Now, when I say I’m looking forward to 2016, I don’t mean I’m looking forward to it, as in “Hurray, 2016 is here!” I mean I’m looking ahead and trying to figure out where everything is going.
Do I have a crystal ball? No, but I’ve read some of the prognostications for the year ahead and I figure I can be every bit as stupid as the experts. And, if my predictions seem less than optimistic at times well, that’s just me. I’ve long been a believer in Murphy’s Laws, which are well explained on a number of websites (a couple of my favourite sources are www.murphyslaws.net and www.murphys–laws.com/murphy/murphy–laws.html ).
On the national stage, I’m predicting that the method of doing business on Parliament Hill will continue to change from the autocratic style of Harper to the more liberal (large or small ‘L’) style of Trudeau. That means I think the federal government will be much more open in future. Only the shady deals will be a secret, for a while anyways. Trudeau will find that the world and Canada’s Provinces will make many of his promises either redundant or impossible.
At the Queen’s Park level, Premier Wynn will continue to do extremely unpopular things that tick large numbers of people off. She will continue to fight off scandals and accusations, not all successfully. She’ll also find one of the taxpayers’ other rare money-making assets to sell off, with the continuing excuse that municipalities want the money for infrastructure spending (they do, but not that way, as a number of municipal responses to the sale of Hydro prove). But Toronto will be happy (since they’ll get most of the money) and, after all, that’s what’s important.
The Region will continue to muddle along, with St. Catharines ever pushing for reform (meaning they control it all). They used reserves to keep their budget down this year, something we here in Thorold know will come to bite them (and consequently us) in the ass in the future.
In Thorold, we’ll finally see that licensing of rentals (read student units in houses, although it applies to all). Unfortunately, due to manpower levels and the volunteer nature of the plan, it will be poorly enforced. Parking downtown will ease up a little as new spaces are created and limits placed on parking times, but it won’t be without its own set of problems. Thorold’s share of the property tax increase will be around 7.5% and there will still be no decisions about Thorold’s crappy buildings except, of course, for the Arenas. But Councillors will continue to get along, for the most part, and things will keep moving forward at the pace bureaucracy and Provincial allow.
And I will endeavour to keep finding something to write about while trying not to sound too negative (again, my fondness for Murphy’s Laws), as long as anyone reads it.
All of these things can be made better, of course, but it requires that people get involved. In other words, they probably won’t. In spite of all that, Happy New Year.