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Mississauga Council Code of Conduct shields Senior City Staff from Integrity Commissioner —MISSISSAUGAWATCH deputation

June 16th, 2012  

For the record, this video was presented as a deputation at the June 11, 2012 Governance Committee meeting.

Complete with transcript.

Mississauga Council Code of Conduct shields Senior City Staff from Integrity Commissioner  (14:03 min)

(Click here to go directly to the clip on YouTube)

[VIDEO TRANSCRIPT BEGINS]

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, introducing the video deputation June 10, 2012

I just posted these [photographs] to the internet the other day. And I got an immediate response.

Seems these are photographs of Mississauga’s very first girl’s hockey team –circa 1965/66. Erindale. That’s me.

And that’s me right here playing right wing to Mabel Boyd on left.

And reaching further back, that’s me and my grandfather beside the Miles Lane bridge over the Cooksville Creek circa 1953 before Hurricane Hazel came and washed the entire bridge out.

So why do I show this?

Photographs — speak to History.

As for video? That’s how History speaks!

The video clips span from May 2008 when Councillor Mullin first suggested “an ombudsman” to address complaints against City Staff to the April 16, 2012 Governance Committee meeting discussions.

Listen carefully and see if you can recognize the most important comment ever made by a City of Mississauga elected official regarding authentic accountability.

Meaning –if you were to take this video and cut it into a one minute clip, what would be the all-important take home message?

And that’s a challenge for you. See if you can recognize Real?

[VIDEO INSERT Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008 BEGINS]

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, whispering into camera, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

This is the one.

Mayor Hazel McCallion, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

Councillor Mullin? Thank you.

Councillor Pat Mullin, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

Yes, I read “R-4”. And I guess my question, and this is regarding the whole complaints issue, with regards to Don Barber at the Council meetings.

And there is an addition to this which talks about the possibility of an investigator. And I guess my concern with that would be, well first of all is that the cost of relatively significant.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, whispering into camera, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

Use the Ontario Ombudsman.

Councillor Pat Mullin, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

And how many times would an investigator have to come forward to take a look at complaints.

But I guess I’m looking for some direction from possibly Staff if there is something that we can put in place which would be, I guess would be a complaint procedure —against Staff. And maybe somebody could respond.

Or if there’s another way in terms of looking at it.

I talked to Mary Ellen Bench about it and I mean I’m wondering if there is something like maybe the ombudsman that could take a look at something like this.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, whispering into camera, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

Yeah, yeah.

Councillor Pat Mullin, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

And it just seems to me that it would be an ongoing scenario—

Mayor Hazel McCallion, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

Yuh.

Councillor Pat Mullin, Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008

—and a continuation. And never a satisfaction at the end of the day. That we would be just putting more and more money into this.

[VIDEO INSERT Mississauga Council meeting, May 21 2008 ENDS]

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, narrating the video deputation June 10, 2012

And then May 2010. Me. Unprepared, incoherent —and ineffective in front of Mississauga General Committee.

[VIDEO INSERT Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19 2010 BEGINS]

Councillor Eve Adams, Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19, 2010

Good morning and welcome.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19, 2010

Good morning Councillor Adams and Council.

I came here to discuss the minutes of meetings and then walked in a saw the —this one here, if I could have this [over head projector] on the [Council] Code of Conduct for integrity commissioner.

And I consider that way more important than anything I have to say about minutes.

So I kind of regret that I didn’t know about this.

You can’t just switch, can you?

Councillor Eve Adams, Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19, 2010

It actually is on the agenda so you can speak to it.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19, 2010

Yeah, but I’m not good on my feet. I need to prepare ahead of time. I’m not swift.

But I was hoping that —this is really important.

If people remember, it was Councillor Mullin who had said that there were issues that are chronically coming up regarding —and she was mentioning Donald Barber as an example.

And she had recommended that, you know, once and for all, to deal with it. And this is how, I think, the idea of the integrity commissioner came up.

