Amaranth Township Council’s public question period Wednesday was dominated by concerns about wind turbines, and accusations of irregular handling of a public appointment to the arena board.
Former mayor Bob Currie, who had served on the board during 12 of his years on the council, had been one of two applicants for the advertised arena position.
The council had selected an applicant from Waldemar for the position, rather than Mr. Currie. The Waldemar appointee subsequently resigned the post.
At the council meeting Wednesday, Mr. Currie said he had evidence that the deputy mayor had then made at least one phone call seeking a new applicant for the position.
Deputy Mayor Walter Kolodziechuk denied he had done so, but that he had been “out in the community” (when the topic arose), whereupon Mr. Currie – in his colourful fashion – accused the deputy mayor of being, in more polite terms, untruthful.
Mayor Don MacIver appeared shocked by the revelation that any member had spoken to anyone about the appointment.
“I should have known of this before the meeting,” he said, adding that the position “was advertised. There is no change from the process. We will not be searching for other candidates. You’re the man of the hour.”
Mr. Currie, however, indicated he no longer wanted to serve as a council appointee to the arena board. Additionally, he accused the council of fiscal irresponsibility in having appointed someone from Waldemar – a round-trip of 40 miles – rather than someone within a round trip of eight, in view of mileage charges.
On turbines, a resident had concerns that the township would be getting “1,041,” on the basis of a flyer she had received in her mailbox.
Mayor MacIver assured the lady that, although he was aware that several companies were negotiating leases, there had not been approaches to the council by many of those.
The flyer “notice” did not come from the Township, but a notice of an impending Ontario Municipal Board pre-hearing on the 15th did.
The mayor said the council is following a “systematic” planning procedure in considering turbines. “The properties have to be individually zoned,” he said.
By Wes Keller
8 February 2007
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