Pubdate: Wed, 20 Sep 2006
Source: Maple Ridge News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2006 Maple Ridge News
Author: Mark O'Neill


Editor, The News:

Re: Trustees Refute Meth Claims (The News, Sept. 16).

If nothing else, Maple Ridge Mayor Gordy Robson is  certainly a 
premier source of entertainment in Maple Ridge.

What other community in the Lower Mainland can boast of a municipal 
politician with the audacity of a Bill Vander Zalm, the incoherency 
of an Archie Bunker and the buffoonery of a George W. Bush, all 
wrapped up in, at times, what appears to be a somewhat disheveled package.

Early in 2006, Mr. Robson tried  (pardon the expression) stirring the 
pot at Pitt Meadows secondary about a crystal meth problem. Not true.

Some  weeks later, he appeared on Vaughn Palmer's community channel 
broadcast and proclaimed that the man responsible for the tragic 
death of Grant de Patie was high on meth.  Not true.

Then, to his credit, because the thought was there, he offers up one 
of his houses as a facility for meth users wanting treatment.  Too 
bad, but predictably, he didn't put enough thought into this 
adventure. Seems the mayor was unaware of the provincial codes for 
facilities of this nature.

Now he has opened the fall season with further proclamations about 
meth users - this time at Maple Ridge secondary. Again, not true.

Should this pattern continue, I would expect the administrators at 
Thomas Haney, Samuel Robertson and Garibaldi secondary schools to be 
receiving phone calls from the mayor some time in December or January.

My advice: tell him you're too busy picking up garbage and cleaning 
graffiti off the outside walls and to leave a message.

I don't believe for one minute that Mr. Robson isn't sincere about 
his desire to deal effectively with the crystal meth problem.  I've 
talked with a few young offenders who had dealings with him through 
the local youth diversion program and each said he was very committed 
to helping them get their lives back on track.

What is unfortunate is that some of his tactics have him coming 
across like such a bumpkin, and people tend not to sit up and take 
note when that's the way he operates.

I just wish the mayor would focus on his assets - helping people 
behind the scenes and doing what he can to open proper treatment 
facilities for users who want   to stop using.  Trying to drum up 
business for his cause in the manner he has been choosing just doesn't cut it.

As W.P. Kinsella wrote, "Build it and they will come."

Mark O'Neill

Maple Ridge
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MAP posted-by: Elaine