Thursday, September 30, 2021

Back To The Future In Vancouver Civic Politics?



Here's something interesting from the Vancouver Sun's Cheryl Chan:

Vancouver councillor Colleen Hardwick plans to seek the mayoral nomination of a new municipal party.

Hardwick, who quit the Non-Partisan Association (NPA) in April to sit as an independent, announced Wednesday she has joined TEAM for a Livable Vancouver and now represents the newly-formed party on council...


...The new TEAM, named after the original The Electors’ Action Movement (TEAM) founded by Hardwick’s father and three-term Vancouver councillor Walter Hardwick and former mayor Art Phillips in 1968, will put Vancouver residents and its neighbourhoods first, promised Hardwick...

Will the resurrection of the party that Ms. Hardwick's Dad helped to build the first time around turn out to be viable?

Will it carve votes away from the NPA's Mr. Coupar and ensure a K. Stewart victory next fall? 

Will it give Marky Mark's mayoral candidacy a wee bit of wiggle room to move up through the cracks that have developed in the center-right 'round here?

Honestly, I'm not enough of an insider to know the answers to any of the above for sure - but feel free to weigh in if you have an opinion and/or an insight.

I would be re-miss if I didn't mention that Sean Holman is coming back to British Columbia...Something tells me that Mr. Holman and Norm Farrell will be crossing paths with some regularity on the climate policy beat (which I reckon will be a very good thing indeed).


Thursday, September 23, 2021

Nanaimo-Ladysmith Nail Biter...The Stealthiest Con Of Them All?



Update Sat Sept 25th: Dipper Barron wins in Nanaimo, Lib Miao wins in Richmond, Lib Noormohamed wins in VanGranShaughnessyBigHouseFlippedOrNotLand

Nanaimo Ladysmith is one of those British Columbia ridings where the decision could by decided by the mail-in ballots. 

Apparently, there are approximately 8,000 mail-in/special ballots that are currently being verified by Elections Canada. The plan is to start counting them tomorrow/Friday.

Paul Manly, the Greeniac, was the riding's MP in the previous parliament. Currently, he's on the outside looking in by 2,800 votes. Here is what he had to say about the situation late on election night:

The Dipper, and current leader by 1,000 votes, Lisa Marie Barron had this to say early the morning after the election:

As for the second place Con?

Well, who knows what Tamar Kronis thinks and/or has to say about anything, including the fact that the PPC vote in the riding is considerably greater than the difference between herself and Ms. Barron.


Imagine that!

StealthCon?...It's a CPC strategy that started in, surprise!, the Harper era.
And we thank longtime reader e.a.f. for bringing the multitude of different demos in Nanaimo-Ladysmith to our attention awhile back.


Saturday, September 11, 2021

B.C. Ridings In Play?....Post Election Day Update (before Mail-In's)



Post-Election Day Update for each riding below...
Update Sat Sept 18th at bottom of post


Mostly, I don't give much of a hoot-in-heckfire about national or even regional polls because, in my opinion at least, it's riding-specific polls that matter most. Unfortunately, we, the peons, have seen little of those.

Regardless, with eyes half-closed due to the lack of hard contemporaneous data, here is a list of what I think are ridings in British Columbia that are in play based mostly on past performance:
Nanaimo: This one looks to be a triple toss-up between Con, Dipper and current Greeniac MP Paul Manley. The Lib does not appear to be a factor...Post EDay Update: Dipper Barron up by ~1,000 votes over Con; former Green MP Manly down by 2,700...Need to wait for Mail-In count to be sure - 8,800 ballots ordered - who knows how many got to folks on time to actually get them in?...PPC difference maker? (1,800 votes, plus).
Kootenay-Columbia: Current Con MP Rob Morrison is the clear favourite but the Dipper, and former MP, Wayne Stetski is a long shot with a shot...Post EDay Update: Con Morrison wins by 4,700 votes over Stetski...PPC takes an additional 4,300 votes in heartlandia (7.1%).

South OK-West Kootenay: Most predictor thingies have this strong for current Dipper MP Cannings. However, there was less than a one point split between Cannings and the Con last time, so this is one where the overall O'Toole National/Regional strength could be a factor in the Con's favour out in the kinda/sorta heartland. It could come down to Dipper GoTV...Post EDay Update:Dipper Cannings wins by 2,500...That rightsided heartlandia strength went PPC with 4,600, plus (7.7%) votes that just might have been the difference.
West Van-SunSeaSky: Two way race between Lib MP Weiler and the Con. Neither the Dipper nor the  Greeniac can win, but their numbers are significant such that together they could get enough votes to split and allow the Con to win....Post EDay Update: Lib MP Weiler wins by 2,200 votes over Con...Dipper Avi Lewis does well with 26%.

Burnaby North-Seymour: Supposed to be a two-way race between current Lib MP Terry Beech and Dipper Jim Hanson. Was a three point victory for Beech over Swende R. last time, but now the urban regional Singh bump could help. Interestingly, given the pipeline terminus in the riding, the Greeniac doesn't look to be a factor...Post EDay Update: Lib MP Beech wins going away by 4,700 over Dipper Hanson.

Coquitlam-PoCo: This was essentially a Lib/Con dead heat last time with current Lib MP McKinnon squeaking in with less than one percent victory. Looks like the Dipper is slightly competitive or, at the very least,  a vote gatherer, here though...Post EDay Update: Liberal MP McKinnon wins going away by 4,000 votes over Con.


