CALGARY- Several city councillors are weighing in on a secretly taped video of a developer meeting last November, while others are choosing to remain silent.
On the tape, Cal Wenzel, the founder of Shane Homes, asks a group of developers to donate to the campaigns of developer friendly candidates in the upcoming October civic election.
He lists which candidates he supports, and which ones he doesn’t.
Wenzel on Ward 1 Councillor Dale Hodges:
“Dale is 72 years old and not good of health, and the rumour mill has it that Dale will not run again. Chris Harper, who of course came in second and is becoming quite a fixture in that ward, is very much the Nenshi lean. He will fit the civic camp quite well. So likely as not, that is a ward we will have to have a good candidate to run in.”
Dale Hodges’s response: “Hopefully there’s fairly good scrutiny of all the candidates that are going to be running – both the current members of council and the challengers.”
Wenzel on Ward 2 Councillor Gord Lowe:
“Right now we are being told that Gord is going to make that decision I think by Christmas, January. Looking at it, I am not so sure if it would matter whether Gord runs or not. I think Magliocca can beat him. He’s a much younger man, he’s a businessman. Now, whether he’d be on our side or not, that, I am not sure of, and quite frankly we haven’t had an opportunity to talk to him yet.”
Stevenson’s response: He does not want to comment until he has seen the video in its entirety.
Wenzel on Ward 4 Councillor Gael MacLeod
“Gael MacLeod is definitely with Nenshi and the gang, and I don’t know if we have a good alternative to run there right now at all.”
Macleod’s response: She does not want to comment until she has seen the full video.
Wenzel on Ward 5 Councillor Ray Jones:
“My only concern is that Ray is so sick and tired about being lied to by administration that he may decide not to run. Now I’ve talked to him, Shane’s talked to him. I think that’s just out of frustration, that one particular week, or at least I hope so, but he was pretty ticked the last time I talked to him. But I think you can kind of count on Ray to run.”
Jones’s response: He says he has never had formal discussions with Wenzel.
Wenzel on Ward 6 Councillor Richard Pootmans:
”He’s kind of so-so. I know there’s a few here that like him, there’s a few that don’t. I don’t know if anyone – I know Joe Connelly has talked about running there and even Joe doesn’t think he can beat him.”
Pootmans’s response: “The way I come to a decision is I talk to all sides, I listen to the experts, I listen to all stakeholders, I ask a ton of questions and at the end of that I come to a decision, and if those decisions concern people, or the process concerns people, that is the way I come to my conclusions.”
Wenzel on Ward 7 Councillor Druh Farrell:
“In case anyone doesn’t know, she doesn’t like me and I don’t particularly like her (laughter). I had 13 trucks out last election delivering signs and assembling them, and I got called by Druh and the elections because they said I’d given $5,000 in cash so therefore my trucks that were out delivering put me over the $5,000 limit. So Druh and I don’t see eye to eye obviously.”
Farrell’s response: “For me it’s very important that at all times, especially at election time, that I rise above it. Certainly my campaign team feels the same way- we rise above dirty politics, and talk about the issues and run a clean and positive campaign. So regardless of what comes out of this, I won’t change my behavior.”
Wenzel on Ward 8 Councillor John Mar:
“Talking with a lot of you people in this room- he’s a little bit wishy washy. You know, we’re never sure whether he’s in the gray, or in the purple, or just where he’s at. So I am not sure on that one there.”
Mar’s response: “Firstly, I make decisions based on what’s best for the citizens of Calgary, the people of my ward, and the city of Calgary itself. Now, whether that makes me wishy washy or makes me grey or purple, does not matter to me.”
Wenzel on Ward 9 Councillor Gian-Carlo Carra:
“Jay and I know this guy from a long time ago. He was actually the consultant for (a project that Jay and I have a business interest in), and he presented us down in Tuscon that the land that we need- the 320 acres that we own in the northeast- would become the first carless subdivsion in the city of Calgary. Carless. So you park your cars around the periphery and you walk in. Obviously Jay didn’t agree with it. I didn’t have any problem with it at all. (laughter) So we’ve known this guy for a long time. He is – he’s not in the same world as we are.”
Carra’s response: “This is the defining question of the campaign, and that is ‘who controls the future of Calgary?’ Is it a very elite, sort of super wealthy Mr. Burnseque shawdowy group or is it the citizens of Calgary? And I’m very happy that Mr. Wenzel has sort of called me out as someone who has in the past, and will continue to be someone who stands up for the citizenry against that group.”
Wenzel on Ward 10 Councillor Andre Chabot:
“Andre Chabot- good guy- but of course he came out and spoke against the mayor and a few other people and he got ostracized, so any of you in the development industry recognize that Andre is on no particular committee that has any importance at all.”
Chabot‘s response: He did not return our calls.
Wenzel on Ward 11 Councillor Brian Pincott:
“Brian is a strange one. You know, James Maxim, as you can see lost by 13-1400 votes. James is running again and will definitely receive our support. You know, some of the things we hear coming out of Brian’s mouth are unbelievable but I’ll get into that just a little bit later on.”
Wenzel on Ward 12 Councillor Shane Keating:
“Shane has proved to be a really, really good guy. I even congratulate him on some of the stuff he’s done, only because he appears to use logic and common sense, which is a wee bit lacking at city hall right now.”
Keating’s response: “After seeing the video that is not continuous, therefore not knowing what comments are missing, the comments made about me are true. I use logic and common sense in my decisions. One can talk about tact and some inappropriate comments by the presenter but nothing leads to any councillor voting as told to vote. I can honestly state that all decisions I have made and will continue to make are in the best interest of Ward 12 and The city of Calgary.”
Wenzel on Ward 13 Councillor Diane Colley-Urquhart:
“Unfortunately, she just lost her husband a couple or three months ago. We did go down and talk to her because the last couple of years she really hasn’t been totally there, totally on side. And her explanation was-unfortunately with her husband being as sick as he was-most of the time she really didn’t have time to pay attention but she’s assured us now that she will. So a Diane Colley Urquhart that’s really prepared to work is a good person for us, I believe.”
Colley-Urquhart’s response: Colley-Urquhart did not return our calls.
Wenzel on Ward 14 Councillor Peter Demong:
“Peter Demong has done a really good job for us at this point.”
Demong’s response: He does not want to comment until he sees the full video.
Cal Wenzel has agreed to talk with Global News on Wednesday morning.