Bravo, Clifford Lee

Kudos to Charlottetown City Councillor Clifford Lee for standing up for his constituents against the tourism behemoth. In today’s Guardian, Lee calls into question the additional impositions on downtown residents, to be caused by the CBC national broadcast of the Dominion Day festivities, that weren’t disclosed to Council until recently.

Comments

Andrew's picture
Andrew on June 8, 2002 - 06:22

Again, I wish the city was informed before people make plans like this. I’m glad the mayor is letting the bylaw slide for a few hours. This is a night for us to show Canada our city for free, can’t buy time like that.

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on June 8, 2002 - 17:08

I fail to understand why national television exposure for Charlottetown is worth anything.

Dave Moses's picture
Dave Moses on June 9, 2002 - 00:52

…and that’s why you’re not paid $92k (according to the Graphic’s latest “What PEI gov’t folks make” survey) to run the tourism department.

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on June 9, 2002 - 01:07

When I say “worth anything” I mean this: obviously national television exposure puts the word “Charlottetown” in front of millions of people for several hours on July 1, and this has, if you believe in the power of advertising, some tangible value. This value presumably some way translates to a better quality of life for the citizens of Charlottetown because more people visit, spend money, employ us directly or indirectly, and so on. However from this “plus” you must extract the “minus” of increased traffic on the roads, increased noise and merriment in the evening, increased pressure on the trees and plants of Conferedation Landing Park and so on. The tourism people consider only the “plus” part of this equation; that’s there job. It’s the job of people like Clifford Lee, who is responsible to his Ward One constituents, to look at the entire equation. I’m merely trying to suggest that in the end, it may very well be that we as residents of Charlottetown lose more than we gain from this who thing.

Charlie's picture
Charlie on June 9, 2002 - 02:30

Do the pressurized trees and plants counts as constituents?

Jevon's picture
Jevon on June 9, 2002 - 03:25

Peter: Did you not move into “downtown” Charlottetown from somwhere a little more remote/quiet/slow/nice? (I only remember cows on the digitalisland website.)

I can’t help but think that certain aspects of a better quality of life still remain in a slightly more rural setting than where you are now, and people who still enjoy such locations most likely will not be affected by these coming events. They may see a few more minivans drive by on a summer’s evening. But that is probably it.

I live in the city because I enjoy city-like things. That includes the occasional large event, having large stores, having small stores, walking to many of my destinations… I am even willing to take the occasional tradeoff for that kind of life.

Jarret's picture
Jarret on June 9, 2002 - 06:44

Enough of the horse_ _ _ _! Mr. Lee is running for Mator next time ‘round. That is well known even here in Ottawa. His objections have nothing to do with Ward 1.
Thank You,
Jarret F. MacDonald

Alan's picture
Alan on June 9, 2002 - 12:46

Peter, as you might guess from me by now, I think (rightly or wrongly) there is a further level.

I think that in a way the touristification of the society is no different than if there was industrial interests that were continuously catered to — in each case the citizen learns their interests come second. When it is a bash for locals as a few years ago at Canada Day, the restrictions on fun are swift and sweeping — something no other Atlantic Canadian city would impose on its own people having fun. However, when there is an opportunity to showcase the two dimensional false or partial history of the area for the tourists, by all means roast the speakers until the new day. The city in this instance may come up with a workable compromise but the underlying ability to look well beyond the local still will be with us.

In addition, while the party line on such promotions might be anything for a job, where is the change in the economy founded by a lower unemployment rate due to the tourism activities? All that can be expected is a continuation of 10 week jobs and — as I have heard it called — “mail money” for the other 42. Critically important if that is your income but are such efforts being put into promoting and obtaining year round work? Have you notices the New Brunswick four season tourism ads over the last few years? They actually make the place inviting!

lana's picture
lana on June 10, 2002 - 12:07

Think of the improved Canada Day festivities in much the same manner as the bride’s family paying for the reception… you can eat as much as you want from the buffet table but not have to pay for it.

Alan's picture
Alan on June 10, 2002 - 14:14

The senior citizens “pay for it” up to Friday night at one apparently…

stephen's picture
stephen on June 14, 2002 - 19:18

I have no vested interest in PEI tourism one way or the other but what I find odd is that the fireworks in Charlottetown, if I understand this correctly, are being moved to 11 p.m. and that this is an incredible inconvenience to kids and their parents. Little kids like to stay up late but they will also be really whiney and cranky by 11 and it would be a brave parent who could get their kids to bed and then wake them up to go see the fireworks. The decision means that the fireworks are really being held for the television audience, which is a bit bizarre since the whole point of the television broadcast would seem to be that someone in B.C. is getting to look through a window into “how folks in Charlottetown enjoy a fireworks show”. Is this the thin edge of the wedge, the beginning of the slippery slope? Why not move Christmas in Charlottetown to July 25th so that more tourists can witness the lighting of the tree in front of the legislature? (assuming they do that at Christmas) My last observation is that this whole event is not just about finding a viewer-friendly time — they could tape the fireworks and broadcast it whenver they wanted — but what is also going on is the fetishization of Live/Reality TV. It’s not enough to let people see the fireworks, they have to see it live — which is an absurd notion since they are watching it on TV and couldn’t tell whether it is happening right now or last year unless someone told them. If the Sydney Olympics had used the same logic, the poor rowers would have had to row in total darkness so that the events could be broadcast live to the U.S. at a convenient time instead of making viewers get up early or stay up late to watch the rowers doing their thing in the sunshine.
Sorry for the Friday ramble-mode,
Stephen Good

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