Hall Monitor: Calgary Mayor Nenshi's fir...
 
11:55
D. Hedley: 
Good morning, city hall and Naheed Nenshi watchers.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 11:55 D. Hedley
11:55
D. Hedley: 
Our city hall columnist and blogger, Jason Markusoff, will be joining us in about 5.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 11:55 D. Hedley
12:01
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
Welcome, calgaryherald.com readers to a live-chat on the first year of Naheed Nenshi and Calgary's new council.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:01 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:02
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
In this forum, I'll be asking you guys a few questions but please feel free to throw any my way.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:02 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:02
How is Mayor Naheed Nenshi doing so far?
Very well
 ( 73% )
Let's wait and see
 ( 11% )
I'm concerned
 ( 11% )
Fail mark
 ( 5% )

Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:02 
12:03
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
My first question: did you vote for Nenshi as mayor? If you did or if you didn't, are you happy with the outcome after one year of Mayor Naheed Nenshi?
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:03 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:04
[Comment From MaureenMaureen: ] 
I didn't vote for him and based on the spending that has gone on so far, were an election held today I would not vote for him, again.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:04 Maureen
12:05
D. Hedley: 
A few commenters on our stories have asked whether we're seeing too much spending.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:05 D. Hedley
12:05
[Comment From KevinKevin: ] 
I did, and so far I like the track he's on. Seems to be living up to the campaign promises, or at least trying to tackle them. Waiting to see what comes of the budget review.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:05 Kevin
12:05
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@Maureen, tell me about the spending decisions that you've disliked. He did occupy the provincial property-tax room to fund the central library, rec centres, etc, but perhaps you're referring to something different
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:05 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:06
[Comment From TWTW: ] 
I have
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:06 TW
12:06
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@Kevin: what are you looking for in the budget review?
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:06 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:07
[Comment From MaureenMaureen: ] 
Well, off the top of my head, the tunnel is a huge issue. I'm not saying that it's not a good roadway, i'm not a traffic planner, however there are more pressing needs on the roads of Calgary.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:07 Maureen
12:08
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
Ahhh, the tunnel. There seemed to be huge city-wide support for it during the election, but the total price tag after all negotiations has, it seems, soured many on the deal.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:08 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:08
[Comment From KevinKevin: ] 
@jason, well during the campaign it was said that there were a lot of excesses and that as part of what Nenshi brings to the table is cutting a lot of fat. I'm interested to hear what fat he finds, if any.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:08 Kevin
12:08
[Comment From TWTW: ] 
I voted for him but I still have a problem with the tunnel and it's cost unless the it will accomodate the lrt---I havn't heard if it will or not
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:08 TW
12:09
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@TW it will accommodate LRT, but that's several hundreds of millions of dollars that are unbudgeted and way, way off in the future
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:09 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:10
[Comment From LeighLeigh: ] 
It's important to remember that the Mayor and Aldermen can only make decisions based on the information provided to them from Administration. My guess is that players need to be changed within Administration before elected officials will be able to do anything significant to change budgets & spending.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:10 Leigh
12:10
[Comment From MaureenMaureen: ] 
Isn't that true of a lot of ideas put forward by politicians? Everyone is behind it until they find out what the real cost will be - by then it's already been decided. Ideas are great, but we need to temper them will a lot of common sense.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:10 Maureen
12:10
[Comment From KevinKevin: ] 
@TW/Jason, the LRT to the airport is going to be well worth it in the longrun, financially, environmentally, and just 'friendly face' for visitors to our city
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:10 Kevin
12:11
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@Maureen: excellent point. Nenshi offered a whole bunch of ideas, and rookie Ald. Shane Keating in today's Herald admitted he likes throwing out "hare-brained" ideas in hopes there's a gold nugget in thar somewhere.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:11 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:12
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
blog.calgarymayor.ca has a new entry with the mayor's self-assessment of progress on his "Better Ideas"
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:12 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:12
[Comment From KevinKevin: ] 
@Jason, maybe you can answer this. Another promise was to make things more transparent at CityHall. With social media we get more info, but how is it for 'insiders'? Any more transparency/access since the mayor took office?
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:12 Kevin
12:13
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@Leigh It's worth noting that administration under Bronco thought one way about the tunnel, and did somewhat of a sea change under Nenshi. Also, I perceive a lot more bubbly attitude from many city executives in the post-Bronco era. many are company men, and when the board changes they try to as well. Some, i should add, and not all.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:13 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:14
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@Kevin The mayor does self-post his office expenses and list of visitors to city hall on his website. Is that what you're asking about?
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:14 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:14
[Comment From MaureenMaureen: ] 
That's my big concern. I hope people realize that individual departments in city hall and even the Mayor, their job is to focus on their personal portfolio - that's all they do all day is come up with ideas, I suspect for most departments much of it is really a make work scheme - it is all they have to do. That is where the common sense needs to come in. I have great ideas all day, that doesn't mean I have the money to pay for them.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:14 Maureen
12:16
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
I wasn't covering Nenshi on election night last year. I was at Ric McIver HQ. Go to www.calgaryherald.com/hallmonitor, where I've posted a recollection of the exciting night at Chez Purple from my colleague, Kelly Cryderman.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:16 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:16
[Comment From Kevin Kevin : ] 
@Jason, partly. Just wondering if there were any non-posted/public changes that you saw around city hall. I know 'attitude' has been something mentioned a lot. People are more open, new ideas are encouraged. Guess I'm just looking for confirmation :)
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:16 Kevin
12:17
[Comment From neal neal : ] 
Ghe thing I liked the best on his interview on the National was how he took offence to the Globe and Mail saying Calgary was finally getting getting into the future with his election. He could have taken that as a compliment but instead defended Calgary.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:17 neal
12:17
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
You'll also find on the Hall Monitor blog my what-if piece that imagines Ric McIver as mayor: http://t.co/UYANsbxX
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:17 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:18
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@neal I haven't heard the National interview yet. The offence at that headline (Alberta steps into the present) was universally condemned, even among some Globe journalists. I'd have been shocked if Nenshi did anything but take offence to it.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:18 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:20
[Comment From Maureen Maureen : ] 
Agreed. Just because some may have some warped view of Calgary, doesn't mean the majority do, it's just silliness to most of us I think.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:20 Maureen
12:21
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
Question for readers: Nenshi seemed to have trouble declaring to us in an anniversary interview what his rookie mistake or failing was. (I'll call up link in a few.)
Whether you're critic or supporter, what do you see as our mayor's greatest weakness?
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:21 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:22
[Comment From David David : ] 
Just to clarify, the LRT was never planned to go through the NE to the airport, it was to come off the North Central line. Has that been officially changed with the tunnel?
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:22 David
12:22
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
that video of Herald's Nenshi interview: http://www.calgaryherald.com/videos/news/video.html?embedCode=tudWR3MjpgBqI-qT0QaCUig1hPrOB0Kc
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:22 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:24
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@David: the plan hasn't been officially changed, no. But the unofficial plan now is to build a spur line from a future 96th Street station north of Saddle Ridge. The tunnel includes right-of-way for it. To me, if we see this before 2020 that's a shocker. (The folks in SE Calgary may have something to say about that as well)
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:24 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:24
[Comment From @dollhouseyyc @dollhouseyyc : ] 
Love the fact that when someone hesitates to answer the question What stupid things have you done due to inexperience.... It surprizes anyone. ;-P Hi Jason....
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:24 @dollhouseyyc
12:25
[Comment From Maureen Maureen : ] 
His failure to see that, by and large, Calgary is a good city just as it is.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:25 Maureen
12:25
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@dollhouse I asked the five new aldermen for our paper today what they found was their biggest challenge. They were able to be a bit more self-critical.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:25 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:26
[Comment From Maureen Maureen : ] 
@dollhouseyyc - If you have ever been to a job interview where they asked you what your biggest weakness is, you would think a Mayor would be prepared to answer that.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:26 Maureen
12:27
[Comment From Cage Cage : ] 
Biggest rookie misrake (in my humble opinion was the Airport Tunnel. Nenshi sold the tunnel as not costing any more than $150 million, about the same as Bronco's GE5 interchange at Glemore/Elbow). The cost escalated once the full cost breakdown was discovered. Interchanges had to be added to get Airport onside. Also rookie mistake was his negotiating tactic for starting a fight with the Airport authority (regarding the Airport should help pay for tunnel, provide free land, and that Airport was a primary beneficiary of the tunnel).
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:27 Cage
12:28
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
Exactly, @Maureen. I was asking the job-interview question. Nenshi later argued on Twitter (natch) that he was implying that his inability to get 2ndary suites legalized was a failing of his leadership. But we'll let our readers judge that for themselves. http://www.calgaryherald.com/videos/news/video.html?embedCode=tudWR3MjpgBqI-qT0QaCUig1hPrOB0Kc
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:28 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:28
[Comment From Cage Cage : ] 
Did I vote for Nenshi - No
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:28 Cage
12:29
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@Cage the airport authority owned the land, had airlines worried about the tunnel being a prob for runways... had the city telling them for ages it didn't need the tunnel. All the negotiating cards were in YYC's hands.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:29 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:29
[Comment From @dollhouseyyc @dollhouseyyc : ] 
Maureen, He actually did give two answers to the question in the interview. Often how a question is asked. Asking one to admit what were there biggest challenges, weaknesses etc is one thing. Asking someone to admit to being a "rookie" is quite another.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:29 @dollhouseyyc
12:30
Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald: 
@dollhouseyyc was, for context, the get-out-the-vote organizer for the Nenshi campaign. You, sir, must be remembering a helluva Oct 18, 2010. Any fond stories to share?
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:30 Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald
12:31
[Comment From Cage Cage : ] 
After One full year I am comming around to being a Nenshi supporter. Nenshi has done an excellent job selling our city and province to Canada and the rest of the world. Nenshi made significant progress implementing his election platform, I always respect a politician who does what is promised in the election.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:31 Cage
12:31
[Comment From Amin Maherali, NW JK Amin Maherali, NW JK : ] 
did you vote for Nenshi as mayor?Yes
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:31 Amin Maherali, NW JK
12:31
[Comment From David David : ] 
Cage, the tunnel will serve less than 5% of Calgary's population so the airport was not a beneficiary. Many people still believe the tunnel replaces Barlow Trail. It does not, it runs east to vacant land where few people live.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:31 David
12:32
[Comment From Maureen Maureen : ] 
@dollhouse - I am watching it right now, all he said was that he didn't get his agenda pushed through, I don't think that is the question asked. @Jason, I had to laugh at your expression as he answered.
Tuesday October 18, 2011 12:32 Maureen
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