And I also recall I had urged Councillor —I think Councillor Saito was going to lead the charge on this.

And I asked her to invite the Ontario Ombudsman in to address Council to give them some idea as to how to set up an integrity commissioner.

This is —you know, I’ve been observing Mississauga Council since June 14, 2006. And I’m talking about audiotape, videotape and stuff like that.

This has got to be the most important Corporate Report and direction. Certainly from the view of treatment of citizens and Ethical Infrastructure. And this thing did not go through Audit Committee, for example.

It just kind of showed up here and Staff is recommending that you accept it.

There’s not any possibility for public input. I don’t even know if it’s been run through [the] public.

And you know I would think that first you’d check to see the validity of the public complaints system that you already have in place. The one for Corporate Security and the generic ones. And whether those are being handled properly.

Because if they’re not —and I’m saying they’re not, and I’ve got Freedom of Information saying it, so, you know, the fact that, the fact that —well, okay, it’s not a fact because it’s based on evidence but it’s sort of ultimately my conclusions. And somebody else could look at the evidence and see it differently.

But for me, I’d question any integrity commissioner —or a process here, because I just don’t see the Ethical Infrastructure in place to support something like that—

—Mayor McCallion was giving an address at UTM last week and I was there. And she was talking about public input and the importance of it.

And this [Corporate Report] just came up and could be rubber-stamped today and that’s it.

So I would hope that Council might look at this and say, “You know this is really important. Let’s put some —let the public look at this and talk about it.”

Anyway, I’m hoping that —I’ll be preparing for this at Council. Because I’m better —I’m very scattered [inaudible] I’m sorry.

[VIDEO INSERT Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19 2010 ENDS]

[VIDEO INSERT  MISSISSAUGAWATCH Governance Committee April 16 2010 video deputation BEGINS]

 MISSISSAUGAWATCH, reporting April 14, 2012

And that was May 21, 2008 and that issue still hasn’t been addressed. It hasn’t.

And while there’s now an integrity commissioner in place to file complaints against elected officials, there still is no consistent person —ombudsman or integrity commissioner, or otherwise, to deal with complaints against City Staff.

And that includes everything right up to the Commissioners and the City Manager.

So it’s interesting to look at the May 21, 2008 video and see that [shakes head and gestures, “WTF”]. And that’s the other thing I would request is for the Governance Committee to perhaps consider expanding the mandate of the Integrity Commissioner to also include complaints against City Staff.

Thanks.

[VIDEO INSERT MISSISSAUGAWATCH Governance Committee April 16 2010 video deputation ENDS]

[VIDEO INSERT Mississauga Governance Committee discussion April 16 2010 BEGINS]

Councillor Pat Saito, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

—with the hiring of the Integrity Commissioner —and the anticipation is that this person would be, hopefully, here by the end of June. And then in the Fall, this committee would sit down with the Integrity Commissioner and work on the amendments to the [Council] Code of Conduct with that person being here to work on it with us.

So there is an opportunity for some of the concerns that you have raised to be reviewed during that process.

They may not all be addressed because —I don’t agree the Integrity Commissioner that we are looking at to deal with the Code of Conduct and the application of the Code of Conduct. That is for Members of Council.

I don’t agree that that person should be handling about all City Staff. That is a Staff responsibility —it’s a senior Staff, Commissioner, Director level responsibility, or City Manager level of responsibility. [* Note. MISSISSAUGAWATCH never suggested that the Integrity Commissioner address complaints regarding “all City Staff”. But rather Senior Management —City Manager, Commissioners, Directors.]

Now having said, Councillor Carlson and I were just talking about it there and there may be some validity in taking a look at the Integrity Commissioner dealing with complaints of the Senior Staff —the Commissioner, City Manager level.

