Aurora Citizen

News & Views from the Citizens of Aurora Ontario

Guest Post: Why Has the Integrity Commissioner Been Dismissed?

Posted by auroracitizen on August 8, 2009

The following letter was delivered by Grace Marsh to the Editor(s) of The Auroran and The Banner and copied to the Aurora Citizen Blog.

The views expressed are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views of the AURORA CITIZEN.

Council created and approved their own Code of Conduct. Some felt the Oath of Office wasn’t enough . Apparently, they believe they need more in order to “control” some Members of Council from expressing opinions that don’t mirror theirs.

Council approves the hiring of an Integrity Commissioner. Puts someone at the ready to “investigate” any complaint that may be lodged under their Code. His bio and experience as posted on the Town website is impressive.

Next Council approves the hiring of Aird & Berlis, at Town cost, to help get ready ammunition in order to prepare a formal complaint against Councillor Buck under the Code.

6 members of Council file a formal complaint against Councillor Buck. 2 do not participate. No surprise who the 6 are. The complaint is placed on the Town’s website and paid advertisements are taken out in 2 local papers. Apparently Councillor Buck has levelled “unmerited public criticism of staff”. So much for confidentiality in the process.

On July 30th, I called Mr. Nitkin directly on his confidential line to let him know that I was willing to provide information for his investigation should he be interested. I actually do have firsthand experience with how other Members of this Council , including the Mayor have criticised staff. Mr. Nitkin advised me that he was unable to discuss Council’s complaint as he had not yet either accepted or rejected the complaint that was advertised by Council. A fair and appropriate response in my view. My feeling from the conversation, although Mr. Nitkin said nothing specific, was that it may not be long before he would make that decision.

Just 7 days later, on August 6th, Rogers First Local broadcasts that Councillor Buck believes a decision has been made and while looking for a copy, it appears she is stonewalled. On the same broadcast the Mayor admits that an email was sent to the Director of Corporate Services, and a copy was sent to the Director’s assistant (the Deputy Clerk). She further stated nothing would be disclosed and it could be up to 90 days before anything is made public. Seems to me that a staff member (the assistant to the designated person) getting a copy should not be a big deal. Why should that stop the Councillor accused from receiving a copy?

Later that same night, there is a Special Council Meeting at which, according to the public minutes, the same 6 Councillors that lodged the complaint, spent 5 hours and 12 minutes behind closed doors on 2 “personal” items and the results are:

The Integrity Commissioner is removed. Any mention of him is gone from the Towns’ website by the next day, and it’s directed that more money will be spent recruiting a new Integrity Commissioner. We (the people paying the bill for all this) still don’t know what his decision was or why it must be secret. Council’s complaint was made very public, in two newspapers, at our expense, but we are not entitled to know the result.

Draw your own conclusions:

  • Would the decision put those who orchestrated the complaint into a bad light,
    perhaps?
  • Did he reject their complaint outright?
  • Did he come to the conclusion that it was purely political?
  • How can they explain promoting the high standards and experience of Mr. Nitkin and so easily dismiss him?
  • Are they looking to hire a “different” Integrity Commissioner who will accept their
    complaint?
  • How many will they have to go through before they find the “right” one?
  • How much will this cost us in the end in money and time? A staggering
    number, I’m sure.

I have certainly drawn my own conclusions, and quite frankly this whole affair simply does not pass the smell test. But I’m also not surprised.

Grace Marsh

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63 Responses to “Guest Post: Why Has the Integrity Commissioner Been Dismissed?”

  1. someone who loves this town more than politics said

    Anonymous – August 8, 2009 3:49 PM

    "What is needed for the job is someone with a law degree."

    What? That is the last thing an integrity commissioner needs.
    You would only need that if you wanted someone in that position with an absence of ethics and that could easily be paid off to make a ruling in your favor.

    But thanks for trying to plant the seed.
    It won't be a surprise to anyone when a lawyer is selected for the IC position.

    "I applaud the decision to learn that an error was made, cut the losses and move on."

    Of course you do, that is the spin that you are selling, "whoops we made a mistake, lets forget that and move on, that's right move on until we find someone who rules in our favor."

    The more I read some of these blog posts the more evident it is that the GOS chooses to post under "Anonymous" in the attempts to make it look like a citizens post. How pathetic.

    This looks to be the case as far back as last year

    September 3, 2008 9:20 PM – Anonymous said…

    "By and far the criticism laid at the feet of Mayor Morris and certain members of council is unfounded. Mayor Morris and Councilors your hard work is acknowledged by the silent majority. History will absolve you."

    Yup you're right history has definitely shown that any criticism to the mayor and the GOS is unfounded, and that all of the citizens have fallen in line. Talk about a council that is completely out of touch with its electorate.

    I'm starting to get the bigger picture on our Mayor but who is MacEachern, where did she come from, and more importantly where will she go back to when she is voted out in 2010? With no real formal education or credentials lets hope she doesn't look to become a career politician with even greater delusions of grandeur, she may just go right to the top.

