I have been doing some research into Mr. Howie’s previous employment with the District of North Vancouver. I am posting some excerpts and links to documents (city council minutes, reports, etc.) that some people may find interesting to read.
Excerpts of documents relating to Gord Howie in his former position as Municipal Manager in the District of North Vancouver
(all items in quotes are actual excerpts from original documents-use links to see actual document)
April 22, 2003 â€“Excerpts from North Vancouver council meeting minutes
-They indicate that Gord Howie was still employed as Municipal Manager
- Northlands review committee was due to meet with Council shortly. (an investigation into suspected fraud of the District of North Vancouver by the Northlands golf course manager)
May, 2003 -Special audit of Northlands Golf Course is completed. (an investigation of the Northlands Golf course and suspected fraud of the District of North Vancouver in the amount of $300,000 ) The following are some of the comments made by the auditors.
â€œmisappropriation of funds from the District occurred because there was a breakdown in controls. Essentially controls were in place, but were not being followed. Controls currently in place include segregation of duties, proper authorization of transactions and activities, and independent checks on performanceâ€
What began as a concerned citizen worried about some unusual contracts now seems to be a personal vendetta.
good work AnnaA, don’t listen to the bulls**t that i’m sure is about to be flung your way.the few that don’t have anything better to do are always first to hang the hangman when the chance arises on here, trust me i have had my fair share of lynch mobs come gunning for me on this site. maybe there should be better background checks done for the people we get in important positions, hell i can’t stand the gaming center in town but even they will find out if your not right for the job due to a sketchy background!
You’re right, thepunisher, I’m sure the City hired Mr. Howie without a resume. Weird, though.
The only reason I’m first to post is because I’m one of the few here who is going against the grain in this situation. Plus, I get off work at 11:30–sorry for that.
My statement suggesting that there is something personal going on here is a fair one, I think. I’m curious why AnnaA is so intent on ruining Mr. Howie.
I think there’s a lot more evidence of wrongdoings at City Hall than there are of any personal vendetta, Eccentric.
Stooping to the Ad hominem doesn’t do you any good.
How about you refute her points instead of trying to cloud the issue?
Well Eccentric, I am not sure why you consider my posting of these documents a vendetta. As a concerned citizen I am sharing information I have found with others. How is that a personal vendetta? Surely people reading these documents are capable of coming to their own conclusions regarding them?
Eccentric, I find it interesting that you are trying to focus the debate on my reasons for posting this information instead of on the real issues. Perhaps it’s because the issues and the facts behind them speak for themselves?
Let me give you a bit of a heads up. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I am not hiding behind any screen name, unlike yourself. I take full responsibility for the things I say and post on here.
One thing I will say, I am intent on making sure those responsible for acting improperly are taken to task and held responsible for their actions. Mr. Howie and the Mayor both need to be held responsible for their illegal actions. Here are some reasons why.
When Mr. Howie and Mayor Pond decided back in 2006 to hire Mr. Howieâ€™s spouse and to do it in a manner in which they took it upon themselves to enter into a contract that is not legally incurred, and not to bring it to council for legal authorization as required under the act (Community Charter), then they put themselves in jeopardy through their illegal actions. They wouldn’t have been able to succeed in doing this had they not been able to throw a cloak of secrecy over the matter in its entirety, keeping both members of council and the public in the dark.
These types of abuses can only occur when people do not take the responsibility to inform themselves of their duties and obligations as council members and as members of the public. Healthy democratic government does not occur without informed citizens that take the time to look at issues and topics, to learn about them and to then arrive at informed opinions or decisions, and then share this information with others.
Perhaps if members of council had asked these questions from the outset, the good people of Prince Rupert would not be in the position of having seen some $100,000 plus of their tax dollars go out in payments under illegal contracts and this number may be even more if it turns out that Mr. Howieâ€™s contracts were improperly or illegally entered into as well.
After all, the Mayorâ€™s silence on why the City Manager got additional monies as a supplier of services in BOTH 2006 and 2007 when he was a salaried employee has not been satisfactorily answered.
If everything was done properly, transparently and according to law - how can it possibly “ruin” anyone?
Eccentric, now why does it seem like someone is trying to bring Howie down, I something smells shitty in the kitchen do you just be silent and eat it or do you try and find the source. If individuals in City Hall are messing with your tax dollars how do you handle it. If your so called mayor is or has gone to far on his Bullshit smile and your expense you cut his wings Turkeys are not supposed to fly anyway. Annie has done much of Rupert a great deal why question her let us question HERBIE,HOWIE and all the rest who we put in their seats.
Just another reminder that you’re not as anonymous as you’d think on the internet, and that a court order will almost instantly reveal your identity.
