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🛻 City Auditor General on the Convoy

Last spring, both the City and the Police Services Board asked the Ottawa Auditor General Nathalie Gougeon to make an independent evaluation of both organization’s responses to the Convoy siege. The reports were releasd earlier today.

  • Audit of the City of Ottawa’s Response to the Convoy Protest

    The auditor said: 


    During the three-week protest, while the City created a process to assist impacted residents with access to basic needs (e.g., food, shelter, medication delivery), the means of accessing this support was not adequately advertised to some residents affected by the emergency. Further, due to the reliance on community partners to assist residents in need, the City should formalize the roles and responsibilities of both the Human Needs Task Force (HNTF) and of community partners during an emergency, to ensure there is mutual understanding and agreement on the expectations the City has, and the supports required.

    Based on our assessment, in the early days of the protest, although an analysis had been undertaken, Legal Services did not present City Management with all possible options, along with the merits and potential downfalls of each option for which an injunction could be sought.

    Another area for improvement we noted was the need for better documentation during the emergency to keep track of directions and requests made to the City to ensure each was actioned appropriately. 


    🗒️ The full report

  • Audit of the Ottawa Police Service’s Response to the Convoy Protest – The Role of the Ottawa Police Services Board

    The auditor said: 


    We found that in the early stages of the protest, the Board did not clearly understand its role relative to a major event but sought out legal expertise and support to guide them through the rapidly changing event. As time went on and, in an attempt, to fulfill its mandate, the Board took steps to request operational information and asked questions of the Chief of Police; however, for most of the three-week convoy protest, this information was not provided, which impacted their ability to effectively undertake their oversight responsibilities.

    Further, we noted that elements of the infrastructure supporting the Board have the potential to impact their overall effectiveness, including: skills and expertise, orientation and training and support available to Board members.

    🗒️ The full report

  • Audit of the Ottawa Police Service’s Response to the Convoy Protest – Collaboration with the City of Ottawa

    The auditor said: 


    1. OPS did not consider the OEM as a prime partner in pre-planning

    The OPS reached out to specifically implicated City departments including Transit Services, Traffic Management, Fire and Paramedics to involve them in pre-planning for the protest. The OPS did not reach out to the City’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM), the central unit within the City that is responsible for coordinating emergency planning.

    Although each City department had a responsibility to raise significant concerns to management, once the magnitude of the event, the possibility of it being high risk and the likelihood of significant impacts to the City were known, the OEM should have been notified by the OPS.


    2. Intelligence shared by OPS with the City was insufficient, impacting the effectiveness of the City’s planning

    Given the large number of vehicles and protesters expected, a key aspect of planning for the convoy was traffic management. The OPS had developed a 46-page traffic plan as of January 26, 2022, based on the intelligence available at the time, but did not share the plan with the City. Only a brief single page plan showing police unit posts was shared with the City’s Traffic Management unit on January 29, 2022.

    As an impact of this, without being provided the traffic plan, Transit Services did not get sufficient information to properly plan for bus service impacts. Transit Services found itself in the position of having to re-route, create detours, post signage, and get information out to the public all at the last minute. Having the OPS’s traffic plan would have at the very least made Transit Services aware of the planned road closures, road restrictions, staging / stacking areas, and ingress and egress routes.

    3. OPS did not consistently engage City resources in traffic management throughout the convoy protest

    During the first two weeks of the convoy protest, the OPS did not leverage the expertise of, nor collaborate with the Traffic Management unit for ongoing traffic management. The City found itself reacting to OPS requests (e.g., assistance with setting up barriers) related to traffic. Traffic Management found the situation chaotic as requests were being made of them (which were not always feasible), but they were not privy to the communications related to the traffic plan behind the requests. Despite this, the City did not formally request that the OPS include them in traffic planning prior to the convoy’s arrival, nor throughout the first two weeks of the event.


    🗒️ The full report

– Martha and Darren

 

  • Fireside Farm of Clarence Creek  is taking orders for its Farm Box Program: Choose the 7, 12, or 17 item box of produce, herbs and veggies, all of which come in a hand-crafted farm crate. Then, all week, dump your peelings and scraps back into the crate, which will be taken away when your next order arrives. Fireside Farm will compost your food scraps, and you’ll receive points to collect for rewards. As if that wasn’t enough, they’ve also got an annual membership scheme that includes free delivery on your orders. 
  • Nita Beer brings back Cranshaw’s Spruced Pale beer this Friday. This traditional beer has in the past been used by sailers, hunters and explorers to help ward off scurvy. So, let’s give a round of applause to the humble spruce tip and this pine-enhanced brew. $4.15 per 473ml can. 

  • Bread by Us is baking up some Valentine’s treats for pick up, such as heart shaped Danishes: croissant pastry filled with house-made raspberry jam (six for $24), and Lemon curd filled cookies, (six for $15).

  • Take your bae to Cold Bear, Arnprior’s brand new craft brewery, for Valentine’s Day, and enjoy a menu from Jay Dog Catering, Mallard’s Milk Bar, Maverick’s Donuts Company, and fresh, locally made beer. Choose from two time slots and book your seats. $50 per person. 

