BarrieToday welcomes letters to the editor at [email protected]. Please include your full name, daytime phone number and address (for verification of authorship, not publication). The following letter is in response to a story titled 'Hughes hoping to secure fifth term as Oro-Medonte mayor,' published Aug. 29.
As for his track record, Mayor Harry Hughes seems to think residents got what they deserved when, in fact, residents have been impacted for many years by this mayor's lack of concern. (For example: short-term rentals, cannabis farms, safe roads, legal fees, Burl's Creek, etc.) I find his messaging to be very confusing and consistently inconsistent with the reality of the facts.
It reminds one of the 2014 election when Hughes was acclaimed and appeared on Doug Downey's (now MPP and Ontario Attorney General) Rogers Community information TV show in Orillia in the early autumn of 2014 and was asked what it was like not to have to campaign?
Mayor Hughes replied: "I don't have to waste time knocking on doors," or to paraphrase with the same intent 'it's a waste of HIS time to engage residents!'
As former U.S. President Ronald Reagan once extolled: "Politicians are like diapers and they need to be changed every so often." This quote certainly applies to a potential fifth term for the current mayor here in Oro-Medonte. Changes are long overdue.
Taxes have been raised significantly over the past several years, four terms, on Mayor Hughes’ watch.
Half truths or partial truths as told by Mayor Hughes (in the article) do not present the whole set of facts, only what Hughes wants voters to believe so he can be re-elected.
Not surprisingly, Mayor Hughes excluded facts which could tarnish his so-called track record of ‘better than ever.’
Well, I strongly disagree with his efforts to hoodwink voters as illustrated by the following pictures and facts:
1. The attached pictures are random paved roads in Oro-Medonte. These roads could be in any of the six wards, are not to specifications and not better.
2. A full-time Oro-Medonte patch crew/Oro-Medonte truck with multiple employees travels around the roads and results are shown in the pictures, and the cost for residents continues day in and day out to fund this crew/truck as the meter ticks away tax dollars with no sustainable positive results for the better.
The obtuse puffery put forth as truths by Mayor Hughes is not what the electorate needs to hear. The electorate does need to hear from the mayor about openness, transparency and accountability, not distractions.
In 2018, Mayor Hughes eked out a fourth term with just 39% of the votes cast. Another view of these facts is that 61% of the votes cast, a significant majority, did NOT vote for Mayor Hughes. Hughes’ proven track record will only increase the 61% against him to a larger margin in 2022, in my opinion.
I know the new mayor of Oro-Medonte, Randy Greenlaw, will be sure the new information highway will be more user friendly, more resilient and more durable than the current state of paved roads in Oro-Medonte.
We cannot afford another four years of half truths, partial truths as if a hurricane swept through the municipality.
Things are not better than ever in Oro-Medonte in my view and more of the same 'track record' would be a bad decision for our community's quality of well being.
Thank you, the electorate needs to know. And vote, too.