But at this point, I don’t think either of us are, you know, that’s just something that was thrown out in discussion. Whether that would happen, whether we would think it’s a good idea after we’ve, you know, we’ve sat down and talked about it or not, I don’t know.

But as far as Staff below that level, that is dealt with by Senior Staff. That is their responsibility.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

Actually that, yeah. I, I —that’s good. I like that.

Councillor Pat Saito, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

But anyway, we’re —thank you. Gee we agree on something—

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

I’ve got a question to what you said, Councillor Saito.

At the beginning you said you weren’t sure about that Number 2 thing, “Upon receipt”—

Councillor Pat Saito, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

I just wasn’t sure where it was from. If you could—

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

It’s under Rule 12.

Councillor Pat Saito, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

That was under Rule 12.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

Rule 12 deals with the Respectful Workplace Policy. And that is Provision 2 under Rule 12.

So anything that the Integrity Commissioner receives a complaint and he feels that it deals with the Respectful Workplace Policy, then he can’t investigate. He must hand it to Human Resources.

Councillor Pat Saito, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

Then it’s referred. Okay. Thank you. I just lost the context on it so I appreciate that.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

And that’s what I’d like you to fix, please. Thank you.

Councillor Jim Tovey (Chair), Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

Okay, hang on a second, Ursula.

Councillor Chris Fonseca, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

I think Councillor Saito’s point, I think for all of us, when we’re looking at this over-review of governance —her point about you get out of it what you put into it, is really important in terms of understanding the process of when a complaint is made.   Whether it be internally amongst councillors— Whether it be from a member of the public towards one of the council-members or from a member of the public towards Staff.

But I’m —Councillor Saito and Councillor Carlson —you just, Councillor Saito, you just spoke for Councillor Carlson, I guess, in saying that you’d be willing to look at —if there’s a way that we can look at including, perhaps, I don’t know, we would have to have more discussion around the Leadership Team.

But I think for all of us, including the Leadership Team and Council, we’re committed to this Governance Committee, specifically because we want to make sure that we move forward for the City of Mississauga —that we have a transparent and clear path when it comes to a complaint process, a Code of Conduct, and also in terms of an independent person who is working to analyze and review that whole process.

So thank you for coming.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

Thank you.

[VIDEO INSERT Mississauga Governance Committee discussion April 16 2010 ENDS]

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, narrating the video deputation June 11, 2012

So what’s that all-important take home message?

[VIDEO FLASHBACK Mississauga Governance Committee discussion April 16 2010 BEGINS]

Councillor Chris Fonseca, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

I think Councillor Saito’s point, I think for all of us, when we’re looking at this over-review of governance —her point about you get out of it what you put into it, is really important in terms of understanding the process of when a complaint is made.   Whether it be internally amongst councillors— Whether it be from a member of the public towards one of the council-members or from a member of the public towards Staff.

[VIDEO FLASHBACK Mississauga Governance Committee discussion April 16, 2012 ENDS]

[VIDEO FLASHBACK Mississauga General Committee discussion May 19, 2010 BEGINS]

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19, 2010

—you know I would think that first you’d check to see the validity of the public complaints system that you already have in place.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, narrating the video deputation June 11, 2012

And, because you can’t say this often enough!

[BLACK SCREEN TEXT SUMMARIES ALL-IMPORTANT TAKE HOME MESSAGE]

Councillor Chris Fonseca, Mississauga Governance Committee meeting, April 16, 2012

I think Councillor Saito’s point, I think for all of us, when we’re looking at this over-review of governance —her point about you get out of it what you put into it, is really important in terms of understanding the process of when a complaint is made.   Whether it be internally amongst councillors— Whether it be from a member of the public towards one of the council-members or from a member of the public towards Staff.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, Mississauga General Committee meeting, May 19, 2010

—you know I would think that first you’d check to see the validity of the public complaints system that you already have in place.

[VIDEO TRANSCRIPT ENDS]

Signed,
MISSISSAUGAWATCH

 

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