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Date: Monday, December 7, 2009
May two of us come and meet with you or your staff, about a systemic issue that a group of us would like to bring to you as a formal complaint in a few weeks? It is about the de facto restrictions on citizens' enjoyment of the city's 49 outdoor compressor-cooled outdoor ice rinks. These restrictions have to do with some serious management problems at all levels, causing many of the rinks to function far under their potential, and frustrating rink users all over the city.
In your talk at Scadding Court Community Centre on Nov.25 you mentioned two requirements for making a complaint to the ombudsman:
1. The complainant must be directly affected: there are five people from various parts of the city that want to join in making this complaint, and I'd like to get another 10, which won't be hard.
2. Your office must be the last resort: we have extensive documentation for five years of attempts to remedy this situation, including many well-tested proposals to address the problems. The progress in response to our attempts has been grudging and slow, and in some rinks non-existent. At issue here is a spectacular city amenity (49 outdoor compressor-cooled ice rinks) unrivaled by any other city in the world. Toronto spends between $3.3 and $3.5 million a year to run these rinks. For that amount of tax money, citizens deserve much better stewardship.
So now, as we prepare to make the complaint and supply you with the documentation, we need a meeting to answer some of our early questions about the process. Could you let me know when we could get an appointment?
I have included a copy (below) of my most recent list of current rink management problems, which is the "third Monday Rink Report" e-mailed to the two relevant directors and cc'd to the general manager. The other two reports have so far been unacknowledged. These reports are sequels to so-far unsuccessful attempts last spring and again in October (meeting with these directors) to address these problems in a timely way.