Candidates describe the five most important actions they would take to improve Hamilton.
By RTH Staff
Published October 20, 2006
1. More accountability from public officials - During this election, our city has been placed under a political microscope; much of this scrutiny extends from lack of accountability. City staff and councillors need to be responsible for their actions and decision as our public officials. Some examples are: the residents affected by several flooding in the past year, also transportation in the new City of Hamilton is very poor; many areas are not effectively serviced. These are two things that could have been handled differently.
2. Decrease in poverty and crime – Unfortunately, poverty and crime are not easily answered. To eliminate either is not a realistic goal. However, to reduce these problems is within reach. Addressing poverty will help address crime and vice versa. Having more police on the streets is not the only solution to the influx of crime in our neighbourhoods. Implementing more preventative measures may be a practical solution. The city's approach to many issues are reactive, taking a more proactive stance with offenders will help with the rehabilitation process.
Increase in economic growth – Although this situation was marred with environmental and ecological stigma, Maple Leaf proposed to move their Burlington plant to Hamilton. 80 per cent of the 1,200 workers live in Hamilton. We lost a $250 million opportunity, with $9 million a year in municipal revenue. Unfortunately, we were unable to capitalize on this venture. As a business owner in the community, I was disappointed to see another major company leave (Firestone Canada, Dominion Glass, Canadian Westinghouse, Proctor & Gamble, Levi Strauss and Camco are just a few that have left over the years). We need to encourage businesses to set up in our city. Hamilton needs to revamp business incentive programs and to restructure the way we attract businesses.
Improve infrastructure - Transportation in the new City of Hamilton is very poor. Many areas are not effectively serviced. For example, Satellite city and Ancaster do not have night service. Areas in Ward 3 no longer receive service. At one point in time, Ward 3 was a booming hub of industries. This no longer exists, but does this mean residents in this area no longer deserve bus service? There used to be service along Wentworth St. to Wilson St. up to Sherman Ave to Main St. then to Maplewood Ave and the Blake St. This was called a cross-town service. Working closely with residents, community members and councillors before unilaterally making service decisions will help meet the needs of the riders of public transit.
1. Maintain public safety as a top priority. We need to nurture neighbourhood environments that are well-policed, conducive to raising a young family, responsive and comfortable to senior citizens, and safe for everyone. We need to continue to increase front-line police protection and Neighbourhood Watch programs.
There are numerous things in all neighbourhoods that are absolutely wonderful and conducive for making a vibrant and enjoyable living environment for everyone. Some of these are: good neighbourly habits; neighbourhood assistance (e.g. people checking on their elderly neighbours); programs such as Neighbourhood Watch; other various partnerships formed between neighbours (e.g. take turns shovelling snow); various sharing between neighbours (e.g. garden plants; vegetable gardens; fruit trees) - things that we need to continue to do to show respect and compassion to reinforce and preserve a sense of community.
We also need to lobby for tougher "laws and sentences" especially in the area related to illegal drugs, prostitution and property standards, and to completely remove the Dangerous Offenders Halfway Residence from the City of Hamilton.
2. Preserve our neighbourhoods. We want want to do things that maintain and preserve behaviour in a fashion we all know is conducive to a wonderful life - dealing with crime, social issues, and the needs of the people as they evolve. We must continue to fight to eliminate disruptive elements such as neighbourhood prostitution, theft, speeding traffic, housing intensification, poor maintenance, and illegal units.
3. Fight to maintain and keep open our inner city schools and to recognize their key role as community centres.
4. Hold the costs on seniors' bus passes and all expenses for seniors with fixed incomes. We need to develop and maintain our hospitals and medical services, to assist our seniors with home care.
5. Further aggressively develop our East and West Harbourfront Parks and Trails, and develop more soccer and recreational facilities in Ward 3 to promone a clean air environment.
Air pollution is emitted through such things as: private and public vehicle exhaust systems; mechanical equipment; industries. The objective is to recognize the emission sources and work reasonably and practically to reduce them. For example, regular checks on catalytic converters in vehicles, and increased use of public transit both help to limit emissions.
The bottom line is that each and every instance of environmental pollution needs to be addressed realistically and practically. It needs to be assessed and dealt with - keeping well in mind that the ideal situation is not always achievable but we can work towards exposing misuses so that they can be eradicated. One of the most recent examples of misuse of our Harbourfront was the unnecessary installation of the Biox plant and Liberty Generating plant. I was strongly opposed to these projects - both for their location and the nature of their operations and their negative impact on the surrounding areas.