  • C’est Japon À Suisha will be closing its doors on July 1, when their lease ends. The traditional Japanese restaurant has fed Ottawa’s sushi lovers for the better part of 50 years as Suisha Gardens (the name changed in 2010). The space will ultimately become a condo development. 208 Slater St.

  • Register for the Indigenous Cooking Class at Mādahòkì Farm on Saturday February 18, at which you’ll learn to make Indigenous Corn Soup and Bannock. $65 per person. 1:00pm to 4:00pm at 4420 West Hunt Club Road.

  • Dominion City takes its game day snacks and libations very seriously. The brewery is offering one dozen cans of delicious local craft beer, a big bag of Covered Bridge chips, and an automatic entry to win prizes from Dominion City Brewing Company, from merch to Redblacks’ tickets. $40. 

  • Valentine’s Day at Hintonburg Public House is a three course dinner that also includes a $5 donation to Parkdale Food Centre. $50 per person. Call 613-421-5087 to book. 

  • Peter Hum at the Ottawa Citizen was satisifed with the Sri Lankan cuisine at Barrhaven’s Ayini.
  • Hum’s former Citizen colleague, Kelly Egan, has gotten himself all verklempt about all the new fangled words in dining today. Such as ... ciabatta?
  • CityNews interviews one third of the Three Sisters Bake Shop and Cafe, Rosemary Brazeau, who gave up the rat race for coffees and cakes.
  • Kanata’s Centrum Centre is getting five new restos this year: the second Ottawa edition of vegan bakery Cinnaholic, US chain Firehouse Subs, Canadian chain Guac Mexi Grill, the third location of Ottawa fave Sansotei Ramen, and the first Ottawa edition of Canadian dessert-only chain D Spot. (Community Voice Kanata PDF)
 
 

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    Weather

    •   Mix of sun and cloud. High of 5°, low of -9°. 

    Number 

    • 10
    • – The number of years that the economic development agency, Invest Ottawa, has been operating. For it's 10th anniversary, the Federal government announced $5.4 million in funding for the agency’s autonomous vehicle, smart agriculture, and unmanned drones campus, Area X.O(Alex Riehl in Betakit

    Ottawan of the Day

    Quote 

    • A lot of fundraising is you bug your parents, you bug your parents’ friends, you bug your neighbours. If you live in an area which is struggling with poverty, all of your neighbours are broke, all of your parents are broke, and all or many of their friends are broke. So it can be a lot more difficult to fundraise.’
    • – Ottawa Carleton District School Board chair Lyra Evans on how charging students for field trips can be unfair. A staff report says the trips should be free or minimal cost. (Jacquie Miller in the Ottawa Citizen)
      

    🚛 Wellington to reopen

    • Despite the security concerns and a request from Ottawa Police Chief Eric Stubbs to keep Wellington Street pedestrianised in front of Parliament, City Council voted to open it up. The street will open to traffic as soon as possible but no later than March 1st. Council also voted to allow the street to be closed for special events as sometimes keeping the street open is not absolutely vital. Capital ward councillor Shawn Menard (Not Mendez! Not Mendez!) and Gloucester-Southgate ward councillor Jessica Bradley were the only two to vote against the measure.(Laura Glowacki at CBC)

    🚨 Job Board

    • The Ottawa Police Services Board is now accepting applications for two positions of deputy police chief. One will be responsible for Community Policing and the other for Intelligence, Information & Investigations. Are you the right person? The job description says ‘Humble and team-oriented, you have a successful history of leading changes to operations and culture.’ The deadline is March 6th. (Apply to be Deputy Chief)

    🚋 Rideau Falls

    • deluge of water at Rideau Centre station stopped the O Train for an hour yesterday. A sprinkler pipe had broken, closing the station. Trains resumed around 4 pm. (Megan Gillis at the Ottawa Citizen)

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    Victoire Boutique is holding an indoor sidewalk sale, where you’ll find snap-up-worthy deals on imperfect pieces by Eliza Faulkner, Wawa, and more. 1202 B Wellington St. W.

    Use the code BIRDISTHEWORD to receive an additional 25% off sale and Last Chance clothing at Birds of North America. 

    When you spend over $65 at Dairy Distillery, you’ll receive a free 250ml Vodkow Chocolate Cream liqueur (a $12.95 value). Add the bottle to your order to receive the automatic discount. Offer available until February 28. 

      

    Ottawa Public Health updates its COVID-19 information on Tuesdays and Fridays. This information is from yesterday.

    At least 5,000 people have died in the earthquake in Türkiye* and Syria and, unfortunately, that number is expected to considerably rise.

    You can help by donating to the Canadian Red Cross’ appeal. The Canadian government will match each donation up to $10 million.

    The OZ Dome in Carp – it’s a covered soccer pitch, we just learned about it, too – is a drop off point for clothes and blankets, organized by the Turkish Canadian Cultural Association

    Peace by Chocolate is raising money for the Syria - Türkiye Earthquake Red Cross Relief Fund. 100% of profits from select products will be donated to the Relief Fund. You can also donate directly if you don’t wish to purchase chocolate.

    * We think that this is the first time that we have ever referred to the country in the ottawan. The country formerly known as Turkey has requested English speakers spell it Türkiye.
     

    We will see you tomorrow  – Martha and Darren
     

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