Report: Councillors Behaving Badly
After years of trying to keep it under wraps, a heavily redacted copy of the City of Calgary's report into City Councillor Misconduct has been posted to the City's website.
The report provides some limited insight into the behavior of some Councillors who were on Council before the 2017 election.
In the opening paragraph of the report, the investigators stated that:
"The problems are sufficiently widespread to sustain a finding of systemic problems in the workplace. Since the problems are known to many in the workplace, all those working in the Council Office are affected by the environment. There are indications that these types of issues are not new."
Only one City Councillor - Evan Woolley (Ward 8) - agreed to let his name be revealed in the report. He indicated that he once "yelled" at a City Councillor staff, recognizing this wasn't appropriate.
Here is how this incident is reflected in the version of the report released by the City (the letter/number sequences in the redactions are the sections of the Privacy Act being cited by City to justify why the information is being kept hidden):
Sadly, this is the most informative section of the report.
The name of every other Councillor and their bad behavior is hidden behind a wall of redactions.
The City claims that these redactions are in place to protect the identity of the whistleblowers. However, this is pretty clearly a smokescreen to keep the names of those councilors who engaged in inappropriate behavior secret - shielding them from real accountability and transparency.
The version of the report released by the City contains virtually no useful information.
Here, for example, is a section on the findings of abuse committed by members of Council:
And here, for example, is a section of the conclusions from the report about the bad behavior of City Councillors:
This is completely unacceptable.
When asked about the fact that no Councillors faced sanctions because of their misconduct - something which would not be the case in any large business, Mayor Nenshi brushed off the incidents, saying:
"I'm not so sure they got away with it if I would use that term, because certainly, you know, we went through training for all of council."
Voters have a right to know which City Councillors engaged in misconduct and what their misconduct was.
We call on all Councillors to agree to have their sections of the report released, and to provide details on the incidents.
The following Councillors who currently sit on City Council were also in office at the time this investigation was performed and the report was drafted:
Save Calgary has also been fighting to get this report released, we've been told that our copy of the report will be available to us on June 28th. We'll see if the City is providing any additional information on the identities of those Councillors who engaged in misconduct, and what their misconduct was.
In the meantime, contact your Councillor and demand that they agree to have their information in the report made public.
Calgarians demand real accountability - what the City has provided so far doesn't come close to meeting that standard.
PS. Summer may be here in Calgary, but Save Calgary isn't taking a vacation - we'll keep working to hold City Hall to account and to stand up for Calgary taxpayers. If you support our work, please consider donating $135, $75, or $45 to help us with our work!
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