  2. Anonymous said

    If you're a councillor the Town would probably pay for your lawyer.

    But you'll still be on the hook for the damages. Unless the Town's insurance covers. I can't say for sure if they would.

  3. Anonymous said

    To : August 11, 2009 9:35 PM

    will the town pay for my lawyer or is that only availble for morris??

  4. Anonymous said

    Anonymous, 8/11 @ 9:35. Thank you for your kind offer to provide all the necessary information.

    If you would kindly provide your contact information (name, phone number or email address) someone will contact you 😉

  5. My Kinda Town said

    Wow.

    Dear Anon 7:15 PM:

    Forget the young appointed one, if you start a collection to fund some ESL classes for yourself, I will contribute!

    You're not the only one. I don't understand how people on here even attended high school, let alone university.

    Did y'all go to high school in Aurora? Were Aurora schools that bad in the 60s?

    MKT

  6. Anonymous said

    To: August 11, 2009 8:52 PM

    Yes there is a rule of law and a procedure.

    If you feel that strongly about what council did on May 12/09 and believe in your convictions, you can visit a Justice of the Peace and swear a charge. Why wouldn't you? Afterall, you have the video.

    On your sworn statement the JP will issue a writ or an arrest warrant against the accused and charge them as per your sworn statement.

    Of course you understand that you, unlike the police, are not immune from a civil suit for falsely swearing a charge against someone. But if you're that sure of yourself and your position, I'll provide you with all the info you need to book an appointment with a JP.

    When are you available?

  7. Anonymous said

    Anonymous 7:15 writes.
    "And while we're at it and the fire is hot is there anyone else you want to throw on: gays, minorities, immigrants, etc."

    Another well versed Auroran wades into the fray….lol. Where does this come from?

  8. Anonymous said

    YOU say there is "There's a rule of law and a procedure to follow"

    watch council may12/09 and tell me who is following rules there…

    man those crazy pills are tasting good…

  9. Anonymous said

    If the minutes are not accurate, it's a leap to say staff worked at the Mayor's direction to make them inaccurate.

    If this is the case then someone (Buck) should back-up her claims.

    If Buck thinks that the Clerk or Deputy Clerk are leaking confidential information, then it's time for her to stand and deliver. Dragging peoples reputation through the mud with implied accusations doesn't serve anyone.

    We don't live in a land where we can make wild accusations about others with impunity.

    Unless of course you got a strong hunch that the Mayor is a guilty, then we should burn at the stake. And while we're at it and the fire is hot is there anyone else you want to throw on: gays, minorities, immigrants, etc.

    There's a rule of law and a procedure to follow. If you don't like the rules, work to change them. That's what make's us a civilized society and the envy of the world.

    Remember, those that throw dirt – lose ground.

  10. Anonymous said

    what's your point? there's absolutely nothing accusatory in that statement at all

    the entire town knows the minutes are not accurate

    buck just pointed out the obvious

  11. Anonymous said

    And are u saying that it is a false statement???

    from what I can recall… the minutes are not the same as what was said that night at council….just watch the video yourself…

    this is all an exercise for the GOS to cover their butts and lay blame somewhere else and confuse the citizen's

    they are the ones that
    Illegally went forward without 2/3 majority…

    the minutes do not accurately state the motion that MorMac gave after they waived procedure…

    so what is wrong with telling the people the truth??

    ohhh yeah MorMac don't want citizen's to realize that they screwed up….and the fact that the rules don't apply to them…they make them up as they go…

    If Councillor Buck did slander staff, then why is this not in front of a court room??

    it's because it is true…..

    The GOS wouldn't dare let that happen….cause then the whole truth about what they have been doing would come out….

    so here we go… this are the actual minutes from May 12/09

    Moved by Councillor MacEachern Seconded by Councillor Gallo

    THAT Ms St. Kitts submit a copy of the comments to the Chief Administrative Officer and the Town Solicitor.

    On a recorded vote the motion was CARRIED.

    YEAS: 7 NAYS: 1

    VOTING YEAS: Councillors Collins-Mrakas, Gallo, Granger, MacEachern, McRoberts, Wilson and Mayor Morris

    VOTING NAYS: Councillor Buck

    Councillor Gaertner was absent.

    now if you watch the video the motion that Evilina moves is as follows

    That StKitts to provide a copy of the delegation to staff to make part of agenda item and that the comments be referred to Mr. Cooper, Mr. Garbe, and the Mayor for review and consideration and for appropriate steps to be taken…

    seconded by Mr. Gallo

    watch it for yourself
    Aurora Council May 12th 2009

    from min 13:50 to 14:30

    so when someone says that the minutes aren’t the same well then they are right!!!!!

    The motion that is written in the minutes is not the motion that was seconded and is not the motion that the council voted on…

    so once again spin spin spin….

  12. Anonymous said

    Just another example of Councillor Buck making accusations against staff but not backing them up.

    "Monday, June 1, 2009
    The Buzz Around Town

    How can minutes of a council meeting be doctored?

