Sunday, February 7, 2021

When influencing public opinion seems to be the goal ...

 

Windsor Works:
An Economic Development Strategy for the City's Future Growth?

At the Monday, February 8, 2021 Windsor City Council meeting, Council will consider recommendations contained in a report entitled Windsor Works: Economic Development Strategy for the City's Future Growth

It was produced by Public First, a small policy and research company located in London, UK. The firm has a revolving door relationship with 10 Downing Street, the office of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and is the subject of a recent public controversy. It has no apparent municipal economic development expertise, or, for that matter, familiarity with Southwestern Ontario.

Windsor Works was commissioned by Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens. It's unclear what due diligence was done before deciding to appoint Public First to create this report.

It offers no major new insights, data or observations. The report largely echoes Windsor City's existing 20 Year Strategic Vision. Many of the source documents referenced in Windsor Works' bibliography were authored by the WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation (WE EDC).

The report advocates for the new County Road 42 hospital site, but fails to note that if the hospital is built there, Windsor's established neighbourhoods will lose 5,000+ jobs. Nor does it offer recommendations for replacing that many jobs.

How much did Windsor taxpayers pay for this "research"? The only public disclosure was that it cost less than $400,000.

Why is Windsor throwing money at a study to discover what we already know? 
Strangely, the study doesn't cite any interviews or consultations with ordinary local residents, especially the talented young college and university graduates Windsor claims it wishes to retain, or its engaged grassroots community advocacy groups. An especially egregious oversight is that no one spoke with the Downtown Windsor Business Improvement Association (DWBIA), which represents almost 700 small and mid-sized local businesses.

Was anyone, at any of the BIAs, actually interviewed?
Mayor Dilkens wrote in a February 5, 2021 memo, "Detailed research, and hundreds of hours of local stakeholder consultations" took place with stakeholders that included a list of specific neighbourhood associations. Yet Windsor Works only indicated "site visits" to those same neighbourhoods.

What new insights were gained?
Is this study really meant to improve the city we live in, or is it just another Hail Mary to convince the provincial government that our municipal leadership knows what our residents want or need? It's a report that demonstrates more PR savvy than urban planning or economic development expertise. And it overlooks contemporary issues like community development, placemaking and climate change.

Why commission a foreign company for this report?
Public First, a small policy and research company located in London, UK, demonstrates, at best, a superficial understanding of our community. This is evident throughout the 314-page report that contains just 87 pages of actual narrative, including some sections repeated more than once.

But wait! Where did we see this before?
Public First's website states that it helps:

organisations understand and influence public opinion
through research and targeted communications campaigns"

 

This is uncannily similar to the description on the Ottawa-based Crestview Strategy website:
 
We make, change, and mobilize public opinion
 
The wording on both the Crestview Strategy and Public First websites promotes expertise in influencing public opinion.

Is this merely coincidence? Is Windsor Works truly an independent, unbiased economic development study? Or is it a covert attempt to curate content in support of a pre-determined objective, ignoring the people who are vital to any successful local economic development strategy? 

Surely Windsor constituents’ best interests are better served by engaging with residents and methodically building upon data to develop transparent evidence-based decisions!
We've written about Crestview Strategy many times since they launched their so-called "grassroots" lobbying campaign in 2020. They are the lobbyists to whom WEEDC awarded a $270,000+ contract to promote the mega-hospital plan.
 
Mayor Dilkens is a long-time Director on WE EDC’s Board, providing a leadership link directly to Windsor City Council. Council approves municipal funding for Windsor’s contribution to WE EDC’s core budget. Yet, Windsor City Council was not involved in the decision to fund WE EDC's Crestview campaign.

Windsor's lacklustre economic landscape
In 2018, the Windsor CMA* per capita GDP was lower than in 2001. The graph below was taken from page 25 of Windsor Works. The report recommends revitalizing downtown Windsor to attract and retain highly talented workers.
* CMA = Census Metropolitan Area. It includes the City of Windsor
and the Towns of Amherstburg, LaSalle, Lakeshore and Tecumseh

Recommendations incompatible with reality: How Windsor Works deals with the new hospital
The report glosses over the new hospital location as a fait accompli in spite of CAMPP's ongoing legal appeal. And the provincial government has yet to give the project a go-ahead.

