Dear Editor: A question to the mayor and council of the City of Corner Brook: If you can’t make a decision, why did you want to run our city?
According to recent media, the residents of McWhirter’s Lane have been put off, ignored and living next to a cat sewer for four years. Can you imagine four years of trying to get the city to resolve this problem? They hide behind every excuse possible and refuse to deal with the matter head on.
The City of Corner Brook Act is clear, and I will quote from it here: “Section 212. A municipal enforcement officer has the powers of a member of the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary with respect to the enforcement of this Act and regulations made under this Act with respect to the city.”
This means that at any time a municipal enforcement officer had the right to inquire and could have approached the owner of this home and inquired regarding the complaints of neighbours.
If they did inquire, why wasn’t this resolved long ago?
“Section 238 (2). Where a building is in a dilapidated state, or is, in the opinion of the council, unfit for human habitation, or the other use for which it is then being used, or is a public nuisance, the council may order the owner or occupier to pull down, remove, fill in or otherwise destroy the building and return the site to its original state, or make the disposition or alteration of the building that the order directs, within the time specified in the order.”
This does not say anything about passing the buck to the government of Newfoundland or looking for some other government department to fix this problem.
It says: “in the opinion of the council.” The full procedure to follow regarding the enforcement of this act is spelled out in the act, including appeals available to the owner. They obviously used this section of the act to destroy the shed on the property. Why did they stop there?
The residents have complained to the city on numerous occasions and again, according to recent media, have been ignored and have not received any correspondence from city hall. Why are the residents not being told what is happening and when they can expect this issue to be resolved?
The Act states: “Section 29. The mayor (a) shall be vigilant and active in causing the laws of the government of the city to be executed and obeyed and in making reasonable efforts to advance and promote the aims and objects of the council; and (b) shall exercise the powers and perform the duties that may be conferred or imposed upon the mayor by the council, this Act or the regulations.”
Is there a dereliction of duties by the Mayor?
Are they frightened to make a decision that might in the end cost the taxpayers of Corner Brook more money? If that is the case, news flash mayor and council: that ship has sailed.
You shouldn’t be afraid because you have made many decisions on spending for far more money which has resulted in far less benefit to the citizens of Corner Brook. Any taxpayer of this city deserves better than this.
Do what you were elected to do or resign.
Gerard F. Lee, Corner Brook