For the Professor, latest accessibility report would just be more of the same


city_scope_logo-cmykWhile he had become accustomed to findings similar to those contained in a report to council Monday, the Professor would be far from pleased with the latest report card.
Prior to his death in February, Ed McLachlan spent years as a member of the St. Thomas Municipal Accessibility Advisory Committee and filed many reports to council  on accessibility issues in all city-owned facilities.
Lesley Buchanan is now chair of the committee and the annual site audit is on the agenda for all to see.
Here is a sampling of the ongoing barriers the handicapped face.

Continue reading

Advertisements

The Professor taught us all a lesson


city_scope_logo-cmykThe latest edition of City Scope was mapped out and ready to put on the page Friday afternoon when this corner received a message, via Facebook, from long-time friend Joe Docherty alerting me to the death Thursday of Ed McLachlan, or the Professor as he was better known.
Hearing the sombre news, I could think of no better tribute to a fellow Scot (he from Dundee and myself a southerner from Edinburgh) than to scrap what I had written and begin anew.
While I was quite at home with the honourable Sensei’s dojo family, who could be found out back in his converted garage, Ed also left his indelible stamp on this city through his tireless work as a member of the St. Thomas Municipal Accessibility Advisory Committee.
For anyone who thought Ed was passionate about the martial arts, he was downright feisty when it came to matters of accessibility.

Continue reading

Don’t worry, he’s not throwing in the towel


city_scope_logo-cmyk
We caught up with Jason McComb this week after his return to St. Thomas from Edmonton where he halted, for the winter, his cross-Canada trek to raise awareness for homeless issues.
He is heading to the North Bay area for a well-deserved retreat to recharge mentally and physically.
If you have seen Jason this week you know he is extremely gaunt, although he never was a Pillsbury dough boy
To allay any fears, Jason assures he hasn’t lost any enthusiasm for his Walking in the Free World undertaking. Continue reading

That was the year that was, in words


city_scope_logo-cmyk

After an enjoyable Christmas and New Year’s hiatus, City Scope returns with a tradition dating back to 2005, when we welcomed the incoming year by casting a final glance back to focus on the wit and wisdom served up by some of those individuals who graced this corner over the previous 365 days.

Since that debut, we have broadened our horizon to include quotes from a variety of sources, including Times-Journal readers.

As an unabashed collector of quotes, this flashback is an enviable task that neatly ties the preceding 12 months into a compact package to open and savor at the demise of another year.

And, as American writer and editor Daniel Okrent deftly observed, “I’m afraid we’ll see reporters stop chasing quotes around the same time dogs stop chasing cars.”
Continue reading

Lights out on this curious decision


city_scope_logo-cmyk
Something just doesn’t feel right here. The lights are on, but is anyone in the council chamber?
Why would members authorize an expenditure of almost $20,000 to a consulting firm to complete a street light energy efficiency project when, surely, the expertise is right in our own backyard?
Why isn’t council utilizing the resources over at Ascent — the former St. Thomas Energy — to undertake this analysis?
Isn’t this kinda like what they do for a living?
And, hasn’t the city just come to an agreement with Ascent to provide IT services at city hall? Why not go back to the well and tap into their bank of knowledge?
Continue reading

Are we talking police HQ or condos?


city_scope_logo-cmyk

Exactly when did this happen? Obviously city council held a closed door meeting and went ahead and approved construction of a new $26 million police station. Talk about a fast one.

Don’t believe this is a done deal? We’ve got the proof.

It says so right here on the introduction to a video produced by Bendel Productions (http://bit.ly/1hRIcNT). Let me quote.

“Our City Council has given the green light to build a new $26,000,000.00 Police Station.”

Can you believe it?
Well don’t.

The only thing this video illustrates is how spiffy a living room Bob McCaig has.

21 jt 03 policejpg

Continue reading

Will pending CAO debate trigger a flip-flop frenzy?


city_scope_logo-cmyk

Mark Dec. 13 on the calendar, because it should trigger the process that will witness the return of a CAO to city hall.

The position has been vacant since 2004, when council determined Roy Main just didn’t fit into the city’s plans.

City clerk Wendell Graves would sure fit the bill now, however.

In a chat this week with Times-Journal reporter Kyle Rea, incoming mayor Heather Jackson-Chapman said she fully expected a notice of motion would come forward on that date to initiate debate on a CAO.

Continue reading