Candidate’s Ledger – Keith Hobbs

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THUNDER BAY – Once again I watched City Council debate the Horizon Wind farm Development. After having this issue take up much of the city’s attention over the past few months one thing appears abundantly clear: people agreed to this deal long before they should have. We have now spent a great amount of time on an issue after the contract has been signed.

Taxpayers should be asking why?

My intent today is not to debate this project in a letter to the editor but to point out that we need to do our homework before we sign on the dotted line. Some members of council are now suggesting this issue will become the responsibility of the next council: that should be unacceptable to all of us. We even get to hear other members try to blame the province or the company for an agreement City Council had full control over. That also should be unacceptable.

It has been interesting watching this take place. It appears that after area residents began objecting to this proposal, some elected officials began having second thoughts about a matter they had already supported. This is not how we should be doing business. I would enjoy discussing the Mayor’s current position versus her position when she supported the agreement but I cannot tell you what that is. This is not leadership.

Some in our community support this proposal. Some in our community are against it. No matter which way it proceeds now, some will be left unhappy but the time for a thorough debate was before we signed on the dotted line, not after. What risk is the city being exposed to if this project does not go ahead? Do we risk being sued if the project proceeds?

For years we have heard about the difficulty in doing business in our community. The way we are handling this matter would seem to support that assertion. How can we create an environment to attract new business, when we deal with issues in such a fashion? No matter what side of this project you may be on, how this matter has progressed has not shown our community in a positive light.

In the future, projects of this nature need to be thoroughly studied and debated in advance before committing to a course of action. I think that process would result in less time fighting amongst ourselves, and more time building the type of future we all want for Thunder Bay.

The old way of doing things must come to an end.

Keith Hobbs

Candidate for Mayor

Thunder Bay, Ontario

www.keithhobbs.com


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