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Integrity Commissioner milks the public cow again

Chris Cooke's picture
Wed, 05/31/2017 - 12:21 -- Chris Cooke

Let’s review.

Here is what we know.

Integrity Commissioner Robert Swayze apparently hasn’t any integrity, has a conflict of interest, uses the City as a cash cow and appears to have personal animosity toward the Mayor.

He just can’t control himself. He is like a mouse watching the cheese.

His latest ruling that the mayor is docked two week’s pay for bullying, harassing and intimidating Clerk Dianne Gould – Brown at a public meeting last February is ludicrous.

Sane people wouldn’t even go there but this is Sarnia City Hall we are talking about.

At issue is a letter emailed February 22 by Margaret Bird to the mayor and council through the clerk’s department demanding a detail accounting of Swayze’s bills, hours of service and an explanation of his work and that of other external lawyers and consultants.

One would suspect this would be pretty routine stuff.

But apparently not so.

Once the overly sensitive Gould – Brown called in the Integrity Commissioner all hell broke loose.

The problem developed when Gould-Brown rejected Bird’s request, treating it as a freedom of information matter and refusing to have her email included on the agenda.

Public video and audio of the February 27 meeting seemed routine. There was the usual banter between the Mayor and Councillors some opposed to the Clerk’s ruling and others weren’t.

The Mayor insisted the public has a right to know since Bird’s email was addressed to him and addressed to Council and has nothing to do with freedom of information.

And the Mayor likened it to someone taking mail from his mailbox and answering it.

With a tear in her eye and a sniffle Gould – Brown took that as a slight against her professional performance as Clerk and brought in Swayze who shouldn’t even be ruling on this matter since it involves requests for information about his billings to City Hall.

Yet, there he is bigger than life stepping up to the public trough … again.

His meter is running at $250.00 an hour while he suggests the mayor who is paid a stinking $52,000.00 be docked another two-week’s pay.

You can’t make this stuff up.

Anyone who has seen the video or listened to the eight minutes of audio from the February meeting is probably wondering what in hell this is about.

It is about overly sensitive City Hall administrators, an aggressive Integrity Commission who is milking the public cow and a mayor who is being victimized by both.

As taxpayers we are paying for another edition of Big Brother. Instead of being a dumb television show it is dumb public theatre and it is performed daily at Sarnia City Hall.

Unfortunately we have to wait 17 months until the next municipal election to get rid of these fools.

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