One of the favored stock utterances of Enbridge representatives, one we’ve heard countless times over the past few months, is “we want to be a good neighbor.” Project Manager Tom Hodge said this repeatedly to the Brandon Township trustees at their “workshop” last month–as his fellow Enbridge reps, including three spokespersons and attorney Michael Ashton, all nodded their heads in agreement. And while on the whole, we found Hodge more credible than most of the Enbridge representatives we’ve encountered, we were skeptical of that hollow phrase. Indeed, given the chance to comment at the end of the meeting, we said as much, pointing out that Enbridge didn’t come to that meeting in a spirit of cooperation; they only agreed to the meeting reluctantly and were there only to placate, not to comply or even compromise. That doesn’t strike us as all that neighborly.
What’s more, a couple of weeks ago, we noted that Enbridge had not bothered to provide answers to any of the outstanding questions from that meeting (including ours) they pledged to provide– not one. (So much for Enbridge’s stated corporate value of “follow[ing] through on commitments”!) Now, after nearly a month, STILL no answers– as ace reporter Susan Bromley of the Brandon Citizen reports this week. And this has Brandon trustee Cheryl Gault– rightfully– a little mad:
“It’s all well and good they are (now) complying with the woodlands ordinance,” said Trustee Cheryl Gault, “but they have not responded to various things. This little agreement is nothing to them… We’ve given them time to answer other questions. It’s simple— do you have permits? There are no answers. They’ve submitted nothing. They are totally ignoring us and I take offense to that.”
We reported on the Woodlands ordinance just recently. Evidently, as Bromley reports, Enbridge has tried to reach an agreement with Brandon on the matter, which is certainly good news. It’s also exactly the sort of thing, Enbridge reps will surely tell you, that demonstrates what good neighbors they are. However, Cheryl Gault clearly understands that they only reached an agreement on the Woodlands ordinance after they were backed into a corner, after they were called out on their attempt to flagrantly ignore it.
That’s not being a good neighbor– that’s just getting busted.