    The answer is they cannot. It took a conference between Neil Garbe and Christopher Cook, the town solicitor to come up with an idea to produce minutes which would "to save the town harmless" from the actions of the mayor and four councillors on May 12th."

  13. Anonymous said

    Does anyone else feel like they have put crazy pills in the water here????

    dealing with the GOS is like dealing with the leaglly insane….

  14. Anonymous said

    To: August 11, 2009 10:32 AM

    I believe they are speaking to where the code of conduct complaint came from…which would be way b4 aug 9/09…

    i guess explaining to you would be a waste of time also….

  15. Anonymous said

    To: August 11, 2009 9:05 AM

    From Councillor Buck's August 9, 2009 Blog.

    "The anonymous comment raises the question; if true, how did that information become known?"

    "Only the clerk or acting clerk of the municipality receives complaints.Her authority is limited to receiving and forwarding to the Integrity Commissioner."

    This is after she wondered aloud where an anonymous blogger got his information that the complaints were in double digits. A point that the assumed blogger clarifies.
    See posting of August 9, 2009 9:17 AM.

    Do you need more?

    I would be willing to spend the time and look it up for you; but I think it would be a waste of time.

    Please let me know what part of the above you don't understand.

  16. White Knight said

    I think it is time that the tax paying residents of this town take a "no confidence" vote and actually do something about this council.

  17. Anonymous said

    To August 11, 2009 8:23 AM

    Are u kidding me?????

    geeezzz ur smoking the good stuff aren’t u???

    Pass some over here..

    MorMac are the queens of putting staff down and terrorize them… Why do u think none of them do anything unless they are told by them what to do….

    They are all walking on eggshells in the town hall and MorMac are loving it….

    I know a few ppl that work in the town hall and if you heard the stories of what goes on in there by morris, you would be appauled by it…

    If you disobey ur fired…

    if u can't see that, well then sir/Madame I say pass that maryjane this way and let all of us see it the way u do…

    2010 change "yes we can"

  18. Anonymous said

    You, the GOS and the Mayor accuse Councillor Buck of wrong doings yet I am still waiting for the exact quote of wrong doings. I have read her blogs, I have watched the meetings I have yet to see where you will find these facts to back you up. On the other hand I have watched Councillor Mac disrespect(to put it politely) many Department Heads and she has not been the only one. We have seen others Fired at their hands and we have seen others leave because they just couldn't take it anymore. We now have town officials who are on PROBATION. Do you think that has anything to do with the decisions being made in the Town hall now. Just look at this last one. Hear today and gone tomorrow. Anyone think about how much that one just cost us. The Town Solicitor is always there, hired by the Mayor. Does he have a voice, his job is still not secured?

  19. Anonymous said

    we need change for 2010

    real change

    someone thats young and fresh, with vision for this town, someone that is honest and has integrity. Someone that will tell the citizen's the way it is no BS..not like this curent sap that is always on a witch hunt to correct political vendettas of the past.

    2010 CHANGE "YES WE CAN"

  20. Anonymous said

    There's a difference between taking a director to task for his report / work and implying that staff are breaching their statutory duties.

    I can't say for sure but I think not fulfilling your statutory duties is an offence under the Criminal Code. I think Councillor Buck described the conduct of senoir staff as a "breach of trust".

    Do you see the difference yet???

  21. Anonymous said

    Ah there is a big difference between conduct in council meetings and the cowardly away from council destructive conduct of Goo( the wizard of Mean).

  22. Anonymous said

    That's the kind of accountability that I'm looking for.

    can i have what you are smoking???

    wasn't it MacMor and the gang that were insulting staff from the begining of the term…

    was it not the Evil one that attacked a director during council on tv about his report

    once again the rules only apply to those not part of THE GOS..

    2010 Peace out!!!!

  23. Anonymous said

    To: Anonymous (aka secret society candidate), August 10, 2009 7:44PM:

    To join the rat pack secret society, please sign six copies of the code of conduct form, go to town hall and knock on the Mayor's door three times and then say the following pass words… "praise to MacMor and pass the Buck-shot". You will be contacted.

  24. Anonymous said

    Anonymous August 10, 2009 9:01 PM,
    You nailed it!

  25. Anonymous said

    Buck is casting the Town Clerk and Deputy Clerk in a very negative light. If she has any proof to support her claims she should deliver, if not she should retract her comments. Wouldn't you agree?

    Afterall this is how the whole can of worms was opened in the first place. Buck made desparaging comments about the senior staff and now even denies that.

    If she backed up her claims with facts, she would be more believable. That's the kind of accountability that I'm looking for. What about you?

  26. Heather said

    Is this a bad time to remind everyone that picking a username would help when readers are trying to figure out 'who said what'?

  27. Anonymous said

    Welcome to Councillor Buck's world – "never never never land".

    August 10, 2009 5:45 PM

    If Buck is in never never land then where are Gaertner and Granger based on their contributions to the issues on council..Alpha Centauri?

  28. Anonymous said

    is any politician held accountable??

    Your going to tell me that morris and the rest of the GOS apoligize for anything or are held accountable for anything???

