Tuesday debate at Paletta Mansion a do or die evening for Peter Rusin; so far the Mayor hasn't slipped up.

council 100x100By Pepper Parr

October 6, 2014



There are Rusin for Mayor popping up around town – maybe as many as a dozen.

Peter Rusin does his second debate against Mayor Rick Goldring and Anne Marsden Tuesday evening at the Paletta Mansion on Lakeshore Road. Start time is 7 pm.

Rusin - daughter - sign GOOD

Peter Rusin with his first election sign – his daughter put it up.

The format will be much like the Lion’s debate last week where the Regional candidates, the Mayoral candidates and the candidates for ward four were all at the front of the room.

Rusin has his work cut out for him. He certainly scored some points during the first debate but failing to say who he was at the start of the debate suggested this is a politician who has a lot to learn.
Ward four carries a lot of clout in Burlington and there will be some people watching his performance very carefully. Last week when Rusin took part in an Ontario Poverty Roundtable it became evident that he didn’t know what Ontario Works was all about.

Not knowing what Ontario Works is about won’t make a pinch of difference to the Roseland crowd but it is a glimpse of the short comings in the Rusin attempt to get that Chain of Office around his neck.
Rusin will have to land a sold knockout punch or Goldring will have to stumble badly if Rusin is to advance his candidacy. Neither is likely – we have seen Mayor Goldring stand up to some of the Rusin challenges. What has been useful is a candidate who has forced to Mayor to move out of the lazy stroll he was taking to a return trip to the office of Mayor.

Basement flooded BSB Coalition

The Regional government has some explaining to do about the storm water and sewage systems.

The battle for the Region Chair has already been determined. Gary Carr has done a good job and will be returned. He could be held more accountable; all for municipalities that make up the Regional government are in for both a surprise and a shock when the Regional budget comes down in the Spring. .

Burlington is due much, much more in the way of explanations as to what went wrong with the storm water sewer and sewage systems.

Dennison LaSalle

Councillor Jack Dennison faces an incumbent who is nipping at his heels – too early to tell is she will manage a decent bite, Dennison is out walking door to door handing our his brochure. Some truth in advertising issues with that brochure.

A key part of the evening is watching how well first time candidate Carol Gottlob does when she goes up against long term incumbent Jack Dennison. Gottlob doesn`t have any political experience but she certainly sounds good. Someone younger with new ideas and a different level of energy might be what ward four needs.

It will be interesting to see how well she holds her own.

Maureen Tilson-Dyment will moderate; Joan Little, Hamilton Spectator columnist, Tina Depko-Denver, city hall reporter for the Post and Pepper Parr, publisher of the Burlington Gazette will be on a panel putting questions to the candidates.

The event is being sponsored by the Roseland Community Organization and the Roseland Heights Community Organization.


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12 comments to Tuesday debate at Paletta Mansion a do or die evening for Peter Rusin; so far the Mayor hasn’t slipped up.

  • Blair

    I once again have to say affordable housing in Burlington is a huge issue. I consider myself and family lucky to live in the downtown core but if we were to try and buy today it would be a stretch, a very hard one! I would like to ask all of the people who say affordable housing isn’t an issue in an affluent city like Burlington who is going to make your $8 coffee at Starbucks ? Are we going to bus them in? Oh no we can’t do that because our transit system does not work!
    Please listen to what new people have to say and really think about your vote.

    • Maggie

      When I worked at Mapleview mall many years ago a met a number of workers who came in from Hamilton. I had moved back in with my elderly father so didn’t have rent to pay otherwise there is no way I could have rented an apartment in Burlington on what I was making and I worked over 40 hours a week which is unusual for retail.

  • greg fabian

    The waterfront issue and uncontrolled high-rise development are two of the main issues I will be talking about to all my friends.

    Blair, this is a great document to use and send to everyone.

    I find Mr. Rusin’s comment on the sale of the waterfront lands to be disturbing. Sounds like he is involved in it.

  • Blair Smith

    The waterfront is an important feature of ward four and something for which the successful candidates need to provide effective stewardship. The responses of all candidates to a series of waterfront-related questions and issues can be viewed on the Burlington Waterfront Committee website, http://www.burlingtonwaterfront.org.

    I hope that people review the candidate responses – there are some interesting ones from the mayoralty and ward four candidates. It’s another piece of information that can be used to inform voting choices.

    In the interests of total disclosure, I am a member of the Burlington Waterfront Committee.

  • tenni

    K. Richards
    I am well aware what was said about the 700 units and the five units. I am also aware that there is no legal requirement that these five units remain at an affordable price. Market price will increase the value of these five unit to a price beyond low income people.

    My concern is that Mr Rusin does not communicate with solutions. He seems to only offer simplistic complaints without articulating a solution. In fact, at ward 2 event, he only complained?!!! He and Marsden offer no solutions but only complaints. I know that the grid is controlled by Ontario. I pointed that out in the form of a question! Rusin’s posted words indicate no understanding of that factor.

