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DebraW
29-10-2007, 04:16 PM
City councillors get portfolios

Oct, 29 2007 - 2:50 PM


EDMONTON/630 CHED - Mayor Mandel is out with a new list of initiatives for each member of City Council.

There are three new portfolios for this three year term.

The Environment - which will see Don Iveson head to Bali for a conference at the end of the year.

The effort to bring the World's Fair to Edmonton in 2017.

Port Alberta - which could see Edmonton become the Chicago of the north in terms of intermodule transportation needs.

Mayor Mandel tells 630 CHED News the idea of councilors taking ownership of individual programs worked well in his first term. (js)

Scott Johnston



COUNCIL MEMBER INITIATIVES

Karen Leibovici

Affordable Housing – Housing First
envisionEdmonton
Port Alberta
World’s Fair
Stony Plain Road Revitalization

Linda Sloan

Seniors Issues
Environment
Stony Plain Road Revitalization

Kim Krushell

Port Alberta
Youth Initiatives
Winter Festival

Ron Hayter

Aboriginal Issues
North Issues
River Valley

Ed Gibbons

Alberta Avenue
Provincial MLA Relationships
North Issues
Industrial Land Strategy

Tony Caterina

Alberta Avenue
Biotech Value-added
Industrial Land Strategy

Jane Batty

The Quarters
Capital Health/Post-Secondary Relationships
World’s Fair
Biotech Value-added
Chinatown Revitalization

Ben Henderson

Public Hearing Consultation Process
The Quarters
Winter City
Chinatown Revitalization

Bryan Anderson

Sports and Recreation
Working with Administration to expedite process and approval of sports and recreation facilities
River Valley

Don Iveson

Environment
Youth Initiatives

Dave Thiele

Transit
Mayor’s Task Force on Traffic Safety

Amarjeet Sohi

Safe Edmonton/Drug Strategy
Multiculturalism

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Elk Islander
29-10-2007, 07:11 PM
Dave Thiele

Transit
Mayor’s Task Force on Traffic Safety


This has got to be a joke, right? At the very least, by his actions or lack thereof, David has demonstrated that he is totally opposed to the very concept of transit in any form acceptable to the average punter. Or, by "transit", do we mean stretched limos or supersized SUVs to get David to work in the morning?

And there has to be a typo in the second part of David's portfolio. Shouldn't it read:

"Mayor's Task Force on Indoor Soccer"?

Maybe someone better informed than myself can clarify these issues, because I'm confused. This is like something out of Alice in Wonderland!

Bryguy
29-10-2007, 07:13 PM
Well that's a handy tidbit of info.
Nice to see that things are moving on the Port Alberta and World's Fair ideas.
Oh - just noticed something mentioned about a winter festival too - very cool. :-D

bagould
29-10-2007, 08:07 PM
Mmm. I don't actually have an opinion on Thiele, which is in itself a bad thing, so I guess I'm not happy with him having transit.

Caterina with Alberta Avenue worries me, though I know that's just a function of it being his ward.

Henderson and Iveson go relatively wasted (portfolio-wise), unless environment is actually going to be something that's taken into consideration now.

As for Sohi, well, they managed to cover all their stereotypical bases, didn't they?

240GLT
29-10-2007, 08:50 PM
Caterina with Alberta Avenue worries me, though I know that's just a function of it being his ward

You gotta be kidding me.

Afraid you might get some EHTF projects in your neighborhood ?

Caterina, while perhaps not good for the city as a whole, will be an strong voice representing a part of downtown that has largely been ignored and misused by the city, and the growing number of people who live there who've had enough.

DebraW
30-10-2007, 12:05 AM
Specialties assigned to city councillors
Councillors to focus on feasibility of trying to host the 2017 World's Fair

Gordon Kent, edmontonjournal.com
Published: October 29, 2007 8:03 pm

Article Link:
http://www.canada.com/edmontonjournal/news/story.html?id=0f089d7e-4fd6-4a02-b855-b6ff3b8ff0e1&k=97675



City councillors will look at bidding on the 2017 World's Fair, creating a winter festival and making the city a North American transportation centre in their special initiatives released today.