    Its all the same BS

    time for a real change in 2010

    "yes we can"

  29. Anonymous said

    Dear Anonymous August 9 5:43 PM, who went out on a limb outing the rat pack's secret society to which I am supposed to belong.

    You wrote: "If I had to place a bet, I would have to guess that the anonymous comments made on August 8th at 3:49PM came from either one of the co-mayors or at the very least a member of the rat pack's secret society."

    With this being a secret society, I wonder if you should be leaking this information, from an ethical point of view.

    I would be interested in belonging. Can you direct me to the channels that would allow me to make contact? I know this is probably a difficult request to make since it is, after all, a secret society.
    Do they have a blog that you know of?

  30. Anonymous said

    Councillor Buck is implying that the Town Clerk or someone in that department is leaking information about the number of complaints and the object of the complaint filed with the IC.

    She drew her conclusions from a posting on the Aurora Citizen. Someone claiming to be the originator of that post has tried to post in Buck's blog trying to set the record straight. Apparently she refuses to acknowledge the points raised. The anonymous poster tells his compelling story to the Aurora Citizen (see August 10, 2009 12:51 PM)

    If Councillor Buck has any proof that staff have contravened the Municipal Act she should produce it or retract her comments.

    I suspect we won't see either, because Councillor Buck prefers to operate in "never never land" – where you never need any facts and never need to apoligize. And maybe never be held accountable either. Welcome to Councillor Buck's world – "never never never land".

  31. Anonymous said

    "Councillor Buck is using her position to try to destroy those who were legally elected."

    Uh…. Councillor Buck was legally elected too. I'm not sure what your point is…

  32. Anonymous said

    Councillor Buck is using her position to try to destroy those who were legally elected.
    She started as soon as this council took office.

    First off all one member was appointed not leaglly elected…

    secondly, let's take Mr Gallo for instance and go through a history lesson…

    This is the same person that called councillor Buck after the election and told her that she is to old and should step down and give way to someone younger "himself"
    So how is it that anyone could in good faith say that Mr Gallo putting his name on the complaint against Councilor Buck is not a conflict and politically motivated considering his past dealings with the councillor

    Just a thought….

    Remember there is only 8 people sitting at that table that we as Aurora citizen's leaglly elected…

    The other was appointed as a lap dog for Morris…

    2010 Peace OUT!!!!!

  33. White Knight said

    I would like to know if there is any recourse open to the taxpayers of Aurora in dealing decisively with the untenable, disgusting display that is our mayor and council. Our council seems to be unable to function in our interests and is frittering away our tax money daily in the pursuit of an obsessed witch hunt.
    How much more of this nonsense are we going to tolerate? How much more money are we prepared to let Phyllis Morris and her cohorts flush down the toilet to finance this absurdity?
    Surely there must be provisions in the Municipal Act to address an untenable situation that is preventing the town to accomplish its REAL business. An ad hoc election would at least afford us the opportunity to get rid of these freaks so that we can start over.
    Are there any legal opinions out there that have the answer to this question, please?

  34. Anonymous said

    What many discount is that there is a silent majority in Aurora.
    They sift through what they read.

    I think it's sad when friends try to have a say and are cut down for their views.

    We're not talking about freedom of speech here.
    We're not trying to understand different views.

    That's why I'm convinced Councillor Buck, and her supporters are out to destroy for their own personal reasons.

    Councillor Buck is using her position to try to destroy those who were legally elected.
    She started as soon as this council took office.

    Grace Marsh is unhappy. She quit.
    Now she wants to join forces with Councillor Buck.

    When someone criticized Councillor Buck she called it hate mail.
    There are too many contradictions.

    I don't like Councillor Buck's style.
    I don't like how she uses everything as a weapon in a political war.

    I don't like how she and her supporters on this blog trash any idea that is different from theirs.
    That's the litmus test of freedom of speech and that's what convinces me that motivations expressed here do not include open, diverse ideas.

  35. Razie said

    All this does not benefit any tax payer. Is there really no way to recall this council and mayor and replace them?

  36. Anonymous said

    Just so everyone is on the same page. Ms Buck has posted a blog entry that indicates that I have said something that I have not. I have posted a comment against the entry but she has not posted it. I think she will probably not post it as it does not serve her cause. Just so everyone knows the truth I would like to post it here.

    First of all, this is my original post in this thread:

    Anonymous said…
    So what is to happen to the process? I filed an informal complaint 2 weeks ago. One week ago I received an email from Mr. Nitkin that the complaint has been assigned a file number (in double digits I might add). Clearly there are others in the pipeline. I will be interested to see what happens.

    In part, Ms Buck's entry says…
    A revealing comment has been posted on the Aurora Citizen Blog.

    Anonymous suggests complaints in the double digits have been filed against myself with the Town's Integrity Commissioner.

    As you can see, I have NOT indicated that there are double digit complaints against her. Agreed, there is an additional post that says "multiple" complaints against her but that could be two.

