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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Election results

I know it was only a by-election, but Really???? only 9% of the Coquitlam residents could be bothered to get off their butts over a 2 week period and cast a ballot??  But the other 91% will sure complain when their taxes go up, or when some councillor oversteps their boundaries and demands a discount from their business.  THEN they will complain. 
What is wrong with the population that they think it is okay to not get involved, even in this small democratic process?  Were the polls too hard to get to?  Did you think there were issues? (There are, but they are Coquitlam-type issues such as 'why are the shoppers at Coquitlam Centre chasing a bear in the parking lot').
This is just sad.
PartyX has some good ideas but they aren't working completely because we are still not getting people interested.

PartyX talks about Voter apathy:

Discontent with Democracy

Churchill once said, “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.” The best of the worst may not be good enough, especially when there is a growing level of discontent with traditional political institutions.
It’s hard to have faith that our current models of democracy will be able to respond to the complex global challenges of environmental destruction, war and inequality; progress simply isn’t being made at the speed or efficiency necessary.
These are  the top five areas PartyX sees opportunity for improvement.

1) Voter Disengagement

Rates of public participation are falling in democracies around the world; there is widespread disengagement with the formal political process.

2) Polarization from Limited Options

When decisions are made by majority vote, the unequal distribution of satisfaction creates resistance to outcomes, instability and wasted effort. When there is a limited set of choices in a decision, there’s rarely an opportunity to develop positive compromises.

3) Limited Stakeholder Connectivity

With the infrequency of elections, politicians can too easily become disconnected from the distributed expertise and intelligence of the population they represent.

4) Susceptibility to Lobbyists

The centralization of decision-making power can allow for the disproportionate influence by professional lobbyists acting on behalf of special interests. This can be compounded by election finance rules, which creates reliance between politicians and organized interests.

5) Short-Term Horizon

The voting cycle of representative democracy creates a system that’s too focused on short-term planning; there is no inherent incentive to make long-term decisions that do not have a positive impact on politicians’ ability to get reelected. Meanwhile, new governments often spend a large part of their efforts undoing the work of prior governments that did the same thing.

 well good on you, 9%, for overcoming the above.  And for the rest of you, no griping, you had your chance.

Oh and congrats to Chris Wilson and Bonita Zarillo.  Looking forward to some good management in the Burquitlam area.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Upcoming byelection

The Burquitlam Community Association recently held an all candidate's meeting for the upcoming by-election.  Bits of it are appearing on their website.  The format was interesting.  I didn't get the feeling that everyone was given a fair shake at the questions, first of all.  This was unfortunate as there were some questions I was hoping to hear the answers from specific people and seemingly randomly someone else would be called. 
One question I did wonder about was the question about someone having to be resident in Coquitlam to run.   Apparently the criteria is:

A person is qualified to be nominated, elected, and to hold office as a member of local government if they meet the following criteria:
  • Canadian citizen;
  • 18 years of age or older on or before general voting day;
  • resident of British Columbia for at least 6 months immediately before the day nomination papers are filed; and
  • not disqualified by the Local Government Act or any other enactment   from voting in an election in British Columbia or from being nominated for, being elected to, or holding office.
 So I guess having someone who doesn't live in Coquitlam is best for Coquitlam?  Well why not?  They can't do worse than someone who marginalizes Burquitlam because they live a half hour away on the eastern edge of the city. 

Burquitlam is a funny area - on the eastern edge of Burnaby and western edge of Coquitlam.  This area has a slightly higher aging population than the rest of Coquitlam.  The area has a higher ethnic content based on language spoken at home, compared to the rest of Coquitlam. Not surprisingly the household income in Burquitlam is less than the rest of Coquitlam.  It is understandable that people in this area are upset about their taxes rising.  But the reality is that as the metro Vancouver area moves here with the access to transit, rents and taxes will increase.  Sadly that means some of the people who have been here for awhile may be driven out.

But it doesn't have to mean that we let people who don't even go through this area on a daily basis make decisions about what is best for us.  Interesting to note that a candidate, when asked how he could possibly justify representing Burquitlam since he had never been to a meeting, side-stepped the question.  Interesting to note that only two candidates and one current Councillor have even been to the Burquitlam Community Association meeting.  Let's leave it at that.