Mayor Stephen Mandel said he worked with each of the 12 councillors to determine the priorities in which they're interested, similar to the process he started when he was first elected mayor in 2004. Each councillor will have from two to five specialized areas, allowing them to work with their colleagues and city staff to come up with ways of dealing with these areas, he told a news conference.

"In the past we have not used the skill set and the drive of councillors to move forward with issues."

One big success in the last term was the work by Coun. Ron Hayter which lead to the creation of Edmonton's urban aboriginal accord, Mandel said.

This time, one focus will be the feasibility of trying to host the 2017 World's Fair, which Coun. Jane Batty and Coun. Karen Leibovici take over from former Coun. Mike Nickel.

"It's important for the world to see Edmonton," said Mandel, adding it will probably be months before it's clear whether a bid is even possible. "A world's fair creates a theme. Maybe that theme could be around the environment."

Coun. Ben Henderson will look at ways to improve city life during Edmonton's cold months, such as setting up a winter festival.

"How do we make a virtue of the fact that we're a winter city, instead of just hiding away and hoping it will be over?" Henderson asked. "My challenge is to go to the community and come up with really creative ways of seeing what winter can look like."

In addition to the possible winter festival, Coun. Kim Krushell will help spearhead the Port Alberta project, which envisions making Edmonton a North American transportation hub distributing containers coming by rail through the new port in Prince Rupert, B.C. While Mandel said the scheme could be worth billions of dollars in development for the capital region, Krushell said it needs provincial investment in elements such as a $150-million interchange planned for Gateway Boulevard on Edmonton's southern boundary. This will allow trucks access to a new Canadian Pacific Railway intermodal facility being built nearby and a smooth flow of goods to the Edmonton International Airport, she said.

"We could become Chicago North."

[email protected]

© Edmonton Journal 2007

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Sonic Death Monkey
30-10-2007, 02:00 AM
Henderson and Iveson go relatively wasted (portfolio-wise), unless environment is actually going to be something that's taken into consideration now.

As for Sohi, well, they managed to cover all their stereotypical bases, didn't they?

Iveson getting the Youth Initiatives makes a lot of sense given his age.

And Sohi in charge of multiculturalism makes a lot of sense too since he would have a better appreciation of what would attract more immigrants to this city.

Elk Islander
30-10-2007, 09:30 AM
"We could become Chicago North."

I am getting sick of this Chicago North twaddle!

Is Edmonton so bereft of merit that we constantly have to be an American Big City Wannabe? Let's build on our strengths, which are numerous! And address our problems, which are also numerous.

Maybe the Chicagophiles in the administration should be sent down there on, say, a three year fact-finding secondment?

LindseyT
30-10-2007, 09:51 AM
"We could become Chicago North."

I am getting sick of this Chicago North twaddle!

Is Edmonton so bereft of merit that we constantly have to be an American Big City Wannabe? Let's build on our strengths, which are numerous! And address our problems, which are also numerous.

Maybe the Chicagophiles in the administration should be sent down there on, say, a three year fact-finding secondment?

Agree

Chicago North scares me.

Winnipeg was once called that....might as well call it Iqaluit of the south now. Because that's how relevant it has become.

snakes on a blog
30-10-2007, 11:26 AM
why wasn't Amarjeet Sohi, a former transit operator, given the transit portfolio? afraid he might make some changes for the better? I would think he knows far more about transit than anyone else on council.

Dusty Bear
30-10-2007, 11:28 AM
^ I wish we could be: "Edmonton, the city that doesn't feel the compulsive need to compare itself to others!"

DebraW
30-10-2007, 11:29 AM
^ I wish we could be: "Edmonton, the city that doesn't feel the compulsive need to compare itself to others!"

^ That would be nice!

Elk Islander
30-10-2007, 11:37 AM
why wasn't Amarjeet Sohi, a former transit operator, given the transit portfolio? afraid he might make some changes for the better? I would think he knows far more about transit than anyone else on council.

