As BTravenn has so eloquently pointed out, the mayor was not being dishonest.
See for yourself.
“Nearly half of the area proposed to be included in the City boundaries includes Prince Ruperts’ water system watershed and a City owned land (green color below). The rational for the boundary extension is to have increased influence over any development within the City water supply and to have increased influence over any future development for the lands which are quite close to Kaien Island across from Fern Passage and Morse Basin”
princerupert.ca/sites/defaul … oposal.pdf
It’s becoming increasingly clear that many of us only received, or chose to receive, part of the information provided.[/quote]
Yes, but the information was not provided in a readily accessible manner that promoted public information and dialogue. I’m familiar with that quote, which mentions unspecified “development”, because I researched the boundary extension proposal on the City’s web site.
While I think that in this instance Mr Brain’s allegation that the Mayor “failed to be honest” was an over-statement, the information provided and the way it was provided only just lets the Mayor off the hook. Boundary extension proposals must be disclosed to the public, but that is a good example of how information flow is kept to a minimum. It’s technical compliance.
The current Mayor and his council studiously avoid communicating with the public. Under the Community Community there is a list of issues that they “may” discuss in meetings that exclude the public: < bclaws.ca/civix/document/LOC … #section90 >, but that discretion has been turned into a standard way of doing things.
This is the only council that I’ve come across in north-central BC that has what amount to regularly scheduled closed meetings. Very little information is released from those meetings.
Sometimes I wonder if the reason for that is that Mayor Mussallem is uncomfortable with public discussion because he is out of his depth on some issues. Another thought is that they keep disclosure to a minimum to avoid public criticism.[/quote]
What information wasn’t readily accessible? Do you mean that the City should have declared that Exxon/Imperial was looking at lot 444 prior to the area becoming part of municipal boundaries? The way that I see it is that the primary goal was to protect the water supply. The LNG project is very preliminary and it’s far from a foregone conclusion. But now that the city has lot 444 within its boundaries, discussion on how to utilize the land can take place. Indicating that any particular company was interested in that location before the province approved the boundary expansion would have been putting the cart before the horse. As you pointed out, references were made in regards to industrial use. Depending on how one looks at it, the optics of announcing a prospective LNG facility in the location being discussed could be questionable. I don’t see it as being dishonest or deceitful however. I see it as waiting until the City had the boundary issue sorted out before making an exciting announcement.
And as far as I can remember, the issue of closed door meetings was an issue when Herb Pond was in office so it’s unfair to make such statements about mussallem.