Aurora Citizen

News & Views from the Citizens of Aurora Ontario

Congratulations John

Posted by auroracitizen on February 6, 2011

A mean-spirited, petty and wholly political act has been reversed.

Led by Councillors Nigel Kean and Phyllis Morris and supported by Councillors Gaertner, Vrancic and Wallace, Council created a street out of a parking lot in what appeared to many as nothing more than political revenge against a man who had served the community of Aurora for many years.

Five members of our current Council have righted that wrong.

John West served our community for many years and political opponents would agree that he did so with honesty and integrity. John voted based on his convictions at all times; always believing he was acting in the best interests of his community.

When John disagreed with fellow Municipal Councillors and Regional Councillors — he always did so based on the issues. The debate was passionate, informed and never personal.

He was always willing to share his experience and expertise.

Community leaders like John West set an example of leadership and integrity which other politicians emulated. They argued the issues — often having different viewpoints — but somehow remaining colleagues. They always understood they acted not for themselves, but for the community. That was the type of leadership John West was honoured for.

He was respected by friend and foe alike. That’s why Aurora Council initially bestowed the honour.

It was an honour that he was humbled by.

It is good to see this despicable act reversed. Frankly, the type of leader that makes the decision to strip an honour from someone based on political spite doesn’t deserve to be a leader. It appears Aurora voters agreed last October.

Congratulations to Mayor Dawe and Councillors Abel, Thompson, Humpfryes, Buck and Pirri for listening — and doing the honourable thing.

36 Responses to “Congratulations John”

  1. Nigel Kean said

    to John Sargeant,
    I am still helping the charities that I chose to help. I did a lot of work to help the food pantry and I did well after the election drop off food that I had collected from friends and neighbours. You were not there that day but I still do my part. i am proud to know you and I do know how much you do for the Town. I also have a full time job where I do travel across Canada and do not get that much time to help. But I appreciate your comments.
    To Tititu, perhaps I could use you to pin the tail as it does go on the donkey.

    • Anonymous said

      Nigel, I’m curios as you travel do you spend your money across Canada? or do you save it to spend when you’re back in town?

    • Nigel Kean said

      To Anonymous Feb 18th 10.06 am
      What a stupid comment even from an anonymous.Of course I spend money across Canada,DUH.When I am at home I do always spend money in Aurora restaurants,grocery stores,hardware stores,barbers,etc, etc, etc.
      But I can’t get over your stupid, no dumb question.Try drinking less then try an intelligent question.

    • Anonymoose said

      OMG, Nigel. Seriously. Don’t feed the trolls! Nothing good ever comes of it.

    • Dale Carnegie You're Not said

      So, Nigel, judging by your response, we shouldn’t expect to see you running for public office again, should we?

    • Making Plans for Nigel said

      Dale Carnegie, I hope you’re right.

    • JOHN H SARGENT said

      Nigel Thanks for your kind words sir, sorry i missed you the day you came in to pantry as i have not missed a opening since we moved into new location,maybe i was off in corner some where as building is bigger than our other little spot (thanks again to the Irvine Family)..Yes you did a lot of physical heavy labor during the move and setup..My comments were not personal, just about your article in Auroran, which i am glad to see you accepted with the utmost grace and respect knowing the source of it.I still think you would have had a good shot of being elected to council in Oct had you chosen that route at the time (regardless of recent comments by you and us public folk) let it be water under the bridge .. JOHN S

    • Glad Nigel lost said


      Your drinking comment is childish.

      Give up your charitable work and volunteering.

      Good volunteers attempt empathy.

      You have not an ounce.

    • Anonymous said

      If there’s anyone that needs to take advise about drinking less it should be Nigel.

      Seriously put down the bottle of sour grapes and take the Auroran off your email send list.

  2. Robert the Bruce said

    While I cannot recall a time that I agreed with Nigel Kean, his letter this week to The Auroran is one that I can support 100%. Combine that letter with Scott Johnson’s cartoon and I think the Mayor and members of council are going to have to wake up to the reality that it’s time to start working on new business now! The aura (not that I think it was there) seems to be dimming and it’s only February.


    • Anonymous said

      But wasn’t the council, including Mr. Kean, who proposed the change,the first to spend their time on trivia, i.e. renaming streets, instead of moving important business forward? I think we have a case of the pot and kettle here. Mr. Kean obviously felt that it was how council time should be spent a few years ago. I say it is also a temper tantrum on his part because his toy has been taken away!!
      I think most politicians (current and former)should just grow up. I am sick of the kindergarten behaviour that has pervaded this town for the last several years and continues still. One only had to watch councillor Gaertner last Tuesday to be assured of that.