I concur. Giving Thiele the transit portfolio is liking putting a fox in charge of henhouse security.

I wonder how much better ETS service would become if councillors were forced to verifiably use it on their daily commute to the pyramids? Seriously, are we overlooking a cost-effective solution here?

newfangled
30-10-2007, 11:43 AM
^ I wish we could be: "Edmonton, the city that doesn't feel the compulsive need to compare itself to others!"

^ That would be nice!

To be fair, we're in a country that feels the compulsive need to compare itself to others. And the "blah blah north" meme was started by Toronto - which is the neediest wannabe of them all. When in doubt, I blame TO. :)

TJ
30-10-2007, 11:44 AM
^ I wish we could be: "Edmonton, the city that doesn't feel the compulsive need to compare itself to others!"

^ That would be nice!

To be fair, we're in a country that feels the compulsive need to compare itself to others. And the "blah blah north" meme was started by Toronto - which is the neediest wannabe of them all. When in doubt, I blame TO. :)

^ :P

Elk Islander
30-10-2007, 12:06 PM
......the "blah blah north" meme was started by Toronto - which is the neediest wannabe of them all. When in doubt, I blame TO. :)

How about "Toronto of the West"? Hey, didn't they solve all their financial problems by swallowing up their bedroom communities? No financial problems there now whatsoever, eh?

bagould
30-10-2007, 12:06 PM
Alright, first of all, I want to turn this list around.

Affordable Housing: Karen Leibovici
Alberta Avenue: Ed Gibbons, Tony Caterina
Biotech Value-added: Tony Caterina, Jane Batty
Capital Health/Post-Secondary Relationships: Jane Batty
Chinatown Revitalization: Jane Batty, Ben Henderson
Environment: Don Iveson, Linda Sloan
envisionEdmonton: Karen Leibovici
Industrial Land Strategy: Ed Gibbons, Tony Caterina
Mayor’s Task Force on Traffic Safety: Dave Thiele
Multiculturalism: Amarjeet Sohi
North Issues: Ron Hayter, Ed Gibbons
Port Alberta: Kim Krushell, Karen Leibovici
Provincial MLA Relationships: Ed Gibbons
Public Hearing Consultation Process: Ben Henderson
The Quarters: Jane Batty, Ben Henderson
River Valley: Ron Hayter, Bryan Anderson
Safe Edmonton/Drug Strategy: Amarjeet Sohi
Seniors Issues: Linda Sloan
Stony Plain Road Revitalization: Karen Leibovici, Linda Sloan
Transit: Dave Thiele
Winter Festival/City: Kim Krushell, Ben Henderson
Sports and Recreation: Bryan Anderson
World’s Fair: Karen Leibovici, Jane Batty
Youth Initiatives: Don Iveson, Kim Krushell

One big thing you'll note is that half of the list has two councillors, namely:

Alberta Avenue
Biotech Value-added
Chinatown Revitalization
Environment
Industrial Land Strategy
North Issues
Port Alberta
The Quarters
River Valley
Stony Plain Road Revitalization
Winter Festival/City
World’s Fair
Youth Initiatives

Okay, but what didn't get two? Most conspicuously, transit. Not only that, but he picked someone who has been around for a long time and ignored the opportunity to get critical new blood. Sohi and Iveson would both be obvious choices here.

What's more important than transit? Apparently "Biotech Value-added," which I'm pretty sure doesn't really mean anything, and this news release being Google's first result doesn't bode well. I mean, sure, it's economic diversication. But is one tiny sliver of that really more important that transit?

I'm sure there are some other examples that become apparent when you flip that around; affordable housing also comes to mind.


Oh, and re: Sohi

I'm by no means suggesting that he's wrong for the job, but multiculturalism, drugs, safety: sounds like the Millwoods stereotype to me.

grish
30-10-2007, 12:13 PM
were these appointments done arbitrarily?

DebraW
30-10-2007, 12:19 PM
Edmonton City Council’s Special Initiatives announced

Edmonton, October 29, 2007 – Mayor Stephen Mandel today announced the Special Initiative assignments which have been accepted by Councillors for the 2007-2010 City Council term. This is the second time that Edmonton’s City Council has undertaken Special Initiatives as a means of fast-tracking important issues, and ensuring that all members of Council are given an opportunity to lead areas of particular interest.

