Widow Darlene Bennett delivers a powerful delegation to Surrey council during a finance committee budget meeting on Dec. 2, saying the planned policing transition is a waste of taxpayer money and ‘quite frankly a slap in the face to the victims left behind.’ (Photo: Amy Reid)

OUR VIEW: Surrey public’s budget input seems wasted

Did council demonstrate the wisdom of Solomon, or just waste a lot of concerned citizens’ time on Monday?

Some people entrusted with making huge decisions that affect the lives of thousands, especially if they have a bounty of information to process, prefer to sleep on it.

Court judges often reserve their decisions to a later date following a sentencing hearing, to carefully weigh what the prosecution and defence had to say, or the lawyers on either side of a civil case.

Some would call this approach prudent, and they’d be correct in their assessment.

On the other hand, there’s that old adage that the wheels of justice and government turn slowly, and there is also truth in this.

Surrey’s current city council has built a reputation for itself of acting swiftly and decisively.

Indeed, during its inaugural meeting in 2018, the council announced its intention to swap out the RCMP for a city police force – a truly monumental undertaking by any account. The dominant Safe Surrey Coalition takes refuge in its position that this is what the voters wanted, with the election results providing a mandate to make this so.

READ ALSO: Surrey’s top cop slams city’s budget

READ ALSO: ‘A disaster’: Surrey council OKs budget despite deemed ‘risk’ to public safety

As this editorial was being written, no less than 51 people had already signed up to have their say on the city’s draft budget, which will have a profound effect on all Surreyites, during the time allotted to them on Monday afternoon. After this, city council was to vote on the matter that very day.

The compact nature of this process suggests one of two scenarios. Either the current council is comprised of bionic members possessed of the ability to process, evaluate and judge scads of information at super-computer speeds, or those at the decision-making table already had a pretty darn good idea how they’d vote on the draft budget regardless of what the public had to say.

Which one was it? Of this we’re certain – you will let us know whether council demonstrated the wisdom of Solomon, or simply wasted a lot of concerned citizens’ time on Monday afternoon.

Now-Leader



edit@surreynowleader.com

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