Opinion – What happened to integrity?

through the looking glassBy Marianne Curtis

Something smells rotten in La Broquerie and it is not the hog barns.

When I attended a recent municipal council meeting, I noted the camera mounted on the left side of the council chambers. After working at an alarm company, I recognized it immediately, along with the one in the alcove to the right side of the entrance. These are only two of many hidden cameras that monitor the entire municipal office, including the offices of several staff.

Yet not a single delegation that appeared before council that night was told that they were being taped. Why would a municipality feel so threatened that they would install so many cameras, without the knowledge of their own staff – and even some of the councilors.

Who installed them and why? Who paid for them? Where is the invoice?

Unfortunately, no one is talking, not even the reeve.

Maybe they were installed to address the mystery of alleged missing files and items from the municipal office and after hours entry to the building by unauthorized persons, and perhaps individual current council members.

Hopefully the Ombudsman will get to the bottom of all these matter during his investigation because he knows everything, including about the cameras.

For the past month, the RM of La Broquerie reeve has been telling local media that the municipality has finally been able bring the municipal accounts into the black.

What she hasn’t said, is that money from the sale of the former municipal office is what put the municipality’s books back on track because the money was put into the “cash” accounts. This was confirmed by their new acting chief administrator.

It is unfortunate that a council that is elected on the pretence of being fair, open and honest can turn out to be worse then its predecessors. Not only is it difficult to get a hold of anyone, it is also difficult to get a straight answer.

Just ask the CBC reporter who recently went to a La Broquerie council meeting only to discover that the person who denied being the reeve of the municipality the day before, was sitting behind council’s table – in the reeves chair.

With a municipal election a mere nine months away, it is time to start looking at municipal representatives that may be vying for your vote and this time, select ones that not only know the meaning of integrity but also strive to maintain it.

~as published in the April 2010 Dawson Trail Dispatch

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