    • Robert the Bruce said

      Dear Anonymous,

      I agree – Nigel was a prime motivator in the original renaming of AN ADDRESS not a street. I did not think it was a good use of resources then, and “undoing” it now is the same.

      However, my point is that council is now 3 months into their mandate. We have no budget, we have no “new” business of worth being done. We have spent time reversing things that previous councils have done. I beleive that this is window dressing to sppease the masses that voted for them. It’s sort of like Jean Chrétien cancelling a helicopter contract. Scott’s comic sums it up.

      To all of those that are bashing Wendy. Wendy has not changed since her first day in that chair. You couldn’t see the forest for the trees. Someone has cut down most of the forest, and there is this tree left there and it’s Wendy. She obviously has been able to convince enough people to vote for her. Unless she leaves on her own, we will have here until November 2014.


    • Anna said

      Someone tell me if I am reading this incorrectly, see attached link, clear schedule is outlined. To get job done right, it takes time, and according to town we should expect budget by the end of March 2011.

  3. No Thanks said

    According to my tax bill, the address for the Town is 1 Municipal Drive. That is where I will send my taxes, I hope it gets there. 🙂

  4. Nigel Kean said

    I am proud of what I did. I am disaapointed in self serving politicians who like West,Thimpson,Pedderson,Olchoski and Buck who felt that they had they right to name streets after themselves rather than looking on the Cenataph fpr names of people who gave their lives to protect the freedom that we all have. YES they had the right, as self serving councillors to name the streets after people that they felt were more important than those who died. They, in their minds felts that they, as councillors were more important than the pioneers of Aurora. They were important, just ask those self serving councillors. Ask them to go to the Aurora Legion and ask those veterans still alive why paid councillors are more important than those who died.
    You anonymous folks can believe whatever you want. You are followers of a lost self serving group. You can say that West deserved the Town Hall street name but what did he do that was any better than Dick Illingworth or any other former mayor of Aurora.
    The difference was that Dick did not name a street after himself.He was a great Mayor but NOT self serving.

    • Anonymous said

      there is a street named after Dick..

      i think your drinking of sour grapes has made you

    • Mr. Spock said

      I’m beginning to think the citizens of Aurora made a slight error in their recent choice for a new mayor…

    • Anonymous said

      “You anonymous folks can believe whatever you want.”
      I have commented anonymously ever since receiving unsolicited emails from you during the election campaign, which I considered to be an invasion of my privacy. That’s what YOU do with identifiable information. No wonder there are a lot of “anonymouses!”

    • Fed up with Nigel said

      You should take your petty sour grapes and stuff them.

      How does it feel being the person who single-handedly was responsible for bringing to Aurora four years of the Mormac administration?

      Your political judgement is in negative territory. You sought the office of mayor twice with disastrous results both times. You will never again be a political force in Aurora.

      Why don’t you drop all the political posturing and commentary and concentrate your mind and your time on projects that benefit the community? You are already doing some of this and congratulations are in order for your efforts in that direction.

      Some of us are meant to succeed in certain areas of life, others in different areas. For some it’s hard to chose, for some easier. Please make some of the right choices that will benefit both you and the town.

    • Anonymous said

      Dick Illingworth does have a street named after him. It was done long before he died.

    • Sour Grapes Makes Fine Whine said

      The rationale expressed at the time of the address change was that it gave an unfair advantage to John West during election campaigns. So certain politicians decided to remove a perceived name recognition advantage from another politician.

      What were you saying about “self-serving,” Mr Kean?

    • JOHN H SARGENT said

      Nigel- Nigel–I was going to write a letter to editor about your article in paper last week, but chose to put it here with all the ones from the self serving lost group, as i see you do read the blog..Yes sir you spend tax payers money changing Town Hall address with no thought of wasting money at that time ?..Yes you did entertain comments from public , yet you had no intention to really listen to or address them and did not as it was pointed out at last meeting by a member of public..You say this council rushed it through not inviting public, i read many articles in both local papers saying when and where it would be brought up for discussion, i like any one else who reads had a chance to go and some of same ones that disapproved of you making changes back when returned to see if this council would listen to public, well they did ..which brings up your soar grapes comment,you remain and will always be the author of your own a councilor maybe as Mayor not in the stars, many of public and your friends tried to tell you that sir ,yet your recent early negative comments about Auroras new Mayor and council,may just have even proved that thought a no go. RE your self serving comments,a little before and a little during Election you were out in public helping out with different Charity groups,were are you mow my friend ??, i sure you still more than welcome.. In closing–without predigest ,just a conservative thought

    • Citizen of Titipu said

      Nigel, Nigel, Nigel. You have dug yourself a deep hole and now you keep digging it deeper. Are you playing Pin the tail on the Donkey? Are you looking for your tail? I will tell you this to your face, but won’t be this nice!

