Letter to Maple Ridge council won’t get on the record

Mayor decides what correspondence goes to council table

Dan Olson just wanted his letter to get on the municipal record, so councillors at least can say they were informed.

But a June meeting decided it’s a personnel issue and it’s not a council matter.

Olson  had e-mailed a letter to Maple Ridge council and the premier’s office about Coun. Cheryl Ashlie becoming part time constituency assistant for Liberal Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows MLA Doug Bing.

Olson said for Ashlie to sit as a municipal councillor and as a constituency assistant for an MLA could create a conflict of interest when it came to voting on local issues and wanted his letter to be put on council’s agenda so it could become part of the official record.

“At the least, it should have shown under correspondence at the workshop, at the minimum.”

But Mayor Ernie Daykin has decided it’s a personnel issue and shouldn’t go before council.

Daykin said in an Oct. 2 letter to Olson that council discussed the issue in June and considered to be concluded then.

But Daykin noted that Olson also sent the letter to Premier Christy Clark and said Ashlie would address the issue if the premier indicates there may be a conflict.

Other municipal councillors in other ridings also serve as constituency assistants.

Ashlie said there’s no obligation to put every letter to the municipality on council’s agenda.

“That’s often the case. Not every single letter ends up on the agenda.”

The mayor decides which correspondence he receives goes to staff or council.

Ashlie said there’s no conflict in her role as a part-time municipal councillor and part time constituency assistant for Bing, a Pitt Meadows councillor.

Her job is to help individual constituents access services and sort out problems while Bing’s staff in Victoria deal with government issues.

She said she doesn’t deal with grant applications to the provincial government.

“I do not deal with grants. I have nothing to do with it.”

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