THE DEMOCRATIC REPORTER
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Comments by others to this web-page - 4 - to this web-page at time of posting.
Mississauga News - Apr. 6, 2010 - By Tom Urbaniak is a Mississauga native, political scientist and author of Her Worship: Hazel McCallion and the Development of Mississauga.
Living in Peel City?
In Ontario, no municipal government is sacred. No affirmative vote of the people is required to get rid of a city or town by merging it with others.
Whatever Mississauga residents might wish, the city’s long-term survival is far from assured.
But Mississauga emerged intact from the “merger mania” of 1996-2001, and there is presently no appetite at Queen’s Park for massive restructuring. So why worry?
A perfect storm could soon be in the works. Here’s how.
First, Mayor Hazel McCallion’s retirement is approaching, either this year or more likely in 2014. Her successor, whoever that person is, will be a weak mayor presiding over a divided Council. It will take time for a stable, post-McCallion coalition to emerge.
The next mayor will face diminishing development charges and mounting infrastructure repair bills because the city is built out and aging. The public will attribute the problems to shaky leadership, instead of the planning mistakes of the past.
McCallion’s embattled successor will have little sway with the Province.
In itself, McCallion’s retirement won’t be fatal to Mississauga. There are other variables to watch.
By 2014, the Province will probably require that the chair of the Region of Peel be elected in the same way a mayor is elected.
Peel’s current chair, Emil Kolb, has a low profile outside political circles. After all, he’s elected by only 25 people, the members of Regional Council. He seldom defies them openly.
On the other hand, an elected super-mayor for Peel would be bad news for Mississauga.
With a region-wide democratic mandate, that attention-seeking person will give Peel the identity it lacks.
The cost of campaigning in a fast-growing region of 1.2 million people will be offset by contributions from developers, especially developers who are eyeing the vast, still-rural sections of Caledon, despite opposition from town councillors there.
More Caledon sprawl is objectionable to progressive planners, but it could be a political winner for the elected Peel super-mayor, at least in Brampton and Mississauga.
New revenue in the north would offset infrastructure-replacement costs in the south. It could even ease the pressure for infill development in Mississauga, to the relief of many neighbourhood activists.
So, a “City of Peel” will start to seem plausible. With the Region already controlling many big-ticket services, some will ask, “Who needs Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon?”
This, of course, supposes that the Province will again work up the appetite to force amalgamations. That time is coming. About every 20 years, almost like clockwork, the Province gets the idea that a whole range of problems — bad planning, high taxes, uncoordinated economic development — can be solved by merging municipalities.
In a few years, the alarm clock will again go off. And when it does, Mississauga could be in trouble.
Comments by others - 4 - to this web-page at time of posting;
May 2, 2010 9:13 PM
@ Canadians, you wrote, "Mayor-forever-McCallion will be almost finished her next term @ the age of 93.8, so the timing will be perfect. Voters are so pathetic."
Mississauga General Committee meeting, March 21, 2007 Mayor Hazel McCallion "I think I quoted at the beginning of the meeting what Henry Ford said. That if he’d been —consulted the people about building a car, they would’ve said no, we need faster horses. And that is the problem that we face as a city." Video of the Mayor at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BbdX8IuEWPs I happen to agree completely. People are idiots and THE greatest single problem that Mississauga faces.
Apr 14, 2010 6:49 PM
I have a MUCH better idea...Mississauga separates from the rest of Peel Region then Brampton and Caledon can do whatever they want. Mississauga does not need the rest of Peel Region....Peel Region, however, needs Mississauga.
The Mississauga Muse
Apr 14, 2010 6:04 PM
I prefer Peel City to Mississauga, yes
So much of government is illusion --deliberately deceptive. Example. "in-camera" really means away from the cameras. "upper-tier municipality" really means the lower tier municipalities have 100% of the say. "increase accountability" really means voting is stretched from three years to four. On and on. I'd love to see Peel. Just today at Council though, McCallion was rallying the Mississauga South group MIRANET to look at the "duplication" of regional government. Me, I'm looking at it entirely differently. There's zero accountability all the way up and down the ranks. Might as well make it all one big Mega-City. After all, zero plus zero plus zero is still zero. Even when multiplied. Right now, you have four pretend-accountability offices. Might as well roll it into one consolidated party of tickle and pretend.
Apr 7, 2010 8:21 AM
Amalgamation 2014--- POST-McCALLION!!!!!!!!!!!!!! yikes are we reading this?
Mayor-forever-McCallion will be almost finished her next term @ the age of 93.8, so the timing will be perfect. Voters are so pathetic.
* Agree 4
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