CITY HALL – ‘Put bruised egos aside’ mayor urges councillors in statement

(Image: CFJC Today)

Mayor Reid Hamer-Jackson today (Saturday, March 18, 2023) released a statement in response to Friday’s news conference held by the eight City councillors about committee appointments and the mayor’s behaviour. The statement is as follows:

Shortly after noon on March 16, 2023, I directed City Council’s Executive Assistant to forward a proposed list of Standing Committee appointees for 2023 to our eight (8) City Councillors, to CAO David Trawin, and to Legislative Services Manager Maria Mazzotta.

My purpose in doing so was to invite their input and discussion on the changes that I felt were necessary to improve the effectiveness of these committees. The e-mail attaching the proposed list was sent to each of them at 12:19 p.m. that day.

Under s.141 of the Community Charter, mayors of municipalities in British Columbia have the sole authority to establish or change the memberships of standing committees.

However, I chose to involve all of Council and senior staff in this process, in this manner, well in advance of the next regular Council meeting where the changes would be presented and debated publicly. The proposed changes were, and remain, a work in progress with one or more further appointees to be added.

Unfortunately, one of the recipients of my confidential e-mail chose to release the list of proposed committee appointees to the media within minutes of receiving it, without my knowledge or consent.

Our eight (8) City Councillors then staged a media event on Friday, March 17, 2023, in which they publicly attacked this initiative. A prepared statement was read aloud by Councillor Neustaeter, which was rife with untruths and personal allegations against me, all based on the false premise that they had been “disrespected” and excluded from a process that is the Mayor’s duty to perform.

In their statement, Council members acknowledged the value of accountability and transparency in municipal governance. In the days and weeks ahead, they will be invited to provide the public with any factual basis for their statements, in the interests of both truth and accountability. As well, the individual who leaked this confidential e-mail to the media should take personal responsibility, and should publicly apologize to the citizens of Kamloops for their irresponsible conduct.

I would urge my fellow Councillors to put their bruised egos aside long enough to consider the merits of the changes that I am proposing, and the value that the new committee appointees will bring to our City.

About Mel Rothenburger (9489 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

10 Comments on CITY HALL – ‘Put bruised egos aside’ mayor urges councillors in statement

  1. If folks believe this reply from the Mayor—-I’ve got a bridge to sell you.
    His proposal was not put out there for council input—it was a done deal and he was not going to have any debate or votes on it by council.
    To those who are on his favorite list to accede to his request to fill the role of elected council—shame on you—-you’ve put yourself in the middle of a tempest in a tea pot—you should know better.

  2. That’s a statesman statement. RHJ is as good as mayor as anyone could ever be perhaps even better with his layman attitude. In baseball terms that’s out of the ballpark…send Katie et all looking for that one!

  3. Ian MacKenzie // March 18, 2023 at 5:14 PM // Reply

    My feelings haven’t changed in any way regarding what has to be done in order to establish harmony within the council of a city deserving better governance. The mayor’s job is to work harmoniously with the council members elected by the rest of us. The last 6 lines of his response above will unlikely do anything to assuage what he calls “bruised egos”. So the charade will go on I expect. Too bad we’re having to pay them a bunch of money for this kind of behaviour.

  4. That Councillor Kate Neustaeter needs to be removed. We are so sorry we voted and promoted her. She thinks she is building support but not with us.

  5. I Agree…and I didn’t vote for him.

  6. Bronwen Scott // March 18, 2023 at 4:44 PM // Reply

    What a thoughtful response by someone who has been badly wronged yet keeps to the high ground. Kudos to Mayor Hamer-Jackson.

  7. Finished reading Mayor Hamer Jackson response to the 8 KAMLOOPS councillors statement.

    Unfortunately if it’s true the Mayor’s confidential email regarding committee assignments was leaked to the press then we have a COWARD in city hall.

    A responsible ethical person who wants transparency would have the gumption and backbone to discuss issues face to face.

    The statement made by the 8 councillors is tainted and has no credibility given the Mayor’s response.

    Who ever leaked the email shame on you.
    You need to be better.


    • John Noakes // March 18, 2023 at 6:31 PM // Reply

      Their IT department should be able to track down the email address used to leak the confidential information to the media.
      If a confidentiality agreement was signed when taking office, this leak could be grounds for dismissal (staffer) or resignation from office if an elected person.

  8. Hmmmmmm, your move Council. What has this City come to. Mayor RHJ reminds me of a man I used to work for. It did not end well.

  9. NOW … The air is clearing – ducks are in order – can we please get down to the business of putting our wonderful city back in good order. Everyone has had enough of the histrionics, thank you ladies and gentlemen. From a concerned senior citizen, taxpayer and supporter.

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