Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Lots of Thank You's - Very Light on Platforms & Vision - New Council Inauguration Speeches

The Langley Township Council's new term was kicked off with this past Monday's Inaugural Mayor & Council swearing in ceremony. This LFP Editor was quite surprised and frankly quite disappointed overall with the speeches made at this first new council meeting of Township Council.

Yesterday I expressed this very concern with our LFP Publisher, Kim Richter, who suggested I give this new council some slack, which I will. We should not forget, that as Times Journalist Natasha Jones says in her article: "In sharp contrast to the hostile atmosphere that dominated Langley Township politics for the past three years, Monday’s inaugural meeting of Township council was an exercise in civility." Very much so. How very refreshing.

I did congratulate Richter on her speech as I also equally do for Councillor Charlie Fox and our new Mayor Jack Froese. These three were the only ones on council who expressed what they each hope to champion in their new 3 year term in office. And only Richter & Froese spoke about the visions that they each had for Langley Township.

I mentioned to Richter that the swearing in ceremony was certainly a great event for the Council members as always, especially for the newest council members and their families, friends and supporters. But it was sadly lacking, in my opinion, in any commitments or vision from  most of Council to the Township taxpayers and voters that elected them!  This lack of commitment and especially any common vision was the single greatest tragic failure of the previous Green Council. So where was the promise of meat, especially for us Township taxpayers who elected this council?

Upon reading the Langley Advance's Mathew Claxton Langley Advance article, it struck me that he too was perhaps indirectly highlighting the same lack of promise and commitments as well. One reasonably should have expected that three points would have been included in the individual council members speeches:
  • A brief re-cap of their past accomplishments (especially incumbent Councillors) 
  • Generous thanks to all that supported and helped them get elected 
  • But most importantly to provide an outline, summary and hopefully a vision of what they hope to champion and accomplish in their upcoming three year new term.
As I said the 2nd was overwhelmingly exacted with tons of thank you's and the third was totally absent in this Editor's opinion except for Richter, FoxFroese. Kudos to those three for that and talking about the future and their concrete commitments to us the taxpayers.

Judge for yourself and watch my edited video with all the council's platforms/promises that I could find and scrape together. I reviewed and edited in as many and all references to ANY visions, promises or commitments made by each and all members of this new council. Quite frankly I had to stretch it to find and to include any promises or commitments from most of this new council. Watch the relevant Council member's  promises in this video and Richter's speech/promises can be viewed separately at the top of this posting.

The next and final  two LFP videos are just ceremonial footage that shows the new council's entrance and oath signing ceremony highlights and the last shows both Pastor Brent Cantelon's invocation and the Kwantlen First Nation's blessing ceremony.

After Watching the videos in detail, this Editor has eight unsoliticed suggestions to Township Council that could help make this Council a success:

  1. Drop past affiliations/IOU's with the defeated VLN & the so-called 6 pack.
  2. Get a quick grip on any power tripping, personal egos & agendas. There is no "I" in team!
  3. Share the information wealth and duties equally and leave no council member behind. 
  4. Use your individual council member's strengths. Never fear or shun them.
  5. Immediately work towards a joint council list of reasonable and doable common goals for this 3 year term and a consensus for a longer term vision for Langley Township
  6. Get taxpayers input and buy in to this council's goals & vision. 
  7. Make the 3 year goals a reality and start building on the long term vision.
  8. Always, always, ALWAYS listen to the taxpayers! 
P.S. Let's be very clear here. This is the Editor's opinion. Not the Publisher's. This Editor simply wishes there had been more meat and commitment to action  in the speeches. It is not a criticism of anyone on the new Council. But it is a criticism of content. I am as thrilled as everyone else is with this new council and I am very hopeful for this new Council's future progress and achievement. But I will always hold any council's feet to the fire. So enough of the fluff. Now get on with the substance of governing. >>>>LFP EDITOR<<<<