Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Nanaimo City Manager's Severance Deal - - - - - - - - - What is True?

Will Nanaimo Taxpayers
Ever Know The Truth?

The controversial decision by city council to pay Jerry Berry nearly $500,000.00 to do nothing for the next two years is still shrouded in mystery. In what has to be an absolutely preposterous turn of events, it appears the deal inked between council and Berry has a clause requiring all parties to be silent on the details!

In what universe is it possible or moral or ethical for City council to spend $500,000.00 of the taxpayers dollars and not disclose the details?
The local fifth estate seems to be as impotent as this lowly blogger when it comes to being able to pry something truthful or even plausible from anyone associated with this event. In less civilized times, an event like this would result in a rightly irate citizenry storming city council and tar and feathering the lot, and then running them out of town on a rail. Does anyone else think that is a good idea?

Which one of these scenarios do you think is most plausible:

  • In an effort to save the taxpayers money, Mr. Berry volunteered to take an early retirement. In the process city council felt him such a great guy, they agreed to pay him to stay home and get full salary for the next two years until his pension kicked in.(How many other members of city staff will be able to claim the same deal? Take early retirement, stay at home and do nothing, but get paid until your pension starts.)
  • After an independent third party review it would have been concluded that the position of City Manager was a waste of tax dollars and the position should be eliminated. This conclusion is based on the fact, Mr. Berry is apparently not going to be replaced, hence the enormous saving to taxpayers in future.
  • Mr. Berry was being so badly harassed by a few new council members, the pressure finally got to him and he resigned rather than waiting for a new crop of councillors come next election.
To date, nothing coming from Mayor Ruttan (the only spokesman on the matter) is anything but a pure insult to the intelligence of Nanaimo taxpayers.

Remember all those closed door meetings by previous councils which resulted in Nanaimo taxpayers dancing to the tune written by Millenium Suro? This council along the way I believe made some promises about transparency and the like. Or was that some other group of politicians wanting to get elected just making more empty promises.

And politicians wonder why fewer and fewer people can be bothered to participate in the democratic process? This current episode is a prime example of why people just throw up their hands.

In a previous, more passionate generation by now the tar pot would be warming up, the feathers would be being plucked and at least ten good rails would have been cut by now.


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