Mayor calls a quickie Reverse Town Hall - he wants to listen to the voters.

eventsblue 100x100By Pepper Parr

January 16th, 2018



The mayor is hosting a town hall this Thursday at the AGB at 7:00 pm to hear from residents about the downtown.

Our information is that the notice of the meeting was only shared on Twitter.  An hour afrer we first published the Office of the Mayor said:

I’m hosting a Reverse Town Hall this Thursday, January 18th, 7 p.m at the Art Gallery of Burlington to discuss the downtown Burlington in context to our Official Plan and the draft precinct plan.

Reverse Town Hall is all about coming together to share your perspectives. I hope to see many residents, developers and stakeholders this Thursday.


The Mayor in listening mode.

The event is being billed as a Reverse Town Hall. “I want to hear your thoughts about the future of downtown Burlington. This is your meeting and an opportunity for me to listen.

Imagine if this listening capacity were to make its way to the Council Chamber.

ECoB has scheduled a meeting for people interested in volunteering to grow what is known as Engaged Citizens of Burlington.

A genuine and regrettable conflict – the Office of the Mayor was perhaps not aware of what ECoB had planned.

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15 comments to Mayor calls a quickie Reverse Town Hall – he wants to listen to the voters.

  • joe gaetan

    Extremely short notice for such an important topic. I suggest the Mayor schedule a back-up session for those of us who can’t make it because we committed to be elsewhere some long ago.

  • Suddenly… the Mayor who won’t answer emails is holding a reverse town hall.

  • Elaine O'Brien

    If the Mayor didn’t know about the ECOB meeting then either he’s missing something or his staff is – it’s on Facebook and the ECOB website. Shouldn’t he be aware of their information ? Burlington citizens are not happy about the proposed Official Plan. So maybe he should go to their meeting.

  • D.Duck

    Election coming up and this time it’s not a sure thing.

  • David Fenton

    Its ironic the Mayor’s called his meeting at the art centre, as he’ll soon be drawing pogey.
    (The old ones are the best)

  • Lesley S

    Not convinced that the Mayor was not aware that there was a meeting conflict on that date with the ECOB….I will send him an email telling him my concerns so he will have them and then attend the ECOB meeting

  • Concerned Citizen

    Developers will be attending as well? Begs the question as to why. Maybe they suddenly understood that the considerable citizen backlash to their future plans for downtown Burlington might be an issue and demanded that the Mayor support them publicly (beyond the incomprehensible support and unfettered approvals City Staff have already given some of those developers). Either that or there has been a sudden realization by the Mayor’s office that City Hall is supposed to represent the citizens of said city, and this is some kind of ‘hail mary’ act – ‘been almost 4 years of not listening or helping the citizens (to wit: the mayoral moonwalk away from the school closing issue), maybe I should do something’. Either way, agree that time’s up.

    • Tom Muir

      Good point about developers. The Mayor is giving them a platform to support him, and so themselves.

      They are very skilled at spin so watch out.

      It’s what is described as the “long con”.

      He’s committed it seems and needs to manufacture an out, as this plan is a goldmine for the land owners, and a rip off of existing residents and businesses. Guess what they will say.

      We will pay for all of it in the longer run, and are paying all the politicians and staff and consultants to foist their assumptions based dream plan, that many do not want, on us.

      It’s all so predictable. Get rich quick. Has anyone seen it before?

      But let’s wait and see what we see before we make judgement.

      If you are there, make notes. Report back.

  • It seems a little amateur hour, but what is the purpose here?

    Should he be swayed on up coming votes we will be living with for decades based on one meeting with who ever shows up?

    The staff were just unable to ram through a plan that people in Burlington don’t like without there knowledge.

    It’s coming out into the open and people don’t like what they see.

  • Phillip

    I wonder if the scheduling of this town hall was inadvertent or planned? At any rate, I going to the ECOB meeting. Goldring has had 4 years in which time he has had no truly meaningful dialogue with residents but now that an election is looming, he’s all ears! Sorry, Goldring, your time is up!

  • Tom Muir

    I can’t really believe that the Mayor’s office was unaware of the ECoB meeting, and that this last minute Town Hall timing is a genuine and regrettable conflict.

    I don’t believe it, as I see the signs of manufactured interference of citizen political gathering are present.

    Mike Greenlee, and the rest of the Mayor’s office and PR support have some big-time explaining to do. Do they not have an intelligence function – radar? ECoB has to be a big blip if they are paying any attention at all.

    It’s a good idea for the Mayor, and I thank him for thinking of it, but the timing conflict, for sure, will push back and be rebounded flak for the Mayor. It will be a distraction, and a loud dissonance.

    He doesn’t need to do this same date, and should change it to show good faith.

    This would look good on him.

  • Lynn Crosby

    So the Mayor never looks at the Gazette?

    Did he invite the downtown councillor to a downtown event to discuss thoughts on the downtown?

    • William

      Lynn- interesting point. His go-it-alone actions belies his self-talk that he is a “collaborative leader”.

      Unlike some of the other comments, I don’t think he would try to deep-six the ECOB meeting. He’s too self-absorbed to pay attention to what’s going on beyond his re-election efforts.

      The townhall is a waste of time – he doesn’t listen and even if he did, he lacks the courage or inclination to act on what residents want.

      • Lynn Crosby

        Yes, his voting against the 23 storey building, after seeing where the vote was going, but not showing any leadership or strength to say before the vote, as the Mayor and leader, “I think we may be making a mistake. There is nothing wrong with changing our minds. I believe we owe it to the citizens to slow down and look at this again.” Maybe some members of council would have listened. But he never even tried. He now says “I voted against that.” Well leadership would have entailed doing a bit more.