‘Text, Lies and Audio/Video Tape’

Union Bay style..

So what happened at the UBID Committee of the Whole meeting on April 23, 2019? Agenda items included the auditors financial report debrief. At the last minute, the Inaugural Meeting of two newly elected trustees in the April 20, 2019 election, was added to the Agenda!? The UBID AGM had been changed in January 2019 to April 25 instead of April 11, 2019. Have you ever heard of an AGM take place AFTER the election? Me neither. Perhaps that is why the two new trustees declined attending? Meanwhile 3 landowners showed up to witness and support the inauguration of two new trustees, who were elected with record numbers and a record turnout of voters! Listen to the 7 minutes of audio/video recordings. Decide for yourself who or what was “unsafe” and or “violent”. Warning!: This audio/video may be triggering for those who have experienced harassment, bullying and intimidation.

April 23, 2019 Committee of the Whole Meeting
Notice Haraldson is holding a construction hammer filled with lead shot.

Written on April 24, 2019 to the landowners from myself:

“Just want all three of you to know that what happened at the Union Bay office on April 23 2pm was disturbing and unsafe.
I have begun to make notes of what happened so i won’t forget. I urge each of you to do so as well. I am prepared to be a witness should any of you three want to make a police report. What Haraldson did was threaten the three of you in a menacing physical manner with his body.  This was done without just cause.  The meeting was open to the public and you had the right to be there, not one of you said or did anything wrong.  It was an unprovoked attack. IMO. 

At approximately 2pm on April 23, 2019 Chair Haraldson approach the three of you as you were all seated at the farthest wall away from the Board table.  The meeting had not yet begun. Ted Haraldson stood within a foot of you, leaned down, put his face inches away and glared at each of you in a menacing manner. I could not hear what he was saying.

I became alarmed at the aggressiveness Haraldson displayed towards all of you.  I got up from the Board table and stood by Haraldson saying in a calm voice “your behaviour is inappropriate”.  At some point the assistant CAO also got up and tried to get Haraldson to sit down.
You may use this if you wish to file a police report.”
Susanna Kaljur

RCMP File # 2019-15109 formal complaint filed against Ted Haraldson by Susanna Kaljur.

At the September 19, 2019 UBID Board Meeting Trustee Bitten repeats “unsafe” and “violence” at least a dozen times through out the meeting implying that a small handful of landowners are to blame including myself. He describes how the logging company won’t meet with the UBID Board due to “violence”.

Fast forward to 1 hour 23 minutes (1.23.05) and watch to the end.

So what happened at the UBID public board meeting on Sept. 19, 2019, after trustee Bitten shouted “turn off the camera, we’re gonna get sued”!? You will hear rustling and movement…

Excerpt from Ombudsperson’s complaint filed Sept. 24, 2019 by Susanna Kaljur; “At the Sept 19, 2019 UBID Public Board meeting Trustee Bitten  proceeds to make a number of claims of violence aimed at a specific group of landowners, (names withheld) and one Trustee, myself (he did not name names but the implication was clear). At that point I stood up on Point of Order and said that the claims of violence are untrue and there is no actual verifiable evidence to support Bitten’s hearsay claim.  As I began to detail what I witnessed on April 23, 2019. Bitten jumped up and shouted “shut the camera off we are going to get sued!”   This caused Chair Healey to jump up knocking his chair over and Bitten hurls himself towards me and shoves a microphone in my face.  The Board tables are U configured with Chair Healey on the short side and Bitten and I are seated directly across from one another. I felt threatened and intimidated. I immediately turned around and left.  This is my formal statement regarding the September 19, 2019 UBID Public Board Meeting.”

RCMP File # 2019 – 15124 formal complaint filed against Rick Bitten by Susanna Kaljur.

WORDS MATTER

At the September 19, 2019 UBID Board Meeting the words “unsafe” and “violence” exploded like firecrackers on Halloween. Noisy, startling but ending in a fizzle. When challenged, this bombastic Trustee was unable to provide any specific examples of unsafe Board meetings or times when violence has occurred, thus he resorts to hearsay with comments like “Everybody knows..”. Never mind the fact he was not in attendance at the April 23 COW meeting. Unencumbered by the facts, he proceeds to accuse another trustee and a handful of landowners who were actually present, of “violence and unsafe behaviour”. Say whaaat?!

Some definitions are in order: Unsafe: not safe, dangerous, Violence: behaviour involving physical force intending to hurt, damage or kill. Oxford Dictionary.

https://www.comoxvalleyrecord.com/news/union-bay-improvement-district-board-lacks-chair/

A false accusation is a claim or allegation of wrongdoing that is untrue and/or otherwise unsupported by facts. Sure sounds like defamation to me but, I’m not a lawyer. I know a good one though.

WHY ROBERT RULES?

