Monday, March 12, 2012

Guest Editorial by Jim Schwartz

The agenda for the next council meeting is very typical of any Council
agenda I've ever seen.
Having served on 3 previous councils I have seen a fair number of agendas.
Up until now I have never understood how or why Council meetings are
so boring and so much time is spent debating ridiculous agenda items
at the expense of the real things that need doing and that really and
truly are the 1st business of the district council.
Nor have I understood up until now that there is another way or there
are other ways to conduct the business of Tofino without producing an
agenda that no one in their right mind could could possibly stay awake
through. Does someone do this on purpose?
Were it not for the relegation of the gas tax status to a barely
mentionable status I may not have taken the trouble to write anything
about doing anything differently.
It's just another painful boring time wasting brain mushing dumb agenda.
No one listens anyhow as many of my previous comments in the blog have
yielded nothing more than acrimony on behalf of anybody that could do
anything about anything.
Rather than watch another council, another group of dedicated
individuals who are sacrificing many many hours of their time and
energy for the alleged benefit of the public, I would suggest the
1. Delegate at least one meeting a month for nothing but
correspondence and delegations. And nothing else.
2. Immediately bring forth a meeting agenda addressing only water
sewer and infrastructure. (lets not waste anther sewer grant
3. Hold special meetings should there be issues arise that require a
concerted effort of council to deliberate and reason intelligently
together about any other things that demand their attention.
As far as I can see there is no plausible reason why agendas are
written as they are unless it is the express intention of anyone to
simply wear out the councils brainpower, attention span, patience,
determination, good spirit and energy. SO THAT NOTHING REALLY HAPPENS.
Doing things because they've always been done that way or that's the
traditional way of doing them isn't going to work in today's world.
I'm sick of it and I think the rest of us are sick of it, year after
year of watching the same dysfunctional activities take place in the
district council meetings.
It is the same dysfunction that brings intense frustration from most
of us who have to sit and watch common sense, altruism & goodwill go
down the twilight zone.
Common sense: sewer. water. infrastructure.
Goodwill: successful negotiation of disputes, the genial acceptance of
new business and new ideas including development and a face which says
how can I help you taxpayer investor tourists businessperson or
By goodwill I mean the perceived face of the municipal government, the
public's perception of what Tofino means and says to everyone out
there. And the people that read this blog includes me.
I don't mean our staff who are very helpful and friendly.
dysfunction: spending valuable time and energy arguing & discussing
festivals, special interests that have nothing to do with anything but
special interests, and the general and unspecific items that should be
dealt with by staff.
If a council was able to change from a paper hard copy mentality to a
paperless body, there's no reason that an agenda can't become something
efficient and meaningful without putting everyone to sleep.
All it takes is thinking differently than politics has to be boring
and adopt to a functional world.
The one that we all live in.
Most days.
Except Tuesdays.

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