“I have always believed that Council works most effectively when all Councillors are fully engaged and bring priority focus to the issues Edmontonians have told us are most important,” said Mayor Stephen Mandel. “Over the past three years, Special Initiatives proved a successful vehicle for fast-tracking priority items and I am confident that we will once again see results from having Councillors work closely with Administration on these important items.”

The Special Initiatives cover a wide-range of issue areas from development of Edmonton’s Port Alberta strategy to leading efforts to eliminate homelessness.

While most initiatives cover city-wide issues, more focus is being given to ward-based neighbourhood revitalization efforts for Stony Plain Road and Chinatown, mirroring the community-driven effort now underway on Alberta Avenue.

“The Councillor Initiatives have worked very well in the past, it has been a rewarding experience and I look forward to continuing to work with the aboriginal community as well as with our Northern partners to further develop these important relationships,” said Councillor Ron Hayter.

As in the past, initiatives will be undertaken by Councillors individually or in pairs.

Councillors will investigate and develop new policy or activity ideas and bring their recommendations forward to City Council for approval. Programs like Cornerstones and the Urban Aboriginal Accord were developed out of past initiatives.

“As a new member of City Council, I value the opportunity to work with my new colleagues on these special initiatives and share in the responsibility of delivering new ideas and solutions to Edmontonians, especially in the area of environmental leadership which I know is a growing priority of our citizens,” added Councillor Don Iveson.

2007-2010 Special Initiatives include:

COUNCIL MEMBER INITIATIVE

Karen Leibovici
1. Affordable Housing – Housing First
2. envisionEdmonton
3. Port Alberta
4. World’s Fair
5. Stony Plain Road Revitalization

Linda Sloan
1. Seniors Issues
2. Environment
3. Stony Plain Road Revitalization

Kim Krushell
1. Port Alberta
2. Youth Initiatives
3. Winter Festival

Ron Hayter
1. Aboriginal Issues
2. North Issues
3. River Valley

Ed Gibbons
1. Alberta Avenue
2. Provincial MLA Relationships
3. North Issues
4. Industrial Land Strategy

Tony Caterina
1. Alberta Avenue
2. Biotech Value-added
3. Industrial Land Strategy

Jane Batty
1. The Quarters
2. Capital Health/Post-Secondary Relationships
3. World’s Fair
4. Biotech Value-added
5. Chinatown Revitalization

Ben Henderson
1. Public Hearing Consultation Process
2. The Quarters
3. Winter City
4. Chinatown Revitalization

Bryan Anderson
1. Sports and Recreation
2. Working with Administration to expedite
process and approval of sports and recreation
facilities
3. River Valley

Don Iveson
1. Environment
2. Youth Initiatives

Dave Thiele
1. Transit
2. Mayor’s Task Force on Traffic Safety

Amarjeet Sohi
1. Safe Edmonton/Drug Strategy
2. Multiculturalism

- 30 -

bornandraised
30-10-2007, 05:02 PM
It's Mandel who decides what he wants to give each councillor, and each councillor can accept or reject what Mandel wants to give him/her. If you think some of the assignments are stereotypical, then you can either blame Mandel, or blame the councillor for accepting the stereotype.

Looks like Karen Liebovici is being set up for her 2010 mayoralty run. :wink:

Elk Islander
30-10-2007, 08:25 PM
There are a few portfolios that I don't comprehend, and seem to reflect Mr. Mandel's trademark goofiness:

Karen Leibovici
2. envisionEdmonton
3. Port Alberta
4. World’s Fair

This is all fluff and will more likely to sabotage any future attempt to be elected mayor than to aid it. I don't even know what "envisionEdmonton" is!

Linda Sloan

Seems OK.

Kim Krushell
1. Port Alberta

Chicagophile fluff!

Ron Hayter
2. North Issues

This is blatant discrimination against East, West, and South issues!

