By Mike Archer. As we’ve pointed out before, Councillor John Smith’s handling of the Abbotsford Social Development Advisory Committee (ASDAC) is a crystal clear example of what is wrong with the City of Abbotsford’s committee system.

We have now witnessed the results of Smith’s experiment in deflective democracy whereby, as the Councillor responsible for certain issues in the community, you express an extreme amount of interest, empathy and understanding and then, on leaving the committee room dump the recommendations you just heard in the garbage and go tell council there’s no need to be concerned.

The Abbotsford News, which has been covering Smith in a servile, subservient and obsequious fashion for years, is now scratching it’s head wondering why the ASDAC doesn’t seem to get anything done.

John Smith
, not the members of the committee. They’re doing their job. Why didn’t he do his?

While we’re at it, why doesn’t somebody ask John why he seems so protective of Economic Development Manager Jay Teichroeb? Most who watch the City of Abbotsford have come to the conclusion that Jay has not really been up to the task on some key issues like the half billion we are now committed to for John’s Plan A fiasco.

He also kinda went over the top on the Great Abbotsford Water Shortage-Surplus telling citizens, in a piece in the Abbotsford News in advance of a referendum that the City would run out of water and the economy would grind to a halt by 2016 if we didn’t spend $300,000,000 on a new water supply we didn’t need.

Is Jay not the same guy who has dropped our drawers to developers with tax incentives, low DCCs and a drastic shift in the costs of development onto the shoulders of existing citizens instead of developers?

Under Jay’s guidance the City’s economic development has been characterized by a decade of decline in housing starts, building permit values, real estate sales, and an increase in unemployment. We are committed to massive subsidies of two giant out of town corporations for John and Jay’s Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre (AESC) and our very own money losing hockey team.

Was the longstanding practice of shuffling the homeless around town and using chicken manure, pepper spray and aggressive tactics to rough them up and have them move on something John and Jay came up with in order to make developers’ lives easier?

We’ll never know if Mayor Banman’s insistence on keeping the name of the culprit secret is allowed to stand and treating this as an internal matter.

It is not an internal matter Bruce. The whole City has been shamed by what was clearly not an isolated incident.

We have to ask these questions and we deserve answers.

If we don’t, then we won’t ever move beyond the shame somebody has forced us to endure as a community and we will, in the end, be no better than whoever perpetrated this outrage.

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