Madawaska Valley Mayor Kim Love opened the March 21 Council meeting as usual with an address. She touched on the high points of local events during the previous two weeks by commending volunteers for running the snowmobile show and the St. Patrick’s Day events. She then attacked the opinion piece published by the Current on March 6 entitled “MV is not a CAO-friendly environment!”
The main points of the mayor’s complaints against the opinion are:
- The number of meetings attended by the author of the opinion piece, Current publisher Roger Paul, during Mr. Robertson’s tenure as CAO.
Her tally was punctuated by an audible stage whisper when Councillor Peplinski hissed “Disgraceful” as he shook his head and stared in the direction of this reporter.
2. She then took issue with Paul’s comment that “an arguable case can be made that the township has in fact been ‘headless’ since the current Council was elected”, saying that it was “derogatory to the previous CAO/Clerk, Mr. Craig Kelley”. She further said that his opinion did not take into account the leadership she had provided over the past three and a half years nor the hard work involved when she stepped up during both periods the township was without a CAO. She also gave credit to Acting Clerk Gwen Dombroski and other municipal staff.
She did not, however make any comment on the overriding theme of Paul’s opinion piece; i.e., the issue of micromanagement when viewed in light of the respective roles of council and CAO.
3. Love went on to repeat verbatim her statement delivered at the last Council meeting on March 5 about the departure of the CAO. After quoting herself, she said she was most concerned that the Current “attributes to me a statement that is completely false regarding Council sitting in judgment on the former CAO/Clerk. I made no such comment and it is, in my opinion, both wrong and defamatory of The Madawaska Valley Current to have published a story stating that I had.”
Throughout the full six minutes of Love’s tirade, Councillor Maika scowled and gesticulated emphatically to evidence her agreement with the mayor, the whole time glaring intently at this reporter.
As this unfolded at one side of the Council table, Councillors Archer and Bromwich watched impassively from the other.
Love ended by demanding that the Current retracts what she says is a false statement attributed to her.
Subsequently another member of council in conversation with this reporter volunteered that the article was accurate.
The publisher is expected to provide the Current’s response to the mayor’s demands in the very near future.