Cornwall Ontario – So I was chatting with a friend who’s nearly 80 and she’s planning to sell her home and leave Cornwall. She shared a few more of her friends were leaving too.
Another friend in her 40’s shared that she’s moving to Ottawa and then shares that she has about a half dozen friends leaving.
A young family on social media excitedly share how they’re moving to Oshawa. Think about that. How bad is Cornwall when you get excited about Oshawa?
So I started to make notes of people leaving and sadly stopped as I reached the forty mark.
That’s a lot of people, even anecdotally for a city the size of Cornwall.
The biggest issues shared when I queried people were the facts that the culture and population of Cornwall simply weren’t really accepting, and that there was not enough going on.
Locals seem to be the worst at trashing Cornwall with many heading out of Cornwall to shop or even go out for a night. With Montreal, Ottawa, and the US border so close it’s easy to get out of town.
Since the loss of the Lift Off Balloon event the city has been sliding down the slope faster than other communities in the region. All one has to do is look at the deflated Real Estate market to also see indicators of the problems plaguing Cornwall.
Once source shared that factors in the Amazon and Giant Tiger distribution centres not coming to Cornwall, which is supposed to be a distribution capital, are the poor interactions with city management and a lack of people in the employment pool, especially if you have to have no criminal records like most DC jobs. The pay of most DC jobs also isn’t enough to attract people to move to Cornwall.
Young people have already been leaving as there are no real good jobs available other than in government services for the most part and many of them require bilingualism. For example how many Quebecers work for the Eastern Ontario Health Unit?
What happens essentially is that people don’t want to bang their head’s against Cornwall Ontario’s corruption. One person shared that she applied for two jobs locally and that the person hired clearly had been a cronyism situation as they clearly had no qualifications for the position.
One cited Lori Greer as an example who parlayed some clique love into a gig at the Agape Centre which resulted in getting the gig running the United Way (total clique board) which failed to reach its funding goals under her watch and was embarrassed by its Italian Night fundraiser, to now having a great job with the Cornwall Police Service which will include benefits and pension. That sadly is typical of Cornwall political machine.
To someone with qualifications watching from the outside and facing little to no job options that’s usually enough to want to move.
Another cited the Chad Kilger hiring by the fire service which the person alleged resulted in qualified candidates taking jobs with out of town services thus losing talent locally in favor of a son of the mayor at the time.
With Cornwall Hydro now charging more for 1000kw of power than Hydro One the city lost its advantage there too thanks to the Ed Lumley inspired plan to sell its own power company to Enbridge over 25 years ago. Enbridge then flipped it for a tidy profit to Fortis who essentially are selling Quebec power to Cornwall residents for nearly THREE TIMES what residents in Quebec pay for the exact same power. The cash and control of its own power far has exceeded the paltry amount the city earned from the sale.
The tax levy has gone up nearly 20% each of the last two terms of council and the weak offering this term clearly shows no hope for improvement. In fact it should get worse due to infrastructure needs and wasteful spending under CAO Maureen Adams.
One source close to City Hall said that it’d be a miracle if the tax hike for this year was under 5%.
The city has also just initiated what could be a foolhardy and extremely expensive lawsuit with MPAC over its evaluations which have cost taxpayers millions of dollars.
CAO Maureen Adams is also refusing to provide how much cash she’s pumping into BLG, the high priced Ottawa law firm the city uses and clearly council doesn’t have an appetite to ask that question either which shadow purchasing old banks and spending consulting fees with plans to spend $6M to renovate it into an art centre.
Clearly the wheels have fallen off.
Are there solutions? Yes, but clearly the political will to do so isn’t there with people choosing to move rather than deal with the corruption, ignorance, and insanity of the way this city is being run.
Are you thinking of moving too? Please post your comments below or send your story to firstname.lastname@example.org
Small city vs big city.