Adam Vaughan has called a Town Hall meeting for this Saturday, at the Waterfront Neighbourhood Centre 627 Queen’s Quay from 1:00 to 3:00.
Adam’s been working to ensure the federal Liberals honour their promise, made in the last election. Here’s Adam, on September 16, 2015 (his full letter appears here):
The Liberal Party has also promised to reform the Port Authority and amend the letters patent to reform the federal agency. We are committed to making sure that the Port Authority holds its meeting in public and publishes its agendas and minutes as part of each meeting. The Liberal Party will ensure that the new Port Authority will be comprised of actual waterfront stakeholders with residents, waterfront businesses, port users and recreational and cultural organizations all represented.
Unfortunately, Transport Canada has yet to fully embrace that commitment, and is pursuing “Ports Modernization” that fails to place the public interest, and effective community relations, at the centre of its review. Consider this, from its “Discussion Paper”:
Leading ports understand that working together with local communities is becoming very important to facilitating port development and operations. Examples of what ports are doing to include:
- hosting open houses to explain their major projects
- starting good neighbour committees
- talking with Canadians on social media
Please come out this Saturday and join me and other community advocates to press Adam to pursue reform. These are recommendations, set out in CommunityAIR’sjust‑submitted brief to Transport Canada:
· For Toronto, as its port is not, and never has been, a port of national significance, the Port Authority structure is inappropriate and should be replaced by a governance structure that ensures that the changing nature of the waterfront is respected, and all of the waterfront’s users are engaged in the decisions that affect it.
· The TPA be required to hold its Board of Directors meetings in public and distribute its agendas and supporting documents and reports to the public, save where confidential employment or business transactions warrant secrecy. The model for such transparency and accountability should be the approach taken by the City of Toronto.
· Directors appointed to the Board of the Port Authority should be selected through an open and transparent process that adopts the public interest as the dominant criterion for selection, eliminates political considerations, and ensures effective participation by all those communities and interests affected by Port Authority decisions.
· The Canada Marine Act be amended to require that the pursuit of the public interest be the prime objective of all Port Authorities established under that Act.
· The TPA be directed to resort to the Federal Government’s exclusive jurisdiction only where it can reasonably demonstrate that a strategic national interest is so important that the normal provincial and municipal requirements should be ignored.
I hope to see you on Saturday, Brian Iler, Chair of CommunityAIR