing Councillor Fraser’s motion to recognize a healthy environment and please the citizens involved with Blue Dot, the Council deferred the question to the City’s lawyers and financial planners. It’s obvious who really runs this city, isn’t it?

Councillor Hawkins dares to make this unfounded claim:

The gall to claim that, while delaying unequivocal support of the Blue Dot message, is staggering, frankly.

Apparently the legal and financial ramifications of Blue Dot are paramount, while the environmental considerations take a back seat for the majority of Regina’s Council. This isn’t the case in at least some other Canadian municipalities.

In October 2014, Richmond was the first city to adopt the Blue Dot Declaration, and since then, more than 100 other municipalities have done so.

Surrey has now joined that list and according to the group, there are more than 1,000 supporters of the Blue Dot petition in the city.

Meanwhile, south of the border…
Flint, Michigan had its water supply poisoned by decisions of municipal and state politicians to ignore and then cover up unsafe water being used in their pipes. It’s clearly a crime to poison a city with lead in their water. Society has agreed it’s a crime because it makes people sick, and suffer to deprive them of potable water. It was a crime justified by “financial considerations”.

UPDATE:

#EatThinkVote Event A Success

The tables were full of people, and full of delicious free organic food too, at the Eat Think Vote forum for candidates this evening at the Core Ritchie hall. (The event had to wrap up at 8:30 for floor hockey at 9pm.)

After, I got to speak briefly with Della Anaquod of the Liberals, Ralph Goodale (Lib), Tamela Friesen (Green), and Erin Weir (NDP). There was a Libertarian candidate there, and others of each party except the Conservatives. It’s so disrespectful of the Conservative candidates to shun non-partisan campaign events such as this one, which help raise the level of discourse and idea-debate during an election campaign.

I asked Della why she didn’t speak with Ralph, and she said that in 8 minutes it was thought Ralph would be able to get across the Liberal’s points the best. The NDP used this strategy too. The three Greens all spoke well though in their allotted time.

Next political campaign event that you should plan to attend in Regina is Sept 29th: