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NPA Candidate Calls Out City Workers

October 29, 2008

Vancouver Non Partisan Association candidate Michael Geller called out city workers in a city council debate at the Vancouver Public Library on Tuesday, Oct 28.

“Have any of you ever watched some of the city works crews doing some repairs, building a street, doing some work around the city?” Geller asked. “There has to be a more cost effective way.”

Geller made his comments in response to a question about how Vancouver’s city council would avoid a deficit if a recession occurs. While calling for more funding from higher levels of government, Geller said council also needs to find efficiencies within its own workforce.

The comments provoked considerable disagreement from the audience. “That’s not fair,” an audience member shouted. “Absolutely not,” said another.

Vision Vancouver candidate Geoff Meggs responded immediately, “Michael, I very much regret the disparaging remark you made about city workers.” Meggs stressed that efficiencies could be found through better cooperation with unions.

Geller later appeared to backtrack. “Let me apologize. I did not intend to make a cheap shot to those hard-working city employees.” Geller claimed that he “really would like to make” the point that efficiencies could be found through suggestions by employees.

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One comment

  1. Thank you for very faithfully and accurately recording my comments. Let me again say I do regret my comment which was prompted by the two year construction works along Blenheim Street.

    But I generally believe that ‘if you make a mistake, at least make a feature of it!’ So I would welcome suggestions from your readers on how they think the city might reduce costs and become more efficient. I would particularly like to hear from people working at City Hall.

    In running for Council, my goal is not to create partisan battles or conflict. Rather, it is to work collaboratively with people from all walks of life, and political parties, to make this a better city. I hope this response will help contribute to this discussion.



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