January 2020

Happy New Year, kids. Hey, I’m startin’ my second year on this column writin’ thing. I dunno if I’m any good at it, but it gets me out of that ice box of a room on Water Street and helps take my mind off the struggles of just bein’ an old guy.
Every now and again, yer city councillors get their dander up about the need for more jobs. Last month, Councillor Dean Pappas spoke up about the $1.7 million that taxpayers are payin’ to Peterborough & the Kawarthas Economic Development (PKED) — the agency hired to push jobs and tourism for us. He figured the city could do a lot better with its own staff, like most of the Townships have, and he’s right. PKED has a sorry record of actual job creation, and it’s the only local agency required to genuflect contritely before city council four times a year. But hey, it’s admirably skilled at spinning lots of stories to help sell the illusion that new jobs are always just around the economic corner. Course, ya’ can’t really blame them. When politicians know that the sky is dark, they try to create activity that makes it look like a new sun might be comin’ out. It’s not.
I see that Councillor Lesley Parnell is already sniffin’ out a mayoralty bid. She took the lead in arranging meetings with Peterborough councillors and her former fellow travellers at Cavan Monaghan – where she was once employed by the Township and personally by a very friendly mayor – to make some new industrial land available. Aggressive yes, but the kind of leadership that’s always welcome.