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Press release December 15, 2017

December 15 2017

Because of recent events which have taken place, we feel it is important to shed some light on the matter involving the Mayor and Council of the town of Dalhousie.

We sincerely apologize for the current situation we are dealing with and we hope it can be resolved and move forward. The intent of Council was to try to handle the situation internally which is why Council did not react publicly, but because of social media, it has gone viral.

We have now come to a point where it is important that our citizens get the whole story and not just what appears on Facebook. From the beginning, the Mayor and Council have not been replying to any comments made on Facebook whatsoever as this is not the proper means of communication of a Town Council. We will elaborate more on Council procedures below.

Councilor Maloney
In all fairness to Councilor Maloney it is important to note that he did bring some good ideas and his intentions were for the best. However, that being said, Councilor Maloney could not accept the fact that this is a democracy and sometimes you don’t always get your way. It was in these instances where Councilor Maloney used bullying tactics; raising his voice, foul language and ridiculed other Councilors about their professions and always reminded everyone that he was the expert at meetings and negotiations, as he has been involved in unions for over 40 years. Councilor Maloney dwells in the past and should realize that a council doesn’t function like union meetings.... When things didn’t go Councilor Maloney’s way, he often takes it out on anyone involved.

In his first few months on Council he publicly insulted an employee at a Town Public Meeting and again to another employee at a committee meeting. Councilor Maloney often blamed employees or Mayor and councilors for any wrong-doings or mistakes that were made. An example of such, is where a message was sent to all of council to attend an event at the Dalhousie Rotary Park. This email was sent twice, once by the Mayor informing Councillors that he wasn’t available and it was also sent by the Administrative-Assistant. For whatever reason, Councilors got their wires crossed and did not show. Nobody confirmed attendance so everyone thought someone else was going but no-one did. This was a mistake, it happens and we have since taken steps to make sure it won’t happen again. Councilor Maloney could not understand or accept this mistake and decided it would be ok to shame the Clerk-Treasurer and the Administrative Assistant by posting that they did not do their job, when in fact we have the copies of the email and the date it was sent. Councillor Maloney was included on both correspondence, however he would never admit he was as guilty as the others. We will all make mistakes but we must learn from them. There are countless examples on Facebook where Councilor Maloney turned brainstorming discussions into FACTS.

Councilor Maloney started his own survey on the relocation of the ice cream shop with no decision of Town Council even being made. Councilor Maloney took an idea from an informal discussion and blew it out of context which created a landslide effect of lies and innuendo.

Councilor Maloney has belittled and humiliated employees on numerous occasions on Dalhousie and Area Facebook page and these comments were unwelcomed and offensive. Further proof of this is a quote by Councilor Maloney posted on June 21st, 2017, one of many. “Well if one looks at the amount of staff working at the Town Hall, including senior staff there is always someone off”. This is an odd thing to comment on, about employee time off, since Councilor Maloney hasn’t set foot in the building since joining the Council, other than meetings in the evenings. Finally, there are the many emails where he has insulted staff and Council that we will not get into or share publicly. 

When elected, all of Council and the Mayor has signed an affirmation that reads as follows:

“In conformity with the duties of my work as elected official for the Town of Dalhousie, And in conformity with the rules to protect privacy set out in the Right to Information and Protection of Privacy that the Town is subject,

I, solemnly and sincerely affirm that I will not divulge any personal or confidential information that the Town collects except where: It is necessary to do my work; I am authorized to do so and only to those authorized who need to know the information to carry out their work.”

Councilor Maloney breached this affirmation by posting names of employees, by sharing private information and even posting some private emails between the Mayor and Council.

These are just some examples of the conduct of Councilor Maloney that the Mayor, Council, employees as well as members of the DBIAC and Recreaplex board have been dealing with in the last 18 months.

There is a fine line between transparency and leaking sensitive information.

