As I explained to a very helpful anonymous commenter to my earlier TWACH post, I’ve been prematurely operating under the assumption that it is already March. So, when I sat down yesterday to write my TWACH, I didn’t bother to check the February list of meetings. “February is so last month,” I was thinking and thus completely missed the fact that there’s a city council meeting tonight. February 28. I mean, I had an inkling that there should be a meeting right about now and when I didn’t see one on the schedule — the March schedule — I thought it was a little weird. But I let it slide because…. well… in my defense, I was a little… erm… hungover yesterday.
There. Now you know the whole, sordid truth.
But, clearheaded this afternoon, I submit for your approval, the lowdown on tonight’s council meeting….
Monday, February 28
CITY COUNCIL MEETING (5 pm): Clearly the Coronation Park Community Group, their friends and associates, didn’t read my previous blog post about their submission to the December 8 meeting of the RPC. My recommendations from back then in short: Indiscriminate use of bold, all-caps, underlining and variable font sizes make you look like a raving, paranoid loon.
Sorry. Please don’t shoot the messenger. It’s just true.
A corollary: when making a submission to city council, you might want to keep your page count in mind. Council reports are distributed to the public and to city councillors on the Friday before the Monday meeting. So, when you and your associates drop 189 pages on the clerk’s office, you’re expecting your audience — which includes lazy reporters like yours truly — to digest all of that in about three days. And, they’ll also have to read all the other stuff on the agenda.
So, in the case of tonight’s council meeting, that adds up to a grand total of 332 pages. That’s worse than forcing someone to read the first third of a Pynchon novel over the weekend — it has all of the tedium and technical language but none of the lyrical genius.
I haven’t had a reading assignment like that since grad school.
And while you may think that by providing nearly 200 pages of argumentation that you will impress people with your thoroughness and convince them that you are Very Serious Indeed, they will only be more convinced that you are a raving, paranoid loon. And that will not win you any friends.
In other words, concision is your friend. And with a friend like concision, you can make more friends. (Again, don’t shoot the messenger.)
I should note, I am not saying that anyone presenting before council tonight is a raving, paranoid loon — not in this post — I am merely trying to be helpful. (And hopefully, stave off having to read this much in future.)
Anyway, tonight, council will be considering the case of an application to build seniors housing and some affordable housing in the Coronation Park neighbourhood. The surrounding community is not amused and is coming out tonight in force to express their displeasure.
Oh, there’s other stuff on the agenda, but the media will be coming out to see the fireworks over this item. It should be a very interesting meeting.
Also up for consideration: Skyview Subdivision Phase II, appointments to the Regina Airport Authority, ratification of the transit union collective agreement, recommendations for the 2011 Regina Municipal Heritage Awards, changes to the discharge of firearms bylaw and changes to the public spaces bylaw to deal with encroachments.
There are also motions! Motions aplenty!
Councillor O’Donnell is taking several pages from the National Infrastructure Summit and asking admin look at ways to use waste water creatively (think, as an energy source and as a source of gray water for industrial uses); to look at emerging paving technologies; and, to look at changing the budget time frame so that we don’t have to go through a budget process every year. (Personally, these were some of the best suggestions to come out of the NIS, I hope admin takes them seriously and we see some movement on them.)
Councillors Clipsham and O’Donnell are also asking admin to look into the feasibility of running transit service out to the Global Transportation Hub.
And that’s it. You can read the entire, monster-sized agenda on the city’s website. And I think I can guarantee that tonight’s council wrap-up will be worth coming back for.