Tuesday, September 20, 2016


The issue really is quite simple. The Municipal Elections Act (MEA) is quite clear. There are rules written down that candidates for municipal election MUST follow. If they do not then they are to be charged. The offences fall under Provincial Offences which could be somewhat compared to traffic offences in regards to severity. For example simple speeding results in a charge, a conviction and a penalty usually of a fine, sometimes along with demerit points on your license. That said there are driving offences which if severe enough possibly including serious injury that can lead to criminal charges. Examples include drunk driving, vehicular homicide, criminal negligence etc.. The MEA charges can be upgraded upon certain very strict conditions and are described as corrupt practices. These do not remotely include simple incompetence, laziness or sloppy record keeping. A judge would have to determine an intentional attempt to bypass the law for personal gain and possibly even more.

The MEA includes a clear provision for citizens to take the law into their own hands if you will. It is referred to as a not withstanding clause. Not withstanding the actions of the municipal council, MECAC committee (Compliance Audit Committee) or the candidate themselves a citizen can lay a private charge if he believes and preferably has evidence that the MEA has been broken. In all three cases in Woolwich Township the lawbreakers (Bauman, Shantz & Hahn) all publicly admitted to their contraventions of the MEA. Professed ignorance of the law is not a defence to any of the charges. Yes it certainly speaks to the penalty phase after conviction.

All three candidates/politicians contraventions were way beyond blatant. They could be described as stupid unless of course two of the three had a history or say a "tradition" of bending the rules without consequence. Then "stupid" becomes more "convenience" than anything else.

This coming Monday 9 am. in Provincial Offences Court 77 Queen St. Kitchener, Courtroom #101, we will see what the Crown has planned. As similar with the Sandy Shantz case the Crown has not been communicative with the complainant myself including even acknowledging receipt of materials and evidence sent to him. I have advised the Crown that while my preference is that he takes on the case I am unwilling to see the Hahn case go the same route as the Shantz case. In other words I am willing to step in if necessary to act as the prosecuter if the Crown for some unfathomable or subjective reason is not. Keep in mind that while there was extremely strong evidence that Sandy Shantz still had not fully complied with the MEA and had her charges dropped; Mr. Hahn does have a professional $12,000 forensic audit as evidence against him.

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