My name is Debra Bresnan and I live on Abeel Street in Kingston. I have been actively involved on the Executive Committee of KingstonCitizens.org since last October when I first learned of the Niagara proposal.
I want to thank the members of the Common Council Caucus for their unanimous decision to recommend that Resolution #134 to “Amend the City Charter to Authorize a Public Referendum re: Water Powers” be adopted by the full Council. I urge you to vote “yes” and then to set in motion the required steps to place the Referendum on the November ballot for a citizen vote. Including the Common Council to represent the public in decisions related to water sales outside of the City is the right course to take.
We dodged a bullet when Niagara pulled out, but I am grateful for all we learned during those challenging times.
Thank you for listening, researching, discussing and reflecting deeply upon this complex issue. This thoughtful process has led us to a consensus, I believe, about the best way to protect our precious water supply from corporate profiteers and environmental vulnerabilities.
The world is a very different place now than it was in 1895. Back then, people could not have imagined plastic water bottling plants or corporate grabs of our natural resources. Today, these are real and present dangers.
When considering the relationship between local government officials and the people they are elected to serve, trust is a key element. Voters elect leaders whom they believe will respect and listen to their concerns and opinions. Leaders who will problem solve and ask the hard questions when the people they represent raise legitimate issues. Leaders who pledge to work together – on behalf of their constituents and alongside colleagues who serve as they do – to create – and then, when necessary, amend – their shared system of governance. As leaders, you have earned the trust of your constituents.
You have all felt the accumulated power of many citizens’ concerns, expressed over the past many months in public forums, letters, phone calls and private discussions. All of us, working together, have played a part in bringing us to this moment tonight.
I know I speak for many when I say thank you for your thoughtful attention, and for your commitment to be good stewards of our water. Please vote yes on Resolution #134.