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Here’s why I won’t vote for Ana Bailao

May 19, 2023

A few years ago, a group of concerned homeowners from the building where I live requested to speak to the Planning and Housing Committee at City Hall. This committee was chaired by Ana Bailao. We had concerns about a new development in our community and the impact it would have on our building.

We had spent some time studying the proposal and how it would affect traffic, the geology and hydrology of the area and the impact on social services and schools. Ours is a part of the city that is underserved and has many social needs. There are also underground creeks that are of concern in any construction.

About half a dozen of us were given a time slot of 9.30. We were supposed to be the first group to depute. We arrived at the committee room bright and early. Imagine our dismay when we were unceremoniously dumped from that position in favour of a group of noisy activists who certain councillors clearly wanted to be front and centre while there were TV cameras on hand.

We were then forced to sit through speaker after speaker with various demands. One of them complained because their landlord wouldn’t change a light fixture. We are all seniors who manage our own light fixtures or pay to have someone do it for us. We weren’t asking for anyone to do anything for us. We weren’t asking for anyone to spend any tax dollars on our behalf. We simply wanted to explain to the committee some of our carefully considered concerns about the development.

We were pushed back and pushed back and pushed back by Bailao. We did not get to speak until after lunch. We finally got out of there at around 3.30 p.m., having arrived to speak at 9.30. At one point, Bailao asked why it was that people from Scarborough rarely go to City Hall committees. Well, when you are treated as an inconvenience and made to wait five hours to speak, that certainly acts as a deterrent. I had a list of concerns, yet after waiting five hours to speak, I was cut off after five minutes.

So thanks, but no thanks, Ana. I won’t be voting for you. Based on my experience, I’d tell anyone living in Scarborough not to vote for you as well.

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