City council nominations now less than a trickle - look for more after the provincial election

By Pepper Parr

May 26th, 2022



Is there another hat about to be thrown into the ring for the ward 2 Council seat?   And is there a third candidate waiting until after the provincial election?

Sabrina Alcala – a teacher at Central High School is rumoured to be thinking about ward 2 being better than a classroom.

What is Councillor Nisan up to?

Ms Alcala was involved in the Rory Nisan campaign in 2018 . No love lost between Nisan and Kearns. Is Alcala a ghost candidate? Wonder what that is all about.  Political hanky panky?

We are seeing something similar in ward 4 where Tony Brecknock has filed nomination papers for the ward seat held by Shawna Stolte.

Brecknock and Nisan go back some distance.

Councillor Stolte will not be sending Nisan a Christmas card.

There are a lot of hard feelings floating around the seventh floor of city hall where all the Councillors have an office and an administrative assistant.  Mayor Meed Ward gets the credit for creating some of the divisiveness and a knock for not working out the differences with Council members and creating a stronger team where differences are respected.

First day for nominations attracted five of the seven members of Council – Stolte and Sharman were the exceptions.

Sharman filed his papers on the 6th.

Between now and the provincial election don’t expect much in the way of new nominations. Look for something from Stolte once the next report from the Investigator of CLOSED meetings of Council is turned in; expected early in June .

Ward 4 Councillor Shawna Stolte

Their first report from the Investigator, determined that the four occasions  Council went into a CLOSED session that were suspect by some, met the letter of the law. During the meeting there was some suggestion that the spirit of the law was not being met.

And that of course is the issue – while Stolte knew she was wrong in what she did – she does not believe she was wrong with what she was trying to do.

Council and the Office of the Clerk have improved significantly on how they report when they come out of a CLOSED session, which was the point Stolte wanted to make.

Councillor Galbraith, was one of the two that filed complaints with the Integrity Commissioner, has been trying very hard to make amends with Councillor Stolte.

It was a council with five new members that the public trusted; the best they have been able to do is squabble and create two groupings that are unable to cooperate fully. Mayor says it ain’t so.

What is most disappointing is how a Council that brought so much promise and hope to the business of the city has become petty, two faced, disingenuous and something of a disappointment to many.

Burlington is facing some very tough issues, the provincial policy that requires the city to grow has stretched everything including the leadership ability of Council and the leadership within the Planning department.

Each red dot is a development application that is somewhere in the process of getting approval. The vast majority are high rise buildings that require much more time and expertise for the planners to bring forward a recommendation.

The changes in senior staff in the Planning department have left that group of people, who have had to work very hard to keep up with the flow of new development applications, close to leaderless.

The developers are taking cases to the Ontario Land Tribunal before there is even a recommendation from the planners.

This very poor ethical behaviour is not being done by all the developers – but enough of them to really gum up the works.

There is a tonne of money to be made; it has drawn experienced developers into the Burlington market.

The opportunity to create a city that maintains its character is being chipped away little by little.

More is needed in the way of leadership from the office of the city manager and that of the Mayor.

Burlington has been and could be better than this.


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5 comments to City council nominations now less than a trickle – look for more after the provincial election

  • john

    Many of us know, Nisan and Meedward usually work together. So the better question might be….what are Nisan and Meedward up to? The idea of running candidates in wards 2 and 4 that previously worked on Nisan’s campaign, certainly seems to signal something.

  • Jim Thomson

    The problem is that our “Official” Plan is under appeal. This is entirely due to the current council and staff. The staff couldn’t even follow through on the Waterfront Hotel Development Study.
    I don’t find it unethical that after waiting several years the people in charge of the development
    took it to the OLT.
    The fact is MMW ran on something she couldn’t deliver. I believe the people in Tyandaga feel the same way about the quarry expansion.

  • Cannot raise funds if not nominated. Incumbents are normally the heaviest fund raisers as incumbents are more likely to get elected and most like to put their money on a winning horse. Rebates to donors is a new factor this election too, so that may see incumbent donations rise significantly. The political “strategies“ in having friends run some very clear and some not so much have been with us as long as we can remember. Good to have the facts pointed out for those who have yet to understand what goes into municipal politics and can, if we don`t cast informed votes, leave us with divisive leadership, lack of transparency and accountability and a toxicity that affects the interests of the city while promoting the interests of individuals. Many of whom are on a career path like many that have gone before them that begins at the municipal council and school board tables. Cam Jackson is a great example, starting off as a school trustee, rock solid victories as MPP until he retired and then going back to municipal 2006 – 2010 as Mayor. Jackson`s campaign manager who we knew and respected as a school trustee was Dianne Leblovic married to Nick Leblovic who we believe Gazette identified as the Mayor`s 2022 Campaign Manager.

    Editor’s note> We did not identify Leblovic as the Meed Ward campaign manager. Had he held that job Meed Ward would have surely lost. WE have no idea what Leblovic did in 2018 – we are advised that he is a member of the 2022 team and the he and his wife dine from time to time with the Mayor and Pete

  • Penny Hersh

    It seems as if changes in council and or city staff are needed to benefit the residents of Burlington.

    It is hard to believe that anything would be different if everything remains the same.

    The campaign promises made by the current council certainly have not been fulfilled. The hope that this council would work together as a unit to benefit all of Burlington and not each ward individually has not been accomplished.