There's no indication in the report that its authors visited the planned hospital location on County Road 42. This is unusual, given the importance of the hospital investment to our local economy. We're wondering if they even realized how distant it is from Windsor's central neighbourhoods.
  • It's unclear how the healthcare needs of people living in the city’s central neighbourhoods are going to be met if a healthcare cluster is developed around the new hospital, as recommended in the report.
  • There's no explanation of how these central neighbourhoods will be impacted by the relocation of 5,000+ healthcare jobs and all hospital services to County Road 42, or why a “global industrial park” will be developed on the airport lands adjacent to the hospital site -- an airport that may soon no longer have active air traffic controllers.
  • Does this mean established healthcare services in the vicinity of the existing hospital campuses will disappear? If so, what will replace those 5,000+ jobs? Nowhere in the report is this addressed.

Attracting and retaining talented post-secondary graduates
There's plenty of contemporary research and data indicating educated young people prefer to live in walkable urban environments.

But Windsor Works doesn't explain how a city that advocates for increased urban sprawl and auto dependence might be attractive to this essential demographic group.

This is a critical omission that will have far-reaching consequences to the success of Windsor's economic development strategy, if it's executed as Public First recommends.

Environmental considerations
Bizarrely, there's no mention whatsoever of climate change or Windsor's efforts to meet the energy reduction targets in Windsor's 2017 Community Energy Plan:
Windsor's Community Energy Plan targets
Scoring Windsor Works
If we were to grade Windsor Works, we might give Public First's report an F for delivering a report without groundbreaking new insights or recommendations, neglecting to involve local residents, and failing to reconcile the planned hospital location with the stated goal of revitalizing Downtown Windsor, especially in light of the high cost of this study.

We'll be following the Council proceedings closely on Monday to see how critical Windsor's ten councillors are about this latest blueprint for our city's future. Stay tuned.
 
Read the 300+ page Windsor Works report
Read written submissions in the Council Agenda
Watch the livestream on Monday, February 8, at 11:00 a.m.
Click here to donate to our GoFundMe
In their own words:
Members of our community comment on the issues this week
Mayor Drew Dilkens and his office go rogue in awarding the dubious Windsor Works report contract to unknown British firm. Will City Council get back control at the meeting next week? Will we see fireworks or yet another roll over? Taxpayers duped again.
There is nothing in the report that council and the good citizens don't already know. Also, I'm getting a chuckle out of the errors. May I suggest a good basic writer's reference guide? Fit to Print by Joanne Buckley is a good start.
 ... if the goal is economic regeneration, some cultural investment is absolutely necessary. But a minimum level of “niceness” ?.... its literally just the civic equivalent of “don’t be an asshole.”
The whole notion of attracting investment is never going to create the desired community unless the investment sought is directed. Countless research has been done over the decades as to what economic activities are required to cluster and what their ranges are, yet this data seems to be unknown.
If all the leisure activities require driving and leaving your car in acres of parking lot, it is not the desired outcome. Walk-able communities are disappearing.
I started skimming half way through because it was so poorly written. Amateurish even - so disheartening.

About Public First, the firm selected to produce Windsor Works

There is no indication Public First, a small London, UK, based policy and research company that was founded in 2016, has expertise in municipal strategy development or knowledge of Windsor’s (or Southwestern Ontario’s) landscape and community dynamics.

It is a controversial firm that specializes in developing Conservative education policy and has exceedingly close ties to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and former Education Secretary Michael Gove.

  • The project was led by Rachel Wolf, a founding partner. Ms. Wolf co-authored the Conservative Party’s Election Manifesto in 2019. She made headlines in 2010 after the charity the then 25-year old was running was awarded an untendered £500,000 grant by Mr. Gove’s Education Department. Ms. Wolf previously worked for Mr. Gove as an advisor.
 
  • The project was supported by Blair Gibbs, a cannabis policy expert. Mr. Gibbs was an advisor to the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson until September 2020. Like Ms. Wolf, municipal strategy development expertise is not evident. Although currently located in Vancouver, he has spent almost his entire life in the UK.
 
Were any established Canadian consultants with expertise in municipal strategy development and at least a working familiarity with Southwestern Ontario considered for Windsor's consulting project? And if so, what does Public First offer that a Canadian firm cannot provide?

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Together, we can stop Windsor's worst planning mistake ever

 
Our fundraising campaign continues!

Many thanks to everyone who has contributed so generously to our GoFundMe campaign launched in February 2019. Together, you have helped us raise $93,938 to keep keep healthcare where people live.

