2009 grade: C-
Lorelei Nicoll is friendly to a fault, which is starting to become a problem: I’ve yet to hear her raise her voice in angry disagreement, or give that passionate speech that stakes out a clear position, detractors be damned. Her natural instinct is to position herself exactly in the centre of every debate, all sides having valid points, everyone with a need for accommodation.
A telling Nicoll moment came during the recent budget debate, during the committee of the whole vote for the package. COW votes are less structured than council votes, and when the mayor was counting the “yes” votes, Nicoll put her hand up, then down, then kind of held it in the middle, a “maybe” vote. When it came time to count the “no” votes, she did the same thing. As I wrote in my notes, and as several TV viewers immediately confirmed via Twitter, Nicoll had voted both “yes” and “no” on the budget. (She subsequently voted “yes” for the recorded council vote.)
Nicoll voted against the “tax reform” proposal, both at the East Harbour Community Council and at council (although she appeared to waver a bit after the EHCC vote). For that, she gets bumped up a tad from last year’s grade but, if she is to do better, she needs to demonstrate increased confidence and forthright political positions.