  5. David Heard said

    This whole episode is disappointing.

    The street remained as such for a long period, before a word was said about changing it.

    Maybe we should listen to some musical advice to avoid this.

    We will use a song from the band U2.Aurora can avoid all future problems.

    AURORA …..”Where the streets have no names”

    It joke, but what have we become with this?

    • KA-NON said

      The street name was not chanegd David. Just the address of the town hall.

      It was wrong to change the address of town hall, no doubt, but your most – and many others – give the impression that the street was renamed. Yout reference to “the streets have no names – have we come to this” is over the top in my opinion.

      The honour of having the street named after him was NEVER taken away. The street remained John West Way. The address of town hall was changed. That was an indignity of sorts, but he was never stripped of anything.

      Let’s be fair everyone.

    • KA-NON said

      your “post” that is (see above)

  6. Grace Marsh said

    I was extremely pleased to see the address changed back. I was staff when John was Mayor and have great respect for him. It was John and I the started the Mayor’s Blood Donor Clinic back in the early 90’s, a tradition that continues to this day. I also enjoyed John’s support when I ran for Council. Thank you Evelyn for the motion and thank you to those who supported it.

  7. Kathy B said

    Congratulations to Geoff and the councillors who showed some integrity and compassion by reversing that ridiculous decision ! John deserves the recognition .
    Hopefully this is just the beginning of the great things our new council will be doing for the “Town of Aurora”. Maybe there is hope for our town after all.

  8. Jytte K Gillies said

    To Mayor Geoff Dawe, Councillor abel, Buck Humfryes, Perri and Thomson.

    Thank you for given back to John West this honourable titel, a titel he has deserved.

    Congratulation John, sometime we do the right thing.

  9. Robert the Bruce said

    To: Winning and losing

    No there is not a recall because what the “other three” did was stand by their principles. How is what they did dishonourable? I would rather have someone stand up for their principles and be a minority than buckle under to pressure from the majority.

    Last term everyone was all about how Cllrs Buck, Collins-Mrakis and McRoberts stood by their principles and did not allow pressure from the others to sway them. How is this any different?

    How hypocritical!


    • KA-NON said

      Well RTB, I am going to agree with you, somewhat…

      Our elected officials should stand by their principles. When we have a long stretch of time where some seem not to (or seem not to have any priciples of their own to stand bym and are thus guided with a firm hand toward what their principles should be) it is easy to interpret principled stances as something more nefarious.

      I think that many people believe that the original alteration of the Town Hall address was less about a principled stance and more about political posturing. If it was the former, then fine. If the latter, well then, I guess that’s politics isn’t it.

      I agree that it should not matter what the address is – which is an argument for having left the town hall address the way it was. The changing of it, however motivated, in practical terms did amount to a slight to Mr. West. Changing back then, in the opinion of many, was the right thing to do. Took almost no time, will cost nothing, and in the end was carried unanimously.

      There will be lots more to debate I am sure. This issue should be put to rest.

      Appreciate your posts as always.

    • sharon said

      Thank you RTB

      I found this initial blog very negative towards the 3 councillors who did not vote in favour. Please, let’s keep our thoughts in perspective
      Let’s discuss issues and not people. We may not agree with some councillors decisions, but they are entitled to their opinion and we alected them to do so.
      I am glad for the reversal, just don’t like the tone of this initial blog.

    • Winning and losing said

      To: Robert the Bruce

      What we are talking about is more of a personal opinion than a principle. It’s really a quite minor thing. How many of us know why streets are named what they are and any history behind this? Probably not too many.

      This is all very interesting but I wish our host would post some new topics that might involve matters of principle. Certainly this week’s Council meeting provides much for discussion and principles definitely were part of this unseemly event.

  10. Anna said

    Well said!

    Anna 🙂

  11. Winning and losing said

    What about the three who did the dishonourable thing?

    Why must we always have to put up with this kind of crap?

    There MUST be a right to RECALL elected officials so that they can be dealt with properly – put out with the trash.

    • sharon said

      Please, this comment will do nothing to bring cooperation to council. Elected representatives may not vote the way we would like them to, and we are encouraged to contact them at any time to discuss these matters. We live in a democracy and these are our current representives. Get involved next election to help others that represent your view have a voice, or better yet, run for a seat yourself.

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