With your support, CAMPP has analyzed thousands of hours' worth of data and produced detailed reports. We've been able to ask the critical questions local elected officials have often overlooked. We know you read and are inspired by CAMPP's Sunday emails. Many of you have told us how much you appreciate CAMPP's relentless efforts.

You make it possible for CAMPP to advocate for a better hospital plan. So today, we're asking you to contribute again.

We are still short of our fundraising needs -- money required to pay our legal costs.

And starting today, December 13, 2020, we have a holiday announcement: Two generous donors have promised a total of $3,000 in matching funds for donations to CAMPP during the next month.

That means all donations towards our legal expenses (up to $3,000) will be automatically doubled.

There are several ways to support our legal campaign. We accept cheques and etransfers, or you can donate to our GoFundMe.

Please give what you can, and give generously.

And as always, thank you for supporting this historic legal appeal. Together, we can ensure accessible healthcare for generations to come.
 
Click here to donate to our GoFundMe
In their own words:
Members of our community comment on the issues this week
"IF you'd put pressure on WRH to change the plan, rather than continue to ram a faulty proposal through QP, maybe we'd get somewhere. Windsor needs leadership."
"If you really want a hospital, change the plan!! CAMPP can't change the plan to something this government will approve. This can only be done by Windsor Regional Hospital. Change the plan = investment. Why do "leaders" continue to blame the people? WRH and the city have the ability to get investment but they've dug in their heels and won't budge. This is not how a city is led. Windsor deserves better."
"WEEDC = City/County Slush Fund, your money people, over a quarter of a million dollars, shameful!"
"Parts of the OR are virtually new. When the last health minister was in Windsor speaking at the Ouellette site he as much stated maybe the newer part of the Ouellette site can be saved and used as day surgery but he never spoke in specifics much like this whole plan."
"In the Star today a story says Lasalle DC’s are going up by a few thousand. And they are so thankful for new development going in because without it Lasalles taxes would have to increase by 25%. That’s just scary. Does no one pay attention to this stuff? This is an acknowledged Ponzi scheme and everyone appears to be ok with it."
"So lets roll forward 10 years and assume that it is built and running, then factor in COVID my questions are, would it have the capacity to deal with the expected increase in Hospitalization’s to come, and will it be staffed well enough to deal with the scenario. In both cases I believe the answer to be NO. If you are gonna get it done, DO IT RIGHT the first time."

Sunday, December 6, 2020

We agree: The status quo is not an option!

Local leaders promote inspiring messages about combatting climate change and improving community health. Yet, with the new hospital location, they are openly planning for a more car-dependent future.
You may have seen the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit's (WECHU) new social media campaign. It encourages walking, biking and public transit. These activities positively impact both personal and community health, and the climate.

WECHU operates under the guidance of the Board of Health. Its Chair is Gary McNamara, who is also the Mayor of Tecumseh and the Warden of Essex County.
Both the City of Windsor and Essex County declared climate emergencies in 2019.

On October 2, 2020, Mayor McNamara authored a guest column in the Windsor Star about the urgency to tackle climate change. 

McNamara wrote: "the status quo is not an option. We have to weigh the costs of moving forward against the costs of doing nothing. The cost of doing nothing could be catastrophic."

Yet his progressive language completely contradicts his unbridled vocal support for what may be the single worst planning decision in Windsor-Essex history: locating the region's only full service acute care hospital on an undeveloped rural site in Sandwich South, adjacent to Windsor Airport. This location is not within walking distance of where anybody lives today or in the foreseeable future. The area is explicitly designated for low density development. Locating the new hospital in Sandwich South will force residents to become even more car dependent than they are today.

In another perplexing public display of cognitive dissonance, Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens, who championed Windsor's climate emergency and Active Transportation Master Plan, stated at the November 9, 2020 City Council meeting:
"I can assure you, you're not going to solve climate change in the City of Windsor by not building a hospital. Not even quite sure I understand the argument...Most people are going to drive to a hospital. They will not ride their bike, if they need hospital care."
Mayor Dilkens may have a point when it comes to the sickest of patients, especially those who arrive by ambulance. But many people who travel to the hospital are perfectly capable of using active transportation, and may even prefer it. In addition to the many visitors and volunteers, the single largest group of people travelling to and from the hospital are the 5,000+ workers who staff it every day of the week, 365 days a year. That's without even including the numerous health-related businesses (doctors' offices, pharmacies, labs, restaurants) and their employees, located in the vicinity of Windsor Regional Hospital's (WRH) two current campuses situated in well-established neighborhoods. What will happen when these campuses are shuttered if the new rural site hospital is built?

