Cornwall Ontario CAO Paul Fitzpatrick Gets Stuck Off Hours – Calls City Truck Instead of for – March 12, 2012

CFN – The actions of Cornwall Ontario CAO Paul Fitzpatrick seem to be getting stranger and stranger?

A reader sent in the following this morning regarding our CAO.

It would crush democratic principles if a CAO has more power than council.

Indeed it would.     This weekend we discovered and confirmed that the good CAO got his car stuck out on 2nd Street West.  He claims he was turning around in the Kinsmen Soccer field parking lot when his vehicle got stuck.

Why he chose to call Municipal Works instead of any of the fine towing companies here in Cornwall boggles the mind.  He’s certainly paid well enough with a near $200K salary to afford a tow.    The pay loader sent by the city cost well over $600 to pull “Fitzy”  out of the muck including four hours over time for a municipal staffer.

I contacted Mr. Fitzpatrick Sunday and he responded to a few questions via email.


Can you explain why you were near the soccer fields?

Paul Fitzpatrick

dealing with an inquiry; turned into the parking lot to turn around; expected area to be frozen given the cold weather over the previous 48 hours; vehicle sunk in soft snow.


Can you explain why if true as reported that you would need to call for a city payloader to pull  you out instead of calling a tow truck?

Paul Fitzpatrick

I contact Municipal Works for assistance; advised tow truck may take a long time to get there;  I did not ask for any specific type of equipment, looking for a truck to pull me out.

Mr. Fitzpatrick’s answers and the questions posted above are unedited.

So on the surface we see a simple abuse of the taxpayer from a City Official.   A fatal crime?  Well that would be up to taxpayers and city council to decide.

Why not call a tow truck; the city has a contract with Metro Towing, and all three tow firms I called said that unless circumstances were unusual a truck would be at that precise location within 15-30 minutes.   Surely it would take longer than that to find a city employee after hours to haul out a massive pay loader to the Kinsmen Soccer fields?

The interesting spin to this is who lives right across the street from where Mr. Fitzpatrick’s car was stuck.

Ms Donna Derouchie is the former mucky muck of Glen Stor Dun Lodge, a city run institution.    Her tenure ended amongst the storm after the Diane Shay case, and an arbitration case yet to be decided hit the fan.   In multiple legal documents it was alleged that Mr. Fitzpatrick and Ms Derouchie had a “relationship”.

There also have been some rumblings and leaks from City Hall about how Ms. Derochie’s settlement was handled.  Apparently her name will appear on the Ontario Sunshine list of employees who make more than $100K per year for another year or two even though she’s left her position.   And who negotiated that settlement?  Was it departed HR manager Robert Menagh or Mr. Fitzpatrick himself?

City Council has been supporting Mr. Fitzpatrick via closed door in camera meetings.   Sources at City Hall identify a close cabal including the Mayor that seem to support Mr. Fitzpatrick scandal after scandal.

The question is why?  And for how much longer can these councilors allow tax dollars to be abused in this manner?   How long can they remain silent?   A core issue as seen in the Andre Rivette complaint is that votes held in camera are not recorded.    The public simply doesn’t know who is voting for what and council is sworn to secrecy during in camera meetings.

Ms Derouchie has not returned calls for this story and Mr. Fitzpatrick stopped returning emails after the first two yesterday.

What do you think Cornwallites?  You can post your comments below.

Cornwall Free News


  1. Hmmm, methinks there may be something rotten in the state of Denmark, errr Cornwall. Sounds a little fishy to me. Does anybody know if he was alone or did he have anyone else with him to verify his claim? Who paid the bill? Would I be able to do the same thing and get away with this?
    This type of poo-poo is making me, a taxpayer, a little bit angry.This could be the straw that broke the camels back for an awful lot of CORWALLITES.
    This shows a blatant abuse use of power and we should not be allowing these types of things to happen. This is absurd.

  2. The trust has been broken too often..
    Its time for the citizens of Cornwall to GONG Fitz off the show. So we can move on……
    We now know why the city is looking for a tax increase..Its to keep
    the FITZ living in the manner he has grown accustomed to.


  3. First of all let me state that I have zero connection to Mr. Fitzpatrick or Ms. Derouchie. I’ve never even met either of them, but I would like to know where do you get off writing an article like this. For the most part this is not news it is gossip. Do you have proof of this alleged relationship? Do you have proof of who negotiated Ms. Derouchie’s settlement? In fact do you have proof of anything in this article other that someone getting their vehicle stuck in some mud.

    I realize that this is the internet and not everything on here is accurate or even true, but you are portraying yourself as a News Organization. I would expect that your articles are based on a little more then water cooler gossip.

    Your slanderous comments make me no longer want to read your site. I know this probably does not matter to you at all, and I am fine with that. All I hope is that you make sure what you are writing is indeed factual before submitting something that can ruin lives.

  4. Where there’s smoke there’s stupid. Jason says this is “gossip”. He admitted what he did and where he was! Perhaps he had several reasons to keep the officials away. If it stinks like a crook, and acts like a crook. it’s a crook and the CAO has got to go. There are other local city hall workers quite capable of taking his position at less salary. If he’s not smart enough to discreetly call a private company to pull him out of a ditch when he’s so close to a house where an alleged co-conspirator and alleged “relation” lives, in order to avoid “gossip”, he can’t handle the job. No parachute, no severence, just gone. And take the Clerk as well. Keep following the truth CFN.

    This is similar to “gossip” about a long-term police chief who was accused of several things a few years back. He smashed his official car downtown near CCVS and the “protection agencies” shut of the scene to whisk him away to sober up.

