City fails to get downtown revite grants

City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby twobits » Feb 10th, 2016, 8:53 pm

Hollywood script writers could not even come up with a believable plot that matches the escapades of this Council. Mere days after trying to sell a 5.5% tax increase due to hardship, lack of funds, catching up with past revenue shortfalls, and stressing the need to invest in aging building to the tune of 30 million dollars, they are denied grants for Main Street 100 and 200 block revite to the tune of over 2 million dollars and still push ahead with the plan. Only a week later they can all of a sudden make up a 2 million plus shortfall in that budget by "reallocating funds from other City budgets"???? For those of you that may not be numbers people, that suddenly available funding would have wiped out the 5.5% tax increase and some.
And Mitch Morizuk's comments in the paper were priceless. Without directly quoting, he said "in hindsight there was little chance of us receiving those grant monies as there are communities without water or sewer services that take priority over a downtown street revitalization" HELLO MITCH!! We don't pay you well over 100k per yr to have hindsight! We pay you to have foresight and determine the source of funding BEFORE you spend hundreds of thousands in planning and engineering on the project.
Maybe I am the only idiot that thinks the funding for a project should be secured before shovel ready engineering is prepared and slated to start one month away?
And we also have our brilliant Mayor Jak chiming in, " we need to move forward with this because the downtown is the heart of our City". Bull poop it's the heart of the City. That ended when the Penticton Plaza was built in the mid 60's and carried on with Cherry Lane and Peach Tree. And every other "main drag" commercial buildings from downtown to Skaha Lake that had to provide 3.5 parking stalls per 1000 sq ft of retail space before approved.
With the exception of farmers market saturday's, there is scant little for most to even go downtown except for some banking, lawyer consults, or an evening meal. It is a low rent district because there is no parking, most merchants don't want to pay for it, and the buildings are approaching 100 yrs old with landlords hanging on to Mayor Jak's notion that it is the heart of Penticton without investing squat into at least their own facades. We can throw millions at repaving, new sidewalks, new street lights etc and it will be nothing more than lipstick on a pig. Just like it was 20 years ago when we bricked the sidewalks, repaved and put in all those really nice planters (that now will be removed cuz they are now ugly).
And someone please explain to me how Mayor Jak has any vote or right to comment on this when he is in clear conflict being an owner of a business in the 200 blk. He should remove himself from any discussion on the matter. For lord's sake, John Vaz was crucified for conflict of interest by the press and public letters to the editor for buying the Legion buildings that is in the 500 blk of Martin st and voting on this 100 and 200 blk Main st revite. And Jak gets a pass??
Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby XT225 » Feb 10th, 2016, 10:02 pm

I completely agree with you on this subject, twobits. Ya, that was priceless when even Mitch seemed to know that the grant money was not too likely to come to us, in the first place. That should have been enough to stop or severely water down the revite project. Dig it up, if they are sure that the pipes are going to fail soon; do the minimum with regards to beautifying things (because as you say, its not going to help) and put it back in place. Sidewalks do NOT need widening, plus this will reduce one lane; even less traffic flow. I also fully agree that Jak has no business being in the room when the 200 block discussion comes up; total conflict of interest. You're right, Vas often got nailed for that and now nobody says boo? And what about all the other city buildings that need serious work, totalling over 30 million? Priorities are right out of control.

My other beef is that Jak said previously that the reason they did the 200 block of Martin Street FIRST was because it was the "entrance to the city". Huh? I would have to say that the 600 block of Main is a more direct entrance, coming in from the South and also from the West. Why, then didn't they continue on up Martin street and put in more bollards if they felt that street was so important? Personally, I think that its the boo boo mistake that they now would rather forget. Nobody that I've talked to even likes it. The only person on council that I have any respect for is Helena Konanz; she often votes against the out of control spending. Too bad there weren't more of them like her.