    What solutions will be offerred by Rusin? Will affordable housing starts be required in the Rosedale section of Burlington instead of monster homes along Lakeshore etc.?

    To be quite clear, Burlington has never promoted affordable housing for low income people. Many Burly peeps have a NIBY approach to any development in the core that increases housing density let alone housing units being required to be resold at a value less than their neighbours.

  • Maggie

    The area around Fortino’s/Ikea is Ward 1 not 2 and yes, many in the surrounding area live in poverty. People living in poverty are not just those living on welfare. People on disability, while receiving more a month than those on welfare still live well below the poverty line. There are seniors living on fixed incomes, there is the working poor making minimum wage or just above. Retail and fast food workers are a prime example of this.

  • Mike Ettlewood

    I was looking at the responses to the Burlington Waterfront Committee’s candidate questionnaire and found Mr. Rusin’s comment on the sale of city owned waterfront property to be very intriguing. What does “I’m not at liberty to comment” mean? Is Mr. Rusin involved in the sale in some way? Might be a good question for him Mr. Parr.

  • K Richards

    Tenni, You should do some reading. Our Mayor and councilors have a direct impact on poverty and public housing in our City. They signed off on new housing development just recently and in 700 units they get a paltry 5 units dedicated to public housing. They applaud themselves for this huge accomplishment! In other words, they have no plan. There was a building built in Aldershot with 400 sq ft units. From what I understand the Region had more to do with that.

    Peter called out the Mayor and Councilors on this directly at the debate on October 1st. (I bet this will be a topic tonight.)

    They City does not determine the “grid”, the way in which Welfare payments are calculated.

    I think you are asking the wrong guy about your the housing/poverty issues. They think Habitat for Humanity is the solution. You should be asking the Mayor and the councilors where they have been the last 4 years. (Here is a clue: backroom secret votes, no transit plan, no housing plan, no infrastructure plan, conflict of interest voting, no ethics, keeping company with developers, are just a few)

  • MrBean

    I voted online this past Friday for Anne Marsden. The election is over for me.

  • tenni

    Mr Rusin
    How does Ontario Works connect to Burlington City council and the mayor’s office?

    What are the percentages of those in poverty who live in say Hamilton compared to Burlington or Halton?

    I am aware that a single male in Oakville on Ontario Works is given about $540 per month. There is a complicated formula should the single male get income where there are deductions. Is it reasonable to expect a single male to survive in Oakville or Burlington under these circumstances and what can Burlington’s mayor or council do to improve these condition? Is Ontario Works a provincial matter? I was told by the single male that the amount would not even pay for his rent. Where was he to get money for utilities and food?

    However, what has this to do with municipal politics? Perhaps it has something to do with the low numbers of housing units that are deemed to be for people on low income?

    Where are the poor people living in Ward 4? Where are they living in any ward? I heard a rumour that the poor people in Burlington lived in ward 2 near Ikea/Fortino? Are the units in apartments and townhouses near this area “public housing”?

    Me Rusin please make your comments connect better to Burlington itself. I think that it would have been better for you to run for a seat on council other than the mayor’s chair. You just are not connecting well in my opinion.

  • Maggie

    Well said Mr. Rusin. I can’t help but be curious who the mole is as I don’t recall any member of the press being there. Not only wasn’t Mayor Goldring there I do not recall seeing any of the Burlington incumbents there. Mr. Rusin was kind enough to give me a ride home where I discovered he knew more about poverty than was evident at the roundtable. Even if he didn’t the fact that he was there and willing to listen and learn is commendable. Just because poverty in Burlington isn’t as visible as in other cities doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
    Mr. Parr since you are so certain of the outcome of this election, as has become apparent in your articles, could I please borrow your crystal ball.
    Margaret (Maggie) Steiss
    Candidate for Ward 1

  • Peter Rusin

    My question at the roundtable was what is Ontario Works, a somewhat sarcastic response to a question posed by a guest who asked what improvements are required; a question posed to a panel of three women clearly affected by their ongoing experiences with poverty.

    Ontario Works perhaps should be called “Ontario does not work well for people living in poverty”; that was my point, and that same message was clearly expressed by the poverty panel. It is arguable that the welfare system has some flaws. Ontario Works is what was previously known as welfare; a more accurate and familiar term to describe what was going on at the poverty roundtable.

    Tell your mole to try and live on minimum wage in this city. There is no reason why this city or this region should even be in the position of having people suffer from poverty or be on welfare. The stats show something like 1 in 10 people suffer poverty in this region, maybe more. Children go to school hungry, and some go without proper clothing, women are living under threatening conditions; in Burlington. I did not see the current mayor at the session.