'Outrageous' $177k approved for Bright Lights set up, tear down
'There's no turning back' says Ward 2 councillor
The cost to set up and tear down Windsor's already-controversial annual Bright Lights festival is being called "outrageous" by some concerned residents.
"The concept is great," said Brenda Clark, adding she's enjoyed the festival before. "It's the spiraling costs and just the lack of democracy in the way that the Bright Lights have been instituted in the city [that are the concern]."
The free month-long festival has cost the city about $3 million to buy the Jackson Park displays over the last two years.
At council Monday $177,000 was approved for payment to a company who would set up and tear down the lights.
Clark spoke at council against the approval, arguing the cost is out of control.
"It's a money pit, and I'm not being a Scrooge about Christmas or accoutrement that the city can enjoy, but I just think the whole way that the project has been launched and continued is unacceptable," said Clark.
Ward 2 Coun. Fabio Costante wasn't on council when Bright Lights was first approved — and as a Windsorite he didn't support the idea at the time.
"As a normal resident, I didn't philosophically support the investment at that time, but when I joined council, it was already an investment that was made, and our job is to make sure that it's run well now," said Costante. "There's no turning back."
Bright Lights runs from Dec. 6 to Jan. 5.