In an article from the Durham Region News is a story that tells a tale of a mayor and council that is so out of touch with it's constituents that it leaves one shaking their heads.

Before I give you the link to read the article, I want to give you some background information gleaned by speaking with Lou DeVouono and from listening to him on radio yesterday.

The HHR is a free to the public event, one that is meant to offer Canadians the opportunity to say thank you to our troops and to celebrate the lives of those who have travelled the Highway of Heroes to the morgue in Toronto.

The City of Toronto did not charge the HHR to shut down the Don Valley Parkway last year.  They did not charge for the police escort, the road closures or the barricades.  The OPP has not charged the event either. In fact no community that has been involved in this event has charged for those services - why?

Because the event is free to the public, brings a ton of visitors into the community and because it is heavily supported and backed by the various military charities who get to fundraise at it - for free and it is supported by the military itself.

The city of Oshawa had given the event it's blessing and support and then once it was too late to change the posters and the marketing that had been done, they pulled their support but did not tell the organizer what it was going to cost.

Lou has tried to negotiate with them, all to no avail and so Lou finds himself on the short end of the political stick.

It is disgusting. It is morally wrong and I along with hundreds of others have begun a letter writing campaign.  There is much talk about boycotting Oshawa to get council's attention but in my personal humble opinion, a boycott hurts the wrong people.

The way to get this council to do the right thing and write the bill off to marketing and advertising - of which they got a lot more than $5,600 worth, hell they got a lot more publicity than $20K...write them, phone them, fax them - tie up their office staff, cripple their ability to get any other work done...

Here is the link to the article:

Here is a copy of the letter I sent to all members of council including the Mayor - I urge everyone to do the same write them and hound them - because I for one believe that they need to be shamed into doing the right thing...

My Letter to Mayor Henry: 
Oshawa suing the Heroes Highway Ride

Dear Mayor Henry,

I was deeply saddened to read that your council has decided to charge for services like barricades, garbage and policing for a free event that is meant to show our troops that we love them, we haven't forgotten them. 

I attended the HHR the year it was held in Oshawa. The venue was ideal on so many levels and it was wonderful to get to meet the men and women who serve our country, to tell them face to face what it means to me to have them serving and protecting our country.

I also attended in Toronto, where they forgave the policing costs etc and in fact had shut down the Don Valley Parkway.

Both were expensive trips to make from Alberta, but they were worth every penny to see the looks on their faces.

I think sir, that you have made a huge political and media blunder.

People are already talking about boycotting your community, which is not the answer here.
You are, I feel, being wrong minded if you think that Canadians don't support their troops and take situations like these and view them as a slap in the face.

You are taking people's feel good emotions and bringing them to a boil.

The small business people of Oshawa do not deserve to get hurt. But some people mistakenly think that they can get your council to reason by boycotting your town.
Please don't let it come to that? Write off the bill as advertising and marketing.

You are coming across as people who don't support our troops, and I think a number of the troops are also your tax payers and voters.

Please write off the bill.

If you would like to join the letter writing campaign here are all of the email addresses of Oshawa's Council:,,,,,,,,,,

PLEASE people - let's flood their offices, let's make them see the error of their ways...

Have a fantastic weekend everyone!

Belt Drive Betty
Editor & Rider

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