Mayor Dilkens also seems to have overlooked how active transportation was supposedly integral to the site selection for the new hospital, further proving how deeply flawed the hospital site selection process was.

How many local healthcare workers and hospital support staff live within walking distance of their place of work today? How many patients go to their medical appointments by public transit? Has WRH ever gathered this information?

Mayor Dilkens' statement is actually quite worrisome. Why should the public trust our elected leadership to build - and operate - the kind of active transportation network outlined in Active Transportation Master Plan to achieve the ambitious walking, cycling and public transit mode share targets approved by the City of Windsor in 2019?
With the recent loss of the third shift from the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Windsor Assembly Plant, WRH has become the region's single largest employer.

And yet, disappointingly, there's little evidence of any environmental leadership (or management interest) in this subject at WRH. There is no environmental language in the hospital's Mission, Vision or Values statement. A search on the WRH website for "climate change" brings up advice on ostomy care; a search for "environment" delivers only a handful of news stories, among them a 2015 Earth Day initiative to replace the light bulbs at the WRH Ouellette Campus, and a more recent story about the installation of water bottle filling stations.

We have every right to expect outstanding health and climate leadership from those entrusted with the care of our physical and community health. However, we have the right to expect more than just lip service, especially from our elected officials.

Every Windsor-Essex resident has the right to expect consistency between what is written into public policies to guide decision makers, and the decisions our elected officials make.

When will this wisdom be applied to the $2 billion+ hospital project?

We must demand better.
Our fundraising campaign continues
Many thanks to everyone who has contributed so generously to our GoFundMe campaign launched in February 2019. Together, you have helped us raise $93,460 to keep keep healthcare where people live.

​However, we are still short of our fundraising needs -- money required to pay our ongoing legal costs.

There are several ways to support our legal campaign. We accept cheques and etransfers, or you can donate to our GoFundMe.
In their own words:
Members of our community comment on the issues this week
"While we celebrate one new facility for Essex County, London has University, Victoria, St. Josephs, Parkwood and Children’s Hospitals, all within the city. The devil is in the details. Sadly, we’ve grown to feel that we don’t deserve any better."
"When I addressed council in 2015, I asked where the impact study was."
“The decision to develop a 60-acre greenfield site at a substantial distance from the city is environmentally irresponsible, short-sighted and not something any progressive city of the 21st century should be striving toward.”
“There was ZERO consultation by the city with regard to the hospital location. Not even at the city council level. Mayor Drew Dilkens made it very clear that the city had no part in deciding where the hospital was to be located. Only after the proposed site was chosen did the city decide to raise a voice...one that was completely onside (not withholding) exuberance and not willing to address a single concern tabled.”
"I think for a lot of people the actual plan (to tear down the current facilities) is too absurd to believe up front. The planners are counting on their continuing ignorance."
"How much economic damage is this going to do to the city's core? What infrastructure costs will Windsor tax payers be on the hook for in order to develop a new area on the outskirts? No one knows. Any attempts to find answers to these questions have been shut down. Why is that?"
"I want to write a letter to council titled “A Tale of Two Cities.”

My sister lives in Erie, Pa., similar in size and population to Windsor.

Erie has vibrant art museum, a maritime museum dedicated to nautical history on the Great Lakes, a two story nature center with a small theatre, labs where the local ecology is studied, and a gift shop. I could go on. Furthermore, all their major medical facilities are interconnected and located in the core of the city.

When I told my sister about the proposed mega hospital site, she was astonished. It’s disheartening to see what other cities create for their constituents while Windsor residents have to settle for mediocre amenities that don’t excite or engage."
"This is yet another excellent newsletter laying out the issues, the contradictions, the deep problems in both decisions made by Dilkens and other councillors, and the depth of the scandalous way in which they conduct themselves in the face of evidence that challenges their very flawed logic. Thank you to CAMPP for continuing to engage the powers that be and the community on this critically important decision!!!"
Thank you for your many messages of support. Please continue to send us your comments and contribute to our fundraiser for legal expenses. 
Click here to donate to our GoFundMe

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Without Data, City Council Writes a Blank Cheque for Hospital Plan

 

Windsor's Worst Planning Mistake Ever: Part 2
At an eight-hour Windsor City Council meeting on Monday, November 9, 2020, four councillors said they could not endorse the proposed County Road 42 location for the new hospital. To the surprise of many, one of them was Councillor Kieran McKenzie, in whose ward the hospital is to be built.

