Should Cornwall Ontario Kick in $50K for the Benson University Project? – CFN Says Nay – January 26, 2013

Should Cornwall Ontario Kick in $50K for the Benson University Project? – CFN Says Nay – January 26, 2013

jg2CFN – A group of esteemed local citizens will be appearing before Cornwall Ontario city council, hat in hand, asking for the City to kick in $50,000 to help research the concept of having a University in Cornwall Ontario on Monday night.

I hope that our council, especially during this budget phase, and in times when they are being asked to not raise taxes while talking about a raise from 3-5% reject this group soundly.

Universities are fine things and Cornwall does need more University educated citizens.  Heck we need more college and high school educated citizens; but surely we need fiscal restraint over vanity projects for those that have made their fortunes off of the backs of the residents of this community?

Roy Perkins & Gerry Benson
Sandy Cameron & Gerry Benson

If Mr. Gerry Benson needs a legacy project surely the he or the  Benson organization can scratch a cheque even with the lay offs that they’ve had and are coming, no?

There’s some murkiness too as there’s a group behind this; but if some of those people are also elected officials it gets fuzzy no?   And surely this group which includes the Kanebs can afford the $50K seed money?   And how do you participate in the Cornwall Action Group or whatever Mr. Benson and friends are calling it that calls for a zero tax increase to our already over taxed residents and businesses, and then show up at council asking for cash?

Distance learning is the buzz word now.   We don’t really need stone walls and desks.  We need affordable internet and some financial support for people to be able to access some of the organizations offering University online.   And of course we need the jobs locally that those grads can fill otherwise all we’d be is a feeder system to other cities.

Sometimes the ideas of yesterday really don’t fit into today’s reality.  Ask any blacksmith you happen to see (nothing against Smithies).

I can understand as Mr. Benson and some of his clique enter their twilight years that they want to create legacies.  It’s a noble thing  and not unique,  but let these fine people do so on their own coin and leave the poor taxpayers of Cornwall Ontario and the Counties off the hook.

It also should be interesting how many of council step back and do not vote for this proposal.  While the ultra precise definition of Conflict of Interest targets pecuniary interest I think the optics of current employees or those with relationships with groups of members of the presenting group would surely preclude a council member from voting.

If they create something noble I’m sure the public will support it.

Jamie Gilcig – Editor –  CFN

What do you think?  Should the City be writing cheques to float this concept?  You can post your comment below.

(Comments and opinions of Editorials, Letters to the Editor, and comments from readers are purely their own and don’t necessarily reflect those of the owners of this site, their staff, or sponsors.)

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32 Comments on "Should Cornwall Ontario Kick in $50K for the Benson University Project? – CFN Says Nay – January 26, 2013"

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luckyred
Guest

I believe thats Sandy cameron in the picture not Roy Perkins.But again Jamie your article hits the nail right on the head.This is a very smart group of people,once they get the city on board with a little bit of seed money then thell keep asking for more and more.
Just how much money does our city really have.Seems to me the city cries poor year after year but we get all these big projects. Something just doesn,t add up.

Wow!
Guest
The Kanebs already have a legacy in Cornwall, a harbourfront poisoned by oiltanks that they never have to clean up. This after their brother Nick gave them a sweetheart deal as mayor decades ago. Esteemed, not in my books. If Benson’s yellow building and trucks are not enough of a legacy for his spoiled rotted kids, he should take a big morning dump high up on the top slopes of Big Ben and build an Inukshuk over it. Or if he is in truly dire straights maybe he can call Lecky or Latour and get some money out of the… Read more »
Dave Windsor
Guest
I have a great deal of respect for Mr. Benson and certainly Sandy Cameron in your picture here, just as I do for Mr. Roy Perkins. These fine men have been involved so much nor only in giving of their time with efforts in charities and corporate boards free gratis. These are fine and giving men, as too are many, many other of our citizens. I know we are thankful for their participation in all the ways they do, well over and above providing many value added jobs to so many of our citizens. We recall recently the request by… Read more »
bigfellow
Guest

What ever happened to ONLINE UNIVERSITY?
Is someone pushing for a university in/on the NAV site?
If your looking for a site that would be a great site. Perhaps Mr. Guindon can get involved and wave his federal flag and it would not cost the city to much. Oh! Oh! That means the boys club in the city hall including Mr.Mayor did not get on the band wagon!
Or have they already.
Oh. well, such is life.

