Closed Session Investigations

Another item on this past week’s Council agenda that is worth commenting on is the report from Amberley Gavel LTD, an independent third-party investigator. They were tasked with investigating a complaint that alleged that matters were improperly discussed by Council in closed session.

To summarize the allegation in a nutshell, “someone” alleged that Council violated the Act as it pertains to closed session meetings.  In other words, alleging “secret back room deals” and “secret negotiations” as some have described. There were two matters that the complainant was unhappy with – discussions around acquiring a property on Yonge street (which was never acquired) and matters relating to the lease of the Armory to the world-renowned Niagara College Food and Wine Institute.

A few thousand of taxpayer dollars later, the investigator concluded there was “no breach” of the legislation. In other words, Council did nothing wrong; there’s no merit to the allegation.

Worse still, the Investigator stated, that the complaint was, to paraphrase, because the person was unhappy with the outcome of the vote. Unbelievable.

Having a legitimate complaint about process is one thing, but wasting taxpayer money on an investigation simply because you don’t like the outcome of the vote? Because you didn’t get what you wanted?  That is not just unacceptable, it is irresponsible.

Alleging shenanigans is nothing new in politics unfortunately; nor is wasting taxpayer money on wholly politically motivated investigations of Council or its decisions.   You see it from at least one candidate in every campaign.  It is disappointing but what can you do.  I guess they believe that if you can’t campaign on your own record or what you have to offer, you try to cast aspersions on others.  Most people can see through that negative nonsense.  I know that voters here in Aurora most definitely do.

The positive outcome of this waste of taxpayer money is that residents can be assured that contrary to what some have said, there have been no “back room deals”, there have been no closed-door shenanigans.  This Council has followed all appropriate processes with regards to both issues – especially as it relates to the Armory and Niagara college.

This isn’t a matter of my opinion versus someone else’s. It is a fact.  Established by a legal third party investigation.

Anyone claiming otherwise is simply not telling you the truth.


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