These four councillors each cited serious concerns: they identified critical analyses, cost and impact reports that were never produced. They also stressed the plan is environmentally unsustainable and completely ignores Windsor's commitment to reduce its energy use by 40% in the next two decades.

A large number of delegates presented hard facts and data to explain why the new hospital needs to be built where people live. Those in favour of endorsing the plan side-stepped the location issue entirely. They just want a new hospital.

There were also 92 personally-written letters pleading with councillors not to endorse the rural location. 

Oddly, the extent of citizen opposition to the selected hospital location and the facts brought forward during the meeting were glossed over by the local media. Why? One can only imagine.

Yet, there were some truly shocking new revelations during this week's meeting!

The six councillors, who, together with the mayor, endorsed the controversial hospital location, openly admitted they were signing a blank cheque in their eagerness to secure the next tranche of provincial government planning funding.

They further reinforced their disregard for informed decision-making and fiscal stewardship when they subsequently voted against a motion to engage an outside consultant to determine the financial, societal and environmental impacts to the residents of Windsor of the existing plan. This motion failed to pass.

This means there is no data supporting the financial, social or environmental costs of relocating 5,000+ healthcare jobs to the outskirts of the city. There is no analysis of the probable impact on the neighbourhoods where the two hospital campuses are currently based - Windsor Regional Hospital is now the city's biggest employer. Nor have the impacts on the region's most vulnerable residents, the majority of whom live in the City's central neighbourhoods, been analyzed.

Windsor City Council is openly and recklessly flying blind with one of the largest projects in the City's history, and they don't care how such a lack of fiscal sobriety and due diligence may be perceived by the provincial government. Neither do Windsor's municipal leaders demonstrate any concern for the residents who will be saddled with the hard and soft costs of their poor judgment for decades to come.

$270,000 in taxpayer funds diverted to suppress concerns!
Another outrageous revelation emerged during the lengthy Council debate: Municipally-funded WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation (WE EDC) spent $270,000 - or 8% of the organization's annual operating budget - on the We Can't Wait promotional campaign. WE EDC hired Ottawa-based lobbyist Crestview Communications to orchestrate "grassroots" support for the rural hospital location. Yet there was never a public motion presented at Windsor City Council to transparently approve this expense.
Click the image below to hear an extraordinary admission by WE EDC CEO Stephen Mackenzie to Councillor Bortolin: the taxpayer funded We Can't Wait campaign cost $270,000 (27 second clip)
Provincial government: looking for financial stewardship?
The councillors endorsing the selected hospital location seemed oblivious to University of Windsor Law Professor Dr. Anneke Smit's pertinent point:
"There is one more elephant in this room...The federal government in particular has signalled its intent to fund a green recovery... In funding municipalities, partners such as the federal government will be looking to work with cities who are speaking the same language. Who have seen the opportunity that is presented by this pandemic to do a serious reset.

Windsor is going to be far more competitive if it shows real commitment to addressing the principles of the just recovery – equity, health, climate – than if it simply goes for the window-dressing.

The province, for its part, is looking to curb spending amidst the financial crisis of COVID-19. Our plan will be far more attractive if it offers a more economical way forward with better financial stewardship."
Since 2015 CAMPP has continually asked decision makers to transparently disclose the project's analyses and impacts. What we learned at the November 9, 2020 Council meeting was that these reports don't exist at all! The necessary impact studies were never conducted.

