"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Monday 23 June 2014

The Mountain Came To Mohamed

Tomorrow's Agenda has a Notice of  Motion referencing  substantial increase in insurance  premium. Stated objective is to suss out reasons for the increase and take measures to ensure nothing like it happens again.

A motion with wider sweep but similar intent was defeated on May 27th.

The vote was 5 to 2. The mover ,Councillor Abel and Mayor Dawe supported the motion.

Because of a Conflict of Interest, I was unable to speak to the motion. I am of course conversant with the particular circumstances.

Councillors Gallo and Gaertner spoke to the motion then decided they too had a Conflict of Interest
They  perhaps should be even more conversant than myself. But possibly not.

It  was February 10th  when a  Vice President of the Insurance company attended a budget meeting of  Council  Likely by invitation. To explain the vagaries of  the insurance industry and variables that lead to premium increases.

It was an unproductive encounter.  Answers to pointed questions were avoided.

I am  privy to information. All of which I believe the community is entitled to know. Yet I am not currently at liberty to tell.

It should not be hard to imagine the difficulty.

As well, the  account deserves more substance and certitude than I can satisfactorily provide.

A factual report could not likely be compiled in house.

Records are missing.  Key Staff have left town service.

It seems, from what has gone before, the insurance company will  not  release relevant information unless compelled to do so.

A Commission of Inquiry may be  the only route possible to obtain the facts  of what transpired  in the previous term to account for  the huge increase in premiums.

Legal  services retained by the  former  Mayor and incurred at town expense  would  be accessible
through the treasury department.

A  town policy in place at the time prohibited the practice.

The  last  figure I heard for  the Toronto Inquiry into corruption. cost something like thirteen million dollars. It was undertaken in David Miller's term.

McCallion's  Fiefdom  had  a Commission inquire into the Mayor's Conflict of Interest which also cost millions.

Neither  were likely  covered by insurance.

The Toronto Commission  findings resulted in permissive legislation to authorize Municipalities if they so chose, to adopt a Code of Conduct , appoint an Integrity Commissioner.  develop a specific procedure to adjudicate complaints  and thereby establish and enforce integrity to provide assurance to the governed, their affairs henceforth  would, forever and a day, be managed  by  the governors with complete and total integrity for all to see and admire.

Yes  indeedy, we have seen.


Anonymous said...

They really, really do not want to know those numbers.
That cartoon in the Auroran was right on point.

Anonymous said...

Why would a couple of the defendants be "even more conversant" than the plaintiff?

Anonymous said...


Because they participated in the action and public statement that led to Clr. Buck's suit against them and the other four.

You might say they started it and therefore know more.

I hope you now understand the "even more conversant."

Anonymous said...

@11:59 I would reason that the defendants should be more intimately aware of the defense costs, and possibly the reserve amounts that the insurance carrier may be putting on this claim, and hence would have a better sense for the impact that would have on the renewal premiums.

Anonymous said...

I can see another dead-end with this motion although I believe it should be passed. Cllr Gaertner will still charge that the timing is " suspect ". I have no idea what she means unless that is a reference to the election. There are enough cowardly lions at the table who will baulk. Cllr Thompson will move to refer/defer.

Anonymous said...

Well here is a surprise....

I think we all knew this would happen regarless of what the plaintiff said.

Anonymous said...

I do not see this as something that requires E declare a conflict. Sounds like a business decision having to do with that insurance hike to me.
But the decision is hers to make.

Anonymous said...

Frankly, 12:42, I'd say their level of participation was minimal. You refer to "they," but we all know it was down to one person.

Anonymous said...

Incorrect. The march was inclusive & enthusiastic. Files available to check statements, the latest likely through Newmarket.

Anonymous said...

Colour me cynical. There is no way any of this can be done before the end of term, A bunch of window dressing during an election.

Anonymous said...

16:23, without knowing all the behind the scenes machinations, you can't categorically call "Incorrect."

Anonymous said...

But nor can you state about whose participations were minimal. You give one individual entirely too much credit/blame. There were at least 2 heads bent over the pot.