"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

Friday 20 October 2017


FAnonymous has left a new comment on your post "LISTEN TO ME CAREFULLY. ..I WILL SAY THIS MORE THA...": 
You failed to mention that the then mayor, having difficulty with your obedience to her, decided to go about getting your attention in a different way. She would bring in the big municipal legal gun George Rust D' Eye. Everyone would be in awe. He was probably given instruction to "shake down" the wayward councillor and get her to "step into line" and then bill the town accordingly. After all, cost was not an issue. 
A warning from the distinguished counsel would surely be enough. My memory goes a little vague here on the actual reason for the encounter but there he was face to face - the big legal gun with you in his sights about to drop the hammer.  
Poor Rusty couldn't get any traction. All his legal knowledge and reputation were of no use. He failed in the task. I suspect the then mayor was furious.  
Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 20 October 2017 


The full story is worth re-calling. There may be a lesson to be learned. 

The Region offered to buy land from the town.They offered to pay the asking price. The site was needed for the new Police Headquarters. The land was on the market for sale. 

The offer and the plan were  good news for Aurora. 

Chairman Fisch and the Police Chief attended a closed council meeting on September 12th .to make the offer. The sale did not proceed

In November, a story to that effect appeared in The Auroran.

The Municipal Act requires public business to be conducted in public. 

Recommendations are reported from closed meetings to be ratified in public. 

The weeks passed after the offer was received. No report came to Council. I inquired of CAO Rogers. He acknowledged the Act but noted no time limit to report is cited within it. 

In my experience, nothing like it had happened before.

The Region's decision to locate the new headquarters in Aurora was apparently already known throughout the police community 

In November,The Auroran published the story and the organic matter hit the fan,

Mr Rust D'Eye appeared at the Council ; apparently by invitation. 

The Mayor, opened the public meeting, declared an emergency and ushered Council into a closed meeting. 

The Municipal Act requires the purpose of a closed meeting to be disclosed  beforehand. I sought 

The Mayor said knowingly   "Ah no, Councillor Buck, you will not catch me with that"

 Before joining coiuncil  in the back room, she brought the lawyer around  and introduced him to me. 

Body language from the pair indicated I was expected to rise and be escorted from that place.  

Instead, I indicated the empty chair beside me and invited Mr. Rust  D'Eye to sit. The Mayor left 
him to carry out her instructions. 

His first question.. .. Had I retained legal counsel?

"Why would I do that?" I asked.

 He wasn't suggesting It, he responded. 

Then he talked about new ,more severe penalties in the Conflict of Interest Act and suggested my presence at the meeting would be a serious conflict of interest if I heard anything that might be of benefit in any legal action that might evolve from the meeting. 

The penny dropped. The Mayor did not want me at the meeting to hear what they planned . The lawyer was charged with advising me of stuff that would discourage me from attending .

it was at that point, I decided I would attend. 

I rose from my chair. "I am a member of Council " I informed him. "I have a right to attend the meeting" 

He trailed in behind me. It was satisfying to see the surprise on their faces. I had no allies in that Council at that time. 

Better than anyone in the room , The lawyer was aware ,Conflict of Interest Legislation requires
an elected official  to make the determination. Legal advice from the municipality is not available. 

When the Boroughs of Metro were amalgamated ,a redundancy of officials resulted in the GTA. 
Mr. Rust  D'Eye was one of hundreds cast adrift. 

His advice to Council that night was that the Code Of Ethics could not be enforced without an
Integrity Commissioner. 

Details or interpretation of a Provincial  Act is not a matter permitted to be discussed behind closed doors . 

I assumed Mr.Rust D'Eye was also aware of that particular. His bridled  when I sought to be reminded what position he formerly held within the Metro regime. 

The story had an ironic twist...or three.  The  Region's offer to purchase was not refused by the town. Land transfer was staff responsibility, specifically CAO John Rogers. 

The Mayor and Councillor MacEachern refused to authorize Mr Rogers conduct the negotiations. it was part of their campaign to humiliate him . Mayor assured me however the sale would not be 

It appeared her intent was to handle the deal herself and win the credit. 

She would have received the credit anyway but it didn't work out that way. The Region made a different plan. 

Negotiations did not proceed as intended and there was no sale. Instead two floors for headquarters were added to a  police building already being designed in the same location. 

The story was  told in The Auroran. Hell hath no fury and without further council ado, 
Rust D'Eye was called in and  wheels set in motion in a different direction.

It wasn't the first unwarranted legal expenditure and as months passed ,it wouldn't be the last. 

Funds flowed freely from town coffers to settle invoices for legal services having nothing to do 
with town services. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Can this old crap not be filed deep in some bomb-shelter and forgotten about?

We have our own current dips with which to deal, as you have so cogently outlined recently.

And no doubt the coming months will produce still more insanity.

Let's look to the future with gleeful anticipation.