CORNWALL Ontario – It was no surprise when Guy St. Jean put in his papers to run for council. Mr. St. Jean had called me on the phone months before; full of high spirits, talking about the changes he felt he could help with in Cornwall and how much he supported Mark A MacDonald for Mayor.
It was a funny call as those kind of calls are when someone’s been tippling.
Monday I went down to City Hall and interviewed Mr. St. Jean as I have offered to do and done for almost all of the candidates (or sent our intern)
Mr. St. Jean mentions some interesting issues facing us in the new election. He’s the second council hopeful to mention re branding Cornwall which while I agree with, the City spends a lot of money already doing. He talked about the waterfront, but has barely been seen or heard from at any of the rallies even though he and his husband live across the street from the tanks in the Cotton Mill Lofts. He and his husband Charlie did take No Tanks pins after the interview.
He talks about the permit process for business in Cornwall which is a huge issue. Why some businesses would have to pay rent for 12-18 months while being tortured by by law officers is not good for business. The biggest complaint is that instead of being given a list of issues at one time by law officers in Cornwall will niggle them one at a time and sometimes new changes force already repaired work to be redone which infuriates business people watching their bank accounts bleed dry without being open.
However Mr. St Jean’s store, Neo Vintage Furniture which specializes in importing kitchy stuff from India and far off places is located in South Stormont where issues are rarely if ever Cornwallesque.
This morning Mr. St. Jean sent me a quick message.
hi Jamie! Please do not publish my interview done with you last Monday February 10th,2014 as I have no interest in any involvement with you!
A bewildering flip flop indeed and certainly something to mull as Mr. St. Jean is asking the public for their support to run for council in 2014. Did his store’s one year party Tuesday night; filled with many of the Cornwall clique influence his decision? Was he distancing himself because of the news of my charges yesterday that are clearly unproven?
Certainly bizarre behavior which begs the question of Mr. St. Jean’s character as the interview we shot was not random but agreed upon with a set time. Is Guy a leader or a submissive follower? Have we not had enough sheep like behavior around our council tables?
Again it’s going to be an interesting election season. I think that for many after what’s occurred with the Kilger council that it will be critical for voters to realize that we are voting for community leadership and not popularity contest or who’s the nicest person. Council run a $160M corporation that makes decisions that impact all of us; like raising commercial tax rates by over 3%.