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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby madmudder » Feb 11th, 2016, 7:18 am

Mayor Jak should get the boot for being in conflict. And for the rest of council to ignore this speaks volumes. 200 block gets done first??????? Hey Jak you want to play the game then play by the rules or leave.
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby pentona » Feb 11th, 2016, 11:26 am

madmudder wrote:Mayor Jak should get the boot for being in conflict. And for the rest of council to ignore this speaks volumes. 200 block gets done first??????? Hey Jak you want to play the game then play by the rules or leave.


Technically, he likely is not in direct conflict, in the legal sense, since I believe the business is in his wife's name. However, morally, most people in his position would avoid any perception of conflict and not be involved in voting on the project.

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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby ToddT » Feb 11th, 2016, 12:14 pm

Here here.
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby fall » Feb 11th, 2016, 1:40 pm

Twobits, I would have to say you are a one man choir (maybe two or one man and one woman) complaining about the tax increase of 5.5 percent listening to your own voice in your head as you type posts about it. I don't see much rejection to the increase on Castanet or letters to the editor.
I agree with most of your post though, poor Penticton, what next.
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby southy » Feb 11th, 2016, 3:13 pm

fall wrote:Twobits, I would have to say you are a one man choir (maybe two or one man and one woman) complaining about the tax increase of 5.5 percent listening to your own voice in your head as you type posts about it. I don't see much rejection to the increase on Castanet or letters to the editor.
I agree with most of your post though, poor Penticton, what next.


What??????
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby ToddT » Feb 11th, 2016, 3:35 pm

Much of my issue with the whole situation stems from the issue of not being able to borrow from the contingency fund one week, then being able to the week after. The tax increase is what it is, but I can't see how this project won't increase taxes further one day. To me it's a waste of money.
Penticton is so many great things in spite of its downtown, not because of it.
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby fall » Feb 11th, 2016, 7:56 pm

southy wrote:
What??????



Long story short, nobody cares about this issue or the tax increase, well most. Especially if you gauge it by the response, views or comments on either, like some people seem to think is what matters.
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby twobits » Feb 11th, 2016, 7:59 pm

pentona wrote:
Technically, he likely is not in direct conflict, in the legal sense, since I believe the business is in his wife's name.


It makes no difference if the business is in his wife's name. Conflict of interest has quite clearly been defined to extend to family members.....even extended family. The loophole he is playing is likely that his wife rents the space and is not the owner of the property. If that is the legal card he is playing, then it speaks volumes on his lack of morality as there is still a clearly defined benefit to the business itself. A morally conscious person would recuse themselves even to avoid the perception of conflict of interest.
Our Forrest Gump Mayor clearly has no moral conscience......just his own agenda.
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby fall » Feb 11th, 2016, 8:16 pm

As mentioned before Penticton and its mayors and council have been the laughing stock of the Okanagan and have set examples of "what not to do" for every other community. Go Penticton!
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby twobits » Feb 11th, 2016, 8:18 pm

fall wrote:

Long story short, nobody cares about this issue or the tax increase, well most. Especially if you gauge it by the response, views or comments on either, like some people seem to think is what matters.


Yup, you must be right. Parking meters are far more important than the City not getting 2.7 million in grants for a project and all of a sudden finding the money they never had 10 days ago to proceed.
But carry on with your parking meter loonie campaign. You could start a facebook group of loonie supporters and ask the Mayor why he was in favour of loonie parking for revenue when he was able to pull 2.7 million that wasn't there a few days ago.

BTW, are you old enough to vote?
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby twobits » Feb 11th, 2016, 8:20 pm

fall wrote:As mentioned before Penticton and its mayors and council have been the laughing stock of the Okanagan and have set examples of "what not to do" for every other community. Go Penticton!


But you just said......

"Long story short, nobody cares about this issue or the tax increase"
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby fall » Feb 11th, 2016, 8:40 pm

Doesn't appear that way by this thread or any letters to the editor (who reads the paper anymore anyway?) on either of the matters. Just making a statement.
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Re: City fails to get downtown revite grants

Postby fall » Feb 11th, 2016, 8:51 pm

Penticton is almost starting to look like Westbank, lots of vacant retail space, rundown abandoned buildings, and gaping holes where businesses once stood before burning down.
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