UXBRIDGE: Despite a late push from a pair of councillors to reconsider the move, council formally approved the renaming of the former St. John’s/Kennedy House property last week.
The recreational facility will now be known as ‘The Fields of Uxbridge’ in spite of opposition from Ward 2 Councillor Pat Molloy, and his Ward 4 counterpart Jacob Mantle.
Earlier this year, council set up a committee to spearhead the re-naming of the facility, ultimately returning with a list of four potential names that were open to public voting through the township’s web site.
However, after the process had begun, township staff approached the committee asking that naming the facility after a person be taken off the table, which led to contention from the councillors.
Mayor Gerri Lynn O’Connor sought to resolve the matter in the hopes of not having endeavours in the future come under similar scrutiny.
"Council authorized a group to be set up to be involved with the naming of this field. In the future, when we set up a committee of citizens there should be no interference from staff or politicians. I think that would solve a lot of problems," said Mayor O’Connor.
Ward 5 Councillor Gord Highet countered the claims of his fellow councillors, adding, "we’ve had several opportunities to voice our concerns at every step."
However, Councillor Molloy continued to push for another chance for the public to have their say in the renaming of the facility.
"We have voted against it every time. Isn’t that why we’re here? To have opinions?" added Councillor Molloy.
As he had done throughout the process, Councillor Mantle sided with Councillor Molloy in pushing for an alternative name for the site.
"The logical choice is to start over and do it again, we’ve spent a lot longer on other things," commented Councillor Mantle. "We all agree there were flaws in the process, so let’s not endorse a broken process."
However, the protests would prove all for naught, as in a recorded vote, only Councillors Molloy and Mantle voted against the name 'Fields of Uxbridge.'