Open Letter To Mission Mayor & Council

By George F. Evens. We must not lose sight of the fact we are dealing with careers of dedicated people and the effectiveness of running a progressive and cost-effective municipality within the taxpayers ability to pay. Thus, reasonable objectives and performance standards to achieve goals are welcome.

However, at the District of Mission plans and their execution have gone off the rails by a seemingly dysfunctional Council, at odds with each other. Thus, the first crucial steps are to get all on the same page, well as best we can, given the divergent opinions, misleading data and leadership in clear denial.

First, Councillor Hensman ought to prove his statements about inaccuracy of quoted figures, as they are available and to simply imply being a weird fantasy is unacceptable, so clearly state facts and figures.

Then as [if] to add his dimension of fantasy, Mike Scudder suggests the analogy between opposing factions, unknown which is the bigger fantasy, which is unproductive, at best but from his silliness to the sublime Danny Plecas slightly behind the conversation and historical facts wonders if Councillor Tilbury and Luck remarks at the last Council meeting may have been the cause of staff departures.

So, we must heed the [Mission] Record Editorial wherein a call to “investigate district staffing issues” is made, as it exudes at least a degree of saneness in this debacle and perpetuating of contrasting opinion.

Much of the dialogue is perceived as political rhetoric and unenlightened self-interest skirting around the issues. Councillor Tilbury is correct though, worrying “staffing exits affect business” and alludes to some real concerns about productivity and knowledge being lost.

As an informed observer, having served over 35 years in senior executive positions, with focus upon Human Resource Management, Leadership, Management effectiveness, Recruitment, Psychological assessment, and Performance, I can say unequivocally, leadership is sadly wanting. This sometimes leads to micromanaging to desperately seek to grasp and stem the growing discontent, which typically has, as being experienced, the opposite results.

But the District of Mission has a further major complication, notably a Mayor who, by nearly every action, seeks unwittingly to exacerbate the dilemma he has created at lacking sensitivity, management and perceptive skills of human nature. Simply, to make outlandish statements like, “if people have a resistance to change, it’s better for the organization that they leave”. His previous angry outbursts demonstrate a clear lack of maturity and leadership skill. This has resulted in lack of confidence, which he never grasped but resulted in a dysfunctional Council and essentially a lame-duck Mayor. Indeed it is perceived a precedent in municipal circles but from all perceived accounts the Mayor has been in continual denial and this has fostered at least two Councillors of perceived like-minded nature and skill to provide him moral support, at best but sadly do not improve conditions or results.

The optimistic aspect is [it is only] only seven months to an election and the voter, if able to overcome apathy that prevails at Mission, will clean house again. But equally, Mission left a former hierarchy of stability, albeit possibly not the most progressive but nonetheless historically Councils could rely upon knowledgeable staff. Sadly, this is in serious disrepair currently and is another crucial first step to recruit two or three very competent civic administrators and human relations oriented leaders, to abandon all aspects of micromanagement. As well, it may be prudent and advisable to move quickly to recruit a few integral Department Heads, that collectively with a new Mayor and Council can restore Mission to a viable body.

I applaud the concern expressed by the Record editorial people but in reality, the lateness of the day and intransigence and position of denial by Mayor and Councillor supporters, to factual evidence, an outside review is not likely. So, I hope all will heed my sage remarks and advice, then agree to move forward in a more enlightened, and in-concert approach in the best interests of Mission, to diligently bolster our leadership compliment to an optimal level and stop all this endless bafflegab and yes, outsider former councillors and politicians to abandon their useless rhetoric and finger pointing in the press.

Mission Taxpayers can rejoice at CRMG ridding Mission of incessant annual tax increases and the horrific PSIT fostered by a former misguided Council. Indeed, we enjoyed two years of no tax increase, several other improvements but sadly, desperately lacking leadership and conviction to work together caused an implosion of CRMG but out of the ashes a new opportunity emerges for the four remaining Councillors and some new blood.

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