Week of November 2

Happy to be back in ‘Pleasantville’

Sir: Regarding your editorial, ‘Six Things I Love About Sarnia,’ I have a few observations to add.

I moved away from Sarnia about 30 years ago and lived in the GTA for most of that time.

Over those years, when I came back to Sarnia to visit relatives and friends, I was always impressed and mesmerized with the people, how kind and considerate they were.

In June of 2016 I retired, and was thankful able to move back to what I call Pleasantville. (Many of my friends here and

Ex-Sarnians elsewhere also refer to Sarnia by that name).

It is such a pleasure and comfort to be back, and be able to enjoy the views at the river, under the bridges with my dad, who is joyfully turning 100 this December.

Dad, during every visit to the river, talks about the fact that when he chose to live in Sarnia in the 1950s, it was the river that brought him here.

He developed many subdivisions in Sarnia under the name Ainras (Sarnia backwards) Development, and has stories about many areas of the city. But the river is always his favourite place to be and chat.

Cheers to Pleasantville.

Marlene Charge

Sarnia


The public wants Jackson Pool saved

Sir: A total of 1,925 people signed a petition to save Jackson pool, and this is how it was achieved.

In late July we decided to put this out in the community and online. Four hundred signed online, and 1,525 people signed paper petitions, mostly from individuals who felt strongly about the pool and took them to work.

It didn’t happen all in one day, and some businesses only had a petition for a week. With proper time, I’m guessing we could have collected 5,000 names.

How does a city not take care of an asset that was donated to it? We need to hold city council accountable, when they are spending $13.5 million on Centennial Park and can’t find $500,000 to build a new pool.

Mark your calendar. There will also be a public meeting about Jackson Pool at City Hall, in council chambers, on Thursday, Nov. 2 at 6 p.m.

Dan Harding

Sarnia


Sentence for drunk driver who killed four far too lenient

Sir: Recently a neighbour of mine was killed at a Sarnia intersection. I don’t know the circumstances of the collision or whether alcohol was a factor.

But if a drunk driver was at fault, it is clear from recent court cases that he or she doesn’t have much to be concerned about.

A drunk driver who kills somebody should be subject to the maximum penalty of life in prison.

But on Sept. 27, 2015 a rich boy with a collection of speeding tickets and a blood alcohol level of twice the limit drove his vehicle through a stop sign and into four people, killing them all.

After pleading guilty, Marco Muzzo was sentenced to 10 years in custody with a 12-year driving ban upon release. According to a Toronto paper, his jail time would probably be served at a minimum-security institution at Gravenhurst, Ont. in one of five townhouse-style units that are not fenced in.

On Oct. 25, Muzzo became eligible for unescorted leave from jail. Next November he will qualify for day parole and on May 9, 2019 he will be up for full parole.

A first-year law student should be able to walk a drunk driver through this inconvenience.

Ed Williamson

Sarnia


Kudos to Theatre Sarnia for the Hunchback of Notre Dame

Sir: Thank you so very much for the article by Cathy Dobson, who wrote about Theatre Sarnia’s first production of its 91st season: “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

A Canadian premiere in Sarnia!

We saw the production and we are again reminded of how fortunate we are here in Sarnia. The calibre of the music was outstanding, to say the least.

Thank you again to everyone involved in this production, which took months of rehearsals. Thank you also to the family members who support you!

Mary Ettinger

Sarnia


Voters need to replace current council in next year’s election

Sir: At the Oct.23 council meeting city council gave final approval to a Communication & Engagement Strategy, Social Media Policy, Media Relations Policy, and Public Engagement Policy. Thirty thousand dollars from reserve funds will be referred to the 2018 budget process, for the pilot of an “online engagement” platform.

Councillors’ expressed much enthusiasm about the way “online engagement” allows for better interaction between council and the citizens.

They cited the proposed tree bylaw as an example of the importance of having public input when dealing with issues that impact every household.

They say this system will make it possible for council to let everyone know what council has planned, and it will allow citizens easier access to speak to those plans, thereby helping council make the best decision.

If the intent of this system is to keep the people informed of council’s plans, and if it means council will heed the people when they disagree with a proposed plan, that will be thirty thousand well spent.

As wonderfully collaborative as this plan sounds, collaboration is at the whim of a dictatorship. A dictatorship suppresses democratic government (which means they do what they want, regardless of the will of the people).

We know this present council will only bow to the will of the people on issues where they may also find themselves a benefit, (as with the tree bylaw) but on important and controversial issues where the people should make the decision (like electronic-only municipal voting) the will of the people is ignored, discounted, and denied.

So, if we don’t want that thirty thousand to be wasted, this council has to be voted out of office at the 2018 election, so we can return to a more democratic process.

Dorothy Allan

Sarnia