Councillor defends colleagues who voted for visitors’ centre

Coun. Charlie Hodge, the lone vote against rezoning land for the centre says comments on the net about his colleagues are 'vile.'

Kelowna Coun. Charlie Hodge

The fallout from Kelowna council’s decision to approve a rezoning on the downtown waterfront to allow for a new visitors’ centre has moved from council chambers to social media. And the comments, by some who remain opposed to the decision, are getting ugly.

So the one councillor who voted against the rezoning is publicly defending his seven council colleagues who did, in light of a Facebook poster who has taken it on himself to publicly call out and insult each council member who supported the rezoning.

In response to Greg Krasichynsky,  who posted the same message to each member of council who voted in favour, Coun. Charlie Hodge has replied with his own Facebook post chastising Krasichynsky for what he calls a “mean-spirited and over-the-top” attack that, in his words, is “harshly inaccurate.”

In his original public postings to each council member,  Krasichynsky, tells them he is ashamed them, accuses each of realizing a “payday,” says its clear who they serve—inferring it is business interests not the public— and says the decision goes directly against the interests of the city and Kelowna’s children. And for good measure he calls a planned new, 24-storey hotel slated for land kitty-corner to the site of the planned one-storey visitor’s centre a “monstrosity.”

But Hodge is having none of it.

The veteran councillor says despite his own opposition to the rezoning, the criticism has been “particularly ugly and abusive” and is unfair.

“I sit at the table regularly with them and can sincerely tell you, each of them loves this city and the people and (they) try to make the right decision in the big picture.”

He said he believes his colleagues only agenda is to do what they feel is right for the city and, while some times he disagrees with them, that does not make their decisions wrong or bad.

“When we ask municipal politicians to make choices for us, we are asking for them to take a lot of heat,” writes Hodge. “But that should not mean a burning (them) at the stake.”

Calling the attacks “particularly vile, personal and ugly,” Hodge said all they will do is hinder other, good, caring people from wanting to run for political office in future.

“Say what you think folks, but put down the flame throwers,” writes Hodge.

Many others on Facebook have also chimed in and many have come to the defence of the councillors who voted for the rezoning of the Queensway Jetty, even some who say they oppose the decision.

One woman wrote that she feels the downtown lakeshore is not the right place to put the Tourism Kelowna visitors’ centre, but Krasichynsky lost her with the personal attacks.

Legally, because the issue is between the public hearing and final reading of the bylaw to approve the rezoning, members of council cannot receive any new information about the issue that they are to vote on one last time at fourth reading of the bylaw.



Just Posted

The Okanagan may not get snow for Christmas

You may not want to bet on having a White Christmas

First candles lit to celebrate Hanukkah in Kelowna

The public menorah was lit to celebrate the holiday in Stuart Park

Outbreak at Okanagan hospital

Gastrointestinal illness reported at Vernon Jubilee Hospital

Kelowna public menorah lit tonight to celebrate Hanukkah

The menorah will be lit tonight after celebrations at 5 p.m. in Stuart Park

VIDEO: New series takes in-depth look at sexual harassment in B.C.

Black Press takes a hard look at sexual harassment in B.C.

Me Too At Work: Sexual assault and harassment in the B.C. workplace

Introducing an in-depth look at who is affected and what can be done

Warriors ground Rockets in Moose Jaw

Moose Jaw scores five in the third period to down Kelowna in Rockets’ third game of prairie road trip

Horgan says pot smokers may face same outdoor rules as cigarette smokers

B.C. is developing its rules on recreational marijuana

Dedicated volunteers look for clues

Police appreciate work of those who provide extra eyes for missing women investigations.

Truck driver volunteers to take dog lost in B.C. back home to Alberta

Frankie, a pit bull service dog, was found wandering in the Lower Mainland

B.C. teacher suspended after explicit images projected to class

Jeffrey Rohin Muthanna had been viewing porn on a school laptop for two years

Vernon Jazz Society swings into Christmas with holiday jams

Sandy Cameron’s Shujazz Sextet will be onstage at the Vernon Jazz Club Saturday, Dec. 16

Man who pledged to give B.C. hockey team millions charged with fraud

Mike Gould has since repaid $8,000 he allegedly owed Cranbrook restaurant, owner says

Most Read