Making it Brighton Starts Here – The Brand Story

Posted by on Oct 30, 2014 in Commentary, Local Politics, Politics |

Click here to download a copy of the Brighton Brand & Graphics Guide

This Brand & Graphics Guide was approved at the last meeting of Brighton Council on October 20, 2014 as part of the Branding Strategy developed by Tenzing Communications.

Stories are used to create context for brands. In the case of Brighton Ontario, much of it will focus on the journey—and creating a new future together. But to set that stage, this is how we want to be perceived when we’re done:

Brighton Ontario, nestled on the shores of Lake Ontario and the primary gateway to the naturalists haven of Presqu’ile Provincial Park, is a growing hub of unique craft and trade entrepreneurs, adult education, tourism and lifestyles.

Our journey to creating that perception starts now as we create context and establish a shared path.



Making it Brighton Brand & Graphics Guide


Related information:

Brighton Creative Trade Centre & Brighton Public Library – Business Plan & Strategy

Brighton taxpayers are being asked to commit to a project based on vague numbers (page 30) and no public discussion on where the project is to be located.


Brighton Creative Trade Centre (BCTC) – Make your own future

On June 26, 2014 I made a Google+ post, No more silence in the library which explains how a modern library is so much more than just books on a shelf. In that post, I took the following quote from the article as I believe that it has been fundamental in the success of the Halifax library redevelopment and I also believe that this approach will be fundamental in the success of the Brighton Library redevelopment.


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Congratulations to our new Brighton Council – Unofficial Election Results

Posted by on Oct 28, 2014 in Commentary, Local Politics, Politics |

UPDATE –  Official Results: Certificate of Election Results – Brighton 2014

Municipal Election 2014 – Unofficial results for Brighton

A strong message has been sent with 61.95% of eligible residents voting and they say that the voters are never wrong!

Looking forward to four years of a Council that puts the interests of residents first and showing them the respect they deserve!

Congratulations to our new Brighton Council.


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For the record, David Green – Citizen Comment

Posted by on Oct 25, 2014 in Commentary, Local Politics, Politics |

At the October 20, 2014 Brighton Council meeting, Mr. David Green used Citizen Comment period to make an unfounded and personal attack against me. The reason for his verbal barrage seemed to stem from a tweet I posted on the evening of Friday, October 17, commenting that for the third meeting in a row the agenda had not been posted as required by Brighton’s Procedural By-Law (# 097-2013).

Click here to listen to Mr. David Green’s “Citizen Comment


The first important fact overlooked, or perhaps misunderstood, by Mr. Green was that my comment refers to the last three meetings and not just the last meeting of council. I spoke to Mr. Green after Monday’s council meeting to point out this fact and Mr. Green’s response was, “ok, well you didn’t say that“. I cannot understand how Mr. Green could read the preceding tweet and miss the first seven words.

As you can see, I posted a similar tweet on October 3, 2014.


I also posted another similar tweet on September 29, 2014.


After I posted each of the preceding tweets mentioning the municipal twitter account, each one of the respective agendas was quickly posted to the municipal website
. This of course was appreciated, but still disappointing. It should not be the responsibility of a taxpayer to ensure that the Procedural By-law is being followed.

Another point to note is that Mr. Green claims that “the Procedural By-Law calls for the Agenda to be ready 72 hours prior to a meeting“. Even if Mr. Green is content to settle for mediocrity, he would only be partly correct. The Procedural By-Law states that agendas must be posted at least 72 hours prior to a meeting. Unfortunately, Mr. Green fails to point out – or perhaps he fails to understand the By-Law. Agendas are to be made available to the public as soon as they are ready. The following excerpt is from Para 4.7 2) of the Procedural By-Law.


If Municipal Staff want to have an item added to the meeting agenda they need to submit their request by noon the Tuesday prior to a meeting and submissions from the public must be made before noon on the Wednesday prior to a meeting, why must the public wait until the Friday before a meeting to receive a copy of the agenda? Why can’t councillors and the public receive a copy of the agenda by the close of business on the Wednesday, or perhaps by noon on the Thursday, instead of Friday night?

Mr. Green’s comments indicate a blatant disregard for the municipal process and that he misunderstands the importance of council consistently following municipal procedures and policies.

During his comment, Mr. Green states that if I want to know what information is given to candidates then maybe I “should have invested the $100 and become a candidate“. I presume that he is referring to my questions to CAO Frost regarding the ballot process. I think that it is ridiculous to suggest that, even though I pay thousands of tax dollars to the municipality every year, I should pay an additional $100 to have simple questions answered. Especially considering that the information and documentation should have been available to the public via the municipal website. I will also note that as a result of my enquiry, additional information was added to the website.

