Vote Yes Or No?


I am biased in favour of Voting "No" for the bridge project loan. Here's what the Yes and No vote says to me about the decisions being made when you go to the polling booth:

Vote No
  • Maybe you just want to see the bridge repaired.
  • It's not that you want to keep the old bridge, you just don't want to green light a $50 million loan because of its implications.
  • The replacement isn't costing $50-million. That's just the loan amount. It's budgeted at $77-million. Budget overruns are a given. This bridge could be $90-million or more. If you let them take out the loan, the City Council will take the in-for-a-penny approach. The extra millions will come from your pockets.
  • This is your money and the City's decisions. Remember when they urged people to vote on the bridge design? Three viable candidate designs were foisted on us-- they purposefully omitted the repair option. The people spoke: they selected an option. Council took the second most popular option instead. Why? Because they're elected and they can do what they want until you vote them out of office. Dean Fortin said almost exactly that.
  • Shoot-from-the-hip finances aren't a good practice. The City budget is laid out in great detail. Every dollar is accounted for-- budgeted for. Dean Fortin drove by Our Place during the aftermath of a pedestrian vs. car incident. He was so moved, he immediately and unilaterally found money for them to expand their opening hours. If he sees something shiny to add to the bridge project, don't think he won't tack it on. He's not an engineer, but he's at the top of the pecking order in the project.

Vote Yes
  • The cost of the bridge works out to over $30,000 per foot of lane (bike, car, pedestrian).
  • If you are pro-cycling and anti-car, you are voting "Yes" to keep cars on the road. If you vote "Yes" sit out the next Critical Mass event because you don't really believe in the cause.
  • If you are pro-heritage, you are voting "Yes" to tear down a world famous artifact of bridge engineering.
  • If you are pro-rail, you are voting to keep light rail out of the downtown core until 2110. What? You hate light rail that much? Do you work for Exxon? Are you hoping we invent teleporters?
  • You are hoping that the Bay St. Bridge is okay and handles the capacity during bridge construction, despite the fact that the city hasn't planned for this.
  • You are hoping that this unproven design lasts 100 years-- though no other parallel to it has stood up for 100 years yet.
  • If you are in favour of replacing instead of repairing, remember your mindset at the next election. Vote to replace all of the positions on council with new councilors. New is better, right?
  • You should vote yes because of all of the money you, as a taxpayer, spent on pushing the Yes vote.

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