Posted October 19, 2016
Mark your calendars: Tuesday, October 25, 2016 at 10:30 AM is the special meeting of the General Issues Committee (GIC) to receive an update on the Hamilton LRT project and to consider some of the proposed motions that have been flying around the council table.
It promises to be a contentious meeting:
A legal opinion by Integrity Commissioner George Rust-D'Eye will be made public. According to news reports, it argues that Council would need a reconsideration motion with a two-thirds majority vote to cancel the LRT plan or even to put the plan to a referendum.
Councillor Chad Collins has proposed putting the LRT project to a referendum question that would be included in the October 2018 municipal ballot, though it now sounds like he is backing away from this.
Councillor Sam Merulla's controversial LRT support re-affirmation motion will be either addressed or withdrawn. Merulla has suggested it is no longer necessary, given the Integrity Commissioner's report.
Meanwhile, a small anti-LRT group has mobilized to send form letters to Council and make delegations to the GIC meeting in order to try and weaken Council's support for the project.
Need Strong Show of Support
We need a very strong show of LRT support so Council knows this last-minute anti-LRT group does not speak for most Hamiltonians:
Mayor Fred Eisenberger recently reported that of 1,837 messages his office has received on LRT, fully 93% have been in support.
Similarly, among the 349 responses staff received during the recent LRT public consultation sessions, only 17% expressed opposition to the project.
What You Can Do
Please try to attend the GIC meeting on October 25. It starts at 10:30 AM. The more supporters we can pack into the meeting, the better. Remember to be civil during the meeting, and note that signs and banners will not be admitted.
If you are willing, please consider making a delegation to the meeting. Your presentation must be five minutes or less, and you can get on the agenda by filling out this online form to request a deletation at the October 25, 2016 GIC meeting.
If you have not already, please send a personal LRT support statement to Council and share the link with your family and friends.
There is also an online petition calling on Mayor Eisenberger and Council to "move Hamilton forward with LRT." Please take a moment to sign it.
We cannot allow misinformation, fear of change and civic self-loathing to stop this transformative investment in Hamilton's future!