Mr. Green concludes that “all I know for sure, is that this person is living up to its moniker and not the smiling part“.  Mr. Green has once again misinterpreted things, even though someone may call themselves an “idiot“, it doesn’t necessarily make them stupid.

Later in the meeting, during Question Period, Mr. Green demonstrates a blatant disregard for and basic misunderstanding of the Municipal ActMr. Green seems to think that council can simply ignore the law as prescribed in the Municipal Act. and write their own laws to supersede the Act.

Click here to listen to Mr. Green’s question to Councillor Martinello

Councillor Martinello is correct when states that the Municipal Act. makes it very clear that reports from the Integrity Commissioner are to be made available to the public. The fact that council passes a motion to only release reports if all those named sign off, does not relieve council of their obligation under section 223.6 (3) of the Municipal Act.

Publication of reports

223.6 (3) The municipality and each local board shall ensure that reports received from the Commissioner by the municipality or by the board, as the case may be, are made available to the public. 2006, c. 32, Sched. A, s. 98.

The Municipal Act. does not say that they “can” be made available. It clearly states that they “are” to be made available. The fact that four Brighton councillors pass a resolution saying that the reports “can” be made available if all parties sign off, does not in any way change the fact they are in breach of the Municipal Act. for not making the reports available to the public.

If I was Councillor Martinello, I also would not sign off on the release of any reports that must be made available to the public according to the Municipal Act. If he did, he perhaps could be found complicit in breaking the law with the four councillors that voted in favour of the sign off requirement.

For the record Mr. Green. I suggest that you gain a better understanding of the Municipal Act. before you embark on vexatious and malicious attacks. If not Mr. Green, you may end up looking like an idiot!


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Brighton Creative Trade Centre & Brighton Public Library – Business Plan & Strategy

Posted by on Oct 19, 2014 in Commentary, Local Politics, Politics |

I was invited by CAO Frost to join the branding strategy focus group meeting on March 12, 2014 and the meeting was very productive and at that meeting the concept of a Brighton Creative Trade Centre (BCTC) emerged. I saw and still see a great deal of potential in the concept, but after the meeting concluded I had several concerns with the discussions focusing on a potential location for the project on Richardson St. (former Country Fixin’s building). As such, I arranged for a follow-up meeting on March 18, 2014 with CAO Frost and Elisha Purchase, Manager of Economic Development & Communications.

At that meeting I raised my concerns regarding the possible location on Richardson St. as historically it had not been a good location for retail outlets as it was “off the beaten path“. It is also in a residential area with limited parking. Additionally, being outside of the downtown core I was concerned that it would take away from the existing Main St. retail corridor. Another main concern was the absence of any consultation with incorporating an educational component and including Brighton Public School, ENSS, Loyalist College etc. in the project discussions.

Considering these and other shortcomings and knowing that Brighton Council was considering a new library redevelopment project adjacent to the current building on Alice St., I suggested to CAO Frost and Ms. Purchase that both projects could be combined into one in the central downtown location. In doing so, it would strengthen the downtown core and take advantage of the synergies between the two projects to create a cultural, arts, technology, retail, educational and business resource hub for Brighton.

At the May 29, 2014 meeting of the Brighton Economic Development Committee (BEDC), the two locations (Richardson St. and Alice St.) were discussed in some detail and Gary Lintern from Tenzing Communications stated that he felt there should be some definition of location before going public with the vision and he hoped that the business plan stage would take care of that. I agree with that statement and view the Business Plan as being incomplete without addressing the question of location. After reading the Business Plan, there is no clearly defined location where the pros and cons have been evaluated. The only real reference to location is, “it is recommended that existing commercial assets located in the municipality be investigated for feasibility for the development of a Brighton Public Library and Creative Trade Centre” and as such it is difficult to understand how hard numbers can be stated in the “Financial Plan” section of the Business Plan.

Brighton Creative Trade Centre & Brighton Public Library – Business Plan & Strategy


Brighton Creative Trade Centre (BCTC) – Make your own future

Also at the May 29 BEDC meeting, Deputy Mayor Vandertoorn expressed concern with the location being in a residential area and I raised the concern that the Library Board had previously stated that the Alice St. location was the only appropriate one for the library redevelopment. When leaving the BEDC meeting I had a discussion with another resident over the safety concerns of the Richardson St. property being adjacent to the main line rail tracks.

