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Controversy continues over post-retirement benefits package continues

October 26, 2016   ·   0 Comments

By Richard Blanchard
It looks like the controversy over the post-retirement benefits package which was extended to retired employees of Adjala-Tosorontio and current council members will not be ending with the recent OPP report on the matter.
It dominated the recent council meeting and continued in a spirited yelling match in the township office parking lot between some councillors after the meeting.
Though the report said that no charges would be laid and that serious failings in terms of documentation were which lead to the extension of the benefits package, council continued to debate the issue at the meeting.
Mayor Mary Small Brett said that she was disheartened that the report had been leaked to the local media within 24 hours of closed in camera meeting on the issue on Sept. 28.
“We had agreed in the session that we would release the report in 10 days at the next council meeting. Only eight of us had the report and it was going to be released. I am very disappointed that it was released.”
None of the members of council who were asked by this newspaper after the meeting said that they had released the document.
Small Brett said that she felt that it was time to move ahead on the matter.
“There is a need to go forward. Turn the page. And reset a new way for staff negotiations,” she said.
Ward 5 Councillor Scott Anderson agreed with the mayor.
“We are going in circles. We must try and move ahead past this,” he said.
Anderson said that someone  on council had cut “off our legs. The report was in the hands of six of us here. We decided to release even though there was no obligation to do so. This does not look good for us.”
Ward 3 Councillor Dave Rose said that he also felt that it was time for council to move on.
“It’s over as far as I’m concerned. Our major issue is to look at the impact of growth and its impact on this township. We’ve been stalled over this issue.”
Deputy Mayor Doug Little, who has served on the council since 1994, said that the recent controversy over the retirement benefits issue has resulted in creating “the most ineffective group of politicians that I have seen. It has frankly become embarrassing. We are the talk of Simcoe County and the surrounding municipalities. It really has to stop.”
Councillor Floyd Pinto said that despite the report that he was still concerned  about the lack of information and process that had lead to the institution of the post retirement benefits package since 2006 and particularly after his election to council in 201) which had lead to his and Councillor Bob Meadows request for an OPP investigation.
Mayor Small Brett eventually called the vote to receive the OPP report which was adopted 5-2.
Councillors Meadows and Pinto voted against it.


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