    In my reply to her, I indicated that my complaint was not even against her. However, she likes to pick out the pieces that serve her best. If she would be 100% transparent with her arguments, perhaps she would have more credibility.

    As this process is supposed to be confidential, I have adopted the anonymous mantle and I am not going to reveal who the complaint is against.

  37. Anonymous said

    The GOO. Give me a break. there is but one villain in this whole big stink, and that person is PHYLLIS MORRIS. History has away of repeating itself and in this case it has. Let go back to the early nineties and the offsite orientation retreat. Who forced council of the day to get a
    legal opinion of the legality of such meetings. For those
    that need a hint it WASN't Ev Buck! What happened was an unfavourable legal ruling to the wishes of one Phyllis Morris and her loyal consort no mind Wendy Gaertner. It was in fact legal to hold meetings outside Aurora. Then like now considerable $$ were spent with similar results. Morris refused to accept them. BTW Morris and Gaertner boycotted the meeting to show their displeasure. To add insult to injury upon election as Mayor, she quickly and quietly attended the Region of site retreat. Yes lets focus on Buck….because the track record of Phyllis Morris is disgraceful!

  38. Anonymous said

    Elected councillors + 1 and the people of Aurora, please m o v e o n. There are too many election promises that you as councillors must complete before 2010. Do not spend anymore time slandering each other. Please!

  39. Anonymous said

    Anonymous of August 9, 2009 7:07 PM Doesn't she though and oh my God I love it. Go Evelyn Go! Maybe GOO should be GEG as in Go Evelyn Go and by the way she is not alone don't try to fool yourself, although you are clearly a fool.

    I hate to say it but, Evelina, this type of condescending crap does appeal to only you it sets you out from most others.

  40. Anonymous said

    Well now there is GOO, to go with GOS, Councillor Buck being Gang of One, storming Town Hall.

    Oh, GOO, you do have a flair for drama.

  41. someone who loves this town more than politics said

    I'm also "all for holding our elected representatives to the highest standards." and plan to do so in 2010 by making sure that none of the GOS can repeat this mockery of public office.

    Evelyn said here of the GOS "They don't know any other way", considering none of us our seeing it from a council seat I believe this is valuable insight.
    Seneca said "There is a great difference between not wishing to do evil and not knowing how."
    Is that what our integrity commissioner was confronting?

    I agree with Anonymous-9:29 AM that there is little chance any other Integrity Commissioner in this world would touch Aurora with a 100 foot pole. So it should be interesting to see how the GOS gets themselves out of the corner they've painted themselves in, I expect they will roll around and get as much paint on them as possible in attempts to put out the flames of their careers.

    The importance of Evelyn Buck's voice is that it comes from inside council, considering no one else speaks out (for whatever reason) silencing it would be a much larger breach of integrity than whatever vindictive complaint was filed to start this whole mess.

    Sure there are some of us that don't agree with Evelyn's approach, but we have to agree that she does a better job than any other councilor on getting opposing viewpoints heard. That is why I voted for her.

    Censorship will only serve to empower an already blatant power grubbing mayor who has swung council to do her bidding and not ours, the citizens. The bigger the wall they attempt to put up the more "transparent" this so-called government is, so I guess they can be congratulated for living up to their campaign promises.

    And even as our tax money continues to be pissed away for nothing more then saving the face of a GOS that has no chance being re-elected, I think of Will Rogers when he said "Be thankful we're not getting all the government we're paying for." Because that is no doubt what is being discussed behind the great wall.

  42. Anonymous said

    I can't quite fathom any logic that criticizes Mr. Nitkin for trying to be a peacemaker and then justifying his firing for such an offense. If peace and civility ever resulted from the adherence to a code of ethics I would have thought that would have been a desirable outcome, or at the very least a good start, but apparently not in this town where we never miss a chance to have a good fight.

    If I had to place a bet, I would have to guess that the anonymous comments made on August 8th at 3:49PM came from either one of the co-mayors or at the very least a member of the rat pack's secret society.

    The fact that the noble six appear to be inclined to suggest that this town needs more lawyers over peace makers really does leave one wondering how far off track this council will go.

    Is this really the kind of change that this town voted for in the last election ? I have to hope not.

  43. Anonymous said

    Excuse me!? The Supreme Court? Hello, this is Aurora we're talking about here…. This is getting completely ridiculous!

  44. Anonymous said

    Anonymous (of pick a time stamp, there are many) referenced:

    "early electioneering tactics."

    What have you been doing with your multiple comments as the resident Morris apologist? Attempting to counter the obvious discontent and dismay with the mayor and her tactics with constant down-is-up, black-is-white arguments?

    One person has been targeted (by foul means), yet she is at "war" with Town Council?! Who is the victim here (an overused term, I know)? Even the dismissal of the Integrity Commissioner (the need for which is debatable, even if the nefarious intent is blatantly obvious) is blamed on Cllr Buck.

