BARRIS HOBBIS’ TOP PRIORITY: $467,000,000 ‘Infrastructure deficit’ (so-called): not homelessness, nor Johnson Street Bridge, nor high taxes, apparently

The more I really look into Council Candidate Barry Hobbis, the less I like (I am afraid to say), but I still am concerned that neither Susan Woods nor Hugh Kruzel have quite the numbers of supporters they really need to take this from the frontrunner.

In fact, at this stage, a real argument can be made that these independent hold-out Councillor Candidates and others that can’t realistically expect to win may end up fatally wounding Mr. Hobbis, thus playing right into the hands of one or two of the party-affiliated candidates like Marianne Alto or Steve Filipovic.

When the campaign first started, I was alarmed at the prospect that the federal NDP might be funding the Alto campaign, but I still haven’t seen a single Alto campaign sign anywhere, and I now must say that I find this curious, and must admit that I may very well have overestimated the extent to which that party is helping this lady.

As for Mr. Filipovic and his claim that he is ‘Green Party-endorsed,’ (Victoria News, Nov. 12) it is my understanding that the Green Party of Victoria was completely moribund until Mr. Filipovic apparently went to the Registrar of Societies office recently, paid the overdue fees, and more or less almost single-handedly revived the so-called ‘Green Party of Victoria,’ such as it is, just in time to be able to make the dubious claim that he is ‘Green Party endorsed.’

Really, Mr. Filipovic?

Can you please tell us which meeting of the newly revived ‘Green Party of Victoria’ passed a motion to ‘endorse’ your candidacy?

When did the meeting happen, where was it, were minutes kept, how many people attended, and were there any other contestants for the great honour of representing your party in this byelection, I wonder?

It is my understanding that to have the legend ‘Green Party’ or ‘Green Party of Victoria’ indicated on the ballot, Mr. Filipovic would have had to find at least 60 valid signatures of Victoria voters to endorse the idea so that those words would appear beside the Councillor Candidate’s name on the ballot, thus giving him an advantage over other Candidates, at least in terms of partisan identification, if nothing else.

Voters who have already gone to the polls will know whether those words appear on the ballot.

They should tell the rest of us what is on that ballot.

If the words ‘Green Party of Victoria’ or ‘Green Party’ appear on the ballot next to Steve Filipovic’s name, then we can know with certainty, that however many members this group actually has or not, they would at least have managed to get at least 60 people to ‘endorse’ him.



Getting back to the more important matter of the suitability of Candidate Hobbis, I note with alarm that as his Top Priority in today’s Nov. 12 Victoria News article, Mr. Hobbis doesn’t say his top priority is homelessness, or high taxes or the Johnson Street Bridge.

Rather, he puts it like this:

‘Top priority: To help create a comprehensive financial framework to address Victoria’s estimated $467 million infrastructure deficit, help facilitate meaningful public participation before setting capital spending priorities.’

I am not aware of any Victorians who would agree that a supposed ‘infrastructure deficit’ of this magnitude is any kind of real priority for the City of Victoria to worry about now.

Rather, what people are concerned to see, Mr. Hobbis, is a real prioritization and final solving, once and for all, of the absolutely disgraceful homelessness issue which has been frankly avoided, or not sufficiently addressed, by all Councils, including this one, notwithstanding the self-serving propaganda we have heard lately from the Mayor’s office.

We also desperately need a radical reduction or freezing of our property tax burdens, whether for businesses or residents.

We want you to help the Council understand the significance of the landslide NO victory that we all anticipate, and we want the Council to also save the Johnson Street Bridge and fix it for a reasonable amount.

Those are the three issues people are concerned about that I hear, Mr. Hobbis.

There are also major concerns about the CRD sewage fiasco, which you have not really addressed in a clear manner, in contrast to Candidate George Sirk, who clearly says that he would ‘seek major cost savings for proposed sewage system and support the Association for Responsible and Environmentally Sustainable Sewage Treatment (ARREST) principles’.

No one believes the supposed ‘infrastructure deficit’ is anything more that a self-serving make-work plan for City Hall engineers  and planners, and unionized workers in the Public Works Department that need to be seen to be doing something, instead of standing around, as we often see, with two men watching for every poor bugger who is digging in the muck of the ditch.

Mr. Hobbis touts his having been a ‘chair of clean and safe committtee for the Downtown Victoria Business Association.’

The DVBA sends challenged people around with carts to pick up debris, including used syringes.

A mobile needle exchange and pick up is listed as one of the ‘services’ that the DVBA supports, listing a phone number: 888-4487.

It is unclear whether this particular ‘mobile needle exchange and pick up’ is government subsidized or receives its funding from DVBA membership dues.

All of this begs the question, does Mr. Hobbis support so-called ‘harm reduction services’ in Victoria, and if so, why?

Does Mr. Hobbis think the police should hire more officers and be given a raise in the next round of contract negociations between their police union and the City of Victoria?

Mr. Hobbis is a former policeman who seems more interested in these issues from a policing point of view, rather than from an efficacious and efficient holistic healing point of view, so I am frankly worried that if we elect him, we will see infrastructure prioritized, the poor ignored, and the police budget expanded, despite their recently being having found deficient in their service delivery on no less than 80 points, and the pointless so-called ‘war on drugs’ in all its stupidity and futility, continued at even greater expense of human lives, money and police prioritization.

Will Mr. Hobbis be able to stand up to the tough demands of Chief Jamie Graham for more money, tasers and cops?


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