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COMMENTARY · 28th March 2010
Walter McFarlane
“The media does not do one any good,” said Mayor Joanne Monaghan at the City Council Meeting on March 22nd.

This was her response to a letter sent to Council by Bill Drinkwater read that night. In his letter, he referred to a Daybreak North interview with Monaghan in which she suggested that because the people of Kitimat have “’ATVs, boats, recreational vehicles and two or three vehicles, they can afford the extra taxes.’”

Drinkwater was not pleased by Monaghan’s comments to the media, particularly because West Fraser’s actions have devalued his Kitimat home and his son has had to move his family elsewhere to find employment.

“Please continue to work for the good of citizens of Kitimat but realize that most of us are just trying to do the best we can with the resources at hand,” wrote Drinkwater.

The letter was received for information, however Monaghan still had to add her two cents. She commented about Drinkwater living in the lower mainland (in a seeming attempt to discredit the worthiness) and explained what the letter was about to the Kitimat Council Chambers and audience.

“That is not exactly what happened. What happened was the gal who was interviewing me said: ‘is it not true that most people in Kitimat have several vehicles, an ATV, a boat, recreation vehicle, etc…’ and I said, ‘yes, many of them do.’ And she took that and ran with it and said: ‘and the Mayor of Kitimat said everyone in Kitimat has…’ It is not what I said and I want to clear that up,” said Monaghan.

She also stated she does not have any of the luxury items which were listed off.
However listening to the radio program reveals the details.

In the radio interview, attached below, provided courtesy of Daybreak North, Mayor Monahan states: “I don’t think too many people in this community will be affected by that because they all have two or three cars, skidoos, boats. They have all these kinds of recreational things.”

This is a long ways from stating she simply agreed with the interviewer, it was Monahan who brought up the topic, and in this case, for the Mayor in particular, “The media does not do one any good.”

The community, Drinkwater and the media deserve an apology.
Unreal
Comment by Sandra Capezzuto on 30th March 2010
I think that there are far more people with-out a vehicle, or with one modest vehicle than those with lots.

The taxes we are paying in July of this year were set before the closure, and now they want to increase next years taxes... not nice at all!

Why don't they up the paltry $20 pay cut they all "took"; by a substantial amount?
Time For The Mayor To Go
Comment by Rory Brown on 29th March 2010
As you know, I asked our "creditable" mayor to resign, and she chose not to. I told her that if she did not resign, I would start a petition, and I will have it ready soon (I will post it when it is ready). Unfortunitally, I can't do an on-line petition, as it might be tampered with. So I guess I should say thanks to the mayor. I won't have to twist anyones arm to get them to sign. Shes doing that for me.
I happen to be one of the people with two veichles, and RV, and my harley. I must be an awful person, and I must be punished. What was I thinking when I got a good paying job and bought things for my family to enjoy.
As for our mayor, like she said, she donen't have any of these things, after all, her Corvette isn't that new.
Do the town a favor, and save a tree. Resign before the petition comes out, and all that paper can be saved.
I would also like to thank Walter McFaflane. This is award worthy.

Enough is enough
Comment by Tom Campbell on 29th March 2010
I am not sure which makes me angrier, the mayor trying to cover up what she said or the fact she thinks people in this community won't be affected by a 20% municipal tax increase because of the "toys" in their driveway. The number of vehicles or toys I own is NONE of the Mayor's business. She cannot justify nor should she be making ANY comments about tax increase based on the vehicles in a driveway. There are rules and laws in place that determine what and how a municipality may tax the people of the community, owning vehicles is NOT on that list! I have a suggestion for the next headline on the tax increase "MAYOR JUSTIFIES TAX INCREASE BASED ON THE TOYS OWNED BY PEOPLE IN KITIMAT."
Now thats a misqoute. The Mayor has NO RIGHT and apparently NO IDEA how much it will affect people... 500 people just lost their jobs! If the city councilors do not bring the Mayor to task over this fiasco then it seems that the people of Kitimat pay the price for inept representation yet again.
Media Circus
Comment by Alacrity Fitzhugh on 29th March 2010
As a long time resident of Kitimat I have seen the council as a pack of unruly children. They are known around B.C. as the council of "No", usually to do with their protectiveness of their own business interests.

Joanne has always liked the spotlight, newspaper, radio, any exposure is good in her eyes. Unfortunately, storage is too good these days. The CBC is good at keeping recordings, so it's a suprise when Monaghan decided to rewrite history in the heat of the moment.

How about Gottschling missing ALL the budget meetings? That's not good either.

As a public figure, you are supposed to be held to a higher standard. In real life it means you can spend the town's money, make fun of the residents and then lie about it later.

It's time to change the players. Get rid of these "fancy pants" and put in some regular folks who are more in tune with the community instead of themselves and their own interests and businesses.

When you can't look past your own nose, it's a problem, especially when it keeps growing.
Thanks
Comment by Daniel Carter on 29th March 2010
I was wondering if you were going to try and get that interview from CBC. Thank you for doing so. I personally did not hear it until now, but I had spent the most part of a day trying to locate it through CBC. I was made aware of it by a friend.
Joanne Monaghan, you are our Mayor. You have a responsibility to represent your community in a positive way, especially in the media. This was very hurtful to many here.
Sure there are many here that have multiple vehicles, There are now a number of those people that struggle to make payments on them now due to the fact they had lost their jobs.
Oops she did it again
Comment by Danny Nunes on 29th March 2010

Well kitimat what more can be said about Joanne Monaghan?

I mean this sort of garbage can be traced back to her very first week of being mayor in january of 2009 when she did all she could to silence Gerd Gottschling from voicing his opinion on Rio Tinto Alcan and power sales....and it never stopped from there.

There are so many articles and quotes I could list to show this is a consistent pattern of alarming behavior but its so time consuming to be able to and that should truly be alarming....there should be next to nothing.

Constant battles in council, mockery of kitimat citizens, disrespect shown to fellow councillors, and now this.....its mind boggling.

Yes its true....all politicians at some point “misrepresent the truth” but to go on live television and make the claim that she was misrepresented...and by the CBC no less and to then attack the media when the she said “The media does not do one any good” is pathetic.

Thank you to CBC Daybreak North for providing the audio clip of what Joanne Monaghan said as I am sure the reporter who interviewed Joanne was not appreciative of Monaghans efforts to misrepresent her with this quote.

““That is not exactly what happened. What happened was the gal who was interviewing me said: ‘is it not true that most people in Kitimat have several vehicles, an ATV, a boat, recreation vehicle, etc…’ and I said, ‘yes, many of them do.’ And she took that and ran with it and said: ‘and the Mayor of Kitimat said everyone in Kitimat has…’ It is not what I said and I want to clear that up,” said Monaghan.”


Maybe Daybreak North would like to invite Joanne on there show again and ask her to explain why she
tried to misrepresent there reporter in a public forum which could have serious implications on the reporters career.

Walter....you honestly deserve a journalism award and the town owes you a debt of gratitude...I dont think enough people realize how important you are and the ethics and dedication you put in...I dont care if they say I am biased cause I am a friend of yours....facts speak for themselves...and so do audio clips.