Superior Court Justice Martin James ruled that Brudenell Lyndoch and Raglan Councillor Andrea Budarick contravened the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act and ordered that her Council seat be declared vacant as of 28 November 2021. Click HERE to read his decision.
In his 15 page decision released on November 22, Justice James addressed whether or not Councillor Budarick’s participation in discussions related to BLR Fire Department billing were an attempt to reduce an administrative charge applied to her son in 2019. Justice James stated: “These factors lead me to conclude that the Respondent’s contravention of the MCIA was not mere inadvertence or an error in judgement. To the contrary, I find that the Respondent intentionally used her position as a member of Council in an effort to obtain a financial advantage for her son.”
The claim, commenced by BLR’s Integrity Commissioner, asked the Court to order that Budarick be removed from office and be barred from sitting on Council during the 2022-2026 Council term. In his decision Justice James stopped short of barring Councillor Budarick from running in the 2022-2026 Council term stating that “I am not prepared to disqualify [Budarick] from seeking re-election when the current term of Council is over.”
When asked for comment Budarick issued a statement. “I am disappointed in His Honour’s decision and the penalty imposed. In consultation with legal counsel, I have decided to appeal. My main priority continues to be to serve my constituents and represent the people of BLR, as I have been elected to do.”
Click HERE for The Current’s report of the Court hearing.