Craig comments on Wiarton Echo/ Owen Sound Sun Times article re Acquittal (8-10)

Rob Gowan, Owen Sound Sun Times, reported [www.wiartonecho.com/news/local-news/gammie-acquitted-of-assault-charge/wcm/3d9e8881-2c41-4464-9005-1806090ba01c  ] on my acquittal and on Justice Morneau’s judgement.   My comments on the Gowan article follow.

In her eight-page judgment, Morneau states that she cannot say that any witnesses were untruthful. (source: Rob Gowan, Echo October 4, 2018)

Out of context this is misleading.  Judge Morneau pointed out that Jackson failed to tell the truth at least sometimes.  Her words were “Ms. Jackson was perhaps more sure of herself, yet the evidence demonstrated that some of that assurance was misplaced.”  I read that as a euphemism for “the physical evidence demonstrates that Jackson lied at least sometimes”.  Justice Morneau even included transcript of Elizabeth Barefoot catching Jackson in the “stop that’s assault” lie.

The judgment goes on to state that “Mr. Gammie most likely did push Mr.Kirkland from behind.    Mr. Gammie clearly did not disagree at the time with Mr. Kirkland’s remarks about being pushed.” (Echo)

Justice Morneau I think was saying that I did not disagree at the time with Mr. Kirkland’s remarks about being pushed, therefore I most likely did push Mr. Kirkland from behind.

Justice Morneau was relying on a notion that my silence when accused by Kirkland is evidence of guilt.  But her conclusion does not follow from the premise, and the conclusion is preposterous.

My lawyer Elizabeth Barefoot capably demonstrated, with reference to several other cases, that the doctrine of acceptance by silence very clearly does not apply here.  For balance Mr. Gowan should have reported that too.

He [Kirkland] suffered no injuries.  (Echo)

But Jackson testified that Kirkland hurt his chin.  That should have been reported too.

Evidence presented in court included video from a surveillance camera. While it wasn’t in position to show what happened, it does show Jackson stepping back as if she had just seen something startling.  (Echo)

“As if she had just seen something startling” is Gowan conjecture, not fact.   I believe Jackson stepped back because Kirkland had the door almost closed and there was no need for her to continue to be in there pushing on Kirkland’s back and helping Kirkland to physically block me from getting my report.

I am told that reporter Rob Gowan was not in court when the video was played.  So how would he know what Jackson’s stepping back appeared to be?

During the trial, Kirkland testified that Gammie pushed him twice from behind quite heavily, slamming his face into the door or door frame. (Echo)

Kirkland testified to no such thing.

Contrary to Gowan’s account, Kirkland testified that he did not see who pushed him, and that he did not know who pushed him, and that it could have been Janice Jackson who pushed him.  Kirkland never testified that I hit or pushed him.  In court Kirkland always used the passive voice, never the active voice.  Instead of saying “Gammie pushed me” Kirkland testified “I was pushed”.  Instead of saying “Gammie slammed me from behind” Kirkland testified “I got slammed from behind”.  The evidence is compelling that I was never behind Kirkland.  If I had been behind Kirkland when he closed the door I would have been on the security camera.  But I was not. But Jackson was on the security video.  Right behind Kirkland.

Reporter Gowan was not present during Kirkland’s testimony. The story was rushed out without Gowan’s claims being checked.

There are no grounds for Justice Morneau to say: “Mr. Gammie most likely did push Mr. Kirkland from behind”.  The evidence would support a statement: “It is more likely than not that Gammie did not push Kirkland from behind”.

Kirkland, who was not in court on Thursday, said he was shocked by the acquittal. “I haven’t really had time to think about it too much, but I can’t believe it,” said Kirkland. “Why would I put myself through that if he didn’t do it?” (Echo October 4)

Yes Mr. Kirkland why would you make false allegations and put us all through that? Surely you knew from your past that you had little chance of getting away with your false allegation.

