If ever there was a city that needs a few cheery Christmas gifts, it’s Revelstoke.
First of all the recent revolving door for department heads needs to be slowed down a bit. In the last six months we have lost four major positions in the great cradle of our bureaucracy.
The most recent is the manager of development services, Dean Strachan. Most knew him as our head planner — hard worker, heavy work load, nice guy, won’t say where he’s going other that to another community that offered him a job.
Head of finance Graham Inglis retired and was replaced with… oh, it doesn’t matter he pulled the pin before his first day at work or was asked to leave, (both he and City claimed it wasn’t a good fit) don’t know why, no detailed public reason given. What the hell does “wasn’t a good fit” mean anyway? It’s used so often. It would be refreshing to, once in awhile, see, “we fired his sorry @##” or “she told us to shove our lame job.”
And, our director of Economic Development has decided to pack it in at the end of February. Alan Mason says he’s retiring after a long and illustrious career that saw him involved in Revelstoke’s famous Fractured Fairy Tale incident.
It shouldn’t be difficult to fill these positions. The is pay comparable to any city this size and in a number of cases even better. The lifestyle is fabulous if you like snow but, the cost of housing and food scream ‘sticker shock!’ It must be quite a surprise to anybody thinking of locating here when a decent home in a town this size runs upwards from $350,000-plus.
So how do we get good professionals who don’t mind driving to Vernon for less expensive groceries? Pay them more? Well, that wouldn’t be a popular move since the City budget is expected to call for, at least, a 5 percent increase in taxes next year. How about free season passes to the ski hill, the Mountain Coaster and the golf course? Nah! Then all department heads will want them.
How about outsourcing? Nope — too impersonal and detached. Besides who would we blame, curse at and start rumours about when something goes SNAFU?
I don’t have an answer just a cautionary note: Council should stamp ‘URGENT’ on it’s Christmas wish list before the remaining staff leave from burn out or take paid stress leave. Happy New Year Councillors.
BTW, is anybody leaving the legislative horseshoe? No by-election? No? I want a guarantee.
So elected ladies and gentlemen, — and Mayor McKee — may all your public hearings be short. May all requested variances please the applicants. May the traffic circle get paid for. May any zoning changes be non-controversial. May all new developments fall into place the first time. May the budget balance and be accepted by the taxpayers. May there be no snow plough breakdowns or blade-destroyed curbs. May our infrastructure remain intact and may you all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, without gaining a pound/kilogram.
Now, who says ol’ Anne isn’t a cockeyed optimist and a positive force?
Pet Peeve of The Month… No, The Century: Autocorrect. Of all the vile, uncooperative, disruptive and embarrassing systems ever invented Autocorrect wins the Golden Razzie Award. Ever type anything that your computer corrected for you then hit Send? Ever type a word that starts with the letters ‘sh’ only to have the recipient tell you what appeared in a fit of laughter? ‘Nuff said.
Yours in crankiness,
Ms. Anne Throap