Apparently it will only take one hour, 45 minutes for Peachlanders to tell council members what they’re doing wrong and what they’re doing right.
If you haven’t heard about the upcoming Town Hall Meeting, you can be forgiven. Unless you happened to glance at the district’s website in the last few days, it hasn’t been advertised very well. One might think that if council was all that interested in finding out what the public thinks of the job done in the last two and a half years, the unusual event would have been publicized widely.
The Town Hall Meeting is being touted (in a minimalist way, on the website) as a chance to join Peachland’s mayor and council for tea and cookies and the chance to chat about council’s work to date.
Qualifying the get together as a tea and cookie event tells the tale. Council is more concerned with the appearance of listening to the electorate than giving them a chance to really talk about the issues. One can imagine council members and senior staff sipping Earl Grey in the community centre’s banquet room while a few people mill about, scarfing cookies and talking about the weather.
With less than two hours alloted to Tuesday’s bogus feedback opportunity, few are going to have the chance to truly confront council with issues. If our local politicians are wandering around the room, anyone with a serious beef will have to go to each individually, wait their turn, explain the beef, then move on.
If council really wanted to hear from the people that elected them, they’d set out a couple of hundred chairs in the community centre’s main room, line themselves up at tables at one end (as is done at all candidates meetings), stick a microphone at the other end and sit there and listen.
Oh well. In the absence of any meaningful open dialogue with the electorate, you can always show up Tuesday night, sip tea and munch on cookies. After all, you’re buying the refreshments.