Ed Gibbons
1. Alberta Avenue
3. North Issues

Alberta Avenue?

Tony Caterina
1. Alberta Avenue
2. Biotech Value-added

Post-oil biotech blah blah.

Jane Batty
1. The Quarters
4. Biotech Value-added

The Quarters: discimination against halves and eighths?

Ben Henderson
2. The Quarters

Bryan Anderson
2. Working with Administration to expedite
process and approval of sports and recreation
facilities

Don't these guys know how to work with the administration? A case of municipal "Yes Minister!" perhaps?

Don Iveson
seems OK

Dave Thiele
1. Transit
2. Mayor’s Task Force on Traffic Safety

Fox in the henhouse!

Amarjeet Sohi
seems OK

The first thing these people should do is explain all this apparent fluff to the citizens of this city!

DebraW
30-10-2007, 08:42 PM
This is all fluff and will more likely to sabotage any future attempt to be elected mayor than to aid it.[/i] I don't even know what "envisionEdmonton" is!


Thread on envisionEdmonton:

http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5421&highlight=

Elk Islander
30-10-2007, 08:58 PM
Thread on envisionEdmonton:

http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5421&highlight=

I am more concerned with how Edmonton will look in 2010, or even 2015, but 2040??? I just have no answer to this. I wonder if the city will have repaved the patholigically bumpy section of 86th street by then? Or will we all be riding, Jetsonsesque, in supersized flying SUVs by then? Maybe I'll include these questions in my submission.

Can I assume the other unexplained issues/portfolios can also be linked to appropriately understated hyperbole-laden threads?

DebraW
30-10-2007, 09:12 PM
Should planning or initiatives never be done because it is too early, too late or too far away?

Me thinks Goldilocks will never find what is "just right" if she stops trying.

Elk Islander
30-10-2007, 09:19 PM
Me thinks Goldilocks will never find what is "just right" if she stops trying.

Nope. This Goldilocks dives straight into the first bowl of oatmeal out of fear they will all be too cold in another 33 years or so. Or someone else will get there first!

I shall try to nurture an open mind about planning for the far distant future.........

kcantor
30-10-2007, 09:29 PM
Nope. This Goldilocks dives straight into the first bowl of oatmeal out of fear they will all be too cold in another 33 years or so. Or someone else will get there first!

I shall try to nurture an open mind about planning for the far distant future.........
you sure know how to make a guy feel old. 33 years is 2 less than i've been married. from a planning perspective, 40 years is not very long. in fact, one of our biggest problems from a planning perspective is that we look at compatibility with what is here today instead of looking for compatibility with what will be here in 40 years. anyway, i don't know about you but i plan to still be here in 40 years to see how it all turns out and hope it's better and not worse than it is today.

Sonic Death Monkey
31-10-2007, 07:25 AM
.
.
.
Ron Hayter
2. North Issues

This is blatant discrimination against East, West, and South issues!
.
.
.
Tony Caterina
1. Alberta Avenue
2. Biotech Value-added

Post-oil biotech blah blah.

Jane Batty
1. The Quarters
4. Biotech Value-added

The Quarters: discimination against halves and eighths?


Thanks for your input, Neil Waugh.

DebraW
31-10-2007, 10:00 AM
Mayor managing the proper way

Scott McKeen, The Edmonton Journal
Published: October 31, 2007 2:51 am

Article Link:
http://www.canada.com/edmontonjournal/news/cityplus/story.html?id=34691901-8635-483f-a71c-d39832a2a401


Coun. Ron Hayter, he of the resolutely fiery hair and rhetoric, was not actually around when Edmonton became a city in 1904.

It only seems that way sometimes. Like when he lectures council about repeating the mistakes of the historic past.

Truth is, Hayter was first elected to council in 1971, at roughly the same time Coun. Kim Krushell was being walked to kindergarten.

Hayter has seen mayors come and go over his time.

But he says he's never seen a mayor quite like the one wearing the hairy chain of office today.

Hayter, who is not one to throw bouquets around freely, almost gushed this week about Mandel's leadership.

