Watts circle talks around key election issues.

Kelly Sinoski recently sat down to chat with Ms. Watts about the million dollar boondoggle new city hall that opponent Ross Buchanan has called for an immediate halt, reveal and review on, in light of the city taking on $100 million dollars in debt over 30 years to pay for it, by way of passing a bylaw with no public consultation to do so.

It is quite interesting that when Kelly asks Ms. Watts how the city is paying for the city hall in particular, Watts dodges the question by talking about the potential lease income for the old city hall and other revenue streams that are already part of the budget.

She does not just admit the city is taking on $100 million in debt to pay for this, with interest over thirty years, nor does she address the lack of any public consultation.

Watts also sidesteps with considerable skill, the talk of an incinerator in Surrey, of which a representative from Aquilini Renewable Energy already confirmed to the Leader was under consideration for a property in Campbell heights that they held an option  on, for some time. That option recently expired, but Watts has now taken the stance that it was not an incinerator that was talked about with Aquilini, but a Waste to Energy facility… a fancy term for an incinerator, among other items. All in contradiction to not just one council members statements,but several, and in contradiction to metro Vancouver spokesperson Bill Morrell who clearly stated that Surrey had expressed an interest in hosting an incinerator.

http://www.vancouversun.com/videos/news/video.html?embedCode=twc2R5MjqvTWSzHXzGq_kaWfR_YpEmxp

You can scroll down a bit to read the full story on this boondoggle that reminds me far too much of Vancouvers Owelympic village for my liking. Let’s hope Surrey taxpayers aren’t left holding the bag for this price tag,since all this development is still just plopped down in the middle of Whalley, adjacent to the Surrey Central skytrain station which is still a sketchy place to travel through, despite years of trying to make it anything else.

12 thoughts on “Watts circle talks around key election issues.

  1. John's Aghast

    Why? It doesn’t require a dash. Besides, that’s what its been referred to numerous times in the last year. |something akin to ‘Lieberals’.
    Laila, Are you aware that the citizens of Kamloops successfully petioned a proposed Parkade from being built? They required, I believe, 10% of the registered voters to petition against it and were successful.. Sounds as if the people of Surrey might do the same?

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  2. Laila, you are an angel of truth in a darkening political sky over Surrey where the mayor can lie about whatever she pleases (including the incinerator but also where she lives – see her fumbling excuse in the Now newspaper Nov. 3) and pretend she doesn’t know the answer to anything, like how much George Bush was paid, or what the Summit cost, or what her level of education is, or why Surrey bylaws are not being enforced, or how much she outspends opponents (110:1). I know she will build her glorious white elephant city hall, because that’s just what she wanted to do with taxpayer money, and she’s the Queen Bee, as you note, of British Columbia. I know she will continue to make backroom, sweetheart deals with developers and firefighters so she can enlarge her campaign war chest. As Lord Acton wrote, “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” She has the local media in her pocket through city advertising purchases. The provincial media are in the pockets of a few self-interested barons. The truth will have to come from somewhere else, from the people on this and other websites.

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    1. Laila

      Thank you for the very kind words Jim, but I can tell you that I’ve not been the only one sounding the horn for a long time, those concerns are all coing to the forefront now at election time. All are valid criticisms and questions, many of which do not know the answer to, since the city is not nearly as transparent or accountable as they would like everyone to believe.

      Nice to see you John! I’ve been so busy working I haven’t much time to spend here as of late but in two more weeks the election will be done and maybe everything will be back to normal..or not..lol….

      I did not know that the residents of Kamloops did that, and very interesting since indicators are that a large number of people in Surrey are against this city hall being built with borrowed funds AND moved from the excellent current location it is in now. Remember, the majority of new building and industry that visit city hall frequently are not in Whalley where she wants to build it, but in Newton, Sullivan, Cloverdale, South Surrey. Moving it north is ludicrous and not a neccesary part of this complex. Not to mention walking from the City Centre mall and the sky train to the new library is a dodgy experience right now, since there are always a huge number of addicts and criminals hanging around Surrey central. Always have been and likely always will.

      Doesn’t matter how we spell it NVG, only matters what it means. And to the people of Surrey, this new city hall means a generation of debt for one building that does not need to be moved, or have a new one construction.

      Randip, I have seen that video, quite the sneer at the end and yes, I agree disrespectful. An answer either way would have been more professional for anyone, in particular for someone running again to hold her seat as mayor.

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  3. Curt

    And Ms. Watts turned down the liberal run to become premier; why? Because they need her in Surrey. She can help her party out by staying put for now. Right Kevin?
    But as I watch the congestion, which every day gets worse, (wait to the Port Mann opens – talk about congestion), the continuous removal of land from the ALR, the development without the proper infrastructure in place, schools for one, (oh, they just announced a bunch, (must be an election) which is good, but years and years late and still won’t be enough) she isn’t looking out for the average citizen/family in Surrey. Our taxes were up over $200 this year. Why? Services are down, road maintenance is at a near standstill especially in the older areas of the city. Snow removal has gone down. We live on a prime feeder route and last year was the worse in all the years we’ve lived here. Why? She won’t enforce the illegal suites bylaw. Could be lots of taxes coming in there.
    And city hall is just fine where it is and makes the most logical sense, especially after spending the millions just a few years ago for upgrades. I’d like to know who has dibs from the inner circles on that land sale or lease??? I read something about law and order.
    Maybe this is the area for one of those new jails the Cons want to build/lease. Now that would be something for the citizens around this area of Surrey. Sorry Laila, I know you’re in the area. There’s enough problems already. And the incinerator — well Dianne? Waste is waste. What part of “no” …

    Anyway, got a run.
    Thanks Laila for all your hard work.

    And citizens of Surrey, get out and vote!

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  4. We have to face it, too many (sort of) men vote with their little brain and Diane Watts is the biggest threat to Crusty Clark, even more than Cummins, because let’s face it he doesn’t appeal the the little brain voting guys, not even the gay ones. She seems to be so ensconced in Surrey though that it is difficult to imagine she would give up her adoring Surrey voters to risk a bigger world and why should she, she is already more important and gets more perks than the premier of say PEI.

    We all know though, that the arrogant “King of Bloggers” is completely infatuated with “Watts going on” Didi. But fortunately that is probably the kiss of death…….

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  5. Gary

    Here in Kamloops, once the city passed the bylaw allowing it to borrow money to build the parkade the citizens could file an objection ( I forget the proper name for this ) and they had thirty or forty days to obtain 10% of the registered voters signatures . Upon obtaining ( and the city verifying the signatures ) that number, the city has to either put the matter to a referendum or just back away from the project. It worked very well here and I see no reason why it would not work for Surrey either. As a former resident of Surrey, I was shocked at how things are now after a visit in May ( having been away from there for twenty years ).

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    1. Laila

      Well Gary, that might have worked if the city actually told the people of Surrey they were passing a bylaw to borrow $97 million dollars, but they didn’t come right out and say what they were doing in a clear and transparent manner. People are still very shocked to find out that is how much the bylaw allowed them to borrow and yes it was approved by the council. She is backtracking now trying to make borrowing that much money seem like not a big deal because of public backlash, which is gorwing. While many areas have no sidewalks, roads in severe disrepair, and ongoing issues with degradation and social problems, this one expenditure being passed with no public opportunity for consultation is really a huge slap in the face of most Surrey residents.

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  6. Gary

    That makes it tough alright Laila. Maybe they were paying attention to what happened here and are trying to make it so it won’t happen there too. Mind you, it is pretty easy to keep track of whats happening in a city of 90,000, a lot easier than in Surrey. I wish you guys the best of luck on this one.

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