In this challenging summer of COVID-19, all hands at Town Hall, including Council and Administration, need to be working hard and working together in the public interest. It is disappointing, to say the least, to learn of yet another counter-productive distraction, one that has transpired over the past six weeks, resulting in Councillor Adam Walker filing a petition in the BC Supreme Court against the Town of Qualicum Beach.
Councillor Walker’s court petition, a public document available through BC Court Services Online, alleges that the Town has — through multiple in-camera Council resolutions — attempted to impose some form of sanctions on Walker based on evidence that was not disclosed to Walker, withheld documents requested by Walker, held a hearing without notifying Walker in advance, did not allow an opportunity for Walker to challenge the evidence, did not provide the charges made nor remedial actions being sought, and did not provide Walker an opportunity to have anyone represent or assist him.
On the surface, these allegations describe a Kafkaesque process, as do the specific facts claimed by Councillor Walker in his court petition. Based on the contents of Walker’s court petition, judicial review of the Town’s actions does seem to be in order to ensure due process and that legal rights and requirements are being respected, by all parties.
We sense that this conflict may not go away anytime soon; Second Opinion QB will provide updates as information becomes available.
Councillor Walker filed his petition at the BC Supreme Court registry on July 28. At the time of writing this article, the Town of Qualicum Beach had not yet filed a Response.
Note: The Town’s website typically notes any special in-camera Council meetings, but it makes no mention of any special in-camera meetings held between their regular meetings on June 24 and July 15 such as are described in Councillor Walker’s court petition.