Concerned
Guest
I am afraid the group behind the idea of Cornwall university has a cookie-cutter scheme of turning it into a French-only university favoring Quebeckers. This happened to Moncton University. Leonard Jones, the late mayor of Moncton and Independent Member of Parliament for Moncton, N.B., had this to say about it: “…things changed in the City of Moncton with the setting up of a University there. Of course, there were the usual changes which accompany such a development but there was more than that, too… The people of Moncton were delighted at the fact that we would eventually be getting an… Read more »
bigfellow
Guest

I had misplaced my thoughts for a bit until I read “concerned”.
Perhaps we should set aside the “university” till the language and the hospital issue is over.
If anymore “issues” develop in Cornwall and cannot be solved, we might a well close the book on progression for Cornwall.
Have a nice day.

Believe Me
Guest

Wow= Nick Kaneb Former Mayor was an uncle to the Kanebs that I believe your referring to . IT was George Kaneb brother to Nick that arranged the oil tanks on the water front (Universal Terminals )
To City Council
Keep Your Cotton Picking Hands Out Of the progress fund .

Mary Anne Pankhurst
Member

“$50,000 to help research the concept of having a University”

What kind of research? Where’s their proposal?

cityBS
Guest

@ Wow, you hit the nail right on the head, you forgot to mention however that when you lie and cheat you get a street named after you. Maybe if we get this University, Latour will finish up with his grade 12 and become an (MODERATED) photo opp (MODERATED)? (MODERATED)

bigfellow
Guest

Boy of BOY, when you see the big craps, in a photo start singing halleuagh, the end is near. Something is up. Man of man it look like there is a big deal coming down. Watch out folks, it’s the calm before the storm. Aybody want to make a deal? Shares? Put your money there. If these big wheeler are on the nose, grab it. Something big is coming down, at least in Cornwall.
Hey, Mr. Mayor and your Cronies, I guess you missed out on the deal, HEH?
Love your friends.
Trust amongst friends?HEH!

Sick of Stupidity
Guest

Funny how CCH comes up with 500,000 when the city says no. Funny how the city continually misspends our money and raises taxes!

ABSOLUTELY NOT to this university project and DO NOT TOUCH PROGRESS FUND!!!!!

Tammy A. Hart
Member

Lets build on the assets we already have. The St. Lawrence College and the Rivers Institute. A unniversity you say? Thats “pie in the sky”.

Concerned
Guest

Cornwall university? Does it mean Cornwall French-only speaking university? Does it mean Cornwall and Ontario taxpayers paying for education of students from Quebec? Does it mean persons from Cornwall area being turned down over and above the Quebecois? That’s what happened to people of Moncton. Persons from Moncton area were being turned down over and above the Quebecois.

billiam
Member

Gerry Benson, Sandy Cameron, Roy Perkinss are the leaders for the Cornwall Community Action Group which wants lower taxes. Would this venture increase taxes,

Sick of Stupidity
Guest

Yep, a university here would ONLY mean French….to draw in more Quebecers! We are already swamped already.

I agree with Tammy Hart 100%! Now is NOT the time for this. Yes, by all means focus on the great college that we have and the River Institute!!!!!

The city is broke and are bleeding it’s citizens dry. Lots of big projects but not a lot of smart spending on behalf of council.

Simon
Guest
The Nav Centre (aka NC-TI and TC-TI) no longer fits with Nav Canada’s plans, and is FOR SALE… if only someone would make an offer. Nav Canada’s plans for the site are incoherent at best. It passed on housing the RCMP detachment, it passed on the Service Canada call centre, it priced itself out of the market with Corrections Canada, the ballyhooed data centre is a no show, and as reported by CFN, even the Canadian Forces are leaving. What to do with this shell? Maybe the old boys of Cornwall are looking at the Nav Canada site and see… Read more »
We have trades gap, not bachelors in arts
Guest
We have trades gap, not bachelors in arts

Does that “group of esteemed local citizens” live in Canada? I doubt it. Locals know that Canada produces too many graduates with useless university degrees who become underemployed or unemployed. We have trades gap. We need more workers in skilled trades.

cityBS
Guest

And what will they name this University? Lapeben U
Latour, Peters, Benson U. Sort of has a French ring to it, so in this town it could fly. And think of the great photo opp Bob, you could have your kid front cover on this one too.