He’s the only guy to keep order. I’ve learned, the hard way, that in order to recover from disaster it pays to read the manual and find out what went wrong and do better next time. The Thursday night Union Bay Board meeting was a disaster by any standard for which I played a part. Judge for yourself..

So I went back to Robert’s Rules of Order (RONR) and confirmed that: POINT OF ORDER is only used to Enforce Rules. The Chair can be interrupted, there is no 2nd required, there is no debate, it can not be amended and there is no vote. RONR (11th ed.), p.247

Wait There’s More!

Robert has Rules for Small Boards (<12 members) too!

  • Motions need not be seconded,
  • informal discussion of a subject is permitted while no motion is pending,
  • when a proposal is perfectly clear to all present a vote can be taken without a motion’s having been introduced.. and last but not least;
  • If the Chair is a member, he may, without leaving the chair, speak in informal discussions and in debate, and vote on all questions. Chair can 2nd a motion.
  • In fact, informal discussions may be initiated by the chair, which, enables the chair to submit proposals without formally making a motion.” RONR (11th Edition), p. 447/448.
  • The Chair has one vote. The Chair can vote on any motion or question when his or her vote would alter the outcome.

Let’s imagine, a village named ‘Hopeful Place’ is looking to become a Municipality. The Board has only four members named Bob, Fred, George and Polly.

Motion:  To Become a Municipality. George is the Chair. Bob and Fred vote “Yes”. Polly Votes “No”.  Looks like Polly lost. But wait, Chair George can vote! Why? Because his vote could potentially affect the outcome…If Chair George votes “No” the Motion dies.

‘Hopeful Place’ needs to find another way. If the goal is to save taxpayers $$ in order to pay for mandated infrastructure, the find a Regional District nearby and Voila!

Municipal Financing & RBC Interest Rates Compared

At the Sept. 12 COW meeting Trustee Bitten attempted to claim that the interest rate on our loan of 3.5 million with RBC at 3.95% is the same as with municipal financing.

This is absolutely not true. 
The current rate for a 10 year loan quoted by Municipal Finance Authority is 2.45% not 3.95% RBC.

https://mfa.bc.ca/

This is a savings of 1.5%!  Why would we expect landowners to pay more than they need to? They only way we can get reduced financing rates through the MFA is if we become a Service Area of the Comox Valley Regional District. In addition to reduced borrowing costs Union Bay would also be entitled to Infrastrucure Grants.  Both Cumberland and CVRD recently had 75-80% of their Water Treatment Infrastructure subsidized by using both MFA (which is below prime) and Infrastructure Grants!

This is why in 2017 I made the motion to send a letter to the CVRD to get the funding to examine the pros and cons of becoming a service area!  This motion passed. Elliott, Kaljur, Jacques voted yes and Loxam, Bitten voted “No”.

The longer we delay the more money landowners will pay in interest. It really is that simple.

The Chair Listens!

All Agenda items (except one) were removed from ‘In Camera’. Bravo Chair Healey! The only glaring omission was the lack of a video camera, again.

According to Bylaw 270 Video Recording states; “Public meetings of the Board will only be recorded by UBID and posted on the Website.” Furthermore, a Committee of the Whole (COW)Meeting is a public meeting by definition according to our Meeting Procedures Bylaw 263 which we are legally mandated to follow.

The real question is: why has the Administor chosen to be absent from Board Meetings ever since two new Trustees were elected on April 20, 2019?? All the Trustees successfully completed their Board training (a $16,000 bill for UBID Landowners). The claims of “safety concerns” are without any proof or evidence. Why does UBID pay a separate person to switch our video camera on and off?!

Solution: Hire a separate person to attend Board Meetings, take minutes and write the minutes, turn the camera on and off. Whatever the cost is for this service, which is a vital part of a functioning board, is then deducted from our current Administrators salary. Now that would make Sen$e!

Agenda Violates FOIPPA

Here are the Sept. 12, 2019 UBID COW meeting Agenda missing Agenda items: 3. FOIPPA officer, 4. Approval of Fire Chief and Deputy Fire Chief contracts, 5. Approval of Capital Expenditure for Fire Department… 6. RBC Loan Discussion, 7. Review policy 1- B – 01 (Code of Conduct).

None of these items are “In Camera” and FOIPPA Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act [RSBC 1996] CHAPTER 165 specifically states; “The head of a public body must not refuse to disclose (a) any factual material, ..AND, (4.) A disclosure of personal information is not an unreasonable invasion of a third party’s personal privacy if (e) the information is about the third party’s position, functions or remuneration as an officer, employee or member of a public body”.. http://www.bclaws.ca/EPLibraries/bclaws_new/document/ID/freeside/96165_00 (Go to Division 2 – Exceptions)

It is evident the Board and staff need training in FOIPPA, sooner than later. The August 30, 2019 letter from the Ministry made clear that UBID has failed in its communication with the landowners and this recent Agenda is, unfortunately, a continuation of UBID following improper procedure.