Saturday, December 10, 2005

An Open Letter to Mayor David Miller

Mayor David Miller
Toronto City Hall
100 Queen Street West
Toronto ON M5H 2N2

Dear Mayor Miller:
I attach an invoice in the amount of $126 for the engagement of a private firm to remove my garbage when City Works failed to do so during the past two collection periods. I look forward to receipt of this amount as soon as is possible, but certainly within 60 days, after which it will be referred to a collection agency.

Note that I am not charging you for time spent in sorting and wrapping my garbage, nor storage for the 4 weeks that much of it sat in the back yard. I am pleased to inform that the private firm I hired did an excellent job: they offered to sort my recycling in the future, picked up all the scraps, even brushed off the sidewalk.

Please also accept this as my formal notice to "opt out" of municipal services, just as City Works and other agencies have opted out of providing them. Obviously, I will no longer be using city garbage services in this new arrangement.

As far as Police Services, I have taken advantage of this service many times over the past, indeed, every time I have overstayed my paid parking period by a few minutes. However, I prefer to no longer call upon this well delivered municipal service. As well, in past occasions that I have had property stolen or damaged nothing was ever done to serve or protect. And in looking at the 21 shootings in the last two weeks in the city, it seems to me that Police Services has chosen to opt out of providing public safety services, so I have a need no longer for these. I have good locks and excellent insurance.

I do not use hostels, or any other social programs, however, do contribute generously to a number of charities that seem to achieve good success at helping people with needs. I do not use Transit, as it is slow and dirty and doesn't go to any place to which I need to travel. I appreciate that I will continue to use City-owned roads, however, it seems to me that the city has opted out of maintaining them, even though I contribute large sums by way of gas tax which I understood was to be used for this purpose.

With the utility's opting out of the reliable provision of electrical power, I am currently exploring my options relative to a generator, however, will continue to pay hydro bills as they are received. I will keep in touch on my progress on this matter.

I promise that I will no longer use city-regulated services - no more hot dogs from vendors and no more taxi rides. If required under this opting out arrangement I will install a septic or chemical system of some sort in lieu of using city sewers. I will continue to pay water bills, but will use bottled water at every opportunity.

During my frequent travels, I will aggressively promote Toronto as a destination for Tourism, and smile at every person I see in my neighbourhood in cargo shorts that appears lost. I will not apply for City Grants (not that I would qualify anyway).

When I was parenting a child, school board employees opted to go on strike and we opted to use the private school system from then on. It worked fine and I have no need for public educational services.

I am very careful with open flames and am well insured against fire damage, so will not call upon Fire Services in the rare event it might be needed. I will gladly pay full market price for any other emergency services that might be necessary.

Unhappily, by opting out of the Ferry Service, I will no longer be able to visit Toronto Islands, as a bridge I had counted on was not constructed. So I guess I'll have to settle for recreating on Harbourfront (oops, I forgot the governments have opted out of making these user friendly).

I appreciate your acceptance of my decision to opt out of using municipal services and look forward to discussions with your financial authorities to determine what credits might accrue to my account.

Thanks for your help. I remain,

Sincerely yours,

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