Friday, March 31, 2017


Well of course there is. It's even possible if not likely that most of our local Woolwich Councillors would be shocked by some form of blatant display of corruption. I'm thinking of the brown paper bag filled with cash, style of corruption. Funny how people can be a little bit corrupted by politics and power but still be outraged when accused of being "corrupt". I've said it before that corruption above and beyond the obvious and blatant is also defined as "riddled with errors". For example a professional report can be corrupt simply because it is blatantly bad, incompetent or inaccurate. The author does not need to have had his palm greased directly from say a local polluter for his work to be corrupt.

Back in November 2012 CPAC and SWAT members were shocked by an exchange that took place between Conestoga Rovers (Steve Quigley) and Susan Bryant at a Chemtura Public Advisory Committee (CPAC) meeting. It seems that local environmental activist Susan Bryant of APTE had been collaborating with CRA (Conestoga Rovers) on a project referred to as E:Dat or electronic data access tool. The timing while not exact appeared to have occurred while Susan was a voting CPAC member. From late 2010 to late 2015 she was not.

Some CPAC and SWAT members heard this directly the first time (Nov. 29/12) it was said and others believe they heard it at the followup Tutorial put on by CRA at their Waterloo offices. CPAC members and other members of the public were invited. I attended both meetings. There were a number of different CRA employees present at the Tutorial in Waterloo than at the public CPAC meeting. Regardless the almost bragging by Susan as to her close involvement with CRA on this project made absolutely no sense if Susan at the time was a voting CPAC member whose interests were entirely those of Woolwich citizens.

Similarly Pat Mclean's longtime membership on the National Advisory Panel of the Chemical Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) was totally inappropriate while she was the Chair of CPAC and allegedly solely representing the publics' interests as Chair. She had no business accepting travel, meal and accomodation expenses from the Chemical Industry (CIAC) of which Chemtura was a member while she was on CPAC, much less Chair.

Woolwich Township were advised of all this two years ago. They covered it up. Now recently Woolwich Council have received a Staff Report advising them of new Ontario legislation (Bill 68) dealing with municipal procedures, codes of conduct, conflicts of interest and an Integrity Commissioner. I again went back to them just over three weeks ago advising that new stringent conflicts of interest rules absolutely disqualified Pat and Susan from being on the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) which is supposed to represent the interests of Woolwich citizens, not the interests of the chemical industry, Chemtura or their consultants.

To date Woolwich have not given me any reason to expect an honest and appropriate response from them. In over two years they have not interviewed the CPAC and SWAT members who were present at those two meetings. They also have not availed themselves of the written statements that are available from them. It's as if their best hope is plausible deniability. Here's a radical thought Woolwich Council. How about doing the right thing? Gently and respectfully remove that pair from TAG as I suggested over three weeks ago. You don't have to vilify or condemn them. You do however have to show more respect to the Woolwich public by having citizens without chemical industry ties or behind the scenes relationships with Chemtura's allies, representing them on this committee of Council.

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