So, with that in mind, how about we not post anything that can be considered libel or slander?
dz302, how about you edit your message so that it doesn’t involve any libel or slander? Otherwise, it stays the way it is, and you’re responsible for it.
[quote=“MiG”] Otherwise, it stays the way it is, and you’re responsible for it.
Ah - MiG - if only every elected official had a MiG reminding them that they are responsible for their words and cannot hide from that.
Uhm, I’m not a lawyer, but I don’t think simply identifying something as hearsay and rumour will take you off the hook for actually repeating said hearsay and rumour, you may wish to reconsider Mig’s advice…
Here are a couple new documents I found while searching the North Vancouver district website.
It appears from these documents that Mr. Howie was trying to get the North Vancouver council to put a policy in place to limit public access to information. (which could potentially interfere with Freedom of Information requests depending on one’s interpretation of the policy)
You can see the entire reports by clicking on the links below:
Essentially the reports were looking into having council adopt a policy that would give the Municipal Manager (Mr. Howie at the time), the power to decide if he felt the requests for information from the public were repetitious, systematic, frivolous or vexatious in nature, and if so he would be able to bring the request to council for a resolution to disregard the request.
Here are a few interesting excerpts from the reports:
Reasons he gives to council for wanting the policy:
-" increasing number of requests for non-routine information from the public, where the information is not readily available, and where a substantial amount of time is required to prepare a reply"
-“request may be so broad and far reaching that it could consume several days of staff time to respond.”
-“In the absence of such a policy, staff is left with no option but to respond to each and every request regardless of the amount of time and resources required and the associated cost.”
The Basic Proposal
“it is proposed that Council consider approval of a policy whereby staff, who
consider requests to be repetitious or systematic in nature, can refer such requests to the Municipal Manager through their respective Director. If the Municipal Manager concurs that the requests are repetitious or systematic, the Municipal Manager will report on same to Council, and seek Councilâ€™s approval to disregard the requests.”
Looking at these documents, one has to wonder why Mr. Howie wanted to restrict public access to information in his previous position as Municipal Manager of the District of North Vancouver. All of his arguments could have been solved by putting in a policy that charged people for the extra time it took to fulfill their requests.
Instead he pushed for a policy that would interfere with public access to information, which seems in direct opposition to the Freedom of Information Act.
Why limit public access if there is nothing to hide? Why not allow the public to view the documents they are entitled to, and if there is substantial time and costs involved, charge them accordingly? It makes one wonder what Mr. Howie’s views are on public access to information, as required under the Freedom of Information & Protection of Privacy Act. Does he believe people have the right to this information or not?
Well-said, Anna. Why indeed?
I must say after reading these documents (the documents regarding the Northlands scandal and the report recommending that public access to information be limited), as well as the ones regarding the timeline for Mr. Howie’s termination from the District of North Vancouver, I am quite disturbed by the chain of events and the possible implications for us in Prince Rupert.
It seems to me that when I look at what had happened with Mr. Howie trying to repress public access to information in North Vancouver, it strikes me as too much of a coincidence that Mr. Howie was trying to block public access to information within 12 months of the Northlands scandal.
Is it just a coincidence or is this a case of history repeating itself?
Just out of curosity, has anyone ever bothered to obtain and take a close look at the expense accounts of city officials and other city sponsored organizations?
I used to question the transparency of just how taxpayers money was used and if it really did benefit the locals.
Just a question - that’s all?
That would be my suggestion as well, Who is holding the purse and who has the card?
As for be any benefit to the community there are many in this town who walk away from meetings feeling the same way…Confused… Some of these people who are elected to represent the citizens do not wish to be there because they are performing. Some do it to climb that corp. ladder and sleeze into others positions, I would welcome some kind of checking these individuals out. Is that where freedom of information comes in? Maybe we should as concerned citizens pick an area and ask for some info on the iisues at hand.
What happened in Vancouver is a non-issue. His terminitation was simply the Mayor’s way of saying “the buck stops here”–or rather, the buck stops there.
Technically Howie should have known what was going on with the Golf Course project, but Vancouver is a big city and he can’t stop by every project site to make sure things are running smoothly–he would have delegated. He should have known, he didn’t, and he was let go. However, he had no part in the scandal.
AnnaA, did you write a letter to The Vancouver Sun coming to Howie’s defense when he was fired without Council approval?.. Seeing as how you’re such an advocate for following policies and procedures, and have nothing against Howie himself, it seems like you would have written up a letter when you read these documents.
Yes, the barber, the nurse, the union member, the pilot, the Port Ed resident, and the banker all have high flying hopes up the corperate ladder at City Hall.