Tranzwatching in Waterloo-Kitchener-Cambridge, Ontario, Canada
It has echoes of the same sort of ongoing controversy that has surrounded big ticket light rail proposals in Honolulu and Winnipeg, now stretching across years. The widespread public demand (from two councils and 8 petitions) for a referendum to be held on a $818 million light rail line between Waterloo and contingent city Kitchener has been rejected by the Waterloo Regional Council.
“I think it would be absolute folly to support a referendum this late in the game,” said Coun. Sean Strickland of Waterloo. quoted in local newspaper The Record. “We’re elected to lead. We have a contract with the people for four years.” It’s estimated a referendum asking a yes or no question might have cost up to $1 million. It would not have been held until 2012 according to provincial legislation and would not have been binding unless turnout exceeded 50 per cent.