By Sean Gibson (anonymous) | Posted October 22, 2006 at 22:58:30
This is a message form Sean Gibson; I’m running against the incumbent in ward 3. To all residents in ward 3, this is exactly why I have decided to run for this position. Among several non applicable issues, the incumbent has focused on crime (tougher "laws and sentences”) environment (catalytic converters in vehicles). However I think the important and difficult ward 3 issues were again neglected by the incumbent! Pollution is a major problem in our ward but poverty and homelessness currently hold precedence. “Garden plants; vegetable gardens; fruit trees” in ward 3 would definitely help the façade of our neighbourhood, but unless those fruit gardens and fruit trees can feed the 40,000 plus residents I think he should reprioritize that list. Look around your community; not just on your block or in your neighbourhood look around the entire ward. Residents, our ward extends from Wellington to Ottawa, from the base of the mountain to the water. If you are happy with the state and condition of the entire area DO NOT vote for me as your next City Councillor. I am not pleased with the state of the neighbourhood and with your help I aim to CHANGE IT! www.discovernewhorizons.com
Your Future City Councillor
By jason (registered) | Posted October 23, 2006 at 14:54:54
I am completely stunned that anyone has been voted back in over and over in Ward 3. Shows how much vision the citizens have for their own neighbourhoods. King East through Ward 3 and Barton St, through Ward 3 are hands down the most depressed corridors in our entire city. And BOTH OF THEM ARE IN WARD 3. Literally a 5-10 minute walk from each other. James North has sprung back to life, King East in the downtown is turning around nicely, King West/Hess is great, Locke South has rebounded over the past decade, Ottawa North has also turned a corner in the past 5 years, yet King and Barton through this stretch still look like a bomb went off. Nobody is fighting for investment in this community. Nobody is fighting to stop the practice of taking tax dollars from these areas to subsidize sprawl. Nobody is fighting for a firm urban boundary and halt to big box sprawl that is keeping the developers and business people happily building in the boonies with no need to invest or pay attention to urban streets like these. King and Barton should be Hamilton's 'Queen or Spadina'. But it'll never happen until the citizens get off their duffs and vote for a politician who will be a fighter for their neighbourhoods. All citizens are equal, yet it is clear to me that folks living in Ward 3 have been given a much lower standard to aim for than other areas in Hamilton. That is quite sad.
By Jon Dalton (anonymous) | Posted October 31, 2006 at 17:03:09
Bernie Morelli has promised me and my fellow citizens of Ward 3 among other things to oppose the planned GO Train storage facility on the tracks east of the GO station.
In addition to being tough on drugs, crime, illegal multiple units and messy properties, he also promises to keep those SCARY GO TRAINS out of our quiet neighbourhood.
The proposed GO Train parking facility would eliminate sending trains back to Toronto every night and back to Hamilton the next morning, and allow them to recharge and warm up before heading out. GO Transit claims this will improve reliability and service to Hamilton.
The proximity to Hamilton's GO station is one advantage of living in this area and many who are unable to find work locally can benefit from its convenient access to transit. Ward 3 should be in the forefront of initiatives to improve public transit.
Sean Gibson, I plan on voting for you and I hope you can get the message out to everyone who also recieved Morelli's slick pamphlet. I'm here to help.
By urbanboy (registered) | Posted November 05, 2006 at 13:30:29
If anyone would like to talk to Bernie with regards to the state of ward 3, he pretty much hangs out at the Apollo Restaurant everyday...
Not a bad gig, eh?
By Newbie (anonymous) | Posted November 06, 2006 at 14:33:01
I'm new to Hamilton, having moved into Ward 3 less than a year ago. It's a neighbourhood with more than its fair share of blight but also remarkable potential. Unfortunately, in my time here I've come to feel things could all too easily go either way.
In my experience, while we certainly don't agree on every issue, Bernie Morrelli has been an excellent representive: willing to listen and quickly respond to local concerns when called on.
My biggest concern with the ward race here, and the other races in the City in general, is the lack of options all around. Despite real evidence of some stellar urban thinkers and people with a genuine passion for all things Hamilton (like this website and others show), there seems to be a real dearth of choice on the ballot I'll be faced with next week.
I wonder if this is not caused, in part, by the system in place.
For instance, the much smaller Ontario city I moved from has two positons on council for each ward (ten councilours for approx. 60,000 population overall). In Hamilton, there seem to scarcely be two real candidates in many wards and the tip of the hat has to go to the incumbent in most of them. Perhaps opening things up to allow more representation would bring more candidates, and, in turn, more choice to the voters. Very few will invest in a candidacy if the chances of success seem so limited.
(P.S. Off topic: I've heard that City tax treaments can make it more pofitable for merchant landlords along Barton, and elsewhere, to close up shop and rent adjoining apartments than to keep comercial space active. Anyone know if this is true? If so, what are the pros and cons? Thanks for your insights.)
By Dave (anonymous) | Posted November 07, 2006 at 12:31:58
WARD 3 all-candidates debate
Thurs. Nov. 9th (7-9 pm)
The Pearl Company, 16 Steven St. (at King William)
By groaning (anonymous) | Posted November 11, 2006 at 10:43:47
You can't have a debate when only one candidate shows.
By scared (anonymous) | Posted November 12, 2006 at 21:25:27
Bernie did'nt need to debate, he's got it in the bag again! May God help ward 3.
By Stop the insanity in Ward 3 (anonymous) | Posted November 28, 2009 at 17:00:16
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. So I say stop the insanity in Ward 3 --- On Oct 25th 2010 let’s all get out and vote for NEW Ward 3 Councilor and take back our Ward.
By TheSearcher (anonymous) | Posted September 15, 2010 at 09:34:45
An enlightening read on a 2010 Candidate; http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/letters/Ontario%20Barbers%20Association_Restraining%20Order_July%2030,%202010.pdf
By TheSearcher (anonymous) | Posted October 12, 2010 at 20:55:46
And another enlightening read in the link below. His 2010 Objective are largely the same as his 2006 Objectives. What has he done in the last 4 years? I mean besides not acheiving his 2006 objectives...
Does he really view Ward 3 as a retread Ward?
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