Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 2/6/2015 (753 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Regulate legislative sessions
It is no surprise to anyone who pays attention that the Manitoba legislature may end up sitting well into the summer to transact Manitoba's legislative business (Pallister a summer spoiler?, May 30).
In this current session, the government didn't call MLAs back to work until Nov. 20, 2014, with a throne speech. After sitting for 11 days and accomplishing nothing, the government adjourned the legislature on Dec. 4, 2014, and didn't bring MLAs back to work until April 30.
Under the rules, the House will adjourn on June 11 for what the government hopes will be another five-month holiday from doing legislative work. In the meantime, in this deliberately truncated session, the government will cram in the review of departmental spending and a raft of government bills, and will essentially legislate by exhaustion, hoping no one will notice or pay attention.
We now have fixed election dates in Manitoba -- we now need to have the legislature adopt a reliable fixed sitting-date schedule for legislative sessions, including a fixed date for the budget presentation as they have in British Columbia.
Of course, we aren't going to see any such reforms from this government, which has made short legislative sessions into an art form.
If the Opposition has to resort to procedural tactics to extend this legislative session into the summer in order to hold the government to account, that's the price that will need to be paid.
Wind, solar pack plenty of power
Letter-writer Don Hermiston's comments that "windmills and solar panels are useless for industrial needs..." shows he knows not what he is talking about (The cost of going green, Letters, May 29).
Hermiston need only look south of the border, where the climate is equal to ours, to find many industrial plants operating from wind-turbine and solar power (look for names such as Maytag or Coke).
Regrettably, our current federal government has seen alternative energy as the enemy, with a focus on just one economic sector, chiefly in one province, which helps explain part of the collapse for Canadian manufacturing.
It may also come as a surprise to Hermiston that the battery power cost used in wind and solar has diminished significantly, thus making both extremely competitive, while excluding the significant health risk from nuclear power.
Road-painting solutions plentiful
I have often wondered why city crews have to repaint the same roads year after year (Caution... wet paint ahead, May 30).
Assuming we don't have the funds -- or the climate -- to install flush plastic reflectors like Las Vegas, one suggestion could be to simply apply thicker coats of paint, which should last longer than just a few months.
Alternatively, we could send a delegation to Hamilton to find out why they are able to paint twice as much road (2,200 km versus 1,000 km here) for roughly half the cost ($600,000 per year versus $1.1 million here).
There must be a concrete reason why they're 75 per cent more efficient than us.
Council prayer has its place
While letter-writer Bob Russell is correct in stating "the state cannot discriminate against non-believers" and in "not doing so is to demand non-believers obediently submit to the superstition of believers," one could just as easily substitute the word believer where he uses non-believer and come to the same conclusion (End prayer at council meetings, Letters, May 30).
Atheism is like any religion; Bob Russell should take his own advice and practise it in private like I do.
Cyclists don't need reminder
Despite the recent articles on the city's cycling strategy, signs on both Wellington Crescent and Wolseley Avenue continue to display a message that clearly expresses Winnipeg's mentality when it comes to cyclists: "Cyclists reminder: vehicle traffic has the right to use street" (Police watching for vehicles on Sunday/holiday bike routes today, May 31).
Few cyclists need a reminder that the street is for cars; they are boldly reminded by those who crowd them to the curb. It's virtually impossible in Winnipeg to "forget" that cars own the road.
It should instead be drivers who are reminded that cyclists too, have a right to the street.