Promises, Promises, Promises

Far too often residents are sold promises that are empty lip service.  Many
disingenuous words are spoken to win favour, to sway or persuade in order to
secure a vote.  Platforms change with the wind, not worth much more than the
paper they are written on.  It causes discourse in residents and apathy in
voters.  Every election has figures standing on soap boxes selling a future
unattainable.  Will voter turnout once again represent a sense that voting just
doesn’t matter?

I am asked by many people why I decided to run for city council.  The
assumptions range from positive to negative and much in between.  There are many
valid and sincere reasons why I want to represent Ward 3 as Councillor but the
most important one is to try to improve our community.  As a resident I have
felt the same discourse in the whole system.  Promises made, promises broken.
 There is no punishment for not being true to the ideals residents put stock in
when voting.  Four years of not being held accountable may lead to an election
date that may result in an incumbent’s return despite their tenure.

I have been open and honest about my experience to residents.  There are those
who want a resume of what I’ve done, of who I know, of what I will do for them.
 There are also residents that just want a person that will listen to their
concerns.  It is that simple act of allowing a resident to speak, to vent, to
voice an opinion on how to improve the city that matters.  The criteria to
register for Councillor pales in comparison to the criteria set by the
electorate.  I often question if the requirements many seek are the same that
have not represented them, should we use that benchmark again and again?  I want
to represent the residents of Ward 3; I want to be part of positive change, a
conduit to make change in our community.  I believe that council will benefit
from having many Councillors from different fields of expertise working together
towards common goals.  Varying political views and opinions will only make the
discussion be intense and ideally constructive on policy.

Promises are the reality of an election cycle.  Many are made by most candidates
that go beyond the purview of office.  Making claims of change in areas outside
the scope of council is the exact lip service that makes good sound bites but
poor policy.  Multiple levels of government control specific aspects of
legislation.  Council has the ability to ask the Provincial or Federal
governments to alter a policy that affects the residents of Toronto.  Asking is
a right that has no power if fell on deaf ears.  Promising change is a great
tool near the end of a term because the eventual result will be known after an
election.  If the outcome is a success it will be kept for the next pending
election.  If the outcome is a failure it can be attributed to overreaching.

Why do I speak of promises and elections, because I make a few that I know I can
keep.  I promise to represent Ward 3 with integrity, I promise to be accessible
to residents and their concerns.  I promise to base my decisions on policy
rather than politics (which far too many decisions get made).  I cannot promise
to fix every problem or to solve concerns beyond council’s jurisdiction.  I
promise to listen; this is the promise that I cherish the most.  I know the only
promise worth anything is one that is kept.

I want to offer hope to our city; I want communities engaged in how to make
better choices that improve our neighbourhoods.  I am Peter Fenech and I am
running to represent you as Councillor for Ward 3 – Etobicoke Centre.

Posted on August 31, 2014 .