Friday, October 11, 2013

The pains of construct

Last week Hydro cut the power.  They are moving the lines for the skytrain.  Wait - they couldn't finish it in the time allotted so 3 days ago we had a repeat.  No power.

Today's email brought more good news:

As part of Shaw's ongoing commitment to provide our customers with the best possible service, we will be performing maintenance and/or network upgrades in your area on Thursday, October 17, 2013 sometime between 3:00 AM - 7:00 AM local time for less than 4 hours.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your patience and understanding. Please be assured that the interruptions will be as brief as possible and that our technicians will be working diligently to minimize this service outage.

For technical assistance please contact our local Shaw Business Internet Technical Support number:1-877-SHAWBIZ (1-877-742-9249) or email:

 We know the cables are part of the whole hydro thing.  Why they can't do it at the same time is beyond me.  Why don't all these guys get it together?  No matter, it is 3am and I'm sure it will be done without a hitch :^|  Of course the weird part is it always addresses us business customers.  Shaw doesn't seem to know this is a residence.  Of course they don't care because - well - they are Shaw and there is a reason they don't have our phone service.

But wait!  Just in case you don't have enough in your email today:

Port Moody
October 11, 2013

Temporary Night-time Construction on Clarke Street
As part of ongoing Evergreen Line utility relocation work, there will be temporary night-time construction work on Clarke Street between Elgin Street and Grant Street starting the week of October 14. Crews will be installing a storm sewer underneath the westbound HOV lane on Clarke Street. Night-time road closures and temporary parking restrictions on Clarke Street will be required from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday to Saturday. This night-time work is required due to high volumes of daytime traffic on Clarke Street and will take approximately four to six weeks to complete. Please note that the schedule will shift slightly if there is inclement weather. Activities will also be co-ordinated with the work the City of Port Moody at the Moody Street overpass.

Nearby residents can expect noise related to night-time construction activities, including saw cutting and the use of heavy machinery. Every effort will be made to minimize noise and disruptions when possible.

Phase I:
  • Starting the week of October 14, Clarke Street between Elgin Street and Mary Street will be closed nightly and motorists will be detoured to St. Johns Street.
  • There will be temporary no parking restrictions on both the north and south sides of Clarke Street between Queens Street and Mary Street.

Phase II:
  • Starting the week of October 21 (weather dependent), Clarke Street between Kyle Street and Grant Street will be closed nightly and motorists will be detoured to St. Johns Street.
  • There will be temporary no parking restrictions on both the north and south sides of Clarke Street between Kyle Street and Grant Street.

Phase III:
  • Starting the week of October 28 (weather dependent), Clarke Street between Kyle Street and Moody Street will be closed nightly and motorists will be detoured to St. Johns Street.
  • There will be temporary no parking restrictions on the north side of Clarke Street between Mary Street and Grant Street. On the south side of Clarke Street there will be temporary no parking restrictions between Mary Street and Moody Street.

Drivers are asked to watch for construction signs and traffic control personnel, drive with caution, and obey posted construction speed limits.

So this is more fun during the night time hours.  And the big freaking machine is arriving, if you don't already know you can watch the webcams

Also, here is a snazzy picture of how the pieces go in, and to think I'll be watching this from my kitchen window!   It doesn't get any better.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Oh great - servers may be down

September 30, 2013


Temporary Power Service Disruption
for Residents at 522 Smith Avenue

Residents are advised that there will be a temporary disruption to power service on October 2 from 9 a.m. to
3 p.m. as part of ongoing utility relocation work in the area. Utility relocation work is required in advance of the
construction of the elevated guideway for the Evergreen Line Rapid Transit Project.

Crews need to temporarily shut off power to residents at 522 Smith Avenue – the Sedona condo complex – in order
to connect the underground hydro cables to the existing transformers.

Nearby residents and businesses can expect to see daytime construction activities as part of this work. Every effort
will be made to minimize noise and disruptions when possible.

To contact EGRT Construction, the contractor who is building the Evergreen Line, please call 604-927-2080,
available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you have comments or questions about the Evergreen Line Rapid Transit
Project, please call the Evergreen Project Office at (604) 927-4452 or email


To find out more, or to receive traffic updates:

Traffic Information Line (available 24 hours, 7 days a week):