Reevely: Police, potholes and trains — pre-election goodies sprinkle out of city hall

By David Reevely, Ottawa Citizen, June 13, 2018

In barely a week, Mayor Jim Watson has found more than $2 million to fill more potholes, hire more police officers and study a light-rail extension to Barrhaven. An election is in the air.

The pothole money is skimmed from cash that turned out not to be needed for a bunch of under-budget capital projects. Rather than putting the money into reserves, the city’s going to spend $1 million more on superficial road repairs — on top of the $10 million city councillors decided to spend out of last year’s surplus back before Christmas, and the regular $8-million pothole budget.

Crumbling asphalt and concrete are very visible signs of a municipal government that’s not doing its most basic work and after eight years of thrift, Ottawa has a whole lot of them. Throw in a sense that gun crime is out of control and it might start looking like whoever’s in charge has let some things slip.

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