Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Community Approach to Solving Community Issues - Part One

Good afternoon Regina!

I hope everyone is out enjoying the sunshine and warmth the past couple of days, after the long winter we had! I enjoyed a lot of it outdoors, and now took a break to relax indoors. Too much sun and heat isn't necessarily the best thing either!

So, the other day, someone brought up the subject of my apparent "personal hatred" for certain individuals in this City and certain organizations. For the longest time, I simply laughed this off as something that people just brought up to find something, anything, to complain about what I do. Then, I decided, okay I'll ask the question "Is this what you honestly believe?" I was shocked, to say the least, to see the legitimate responses from some folks that I did not expect to see the response from. With that said, I guess I need to really clear the air as to why exactly it is that I have certain feelings towards certain individuals, and understand that I hold no hatred in my heart for any individual or organization, I simply want to ensure that no one ever gets a "free ride" in life, especially when it's on the taxpayer's dime. If they want to screw people over on their own dime, as much as I can't stand it, so be it. Go for it. Just don't ever expect me to ever support you or your efforts until you realize what wrongs you are doing in life, and you have made amends for those wrongs.

First off, regarding the Fiacco family, probably one of the most misunderstood issues, perpetuated by them and their (extended) family, and continual harassment from those that choose to associate themselves with this family, for whatever reason, personal gain or whatever. I want to make this 100% clear, up until February 14, 2012, I had the utmost respect for Mayor Pat Fiacco, and thought the world of him. Yes, believe it or not, I looked up to the man. Many called me out for idolizing him, but I was of the belief that until I see with my own eyes what these others are seeing or have seen, I see no reason to not believe the public image that he was portraying. Or at least the public image that his polished PR team was portraying. I did not know who any of the other Fiacco's were, nor did I care. To me, he was Mayor Pat, 12 year Mayor of our great City. The one who could do no wrong, the one that changed the image of our great City from one of a dark and dingy, "smelly", City, to one that many folks were proud to call home.

February 14 came around, and at the time when I was planning to run for City Council in Ward 8 against Mike O'Donnell, Mayor Pat holds a press conference, assumably to announce he is running again. To the shock and awe of many, he announced that he was stepping down. (My personal views on this will be discussed in a later posting - which changed from this date to later in the campaign) That was when I realized that my passion for affecting change in a positive fashion might just have been given the Golden Opportunity! My wife and I sat down and discussed it long and hard, and within the next 48 hours, I had placed a phone call to Mayor Pat's office to request a meeting with him. Many from his "extended family" assume, incorrectly, that the only purpose of this meeting was to get his endorsement. While I agree that would have been nice, that was not the intent of this meeting, whatsoever. In fact, if they keep recordings of all phone calls to the Mayor's office, I would invite you to do a Freedom of Information request to listen to that very conversation. All I wanted to do was get Mr. Fiacco's feedback on what it was like to run for Mayor and be Mayor from both a personal and professional standpoint, and if there was any feedback he could provide to someone brand new on the scene, similar to how he was 12 years prior. I was not wanting that meeting to be anything more than simply more food for thought for my wife and I to consider.

Unfortunately, I didn't receive a response till many days later. In fact, it was two days after Michael Fougere announced his intentions to run, where also Mayor Pat announced his endorsement of him. Many say it was a given, I call it a premature decision, but a year later, it is quite obvious that this was his intent all along, for weeks if not months prior to that. Regardless of what you'd been fed through the Media up to that point, that was the reality of it. Unfortunate, but still, worth the meeting for his personal feedback, or so I thought. The Mayor's office called to tell me that my meeting would happen with him on March 7, 2012, which happened to be two days after my planned March 5 Press Conference. Over the next two weeks, my life was a living Hell. I had plans SET IN STONE to use the City Square Plaza for my "big announcement" and even had the approval (signatures and all) to bring my vehicle onto the Plaza for the announcement. Now, a year later, it's obvious to realize just why it was so important for me to include my vehicle. I was thrown roadblock after roadblock after roadblock by the City (the details are far too lengthy to get into in this blog post), and finally by March 1, 2012, I had enough. I decided to cancel my meeting with Mayor Fiacco, and told his office "If he wants to meet with me at a later date, he can, but the reason for my meeting with him is now pointless." - in other words, I had witnessed first hand just what that office was capable of (professional feedback) and what he thought of anyone daring to challenge the norm (personal feedback). 

There is much more I could go into right now, but that should be saved for a future posting. Suffice it to say, this was the beginning of my disgusting interactions with his Executive Assistant, Mr. Mark Rathwell, and still to that day, I didn't have a clue about any of the Fiacco family.

Have a great Regina day everyone!!

Stay tuned for Part Two - Discussing issues with the RPS and more!

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