Click the image below to hear this shocking acknowledgement by WE EDC CEO Stephen MacKenzie to Councillor Bortolin (12 second clip):
MacKenzie: The impact of relocating hospitals from Windsor's central neighbourhoods to the city's outskirts was not determined prior to endorsing the proposed County Road 42 hospital site.
What kind of local government ignores not only the people it was elected to serve, but also the long term health of the community?
Four councillors voted against the motion to endorse the hospital site
Councillor Holt listed the analyses he needed to make an informed decision:
  • Impacts to road infrastructure of the expected new traffic patterns
  • Impacts on existing neighbourhoods that have grown around the hospital campuses
  • Municipal costs (capital outlays and ongoing operational legacy costs) and where the funds are to come from
  • Social impacts of relocating the hospitals away from the high risk populations that live in close proximity today
  • Long term sustainability in view of Windsor's climate emergency declared in November 2019
Each of the short clips below gives a snapshot of the reasons the four councillors voted against the County Road 42 hospital location. 
Ward 4 Councillor Chris Holt listed specific data and analyses that have not been prepared.
(170 second clip)
Ward 2 Councillor Fabio Costante described his belief in a healthy, sustainable and equitable community. He was unable to endorse the hospital site based on the lack of evidence before the council. 
(40 second clip)
Ward 9 Councillor Kieran McKenzie cited an absence of drainage studies and cost analyses as the reason the City simply isn't ready to endorse the County Road 42 hospital location.
(46 second clip)
Ward 3 Councillor Rino Bortolin explained how unsustainable growth will lead to an increased infrastructure deficit and higher taxes. He talked about the need for climate leadership and said the proposed site will do the opposite. (55 second clip)
A complete disregard for Windsor's Asset Management Policy
Windsor's Asset Management Policy is the policy framework to guide decision makers responsible for governance over Windsor's assets and infrastructure:
It is an absolute scandal for a majority on Council to rubber stamp one of the largest infrastructure projects in Windsor's history - the hospital's construction cost alone has now ballooned to $2.3 billion! - while actively refusing to ask for analysis of the probable costs and impacts of this project.

Poor governance bankrupts private corporations
In the corporate world, shareholders would be justified in firing management after becoming aware of such poor governance.

How much longer will Windsor's residents tolerate such dereliction of fiduciary duty by elected municipal leaders?
Commentary about the November 9, 2020 Windsor City Council meeting
We think you will be interested in this thoughtful Twitter thread by political commentator Doug Sartori. He describes the suppression of opposition to the rural hospital site by the media and decision makers, and presents a four-step approach to constructively addressing residents' concerns. 
Finally, for an in-depth discussion about this controversial Windsor City Council meeting, we recommend listening to the November 11, 2020 Rose City Politics podcast.
In their own words:
Members of our community comment on the issues this week
"Last night the mayor put a motion forward that divided us instead of unifying us. He wanted unanimous support, he got a 4 to 6 vote. He wanted to show the province the city was united, but more than half the delegates spoke to major issues with the plan. "
"I thought Ontario was in massive debt ? Then why did they pick the most expensive location ? It'll cost 3x more for the infrastructure then any other sites. Also only Windsor residents will foot this bill. These are blatant facts of you can't google them yourself then don't reply."
"Pressing forward with a bad plan for 8 years doesn't change the fact that it's still a bad plan. Based on the original RFP it was flawed from the very beginning."
"ppl that don’t struggle don’t care it’s not their problem"
"To continue to remove piece after piece from the city core area and the area with the greatest challenges and needs his nothing short of negligence and incompetence on the part of our elected officials. The “strong majority” according to Mr. Dilkens has won the arm wrangling at the cost of the environment, the revitalization of the city core and those who are in the greatest need. So disappointed."
"Although I agree a new hospital somewhere is better than no new hospital anywhere, I don't agree with the decision to build it next to an airport, on a farm field, in the middle of nowhere, with no infrastructure in place that has yet to be built. Urban sprawl is not the answer"
"As this goes forward more problems will become evident. Sadly, we can already see that they will use CAMPP as a scapegoat if thing go wrong. Why don't people read the facts on the site? People are so unaware."
"It just doesn't make sense to move a hospital so far away from the most densely populated area of the county and put an airport between it and them. Only 2 major arteries to get to and from the hospital for an entire city?"
"CAMPP is a response to a threat, a threat against the city - CAMPP would not exist without that threat.... in a sense – CAMPP was created by Windsor Regional Hospital and The City of Windsor.
Drew Dilkens and David Musyj made us... and until the threat is gone, CAMPP will be here."
"What they don't seem to get is that the group didn't start because of the location. It was started as an attempt to get the "powers that be " to engage with the citizens (the people footing the bill for a very long time) in order to, through consultation, work out the best plan for everyone"
"Windsor can not afford more sprawl, especially on a flood plain, when we have enough spaces already more suitable within our city, sitting unused and flooding is a major problem in most residential areas."
"I'm not as down on this project as others, but it is a little concerning to me that we moved forward on it based on the idea we were getting support that isn't coming.  Have to be careful not to treat grant applications as money in the bank."
"To characterize informed, concerned and engaged citizens as naysayers is an unacceptable treatment of the very people for whom you serve.

Public service does not privilege one to disparage the public - on the contrary, respect for the public is a requisite.

They've got it backwards, and it's a loss for all concerned, especially the uninformed."