Contrary to what people think, the Mayor was actually trying to help Councilor Maloney and often told him that his heart was in the right place but he needed to dial it down a bit, the Mayor also stated this at a public meeting.

The fact is, that the Mayor was asked by Councilors and employees time and time again to take action to try to stop Councilor Maloney from bullying, and continuously posting insults as well as putting out false information about Town projects, personnel and the list goes on.

Facts:
At the September 18th public meeting and several other times in committee, Councilor Maloney was asked by the Mayor to stop posting incomplete and inaccurate information concerning town activities as well as some sensitive information on Facebook, Councilor Maloney flat out refused.

He was reminded that any official release of information had to come from the Mayor or sanctioned by him, since the Mayor is the voice of the Council. After this meeting, Councilor Maloney mentioned he would be absent for some time for personal reasons. Any councillor present or not has the opportunity to add items to a private or public committee agenda. Councillor Maloney as all other Councillors have an alternate Chair named in case of absence.

On November 16th, Councilor Maloney emailed the Mayor and Council requesting to add four items of discussion to the November 20th public meeting agenda. The Mayor replied that these items should be discussed at a private or committee meeting and told him to add these items for the next committee or a private meeting in December as they dealt with confidential matters concerning staff and collective agreement as per section 10.2(4) of the municipalities act.

At the November 20th public meeting, the Mayor called the meeting to order. Councilor Maloney immediately handed his list of items to be added to the agenda for discussion, even though he was advised to proceed differently. The Mayor refused based on the fact that Councilor Maloney was already told to bring these items to the next committee or private meeting for discussion, as is common practice in municipal governance as per the municipalities act.

It was, at this meeting that the Mayor felt that Councilor Maloney had gone far enough with his slandering remarks, insults and insubordinate attitude and decided to ban him from any Council meetings until he apologizes to Council, the Clerk-treasurer, the employees and the DBIAC and Recreaplex board, stop posting on social media and communicate in an orderly fashion. Councilor Maloney left his chair and gave the middle finger gesture to the Mayor and stayed at the meeting. After the meeting he had discussions with several Council members as well as the Clerk-treasurer. He then left without incident. 

Procedure:
At the Town of Dalhousie, items for discussion or that require a decision are brought up at a private or at public committee meetings. All decisions and recommendations from committee meetings are then brought forward to be adopted or rejected by Council at the following public meeting.

As per section 10.2(4) of the municipalities act, some items cannot be discussed in public, such as; employees, land transfers, information that could cause financial loss or gain, to name a few.

The Council of the Town of Dalhousie follows By-Law 103-08 for all proceedings of Council for the order and dispatch of business in Council and Committees meetings.

Conclusion:
Councilor Maloney's behavior has been questionable ever since he was elected. He frequently used foul language, gestures and repeatedly insulted the Mayor, the Clerk-treasurer, fellow Councilors and employees. Furthermore, he even insulted business women and men from the town who volunteer their time on the DBIAC and Recreaplex Board; these are people volunteering their time to help improve our area and businesses in our community.

Volunteers are the foundation of every municipality across Canada and should be respected by all.

The decision to suspend Councilor Maloney was unanimous and fully supported by the entire Council.

In order to return as a working member of Council he must apologize publicly to all those mentioned and refrain from posting any Town related or sensitive information on social media and communicate in an orderly fashion.

Councilor Maloney can only then resume his duties and Mayor and Council will be ready to work with him. If Councilor Maloney refuses to comply than he will remain on suspension and not allowed to attend any meetings of Council.

No employer, board, organization or other would accept someone being disrespectful, use offensive and profane language toward others. Neither will the Mayor, Council and employees of the Town of Dalhousie!

Thank you for your understanding,

Mayor and Council
Town of Dalhousie

Links:
Municipal Act of NB
http://laws.gnb.ca/en/ShowTdm/cs/M-22//

Town of Dalhousie By-laws
https://dalhousie.civicweb.net/filepro/documents/162
  

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