"He's the most innovative mayor I've run under," says Hayter. "He's challenged councillors every damn step of the way. It's such a refreshing approach, the way he gets the most out of councillors."

Mandel isn't perfect, by any means. He can be aloof at times. He blows his temper when he shouldn't and defers when you'd like to see him erupt.

But his most brilliant stroke is in delegating responsibilities to councillors. This week, Mandel engaged his new council by handing out these areas of responsibility, or "special initiatives."

Some portfolios continue from last term, such as affordable housing, youth initiatives, seniors, northern affairs and sports. New initiatives for this term include revitalization of Stony Plain Road and Chinatown, as well as development of an inland cargo port, a winter festival and a bid for the 2017 World's Fair.

The portfolios hint at Mandel's bold agenda for the term. More will be revealed today, when Mandel unveils his so-called 90-Day Plan. The name might be tad trite, but the message to council and the civil service is clear.

"Three years is not a lot of time and we have a lot to accomplish," says Mandel. "I want to get on with things quicker. Let's get going."

The beauty of giving councillors portfolios is that it makes them activist politicians. They can't relax into the usual constituent concerns and council meetings. They must report back, in public, to council on their various projects.

"Yes, absolutely the pressure is on you," says Hayter. "You can't just sit back and fill a seat on council. You have to produce."

Last term, the portfolios created a number of wins, including plans to revitalize 118th Avenue, the creation of a young-adult advisory group, as well as the signing of an urban aboriginal accord, the first of its kind in Canada.

Hayter was in charge of the latter and will work again this term with Edmonton's aboriginal community to create opportunities for its young people. He's rarin' to go.

"I really want to see some of the things we've proposed get implemented," said Hayter.

It was Dwight Eisenhower who once said that leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it. But really, delegating responsibility is the oldest trick in the management handbook.

Leaders always get more out of people if they challenge them and then get out of the way, rather than meddling or micro-managing. It's as true in politics as it is in the office.

"It allows you to really zero in on something," says Hayter. "It adds to your workload, but it's a joy -- it's invigorating. You feel you're accomplishing something."

Accomplishing something will be tricky for Mandel, who kept the portfolio of regional co-operation for himself.

Tricky because you can't delegate this one to councillors, or regional mayors. Tricky, too, because regional discord has been around for more than 50 years.

Even Hayter doesn't remember that far back.

[email protected]

© The Edmonton Journal 2007

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MylesC
31-10-2007, 10:08 AM
The first thing these people should do is explain all this apparent fluff to the citizens of this city!

The two things I see as potential fluff is that envisionEdmonton and Biotech Value-added.

Port Alberta, as much the whole Chicago comparisons are rather silly, could be huge for this city. We're sitting on a gold mine of transportation with the work being done at Rupert.

Alberta Avenue and The Quarters need constant pushing so the revitalization plans just don't die on the table.

grish
31-10-2007, 10:17 AM
I don't see any of these as fluff. Bio-tech, for example, can be huge and we are already well on the way to building a strong industry there. If we can find way to get more companies, this can go a long way for our economy.

I wonder if the initiatives described here are fluff, what initiative would be "the opposite of fluff", er, clump?

MylesC
31-10-2007, 11:16 AM
I describe the two I mentioned as fluff because they're ambiguous. For instance, what is Biotech Value-added? Why value-added? How does that differ from what EEDC should be doint?

DebraW
31-10-2007, 11:18 AM
Bio-tech (value added) would be part of EEDC's Cluster strategy.

Elk Islander
31-10-2007, 02:39 PM
Bio-tech (value added) would be part of EEDC's Cluster strategy.

I'm still confused. What exactly is Bio-tech (Value Added)? Or Biotech Value-Added? A plague of inexpensive high school biology technicians? Or Biomira on steroids? And how do we distinguish it from straight Biotech (or Bio-tech). It all sounds quite overblown.....

Surely we should call a shovel a shovel and state that we need industries to develop that will exist to prevent Alberta eventually becoming some sort of post-oil apocalyptic wasteland. I assume that this is what is being eluded to here?