PoMo-Coquitlam: Dipper has a real shot in what looks to be a three way race between Lib and current Con MP Nelly Shin...Post EDay Update: Looks like Dipper Zarrillo will win up by 2,000 votes over Con Shin...PPC might have contributed to spread (1,700 votes) but not the decider, at least pre-Mail-In count. 

Pitt Meadows - Larry Walker's Ridge: You won't find this one on many in play-type lists but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the Dipper has a shot because it's an historical Lib/Dip split riding that let's the Con, currently MP Marc Dalton, win up the middle....But I reckon this could be one where the regional leader/party polls favouring the Dippers could maybe, just maybe, turn things a wee bit orange...Post EDay Update: Con MP Dalton will win...But Dipper Klapwyk was strong second only down by 2,400 votes with 31.8%...Lib distant third this time out. 

Cloverdale - Langley (is a?) City: Could be the opposite of Pitt Meadows-MR in that here a rising Dipper could take enough votes from the previously close Libs to help the current Con MP Tamara Jansen win again in what should be a relatively close Con/Lib race...Post EDay Update: Still close, Lib up by 1,100 votes on Con MP Jansen...Here the PPC might be difference with 2,500 votes...The Dipper faded into low show position down by 10,000 - had this one way wrong.
Delta: It's a toss-up between the Con and current Lib MP Carla Qualtrough. Can't help wonder if the PeepsPartingOfCrazySea candidate just might shave off just enough to keep this one in the red...Post EDay Update: Lib MP Qualtrough wins going away over Con by 4,000...PPC not a factor.


Van-Gran...Post EDay Update: Still too close to call..Lib Noormohamed up by 230 votes over Dipper Appadurai...Mail-ins could definitely matter here...Con a fading third 3,200 votes behind.


South Surrey-WR...Post EDay Update: Con MP Findlay will hold on to win, up 2,300 over Lib and former CampbellInc/Clarklandian Hogg.


Richmond Centre...Post EDay Update: Lib Miao up by 700 votes on longtime Con MP Alice Wong...Definitely need to wait on Mail-Ins here.


Voting time is upon us...If you haven't already completed your mail-in ballot advance polling is now open!...General admission Monday!...Now just waiting for the Mail-In's to be counted.

And we heard from Beer...As you might expect, he is off in the the Albertalands trying to elect Dippers!


Tuesday, September 07, 2021

The Songification Of Everything...


We spent the long weekend at our girls' Grandpops house.

To be super-safe we put a hotel suite in his driveway - turns out that you can rent folks' camping trailers as roaming Air B'nB' - type deals.

Anyway, it was a fun weekend, including a Sunday afternoon songification session with Bigger E.

Just in case it's not obvious from the above, you can find E's instantaneous and, more often than not, grammatically correct stuff...Here.


Wednesday, September 01, 2021

The Little Mountain Deal, Re-Examined: It's More Than Just The Interest Free Loan.


By now you have likely heard about the massive, two hundred million dollar, plus, interest free loan that the 'purchaser' (i.e. Holborn Properties) received from the 'vendor' (i.e. you and me) when they bought the Little Mountain tract in central Lotusland and started demolishing existing public housing soon thereafter.

This is because, finally, thanks to the digging of David Chudnovsky and local advocates as well as Jeremy Allingham and the CBC, we finally got to see the 'contract', which was signed in 2008 and has been amended since.

Yesterday, in addition to his piece that was posted on the CBC British Columbia website (where the entire 'contract' can be downloaded), Mr. Allingham also posted the following on his Twittmachine feed:

Mr. Allingham's tweet led me to go digging through the original 'contract' (careful: pdf file) where I found the following in Section 2.3 of the April 25, 2008, 'Amended and Restated Purchase and Sale Agreement':


Does this mean that the 'purchaser' (i.e. Holborn Properties) doesn't even have to start paying back the principal on the $210,957,340 interest free loan that, again, was laid out by the 'vendor (i.e. you and me) on that 'Remaining Balance' mentioned above as long as they leave the bulldozed and weeded over land fallow (except for a single tranche of already built, but excluded, non-market public housing) while the value of the land just keeps on appreciating?

Well, according to Holborn Properties spokesperson Megan Schrader, it would appear that just might be the case.

Dan Fumano had that part of the story in his piece published in yesterday's Vancouver Sun:
...(Ms.) Schrader, the Holborn spokeswoman, said that remaining balance of $210.9 million will be paid through the proceeds of market housing sales, and the arrangement was structured this way “to prioritize the construction of the social housing units.”

“In payment structures for large land sales, it is very common for the Purchaser to provide a deposit and pay the remaining balance as the land is developed,” Schrader said. “The proceeds of the Little Mountain sale provided immediate funding to the province, allowing them to reinvest that money into affordable housing projects.”...

Imagine that!

By the way, that Section 2.3 is some Catch...errrrr....Section (it starts on pg 30 of the 'contract' pdf file)...Section 2.3 pretty much lays out the entire deal in financial terms...That 'deposit' that the Holborn spokesperson mentioned above?...In total it appears to be all of thirty-five million dollars....Given that, I don't know about you all but I, for one, sure would be interested to learn what the 'purchaser's' non-market housing parcel is worth today. 
And here's a question for, say, the guy who was in charge of the deal at the time....How, exactly, did Holborn's $35 million lead to more reinvestment in affordable housing projects than, say, $210.9 million, would have at the time?....And, to be clear, when answering that question, phoney provincial budget number re-jigging does not count as a legitimate explanation.