    For someone so concerned with optics, it appears the mayor now doesn't care how things look or is so delusional as to not see them as others might perceive them. The IC won't do as she wants (says?) so he's gone without a public announcement of his findings. But they covered themselves by publishing and publicizing (at some public expense) the besmirching charges against their nemesis. They must have had a suspicion that Mr Nitkin wouldn't "play ball" (considering how long it took for the contract to be signed).

    Although they had created the mechanism of the IC – the much-vaunted "process" spouted by a few here, contrived with malice aforethought – he wasn't going to be their 'hammer' to Cllr Buck's 'nail'.

    I will give you marks for persistence, Resident Morris Apologist. And I do rate loyalty, but fealty to this flawed lot does you no credit.

    Dear Sir or Madam, you are defending the indefensible – and failing, as they are.

  45. Anonymous said

    don't worry it will be challenged

    it's called judicial review Phyllis

    rules have to be followed even by you..

    "I'm all for holding our elected representatives to the highest standards."

    thats shocking considering it is MorMac that broke rules to allow procedure to be waived with out the 2/3 majority they needed

    and thats just one instance of MorMac's incompetence and idiocy

    trust me there is a long list much longer then any other politician in the history of Aurora

    i'm voting for the monkey in 2010

    2010 peace out!!!!

  46. Anonymous said

    Queen of Mean Buck needs to go.

    Then we can focus on making this a compassionate, caring community.

    Pay the lawyer, establish fair boundaries.

    Of course it is far more challenging to express ideas, criticism, through a thoughtful, respectful, instructive lens.
    Councillor Buck and her peons are fearful that regulations would be brought to bear on their early electioneering tactics.

    By establishing legal parameters for responsible criticism residents might consider participating in political discourse in an accepting, yet challenging atmosphere.

    I'm all for holding our elected representatives to the highest standards.
    I support paying for legal advice in pushing that agenda forward.
    I want rules and regulations to be enforced!
    I support the enforcement of the Town's Code of Conduct, signed by all but one, the one who is ironically finding herself in a situation where complaints about her have been lodged with the IT.
    Without total enforcement of the Code it has zero value.
    We have already invested in the importance of a Code of Conduct.

    I want the Code to be challenged and explored, like
    the Supreme Court might do.
    I want serious boundaries.

  47. Anonymous said

    I don't think Mr. Nitkin is being discredited.
    He was unable to enforce Aurora Council's Code of Conduct, because of his own brand.

    The problem is he agreed to follow the Code of Conduct because he really believed that he could sit down with people to resolve things and wouldn't have to enforce the Code.

    He hadn't anticipated the likes of Warrior Councillor Buck.

    She LOVES the battle and with that love in mind ensures that no civil solutions can exist on Council.
    It's no accident that Councillor Buck puts more into blogs than into Council meetings.

    And what about her wanting to spend more on the megadollar baseball field than even the baseballers wanted?
    She is as we say in the trade a contrarian.
    That's her brand and she doesn't much care whose reputations she attacks in order to establish her brand.
    It's all about her.

    And I'm just not that into her.

    Her brand is that of warrior.
    What excuse do those that support her have?

  48. Anonymous said

    August 9, 2009 9:17 AM

    Yes we are all dumb and misinformed but you are the wise one…lol

    You say you are one of many complaints agaisnt Buck…..

    Well i think you should count and find out how many complaints there are against morris and GOS ( many more then against Buck…

    These are facts not misconception

    you say "Lots of censorship going on here.

    Lots of assumptions and rumour mongering; strange values indeed."

    You should be carefull who you say that to…if you had said that to the mayor she would hire a laywer with taxpayers money and sue you…

    New Town slogan

    Aurora, YOU'RE FIRED!!!

    Donald Trump would love this town

    The mayor would probally fire him too…..we all know she is smarter then everybody….haha

    Wow can't wait for 2010 for real change "yes we can"

    I think a monkey could do a better job as mayor!!!!

    2010 PEACE OUT!!!!!

  49. Anonymous said

    I'm tired of the carping of Councillor Buck.
    She has turned my Aurora into a battle zone.
    She is the spark and the fire.

    She stands in the way of civility.
    And as she says she has nothing to lose.
    I don't like having someone elected to office with the attitude of nothing to lose.

    I have a lot to lose with her as an elected councillor.

    I'm patient. I'll wait, I'll work to ensure she is not elected again.

    And as for Grace Marsh, she was elected and quit.
    Who could possibly consider voting for her?
    I voted for her and she quit.
    End.

  50. Anonymous said

    Why does anyone think for one moment that after what they have done with the Integrity Commissioner and the slander that the GOS will not manufacture to discredit him, that there is another Integrity Commissioner in this world that would touch Aurora with a 100 foot pole. Any complaints as stated in the GOS's notification are either stayed or abeyed until the commission of another Commissioner, good luck with any complaint issued to date. The wording alone is of legal contention and if any complaint goes further it only justifies further legal recourse for anyone involved. I would be extremely careful what you are complaining about and who? You never know what dark horse will jump out at you.

    One more question…. was legal council, Mr. John Mascarin, in attendance at the closed session meeting on Thursday and if so how much did this little escapade cost us?

