There is a lot to write here about and I feel very behind on writing about a whole host of issues - the UBCM convention takeaways, my request we consider promoting human rights and democracy in China, the community arts council agm this evening..lots and lots.
But, I want to tallk about a screw up first. I think I screwed up on how I handled proposing (and subsequently withdrawing the proposal) a bylaw to ban smoking on public patios in the city.
A few nights ago, a gentleman waiting with me in the concession line at the Blazers game said to me, quite ominously, that I should have never have withdrawn that motion. And it got me thinking again about how this all happened.
I was first approached to raise the issue at council by Tina Lange, who has spoken publicly in favour of a ban, but subsequently found out she could not raise it in council because of a possible conflict of interest.
I told Tina I would take this on, because I truly believe its, at the very least, a good conversation for the community to have. I made a notice of motion so that council could discuss banning smoking on public restaurant and bar patios at the next council meeting.
All throughout the week, I thought about this. I got a bit of feedback from people as well. This is another very emotional issue for people. And I started to waver about the motion.
I guess what got me was that the motion was very final - that council decide to ban or not to ban with a week's notice. No real consulation, no real conversation started.
I decided to withdraw the motion, and that's where I think I really screwed up. I think I should have made a motion to hold some sort of public consultation. Now, Peter Milobar believes that the sides are pretty hard on the issue and we already know what people think.
But, I am not sure. I think where people start is not necessarily where they end up. If the consulation turned into a real conversation, people might actually move their positions from the hardlines.
I don't know that a motion to hold consultations would have passed. It would have better reflected my thinking on how to move forward. I feel that my work on this may be incomplete.
It is important to note that the UBCM convention delegates last week passed a motion asking the province to ban smoking on public patios.