Dukers1
Guest
We already have a French University section by correspondence at or near La Citadele and/or St. Croix. This would be an expanse to that with professors. But that is no difference than us having the same for the English via St. Lawerence College or from anyone doing it from home. The English do hot trust the new suggested phase without assurance that they will not be overrun as in all other areas of town by a French University takeover. This is why clarity in advance is vitally important. So good luck Tom and Jerry. It is well known that St.… Read more »
stellabystarlight
Guest
Until the mentality of the citizens of this city changes……we will never grow. Plain and simple. Many are favoring distance learning these days. The pro side is one can earn while they learn but on the other hand the work involved is greater. Going back 5-10 years ago, the college was in dire financial straights, that being said, I can’t see the point of having a university in Cornwall….especially when we are closing elementary schools. Besides this city is not big enough to warrant a university. The thought may be nice but realistically it is not feasible.
David Oldham
Guest
Universities receive their primary funding from you and me, taxpayers that is . The decision for location is done at the provincial level ( I have never heard otherwise ) therefore the taxpayer already funds the necessary studies to facilitate this process . Should the business owners within our community that would profit the most wish to step up and fund their own feasibility study thereby duplicating the process at their own expense who are we to interfer ? However I take exception to being played as the idiot taxpayer whose pockets are continuing to deepen as if expanding into… Read more »
David Oldham
Guest
In regards to the concept that the PROGRESS FUND could actually GROW/INCREASE . Ginormous idea ! Simply pass a motion not to withdraw any more than 90% of the interest accrued in any given fiscal year . Same idea could be applied to increases in taxation, not more than the actual rate of inflation in the preceding year . Pass a motion, other Canadian communities have . A growing Progress Fund would bode well for this city given the loss of our exemption terminating our ability to purchase electrical power ( cheaply ) from our provincial neighbor to the east… Read more »
hailey Brown
Member
Considering these two gentlemen have a family history of holding back post secondary education, I believe Kaneb should be responsible solely for what his Uncle had created in Cornwall. A city of mill workers kept in the closet to expand the family wealth and not provide the chance for higher post secondary education. It would have been an opportune time to open such schools with the industry we had at the time. You want tax payers money …I think not. Tammy I wish you would have replied to a post made last year relating to how Long Sault is managed.… Read more »
Helga
Guest
Dukers1, you are naive thinking that “clarity in advance” would guarantee the outcome. Read again what Leonard Jones, the late mayor of Moncton and Independent Member of Parliament for Moncton, N.B., had to say about what happened to the University of Moncton that was supposed to be a bilingual college: “But after the funds for the university were collected, and the college built, the attitude toward the city people changed. The school was no longer for persons of English-speaking origin. The school had almost overnight become a totally French-speaking institution. You can well imagine that these developments made the people… Read more »
Dukers1
Guest
Helga – January 28, 2013 at 10:46 pm I well appreciate your comment Helga and admit that my reason for the ‘clarity’ was in fact because I read the same article you refer to. YES..frightful isn’t it. Listen, the entire idea of a university is sound, appropriate and would be meaningful to the city of Cornwall, however, we are all in shock DUE TO THE EXCESSIVENESS of french at the Cornwall Community Hospital. The ranckor over that nonsense they put the English nursing candidates through was with total disregard the true NEED. That alone should wake up the neighborhood. Yes… Read more »
Dave Windsor
Guest
I concur much of what Dukers1 and so many others have said here. Much of it is ’emotional’ while still much is factual, historical. We are all well aware of the Universities offering courses of study online. Fabulous. We are also aware that many Universities today in order to stay alive, are ammalgamating ;their fields of study and professorships. I believe this comity is also keenly aware of these facts. Here though is another one, we have the bricks and morter in place. We have such a low cost of living and a communicating city like no other. These two… Read more »
Dave Windsor
Guest
admin January 30, 2013 at 11:36 am Salient points Jamie. My take has been that all need to know that at least a measure of support would be behind their efforts before they put up or shut up. Being philanthropistsof the past and perhaps on going year to year {example bursaries for our high schools) I have faith in their desires to participate in major ways besides speechees and paper. Yes, admin. your questions are justified yet no one weould come up with their own money for a non participative ‘city’ commited venture kof this magnitude. We here as a… Read more »
Dave Windsor
Guest
Again Admin., your point is understood. Yet I say that if we grieved every Tom, Dick and Harry that had warts, we would never have survived this long. Cornwall would have been a forest ofd grass’s n trees n’ stuff. Difficult as it is for us, and I include myself in this. If we continue to badger, condemn and not condon, to demand and to prolong, we’ll be dead before we aquiese to progress. It purpuses us not to wonder whose name is on a plaque. You see here and their donners separate from initiators often are gifted a plaque… Read more »
Eric
Guest

The steering committee chose a consultant in June, with a goal of 3 months for a report. It has been 3 months, where is the report?

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