  5. Re: Jason, in todays modern society a “NON-RESPONSE” is a sign of guilt!

    Question: “Why not come out and call whoever is spreading the “rumours” a liar?”

    Answer: “You can’t if you know they are true and are worried about someone proving them publicly!” Now that would be hurtful!

  6. What does the “RE:” even refer to?, and “Today’s modern society”… could we be more cliche?

  7. As a public official, it should be expected that your actions will be scrutinized closely by the very people who work to pay your salary. If there is any hint of impropriety, then it is also expected that someone will come forward and make it public. I hope Jason that you realize protecting these individuals is only hurting yourself and the ones you love monetarily as you try to build a life here in Cornwall. Unless of course for some reason you have something to gain out of this. Interesting!

  8. Seems like the good CAO of the City of Cornwall has taken a page out of Peter MacKay’s book.

  9. What’s wrong with this site i have tried twice now post n it won’t let me,maybe JASON is right all they want is GOSSIP

  10. Interesting: Municipal Act 2001

    Chief administrative officer

    229. A municipality may appoint a chief administrative officer who shall be responsible for,

    (a) exercising general control and management of the affairs of the municipality for the purpose of ensuring the efficient and effective operation of the municipality; and

    (b) performing such other duties as are assigned by the municipality. 2001, c. 25, s. 229.

    Role of council

    224. It is the role of council,

    (a) to represent the public and to consider the well-being and interests of the municipality;

    (b) to develop and evaluate the policies and programs of the municipality;

    (c) to determine which services the municipality provides;

    (d) to ensure that administrative policies, practices and procedures and controllership policies, practices and procedures are in place to implement the decisions of council;

    (d.1) to ensure the accountability and transparency of the operations of the municipality, including the activities of the senior management of the municipality;

    (e) to maintain the financial integrity of the municipality; and

    (f) to carry out the duties of council under this or any other Act. 2001, c. 25, s. 224; 2006, c. 32, Sched. A, s. 99.


  11. I find it hilarious that someone would have to call out a payloader when we here at Metro Towing we respond to calls within 20 minutes of receiving them at worse 30 minutes during a winter storm. $600.00 expense when a minimum charge by a tow company in town would be 60.00 + h.s.t. (depending how stuck you were). I wonder if the city would do this for any of Cornwall citizens who happen to need a winch out of the snow???

  12. To Simon,

    “RE” is a latin word meaning about! It is beleived to have been used in before there was even correspondence in english. Now, people think it is an abbreviation for “REgarding” or “in reference to but “RE” by itself is proper!

    In regards to cliche’s, would you prefer the term in “contempary society” instead of “in today’s modern society” or would rather simpler terms such as “today” or “now”!

    Don’t you think making a derogatory comment without using your real name is NOT a cliche?

    Is this the only input you have on the conversation or are you going to call me names since I have just answered your questions professionally? I guess if you can’t dazzle them with brilliance then you have no choice but to baffle them with BS…!

    Have fun and enjoy the Cornwall Free News it entertaining and brings life-blood to an otherwise dead political scene!

  13. Author

    Hi Debra, that’s what we discovered when we called some of the professional companies like Metro.

  14. Too MANY people are taking hard hits due to one person…. Mr.Menagh did NOT deserve to lose his JOB, the last say goes to the CEO and let me tell you, lots of people hear lots of things….. Most of the time its not bang on but its very close to the TRUTH….

  15. RE: Elder Abuse, Systemic Coverups, and Get Tough on Crime Legislation

    Following the most heinous of actions to coverup the failure to act on elder abuse in MP Lauzon’s and MPP Brownell’s very own community — and following the unlawful retaliation against the whistle-blower in the matter — Ontario’s Ministry of Health prosecuted the operator of a Cornwall long-term care facility.

    The operator of that facility was the City of Cornwall which entered a guilty plea last autumn.

    The City Manager who oversaw the unlawful retaliation was discharged with a nice pay out even though he was previously fired from an HR position in Hamilton for even worse (Menagh v. The City of Hamilton (2005)). That case is even used as a “text book” example.

    Donna Derouchie was the administrator of the facility but left just before the whistle-blowing case against the city went to trial. Her payout is not being disclosed by the City of Cornwall or her “friend” and CAO Paul Fitzpatrick. Check out her Job search resume,

    The City was fined $15,000 plus $3,750 to the RN who was harassed and terminated from her job in retaliation for reporting resident abuse at a city run nursing home.

    So no money to the abuse victim, a few thousand dollars to the hapless reporter of the abuse, and $100,000’s of dollars to a gang undermining the law. All of this out of the pockets of innocent residents of Cornwall and hundreds of thousands more on legal fees to cover the guilty party… and the Chief Administration Officer Paul Fitzpatrick saying the guilty plea was made to save money.

    Perjury? (i.e. intentionally lying in front of court, committed through verbal or written statements)

    So Mr. Guy Lauzon, how will your little bill fare against such open and systemic abuse of the system meant to curtail abuse… after all this has been going on under your nose for several years (and I dare say that your wife, the former Glen-Stor-Dun Lodge head honcho, was keeping you up to date all the while)?

  16. Just noticed Mike’s opinion that “silence is a sign of guilt” (Re: Jason, in todays [sic] modern society a “NON-RESPONSE” is a sign of guilt!)

    For an “aspiring young politician” it’s an incredible show of either ignorance or disrespect for the “rule of law” and “due process”

    Then Mike offers the Question… “Why not come out and call whoever is spreading the “rumours” a liar?”

    And a little impatiently but quite conveniently gives himself a suitable Answer… “You can’t if you know they are true and are worried about someone proving them publicly!” Now that would be hurtful!”

    Too bad it’s just a print forum, it’d be fun to know if the Questions and Answers are in different voices.

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