Originally Published on July 24, 2019
I felt it necessary to issue a statement given the recent and ongoing issues at City Hall. It's embarrassing, disappointing and concerning.
I agreed to run for Council because I truly felt there was a lack of leadership, accountability or a vision for our future. I believed many have lost faith in all levels of Government along with our leaders. Then today we received more evidence of concern and potentially bigger issues at City Hall.
Let's look at the facts. We've lost our best traffic & transportation engineers, the City assessor left (retired), our CAO left, we have no City solicitor, the director of community services left and today we learned the chief planner is leaving. Either a number of building inspectors or PP&D staff (nobody will provide accurate details) were fired or left on their own and a male staff member who left the City told media he did so because of the TOXIC environment. The police chief is scared and Firefighters are sounding alarms. Crime is up every year for the last five years. We're out of money which is concerning as the City is close to it’s debt ceiling. We can't seem to clear snow on sidewalks properly, Transit Plus is failing, and Transit may or may not go on strike.
The uncertainty in the City is having an impact with several businesses that have fled to the capital region, coupled with the fact that single-family home starts in the 1st quarter of 2019 for Winnipeg have dropped compared to 2018. However, in the surrounding RM's they’ve grown in comparison.
Internally we say, "we’re collaborative, fiscally responsible, open and transparent", but I won’t say that because I don’t believe it. I believe our system is broken; can you say it’s working? We’ve followed the same system during the tenure of many Mayors including Glenn Murray, Sam Katz and Mayor Bowman. Maybe it’s time to change the system.
People only jump ship when they see that it is sinking. No leadership, no collaboration, and no responsibility is taken. That is a massive hole in our ship. I would launch an immediate review of our internal leadership, management, programs, and systems, similar to a Zero Based Budget Review, which we desperately require.
I'm disappointed, frustrated and I must apologize to you. I apologize because you deserve better. It's your money, it’s your City and we work for you.
I believe we can do better and I won't stop working #ForABetterWpg
Kevin E Klein