Wednesday, November 15, 2017

The NoFunCouver Party Unanimously Declares Transparency A Conflict Of Interest.


There was a Vancouver City Council meeting going down today until, all of a sudden, all the NPA councillors disappeared, en masse, as noted by the Vancouver Courier's  Mike Howell:

What's it all about this time Alfie?

Well, Mr. Howell had that story also, recently (i.e. before the walk-out), in the printier version of the Courier:

...(Vision Vancouver Coun. Andrea Reimer) wants the public to know exactly where she and her colleagues on council make their money when not on the job at city hall.

That’s important, she said, when conducting city business and having the public know whether a politician has any pecuniary interest in a matter before council. She’ll be introducing a motion on this today at council...


Why might we, the citizens of Lotusland, want to know about stuff like this?

Well, back to Mr. Howell's story...

...NPA Coun. George Affleck lists himself as owner of public relations company Curve Communications Group Ltd. NPA Coun. Melissa De Genova says she owns consulting company Eventure Holdings Ltd. That’s just a few examples.

What concerns Reimer is that the public has no immediate way of knowing, say, who Affleck’s company does business with. Same goes for De Genova. The recently sworn-in NPA councillor, Hector Bremner, has yet to have his financial disclosure posted on the website, yet it is well known that he is vice-president of public affairs for the Pace Group. He’s also worked as an oil and gas lobbyist...


...So is Reimer going after the NPA?

“Not in a specific or personal way,” she replied. “Two of them have declared conflicts that aren’t listed on their financial disclosure and another one [Bremner] coming on could be in the same position. And given the intent of the Financial Disclosure Act, it seems reasonable to have something in place that allows the public to see where potential conflicts might lie.”

Which conflicts are you referring to?

“On several occasions, councillor De Genova has declared herself in conflict. The only source of income listed on her disclosure, other than council, is a holding company, and none of the conflicts have related specifically to that holding company, although apparently to things or clients of that holding company relates to.”

Added Reimer: “The same councillor has said on quite a few occasions that she works with a non-profit housing agency, which is definitely laudable. But if one looks at her financial disclosure, none is listed. It’s not that there’s something illegal going on here – that’s well within the rules – but I think the rules didn’t anticipate this kind of situation.”...

{snippety doodle-dandy}

...“I think she (Reimer)’s doing this to try and make a smokescreen story out of something that unfortunately Vision Vancouver is most guilty of,” said De Genova, pointing to the millions of dollars Vision has collected from developers over the years for election campaigns. “If she’s going to point fingers at other people, I think she needs to look within. Don’t throw rocks if you live in a glass house.”...


Not sure if we can be of any real help on any of this, but...

We do happen to remember that an early Cambie corridor land assembly effort led to a most interesting bit of close-quartered sign juxtapositionage back in the fall of 2011:


Is it possible that this was foreshadowing the formation of a most excellent non-profit housing agency to come?

Update: Bob Mackin has a little bit more....And NPA councillor George Affleck responds in a most strate(r)gic manner.



North Van's Grumps said...

Vancouver Councillors

eg. Bio / Disclosure for ....
Melissa De Genova notes to a high degree of public service, naming names but when it comes to her private business interest eg. marketing and event production company (no company names)

View Councillor De Genova's 2017 financial disclosure statement

RossK said...

Thanks NVG--

Proves Ms. Reimer's point I reckon.