  51. Anonymous said

    Lots of censorship going on here.

    Lots of assumptions and rumour mongering; strange values indeed.
    I too filed a complaint: against Councillor Buck.

    Mr. Nitkin was dealing with MULTIPLE complaints against Councillor Buck, who loves to play the game that she is above the law.

    And it's Councillor Buck who has never had a daytime job and hasn't ever that I've heard of as long as she has lived in Aurora.
    She does spend ALL her time cooking up new ways she can capture attention .
    Her goal is to be noticed!
    She doesn't have power but is desperate to find ways to exert her will.

  52. Grace Marsh said

    Anonymous 3:49 pm
    I have no reason for sour grapes. I am not there by MY choice. However, I continue to be a tax paying concerned citizen.

    Anonymous 5:50 pm
    There was no person or process available at the time. I tried to find a way. I talked to former and current Sr. staff in and outside of Aurora as well as elected officials outside Aurora. Had I felt there was another way, othering than resigning I would have taken it.

  53. Anonymous said

    So what is to happen to the process? I filed an informal complaint 2 weeks ago. One week ago I received an email from Mr. Nitkin that the complaint has been assigned a file number (in double digits I might add). Clearly there are others in the pipeline. I will be interested to see what happens.

  54. Walt said

    From:

    http://www.georginaadvocate.com/News/Aurora/article/94317

    Questions and concerns can often be resolved quickly by Mr. Nitkin or through a referral to another organization.

    Complaints, on the other hand, follow a different path. The complaint will be heard by the integrity commissioner and then evaluated.

    Those found frivolous, vexatious, not made in good faith or only political in nature will be dismissed and the dismissal will be accompanied by an explanation.

    Hmmmm. Not only did they not like the answer, but they didn't want the explanation getting out to the real world.

    There's some serious mind-messing on, people.

  55. Anonymous said

    Mr Nitkins credentials can still be seen online at http://www.town.aurora.on.ca/aurora/index.aspx?CategoryID=312&lang=en-CA until the GOS have it fully removed from the internet archives. But here they are again for your interest.

    David Nitkin is a rare breed in North America: a full-time corporate ethicist. He does original writing, teaching, consulting and research on corporate social accountability, ethics auditing, and enhancing ethical management and partnering. Mr Nitkin is

    *President of EthicScan Canada, Canada's oldest, full-service corporate responsibility research house and ethics consultancy
    *Author or editor of several books, including The Ethical Shoppers Guide, Shopping With a Conscience, Ethical Wills, and Conscious Consumption
    * An international speaker, writer and trainer in the area of Ethics in Business
    * Publisher of The Corporate Ethics Monitor.
    * past national chair of the Ethics Practitioners Association of Canada
    *Sessional lecturer in International Business Ethics, Schulich School of Business, York University
    *Author of over one hundred and fifty published studies or comparative reviews of corporate and organizational integrity behaviour;
    * Ethics advisor to a number of public and private sector organizations, including companies, integrity commissions, human rights commissions, and public service commissions
    * Product team manager of the EthicsAssurance© enterprise pulse taking tool;
    * President of the Canadian Clearing-house for Consumer and Corporate Ethics,

    Mr. Nitkin graduated with a MA (Historical Geography, York University), and at the top of his class in Honours BA (Geography, University of Toronto). David lectures widely on a number of ethics themes: notably, ethics assurance; the changing nature of corporate responsibility; organizational reputation management; and effective frameworks for enhancing ethical management in corporations.

    David's many volunteer and community services include Board positions with the Bathurst-Lawrence Four Quadrants Community Association, The Ethics Practitioners Association of Canada, and breakfast team leader of the Toronto Out of the Cold Program.

    He strikes me as pretty qualified. It appears Mayor Morris and her faithful lackey Councillor MacEachern feel they are more "quackified".

  56. Evelyn Buck said

    David Nitkin made it clear from the outset,repeatedly and publicly, his role would not be that of a policeman.

    I made it clear to him from the outset he would not be allowed to do his job.

    His answer;
    " Councillor Buck, I have had success with governments and people with blood on their hands"

    He certainly did not anticipate finding what he did on the Council of the Town of Aurora.

    Now we will watch them do to him what they did to Grace Marsh and are poised to do to Councillors Bob McRoberts and Alison Collins Mrakas.

    They don't know any other way.

  57. Anonymous said

    I am really disappointed that this mayor and council has done such a bad job of what they call integrity. They really are a disappointment.
    A councillor has quit and non elected person is now a councillor. There has been so much money wasted on lawyers and now on an integrity commissioner has been dismissed since the answer he gave them was not what they wanted.
    Three councillors did not even get to see the final statement.
    Why? Ask the mayor and her loyal but fumbling councillors.
    This group has destroyed freedon in the town. They have basically told the citizens of Aurora that they have no rights any more. They do not care if the residents wanted a byelection. They do not care nor do they heed their election promises. They do not care what we, the residents think.

