-3.5 C
Elmira
Saturday, February 22, 2020
Connecting Our Communities

And then there were six in Woolwich Ward 1 race

TRENDING

News Briefs

Woolwich nixes traffic islands Displeased with the troublesome pedestrian islands installed during the Region of Waterloo’s reconstruction of Church Street...

20-year-old agreement causes a stir

An Elmira environmentalist’s “smoking gun” appears to be shooting blanks. Al Marshall, a long-time critic of cleanup efforts at...

Forks up to farmers on well-timed Agriculture Day

February is not the most obvious time to celebrate agriculture in Canada. But that’s...

EDSS student wins $5,000 scholarship to pursue his university education

Max Campbell’s dreams of perhaps one day making it to space got a down-to-Earth boost last week in the...

THIS WEEK

Elmira
clear sky
-3.5 ° C
-1.7 °
-5.6 °
45 %
2.6kmh
1 %
Sat
4 °
Sun
5 °
Mon
5 °
Tue
3 °
Wed
7 °

Woolwich now has a six-way race for Ward 1 as Patrick Merlihan this week entered the contest.

A co-founder of the Observer and current production manager, Merlihan wants to bring a strong voice to council.

Patrick Merlihan
Patrick Merlihan

“The township council needs to operate by having a vision and driving the agenda,” he explained. “And how council has operated for at least 12 years has been staff-driven. Staff comes up with whatever kind of project they want to work on and it is automatically rubber stamped. There isn’t a whole lot of vetting of the ideas that come forward.  I think there needs to be a whole lot more questions asked of staff before we commit taxpayer dollars to projects where the public sees very little benefit.”

A lifelong Elmira resident, Merlihan believes he is in touch with the issues that matter to the community.

“I think I would make a good councillor because I live in the community and I grew up here,” he said. “With my position here at the Observer, starting a newspaper, I have access to a lot of information and I follow closely what is going on at council and I follow what is going on in all of the different communities in Woolwich.”

He continued, “I think presently there are a lot of people who are angry about this past council. … I think there is a real disconnect between the people who are administering the township and what people actually want to see happen.”

Of chief concern, rising administrative costs that cut into the infrastructure budget.

“The justifications we keep hearing for all of the new (township) staff members is all the new paperwork that has been downloaded by (higher levels) of government,” Merlihan said. “If that is the case, instead of the administrators coming to council saying that they are busy and they need more people, the councillors should be using these conferences that they (attend) to meet with ministers and advocate that some of these policies need to lighten up on the paperwork because it’s costing taxpayers too much.”

He added, “I think the way the business is conducted needs a revisit. We can all retool how we do business. We look at how we operate here at the Observer and we find efficiencies, because if we can do something in less time and save money, let’s do it.”

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to The Observer's online community. Pseudonyms are not permitted. By submitting a comment, you accept that The Observer has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner The Observer chooses. Please note that The Observer does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our submission guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

LIVING HERE

Under the auctioneer’s gavel to provide help Down Under

After seeing the devastation from the Australian wildfires, a local art collector sold the first painting she ever bought on Saturday to help raise money for relief efforts there. Nancy...

In Print. Online. In Pictures. In Depth.

You obviously love community journalism. Thanks for visiting today. If you have a great local story, let us know.

Jacks take 3-2 series lead into deciding weekend vs. New Hamburg

The Wellesley Applejacks are up 3-2 in their best-of-seven series against the New Hamburg Firebirds, having claimed two of this week’s three games in...

Sugar Kings win three games, clinch first place

In need of just one more win to clinch first place in the Midwestern Conference, the Elmira Sugar Kings claimed all three games...

U.S. edges out Canada in national para hockey battle

In the natural on-ice rivalry between Canada and the U.S., the American para hockey team has had the advantage in recent years. That...
- Advertisement -