On the heels of what we are sure was a difficult meeting for all involved, including the mayor, Mayor Eisenberger provided the following response to our question re: LRT
We acknowledge your frustration when councillors by pass the office of the mayor and write directly to other levels of government and note that it has been done by different councillors in the past on different topics. Recently, Clr. Whitehead appeared to frustrate you by writing directly to the provincial government asking if the 1 Billion is unmoveably wired to LRT as we presently know it, or if there is room to repurpose the money for alternative transit strategies in Hamilton- should that be or become the will of the people. You had stated that the Clr. knows the answer to this but simply does not like it.
Putting aside the appropriateness or inappropriateness of councillors writing to other levels of government, and given some of the angst that continues to haunt the LRT file, would you agree that Clr. Whitehead's question, while perhaps mis-channeled, could be a talking point between yourself and the province. Or are you of the view that the issue is carved in stone and there is no room whatsoever for further discussion. If the latter, is there not a risk that we may be becoming tone death to those who still have concerns over LRT?
Mayor Eisenberger's reply:
The one billion dollar investment from the province of Ontario is very clearly directed solely to the LRT project. Specifically, it is to fund the building of the east-west line, plus a north-south spur connecting to the newly opened GO station in James St North. We should now be focused on the specifics of the implementation plan, including Impacts to businesses during construction, connectivity with existing infrastructure and communicating consistently with the citizens of Hamilton on progress reporting.