    All I can ask is that we the residents tell them that we do not care for their type of government. Vote them all out next November. Tell them that they are an embarrassment to Aurora and that this joke has to stop.

  58. Anonymous said

    Grace resigned before there was a code of conduct, or an integrity commissioner, I believe.

    "No attendance, no voice but another opportunity to blame the six who make the effort to actually wrestle with and decide on appropriate action.
    Not criticize, but focus and discuss and have the intestinal fortitude to act."

    I think that Evelyn's participation will forever be a moot point. Not that she isn't valuable, because she is, but because the GOS always vote as a block. ALWAYS. McRoberts and CollinsMrakas often side with Evelyn, but 6 is always greater than three, no matter how you slice it. I think Evelyn does a fine job of telling us what's really going on. I can see it's a thorn in the side of the GOS – but if they'd just let her say what she thinks (and if they were doing the right thing), nobody would be in the bad books.

  59. Anonymous said

    To Anonymous Aug 8 3:49 – Could you please direct us to the specific areas on the town website that indicate that the Integrity Commissioner saw himself as a peacemaker? Seems to me that you must be a member of council in attendance at the August 6 meeting to be in the position to make such a statement. All references to Mr Nitkin have been removed from the town site already, but his qualifications as outlined on the EthicScan website are quite impressive, which would likely be the reason that he was engaged in the first place. How many more "errors will be made" before council finds it's ideal Integrity Commissioner? This would appear to be defeating the intended purpose.

  60. Anonymous said

    Blame blame blame, that is what is so open and transparent about the GOS. Mr. Nitkin is a highly educated, extremely intellegent man, with great experience behind him and you are glad they made this decision. Ha! you and the 6 councillors involved deserve each other. There is no assuming what has happened here if it was to be open and transparent and was in favour of the GOS you can bet your butt it would have been broadcast from here to eternity, not so.

    There is not one degree, diploma or any sign of higher education between these six members, however they claim to know better than people with the background to back up the choices they make. They claim the Integrity Commissioner had an agenda that is as funny as hell seeing as it is quite apparent the agenda sits with the GOS.

    By the way I am curious, does Wilson, Gallo, Gaertner or Morris have a daytime job or do they just sit and conjure up whatever delinquent ideas they may have all day? I have heard a multitude of gossip about them, unfortunately it is not worth repeating here. These people might try helping society and the economy by getting a real job, whatever they may qualify for. I did see a help wanted sign at Walmart, but then again I can just picture them telling people what they should and should not purchase, like no one but them can make a decision. How highly intelligent they are.

    It makes me absolutely sick.

    To anonymous of 5:50 p.m.did you know that the agenda was only put out after three councillors notified the Acting or not Acting Deputy Clerk that they would not be in attendance and the reasons behind that decision, of course not, you just spew that crap like the other six. The Acting or Not Acting Deputy Clerk sent the Agenda at 13 minutes to 5, these councillors who chose not to attend would have been enroute to the meeting by then and would not have received it any way. Only a friend of the GOS's would blame blame blame someone without understanding the circumstances. You deserve what you get.

    Grace keep up the great work you do on a daily basis and I hope you run for council again in 2010 I am certain the change in the mayors seat will be beneficial to all of us. You most definitely have my vote.

  61. Anonymous said

    Grace you are sorely missed on Town Council…

  62. Anonymous said

    Grace Marsh I hope you can help me with a few things I don't understand.

    You write,"I actually do have firsthand experience with how other Members of this Council , including the Mayor have criticised staff."
    Why didn't you lodge a formal complaint?
    You make the observation, why didn't you do something?

    Now you are saying you wanted to weigh in on the process.
    After you walked away from an oath you had taken to speak for me, someone who voted for you.

    I don't understand your actions, and motivation for those actions.

    Kind of like the councillors who chose not to attend a meeting that contained closed-session agenda items.
    You don't deserve my vote when you can't be bothered attending a meeting, because you don't feel like going.

    No attendance, no voice but another opportunity to blame the six who make the effort to actually wrestle with and decide on appropriate action.
    Not criticize, but focus and discuss and have the intestinal fortitude to act.

    They ARE out there open for me to see them struggling with our changing times, trying to make a difference, to make a community.
    I appreciate what they are doing for me at my age(a senior) after all the years I have lived in Aurora (45 years).

  63. Anonymous said

    Careful, Grace Marsh. Sour grapes can leave stains.

    I assume from what I read on the Town's website that Mr. Nitkin was not prepared to follow the procedures set out in the Code of Conduct. His had a different agenda. He saw himself as a peacemaker.

    What is needed for the job is someone with a law degree.
    I think Council erred in hiring Mr. Nitkin because it would never serve Councillor Buck's purposes to negotiate or problem-solve with those she attacks.
    It's what Mr. Nitkin claims to be his strength.

    I applaud the decision to learn that an error was made, cut the losses and move on.

    And make no mistake if you are in the path of a bulldozer it is prudent to have a backup plan.
    And Councillor Buck bulldozing into Town office with a young videographer in tow shows the lengths to which she is prepared to go to continue her war on Town Council.

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