Ward 3 just might have a creditable candidate for the 2018 municipal election.

Ward 3 map 72x650

Ward 3 is a mix of suburban and rural – everything south of Dundas is easy to serve – it is the rural parts of the ward that are both demanding and hard to serve.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

April 26th, 2016


Way back in 2010 two of the people who now sit on city council got themselves involved in the Shape Burlington committee, a group appointed by then mayor Cam Jackson to prepare a report on how well city hall was engaging the citizens of the city.

There was a lot of chatter at that time about city hall’s inability to hear what citizens were saying.

Two of the people on that committee, Paul Sharman and Blair Lancaster went on to throw their hats into the municipal election ring and got themselves elected – then they apparently forgot much of what the Shape Burlington report was all about.

At the same time Marianne Meed Ward was delegating consistently on the problems with the way the city was developing the waterfront area. She was instrumental in creating Save our Waterfront which sort of evolved into her campaign team and she too went on to get herself elected to Council.

While Meed Ward wasn’t part of the Shape Burlington group she was the one who remembered what the report was all about and created a constituency organization that spoke for the citizens in her ward and anyone else in the city who asked for help. And for the most part Meed Ward delivers.

All this is passed along as background on how people in this city get themselves elected to city council.

Burlington currently has two members of Council who have both been on the public payroll for more than 20 ears and are showing the wear and tear of public life. In their early years what they got in the way of remuneration wasn’t all that much to talk about.

Taylor with Black smilingJohn Taylor, Ward 3, has seldom had anyone worth more than the votes they get from family and friends run against him – other than Cory Judson, Taylor has never had to fight off a real candidate.

There appears to be an individual in ward 3 laying the ground work for a run at that seat.

When you cover municipal politics long enough you can see the potential candidates from some distance. They become active in the community and begin to groom themselves for the opportunity to run.

We saw that with both Lancaster, Sharman and Meed Ward in 2010.

In the 2014 election there were not the same calibre of candidate presenting themselves. In ward 6 there were ten people who ran for office – most were very inappropriate as candidates; they were not known and had done next to nothing in their communities. Vanessa Warren and Jennifer Hlusko were the exceptions.

In ward 3 – in 2014 – there were two candidates running against John Taylor who had little hope of gaining public office.

It looks as if it is going to be very different in 2018 – there is a gentleman who serves on a major Advisory Committee who appears to be grooming himself for that seat.

John Taylor is reported to have said to some people that he will not run again but that he will join BurlingtonGreen and become part of that committee.

Many thought ward 3 stood little chance of getting a decent member of Council when Taylor hangs up his boxing gloves.

That does not appear to be the case.

Stay tuned.


Shape Burlington Report – a seminal document.

City response to the Shape Burlington report. Long and boring; did the people who wrote the report ever read it?

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4 comments to Ward 3 just might have a creditable candidate for the 2018 municipal election.

  • Shannon Gillies

    Are you thinking of Tim Park (from the Sustainable Development Committee)? I hope so. He’d be great.

  • John

    John Taylor, if he decides not to run, will be difficult to replace. His steady hand and ability to understand the needs of ward 3 and the city overall is a rare combination.
    For the most part, all of our current councilors deliver for their wards.
    The difference between the councilors is how they grasp and deliver on the bigger picture.
    Some see Burlington others can only see their ward.

    • Tom Muir

      I agree with John here, and I want to speak a little to this.

      John Taylor, in my opinion and experience with him over pretty much his entire service, is that he cannot be replaced, except in nominal terms as a Councilor if he chooses not to run again.

      Most of all, he cares. I can’t say that about everyone, or even most.

      I know he gets tired of those he sees that don’t care, and put themselves and personal agendas first.

      He is allied with Councilor Meed Ward because in her heart of hearts she cares, and he sees that.

      He knows the books and has always been on top of this. He puts a lot of time in on this.

      I know he gets tired of how hard it is to make progress and change that translates to action, not just talk and posturing and the same thing over and over, with nothing happening in the end.

      He is tired of the failure of the big media to do their reporting job in Burlington, although I can’t say what he thinks of the Gazette, which in his service is new, and on life-support, is strangely the only game in town on city hall issues.

      I think he feels that this overall media failure is one tap root of city failure to really engage citizens, and live up to honest transparency and accountability about issues he takes to heart.

      To live up to the Community Engagement Charter, with citizen empowerment, is something this Council and city has not done.

      Despite having the Charter pushed in their face by citizens, myself included, the majority just turn away. and this is because they can, without fear of exposure and real accountability.

      It will be a tall job indeed to fit John Taylor’s suit and shoes, and walk his walk.

  • Mike Ettlewood

    Hmmmn – if memory serves, John claimed in both 2010 and 2014 that ‘this was his last time running’. Not holding my breath.