Do Straws Really Break Camel’s Backs?

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THUNDER BAY – There are some issues which generate a great deal of interest from our readers. One is the decision by City Council to allow extra residential lots between River Terrace and the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre.

For many in the neighbourhood, that decision by Council may well be the straw that broke the camel’s back. Readers have shared with NNL that the decision is, in their view one of many that this Council has made which will determine their voting decision this fall.

At issue is the approval by Council of a request from the property developer to take land between the homes and the hospital and put in another row of homes. Residents believe that the loss of the natural buffer will make their neighbourhood far noisier than it should be.

Council in making the decision seemed to side with the developer over the home owners. In doing that, during an election year, there are likely several hundred voters who will no longer vote to re-elect any of the Councillors who voted against the residents.

It’s a gutsy move by Council and the Mayor, during an election year. It either suggests that Council is taking a stand that they truly believe is right, or, as many residents say, that Council has become a little too far removed from their main task of representing residents.

Can several hundred votes make a difference? That may well be the question. Election math is an interesting science. An elected representative that won by 1000 votes actually only needs to lose 501 votes to have their previous margin of victory erased.

There are a number of issues which, in a city that increasingly seems hungry for change may make a major impact on the voting results this fall.

Add up the residents in River Terrace with those in Neebing Ward concerned over the proposed wind farm and the election math is adding up to possible change.

Sometimes it is not the biggest issues, but rather the straw that broke the camel’s back that makes the real difference.

Will those issues make for a “perfect political storm” this fall? All I can suggest is to stay tuned.

That of course is just my opinion, and as always, your mileage may vary.

James Murray

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