The Local Government Act and the Community Charter are the foundation of the public process requirements of local governance.
City Council has a public meeting every other Monday, allowing any citizen to speak to an agenda item; usually limited to three minutes. That does not constitute a public hearing and does not fulfill public hearing requirements.
A public hearing is a quasi-judicial process with no limits on public input. Under previous councils many public hearings took place at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre.
Time in public hearings can be limited to five minutes. Any citizen can have as many five minutes spots as needed to complete their presentation. This can go on as long as it is not repetitive and is germane to the subject of the public hearing.
One of the accepted norms that must be followed during a public hearing is that council and mayor must attend said public hearing with an open and undecided mind and be prepared to listen before making a final decision.
Too many of this city council is on record making biased statements pro-Trio before the travesty of said public hearing (June 29). It is questionable whether their many secretive meetings on the Trio project prior to the public hearing ensured bias in favour of Trio.
It is very important that the recall petition go forward. As long as recall legislation does not exist there are no adequate checks and balances that Pentictonites can use to ensure that the council they elected runs the City in a responsive responsible manner. This requires recall legislation in place to protect the public from dictatorial actions.
That is what this recall petition will attempt to do. To be successful it needs Penticton voter signatures. I have been away however, I will be available for your signatures at the Dragon’s Den Saturday morning and every night next week between 6 p.m. and dusk at the Splash Park at Skaha Beach; weather permitting.
I cannot continue this indefinitely. So if you are interested in pursuing the recall petition grab your chance while it’s available.