Vancouver city politics in review, Part Two: a CityCaucus Podcast

Post by Daniel Fontaine in


homeless 3.jpg
Homelessness made headlines in Vancouver for all the wrong reasons in 2010

Earlier this week we began to pilot our CityCaucus Cast whereby Mike and I began to explore some of the issues that impacted urban politics in 2010. In part two of our series, we continue to explore some of the top civic stories that made headlines this year.

We begin our discussion talking about a story we broke in August regarding plummeting staff morale at Vancouver City Hall. A brown envelope with some interesting survey results were dropped through our mail slot and it revealed that all is not well in Gregor's sealed fortress. The "internal" survey was never meant to get into our hands, but it demonstrated that some of the top managers at City Hall were not pleased with their new City nanomanager Penny Ballem. Management spoke of a loss of respect and new inefficient processes being implemented with little thought to the long-term consequences to taxpayers. The Vancouver Sun also dug into this as well and eventually ran it as a front page story.

Homelessness also made the headlines this year, but for all the wrong reasons. Despite Mayor Gregor making countless campaign promises to end homelessness by 2015, a new report revealed that it actually went up by 12 % since he took office. Mike and I explore what's behind the empty promises and whether the lack of progress on homelessness will actually impact Robertson in the 2011 civic election. Keep in mind that homelessness continues to track as the number one issue of concern when Vancouverites are asked by pollsters.

If you want to listen to this segment of the podcast simply click here (mp3 clip):

It wouldn't be a year end review without a discussion of the polling data coming out of Vancouver City Hall this year. After Vision Vancouver officials first leaked to select media that Mayor Gregor's approval numbers were at 78% in the spring, it all seemed to go downhill. A poll by Justason Marketing Intelligence in September had him pegged at 49% approval rating. By November, Angus Reid was reporting his numbers had fallen even further to 43%. Most astonishingly, 47% disapprove of Robertson's performance with only 31% of Vancouver voters believing he deserves to get re-elected.

For an incumbent mayor with name recognition and the levers of government at his disposal, these numbers are VERY low. For heaven's sakes, pollsters even revealed that an NPA lead by Suzanne Anton would be neck and neck with Vision Vancouver if an election were held tomorrow.

As you can appreciate, we had hundreds of topics to choose from when we decided to record the podcast. It's always difficult to pick the top ones, but we made our best effort at capturing what we thought were some of the biggies.

We hope you enjoy this second installment of our CityCaucus Cast and please let us know what you think of the concept. So sit back, grab some eggnog and enjoy our second podcast. The next installment should be delivered under your Christmas tree!

To listen to our first CityCaucus Cast click here.

- Post by Daniel


This must be gregor's kinda homeless person. He has a bike!

The Thought of The Day

“Shady landlords, overpaid apathetic bureaucrats, and cronyism driven agendas are sketching a circle on a drawing pad. Corrupt, incompetent, egocentric politicians are only completing it. Welcome to Vancouver Vision – Home of Sexuals.”

When your priorities as a Council, Park Board, and School Board are dictated by your Party Doctrine no one wonders when something goes wrong.
The question becomes ‘How bad is it?’ Or, ‘How can we distance from it?’
Or ‘What’s the most palatable Spin we can administer?’

For the past two years and counting Vision’s only goal was and still is, to place all their friends and shady characters in senior and middle management positions inside City Hall. Establishing a bridgehead if you may. This New Age apparatchik, is catering to their own, no question about that, it has nothing to do with good governance, due diligence, or respect for the taxpayers. They operate in the same way a hypothetical ‘Vision Corporation’ would operate. Most profit for their Vision shareholders and investors, regardless.

I’m only going to advance one story for you to chew on ...‘Ark Tsisserev’ point exactly.

Having registered charities like Tides Canada whose links to the Vancouver politicians was recently exposed on this blog and in the 'select' media, only enforces the lack of Christmas Spirit in terms of giving.

Gang slayings at your doorsteps, media gag orders in your cubicle, sinkholes that could take you to China, biohazard incidents at Electra, disastrous demolition good to go in this year’s ‘I'm too Stupid for My Shirt’ Awards, Olympic sized debt with a Village twist, wining and dining Casper the Friendly Vision Ghost on public money, fatal fire in the third degree, Party hacks pilgrimage to Shanghai right after Canada have received the status of ‘friendly destination’ and on, and on, and on...

'What ‘Aufocks’ going on at the Vancouver City Hall?’

That’s one question all Vancouverites should be asking themselves in the New Year.
I for one am going down to Jamaica. Let them steal my money!

Merry Christmas!

We live in Vancouver and this keeps us busy

Check out!

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