"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

Thursday 7 July 2016


Newmarket reporter Chris Simon has failed to convince former Councillor Joe Sponga, he owes an explanation to constituents for his resignation, beyond a vague reference to  " court spat,conduct complaint and family resources" 

Why is Sponga expected to publicize a complaint against his character?

The process  is not public until the Councillor-complained-about has been "investigated" like a felon.

An Integrity Commissioner appointed, not sworn into office, makes the decision whether or not to do so. 

Elected officials, sworn to an Oath of Office, have freely subjected themselves to the rigeur. 

If quitting is an option, that's  for Joe Sponga to know and Chris Simon to find out.

The rest of us can ponder why government sinks ever deeper into disrepute. 

The Integrity Commissioner can advise Chris Simon, if an investigation is abandoned when a Councillor opts to leave the office to which he was elected for four years. 

Councillor Taylor throws a little light on the issue. He respects the Councillor's right to decide, in a Hobson's Choice, whether "he's had enough".  Two  "frivolous" complaints were filed against Councillor Taylor and dismissed. 

Sufficient clues exist for Simon to sort out the story without actually guessing at the facts. 

In the New Year, the Town of Newmarket retained a new Integrity Commissioner to implement a new Code of Conduct .

There was a crooked man 
Who walked a crooked mile
He found a crooked sixpence
And climbed a crooked stile

Since then sixteen complaints were filed. Twelve were ruled " frivolous" and dismissed.

For protection under provincial regulations, identity of complainant and complained- about are kept secret. Ah! isn't that sweet. 

Somewhat similar to anonymous comments to a blog. Not at all similar to letters to the editor. 

Unless the Commissioner decides to investigate, then both complaint and  complained-about and decision are publicly reported to Council. 

The process costs complainants nothing. The Integrity Commissioner is paid in lawyerly fees. 

 Newmarket  has expended $25,000. to determine twelve of sixteen complaints were not valid.  Apparently filed for fun and frivolity. 

Sixteen filed. Twelve bogus. Hardly a promising start to a program promising integrity. 

Mr Sponga ,in his resignation , referred to Conduct complaint, "court spat " and spending family resources. 

A Councillor in Newmarket has no entitlement to assistance from the town to defend himself against 
accusations. Toronto Councillors receive $20,000 to retain legal counsel. 

Guilty or pure as the driven snow, a Newmarket Councillor would have to foot the legal bill to defend himself or counter legal action without legal resources ,or quit. 

As for justice in the courts, he can write that right off, right at the outset.

Mr. Simon's latest report reveals a recent letter to Council from a BIA member demanded an apology from Councillor Sponga for speaking rudely in a BIA meeting. 

Council correspondence is a matter of public record. 

The malcontent can easily be identified with search of the record. And from there perchance, the complaint to be investigated , might be identified. 

Maybe .. Oh Mercy Me ...Maybe  Councillor Sponga toyed with the word Fuddle -duddle.  

For fun and frivolity. 


Anonymous said...

Theatrical performances in Newmarket have been loud fast and furious for a while. There was a councillor in the last term that was getting a lot of flak for her performances and was blamed for much of the newmarket's disfunction. She's gone and yet it's still going strong. The link is leadership. They have none. Much like our own.

Anonymous said...

There is too much "crooked" going on to suit me.

Or was this always so but before social media reared their ugly heads?

It seems, in the U.S., there is a perpetual investigation ongoing in the matter of Hillary's emails. Now the State Department is commencing another one to determine if all the others were justified. But there will be no time restriction, so she could have been a sitting president for a year before this latest reaches a conclusion. And Republicans can continue the process until she has become a two-term office holder.

Have they nothing better to do?

Anonymous said...

That " reporter " really does not qualify for the term.
Anything to do with the Banner generation has to generate advertising.
Anything that smacks of real reporting will be red flagged.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

While criticizing the Banner may require little thought why don't you tackle the Toronto star and the Fed liberals
The Fed liberals are quick to point out their Syrian Refugee program came in under budget
Yesterday the Star in its editorial wrote about the need for more monies for social programs, education. Health costs, and even jobs
What's incongruent is these needs are all funded by Provincial and Municipal levels of Gov' hence the Feds are "correct" in saying they did their job but in reality they should be factored into the total costs
What's lost is there is only one taxpayer
In other news the Manufacturing sector continues to flee
Ontario, more cuts to health care programs, and the big three Teachers, Police, and fire fighters continue to get raises at a time when th tax base for Ontario continue to shrink

Anonymous said...

Sounds like some of the bullshit going on in Aurora, and certain groups, oh I don't know .... the Economic Development Committee??????

Anonymous said...

08:41, the election was last October, ... and you lost.

Anonymous said...

Yes the election was last fall, that doesn't mean all criticism ceases
I suggest you read up on Fredericton high school and how the New Brunswick government had to pay big bucks to rectify the problems caused by the inadequately funded Syrian Refugee program Federally
Now the Toronto Star says we should spend hundreds of millions more too

I'm sure you would have been inundating this site and others with Harper this and Harper that if he had won the election and done the same thing

Anonymous said...

Nope, 17:40, I wouldn't. I come here for local issues, not to bitch about federal politics.

Anonymous said...

In case you haven't noticed, Federal, Provincial,Regional, Municipal all fly the same Red flag