CFN – Back on March 5th Mayor Bob Kilger issued a press release. It was very clear.
Mayor Kilger issues statement regarding decision not to participate in recent in camera discussions
Mayor Bob Kilger issued the following statement today regarding his decision to not participate in discussions at two in camera meetings of City Council regarding personnel matters:
“There was an in camera meeting of City Council on February 19th regarding personnel matters. The same matters were also briefly discussed during a portion of an in camera meeting on February 11th. I did not attend the February 19th meeting and I recused myself from a portion of the February 11th meeting while these matters were discussed because I wanted to obtain independent legal advice as to whether I was in a conflict of interest. If I was in a conflict of interest situation with respect to the matters discussed at these meetings, the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act states that, because I was absent from the one meeting, I must declare that conflict at the next regular meeting of Council.
On this question, I sought and have received independent legal advice from the national law firm of Blake, Cassels & Graydon. The advice I have received is that I am not, and have not been, in a conflict of interest situation with respect to the matters discussed at these in camera meetings.
Accordingly, I did not have a conflict of interest declaration to make at the City Council meeting of February 25th.
While I accept my lawyer’s advice that there is no conflict of interest, I do not intend to participate in any of Council’s future consideration of these specific matters because I would like Council to deal with these matters with as few complications as possible.”
Mayor Kilger will not comment any further given the confidential nature of these matters discussed at in camera meetings of City Council. For clarity purposes, this information will also be included in the meeting minutes of February 25th, 2013.
If you jump to the 1:38 mark of the video below you can hear Mayor Kilger state the above.
Tuesday night saw council hold a special meeting into the report by Stephen Fournier.
Q&A after the meeting;
It was a stunning heavily lawyered process that is a feeble attempt to whitewash the Whistleblowing cases against the Mayor who still is refusing to declare his Conflict of Interest.
Essentially this exercise was of limited scope with no teeth. Mr. Fournier was clear that the public should have knowledge that these in camera meetings were occurring in relation to Whistleblowing. The Municipal Act however only forces motions and decisions to be in minutes and not a detailed collection of what took place.
When you have an open meeting media and the public have an opportunity to observe what’s said and by whom. In camera meetings do not have that transparency or accountability and the bottom line is:
Who is protecting the public’s interest?
Talking off camera Mr. Fournier said he’d never seen as many lawyers as in this investigation and that’s the root of the problem with this whole situation. The Mayor and Council have been spending monies furiously with high end lawyers like Ford firm hawk Will McDowell while the Whistleblowers have to spend their own funds.
Even the media is frozen out as the City is still refusing to be accountable and answer basic questions such as giving a GLOBAL SUM on how much they’ve spent on legal bills and settlements.
Even as to whether the mayor is paying his own legal bills, CAO Norm Levac coyly stated that they city had not been billed for services; not that they would not pay for the Mayor’s legal bills.
So why was Mayor Kilger sitting atop his perch at the special meeting when he said he would not participate in any further deliberations connected to the Whistleblowing cases which Mr. Fournier’s report clearly was about?
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