A long time coming, so let's hope it works - Denny Scott editorial
I used to really enjoy The Simpsons. It went from a show I watched at friends’ houses, because my parents wouldn’t allow me to watch it, to a guilty pleasure, to something I would regularly watch with my roommates at school. (One of them even splurged on the 20th edition DVDs of the show.)
While my interest in the show has definitely waned in recent years, there are certain clips and quotes that will always, as the kids say, “live rent-free in my head” for years to come.One of those comes in an episode in which patriarch Homer becomes a plow driver and takes out a late-night television advertisement to pump up his business.
As the family sits in their famous living room waiting for the advertisement (which aired at 3:17 a.m.), Homer says, “It’s time to play the waiting game.” Shortly thereafter, he explains that the waiting game sucks and he’d rather play Hungry, Hungry Hippos.
The line often comes to mind when I’m looking at writing my columns. Because of the cyclical nature of both news and
The Citizen’s publication dates, events can fall between the cracks, leaving me to try and figure out when the best time to write about something is. I hate playing the waiting game, because the news may be old by then, however, in not waiting, I can write something here that’s completely irrelevant two days later.
Writing about Morris-Turnberry Council’s actions is one of the best examples of that because they traditionally happen on Tuesday night, hours after we finalize the layout for the paper for that week.
Take North Huron and Morris-Turnberry Councils possibly coming to a deal with cross-border servicing after three long years. North Huron Council announced, during its April 19 meeting (moved from April 18 due to Easter Monday: the holiday we don’t all get off), that it was sending a contract to Morris-Turnberry that North Huron Council members felt might be acceptable, or at least up for debate, by their counterparts.
However, due to the timing of the meeting, the agreement won’t be discussed until Tuesday, May 3 – again, hours after we put this paper together.
So, I’ve got a choice – write about it now, without knowing how the vote or discussion will go, or wait and write about it next week at which point most people will already know the gist of the discussion that went on (and have a more wholesome view of it thanks to the stories I’ll write about it).
It’s a tough choice. I can either jump the gun and chance looking foolish or take the wiser, less exciting approach and write about it after the fact.
This isn’t a complaint. The only way it could be solved is if Morris-Turnberry moved its council meetings to Monday or Friday nights, and I’d rather not give up my weekend evenings or regularly try to take in both North Huron and Morris-Turnberry Council meetings on the same night. No, the reason I’m writing this is because, for once, I can take a stance here that won’t change regardless of how Morris-Turnberry Council receives North Huron’s suggested agreement: hope.
While I’ll often joke with people about the fact that sitting on the fence between these two municipalities likely provides as much ink in the newspaper as our other three or four municipalities combined, the simple fact is that, if these councils were in agreement about cross-border servicing, it would likely be better for everyone.
North Huron might get some benefit out of the situation (including land if Morris-Turnberry Council agrees with the proposal) while Morris-Turnberry will be able to turn the water on for its landowners who border on North Huron, possibly including Green’s Meat Market, which became a focal point for the debate after fire burned down most of the Green family’s facility.
So I’m not taking a side here. As much as I am a North Huron ratepayer, I know that the best way to success is through collaboration, not competition, so I just hope that our municipal leaders will be able to bury the hatchet (and bury it deep this time) and move on from this issue. I hope that some common ground can be found and the next sessions of council aren’t back at the table arguing this in a few months’ time.
I hope that, come next week, I’ll be writing stories about how the municipalities are either in agreement or close to it, and we can all put this years-long debate to an end.