By Ross Ryder
In view of the upcoming municipal elections, I would like to provide a "Term in Review" of the present Carbonear town council. Since being elected in the last election this council, in my opinion, has done nothing to improve the Town of Carbonear. During this term they have spent our tax dollars unwisely and I will present some information that has been received by me from the town office.
Salary increases for office staff have increased considerably over this term with our town administrator receiving in excess of $80,000 and our director of operations receiving $72,000 annually. In addition, the number of office staff has increased also. These increases continue each year while other governments slash their budgets and spending in order to stay within their financial means. This information was received and paid for by my own funds.
Now it has been over a year since this same council implemented our famous “town logo” and as stated in a previous letter to this paper it is time for this council to let the taxpayers know how many new businesses were attracted to Carbonear because of this logo, which, by the way, cost the taxpayers $85,000.
Then there is the Targa race, which brought no revenue to the town whatsoever. Instead, it cost the taxpayers additional monies as town employees hastily prepared for this spectacular event last fall. We are subject to witness this event again this year at our expense.
Then there is the wasteless spending of our taxes to install cameras around town to catch hard-nosed criminals for dumping garbage around town. I ask, “how many did you catch and what penalties were imposed on these individuals for their actions?”
And for the greatest wasteful spending of our tax dollars let us not forget what these individuals did last October when they sent four individuals to Toronto to attend a convention of International Shopping Malls at a cost of over $7,500 from the coffers of the town hall.
These individuals were travelling in style, staying at the Royal York Hotel at a cost of $264 each, just for rooms. They sure know how to spend our tax dollars wisely. How many businesses were setting up shop in our town because of this visit? What a farce. Again, all of this information was received by me and I paid for this information myself.
In the meantime, the residents have to drive over the worst roads in the province while these elected representatives continue to spend our tax dollars as they see fit. People continue to complain about the road conditions, but their complaints go unheard.
I just want to remind the taxpayers of Carbonear that when they go to the polls on Sept. 24 to cast their vote, that they keep in mind the wasteful spending of this current council.
There are a number of good candidates that have put their names forward for this election and I commend them for doing so.
One thing for certain is that we will definitely have a minimum of two newly elected council members. Whether there will be more, will depend on you, the voter. Let’s get out and vote and send a strong message to this current council that we will not tolerate this spending nonsense.
I, for one, will do my part in this election.
— Ross Ryder writes from Carbonear