Let’s take a trip down memory lane.
You might recall the Safe Surrey Coalition’s promise, in its 2018 campaign literature, to “develop and implement world-class communications strategies and processes between residents and the city.
“It’s based on the aspirations and goals to inform, consult, involve, collaborate and empower, each with a corresponding commitment of Surrey and the public,” the slate’s literature read.
But council meetings, even held virtually, have become predictable. It would have been nice to hear from at least one of SSC’s five council members, who hold the majority vote on council, during Monday’s discussion that resulted in council approving, on a five-to-four split, a $500,000 IT expenditure on the Surrey Police Department that’s set to replace the RCMP.
We heard, as what’s become typical, from the four council members who occupy the outside looking in, why they didn’t think that’s such a good idea during a pandemic, when cash is tight.
Each of the four spelled out, for Surrey residents, reasons why they are opposed to this expenditure.
The SSC enjoys the advantage – what they say, by virtue of their number, is what goes.
We get that they support the transition. What we don’t get is their not bothering to express publicly their reasons why spending half a million dollars on database upgrades for a yet-to-be city police force is the best course of action at a time when so many Surreyites, and the city government itself, are struggling financially because of COVID-19.
Perhaps they have sound, well-reasoned arguments for voting to approve this expenditure right now. It’s too bad they didn’t bother to express them, though, during Monday’s council meeting, prior to voting on it.