On June 26, 2014 I made a Google+ post, No more silence in the library which explains how a modern library is so much more than just books on a shelf. In that post, I took the following quote from the article as I believe that it has been fundamental in the success of the Halifax library redevelopment and I also believe that this approach will be fundamental in the success of the Brighton Library redevelopment.

Nobody says, ‘Wow, this not a good use of our money,’ because we did this community consultation and the community told us, ‘This is what we want‘”

Unfortunately so far and despite the fact this quote appears in the BCTC & BPL Business Plan, to my knowledge, beyond small focus groups the community has not been consulted. If this project is to be a success, which I believe it can be, it needs to be driven by the Community and not by the Municipality.

If there is an “Advisory Committee” formed as suggested by the resolution that is being brought forward to the next meeting of Council on October 20, it is essential that the committee selection process is transparent and does not happen in closed session as happens with the selection of other committees. I also believe that it is essential that the committee be chaired by someone other than a Councillor or Municipal staff member.


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Brighton Municipal Election Ballot Return Envelope Processing Procedure Questions and Some Answers

Posted by on Oct 17, 2014 in Commentary, Local Politics, Politics |

This post is a follow up to an earlier Facebook post titled “Vote by Mail ballot processing procedure questions go unanswered

I am pleased to say that answers have been provided to most of the questions I posed to CAO Frost regarding the elections procedures.

CAO Frost provided a document called “2014 Municipal Elections Procedures” and this document confirmed that candidates and/or their appointed scrutineers are permitted to be present during the opening of the ballot return envelopes.

On Tuesday afternoon at around 3:10 pm I dropped my ballot return envelope into the ballot box located in the Municipal offices at 35 Alice St. As a designated scrutineer, I was then able to watch the processing of the contents of that ballot box, including my own ballot return envelope.

Although the procedural questions were answered in the documents provided by CAO Frost, there are still several other questions that remain unanswered. I emailed the following to CAO Frost on Wednesday afternoon and as of yet I have not received a reply.

Hi Gayle,


Thank you for the information provided as it is does address some items of concern, but it is disappointing that this information was not available on the Municipal Website and it was not provided when I specifically enquired last Wednesday, or last Thursday when I asked again for the answer to my question.


Considering that you knew the answer to my question, I am not sure why you referred me to the Municipal Elections Act which did not contain the answer?


Also, considering that you knew the answer to my question, I am not sure why it took the best part of a week to reply to me with the answer?


I would appreciate answers to these questions, as the lack of timely answers has cast a shadow over the process. As I have mentioned before, I believe that in addition to actually being fair, an election must also appear to be fair. Effective communication is essential in these situations.


However, more importantly why were the candidates not notified directly about the time and location that the ballot return envelopes would be processed?


I know that the candidates have all now received copies of the “Election Procedures” document as you copied them on your reply to me. As such they are aware that they can be present during the opening of the ballot return envelopes, but the time and location where this will be occurring has not been directly communicated to them. Some have been provided this information, but I am not sure why this would not have been communicated directly to all candidates?


I also know that you will be conducting a briefing to all candidates tomorrow regarding the election procedures, but I think that if the briefing had taken place before the ballots were mailed out, you would have been able to address all aspects of the election process and it would have allowed for the candidates to participate in scrutinizing all aspects of the return process from the time that the first ballot returns started to arrive.


I look forward to your reply.


Thank you,



I will update this post when/if I receive a reply to these important questions.


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Brighton-Cramahe Chamber of Commerce Mayoral Candidates Forum – video

Posted by on Oct 9, 2014 in Commentary, Local Politics, Politics |

Thanks to the Brighton-Cramahe Chamber of Commerce for hosting the Brighton Mayoral Candidates Forum on October 8, 2014. It seems that Brighton Independent reporter Ray Yurkowski stole the show with what appeared to be a staged question at the end of the forum. Following complaints to Mr. Terry Bush the Brighton Independent editor, Mr. Bush confirmed today that “John Campbell or another freelance reporter with be covering council from now on”.

Video credit – Chris Pelletier –

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BRIGHTON MUNICIPAL ELECTION 2014 – Important to remember!

Posted by on Oct 4, 2014 in Commentary, Local Politics, Politics |

It is very important to remember that although you can select up to six Councillors, make sure that you only vote for those that you know can represent your interests with professionalism and integrity.

If there are only four candidates that you feel can appropriately represent you, do not vote for six, only vote for the four. If you vote for six, then you are actually casting votes against the four that you want to be elected!

The extra votes given to the others, could mean that they get elected instead of your top four picks.


Brighton Municipal Election Ballots were mailed out this week.


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