Vision could be holidaying in Hollyhock with Joel Solomon while Penny reviews the riot
It’s been a little over a month now since the Vancouver Canucks choked and our downtown turned into a riot zone. For his part, Mayor Gregor has been all over the airwaves saying that the riot was a “learning experience” for City Hall. I suspect some of the employees trapped in the London Drugs for two hours as a bunch of drunken goons were trying to break into the place might be less patient with Robertson's on-the-job training.
There are now several reviews taking place to assess what went wrong and how we can prevent this from happening again in the future. The only “independent” review taking place was commissioned by Premier Christy Clark.
The other riot reviews are being drafted by Mayor Gregor’s hand-picked political appointee City Manager Penny Ballem. Needless to say, the City reports will be considered a complete sham due to the manner in which they are being conducted.
My biggest concern is Robertson has not provided the public with any of the basic details regarding his internal reviews. Want to know what the reviews will cost taxpayers? Oops, you’re out of luck. That information is still under lock and key.
How about the terms of reference for the reviews? What are they and exactly who will be conducting the review? On both counts you are out of luck. The City has yet to provide the public with this information.
Do you want to be assured the reports will be independent and free from political interference? Too bad. As it stands, the only person we know that will sign off on the report is Ballem, the most political city manager we’ve seen at Vancouver City Hall in over a generation.
Are you wondering if the public will have a chance to weigh in with their observation regarding what the Mayor’s office could have done differently leading up to the riot? Once again, we still haven’t been provided with that basic bit of information.
City Hall is now in its summer recess. Despite a motion from NPA mayoral candidate Suzanne Anton requesting that more light be shed on the internal reviews, nothing was forthcoming before the politicians head out to Hollyhock for their tradition meditation & Kumbaya recitals.
As a result, the City Manager is busy working behind the scenes drafting her version of events. Rest assured it won’t be critical of her own actions nor those of the Mayor when it comes to the poor planning that planted the seeds for thousands to hold Vancouver's biggest ever house-wrecking party.
In part II of this post, I’ll be exploring what could have been done differently leading up to and during the Robertson’s Riot. And it won’t cost taxpayers a “Penny.”