Kirkland took the witness stand in grubby shorts and sandals.  He made a joke on the stand.  He did not seem to care if he was seen as credible or not.  He did not seem to care if I was convicted or not.  At times it seemed that he did not want the judge to believe that I slammed him or hit him or pushed him.  I do not think Kirkland ever really expected that I would be convicted.   Under oath he declined to say that I hit or pushed him.  He was being careful not to perjure himself.  If I had been convicted and gone to jail instead of the acquittal Kirkland would have had trouble sleeping at night.   I believe he is pleased with the outcome.  Because that puts less of a burden on his guilty conscience.  But he has to pretend that he is disappointed.

Why does anyone make a false allegation? Not to right a wrong. People make false allegations for improper purposes and because they think they can get away with it. Kirkland’s purpose was to get me off council and away from town hall. He and Jackson achieved their sinister purpose. They got me off council with their false allegations.  Kirkland got away with his false accusations.  So far anyway.

“Why would I put myself through that rigmarole if it didn’t happen,” said Kirkland. “He even had me on his own tape that he recorded telling him not to do that to my back from behind again. (Echo October 4)

Kirkland testified that he did not know who pushed him and that it could have been Jackson.  But in an unsworn statement a year earlier Kirkland accused me of pushing him and hitting him.  He should try sticking to the truth.

“Why would I turn around if somebody didn’t slam me from behind, and tell them that?” (Echo October 4)

Note the passive voice again (“if somebody ….”).   In the heat of the moment he obviously made an assumption that I had pushed him.  But that was before he saw the video tape.  When he saw the video tape he realized that Jackson was the one behind him and that it was Jackson who pushed him.   By his own sworn admission he did not see who pushed him or slammed him and he did not know who pushed or slammed him.

“It was the Crown that charged him, not me,” said Kirkland, who said he went to police, asked if they thought it was a case, and they told him that Gammie couldn’t do to him what he was alleged to have done. (Echo)

But Kirkland was not truthful to the police.  If Kirkland had been as truthful to the police as he was in testifying that “I did not see who pushed me. I do not know who pushed me.  It could have been Janice” there would never have been a charge.

Kirkland said he plans to move on from the trial. (Echo)

If Kirkland has any semblance of decency he will take a long hard look at what he has done, and he will make amends before “moving on”. You are not absolved, Mr. Kirkland.

Jackson said the recording was edited, which Gammie admitted to. (Echo)

The entered audio file included everything from the second the “record” button was pressed to the second the “stop” button was pressed.  The recording was not edited.  The full unedited unaltered audio file was entered as evidence.  Judge Morneau insisted that the whole file be entered.  The audio file was not challenged by the crown.  Judge Morneau accepted it as evidence, saying (her paragraph 35) “I conclude that this recording is accurate and reliable”.  The claim that it was edited is just another Jackson lie.  No surprise there. (Is anything Jackson says true?)  I made short audio excerpts for convenience.  But they were not “edits”.

Contrary to Mr. Gowan I did not admit to editing the recording or any recording.  That I admitted to editing is a reporter Gowan lie.   It appears that Gowan has learned much from Jackson.

“A lot of the very damning statements that Mr. Gammie made were interestingly removed,” said Jackson. “That was unfortunate.”  (Echo October 4)

There were no statements removed, damning or otherwise.  This is another Jackson lie (no surprise), easily disproved (no surprise).  It is no wonder Judge Morneau said (at paragraph 30) “Ms. Jackson was perhaps more sure of herself, yet the evidence demonstrated the some of that assurance was misplaced”, and (at paragraph 42) ““The difficulty with Ms. Jackson’s evidence is that she was so clear that she did not say the phrase “I love it” and characterized that assertion as a lie.  That was not a lie and her confidence in her position causes me to be very cautious with the use of her evidence as her memory is not reliable on some details and there is a history between her and Mr. Gammie.”

The complete unaltered audio file caught Jackson in at least two lies.  The video file caught Jackson in the big lie.  That’s what “was unfortunate” (for Jackson).

Jackson said the evidence speaks for itself, including the video, audio and her and Kirkland’s testimony. (Echo)

What a stupid statement.  The evidence said Janice was right behind Kirkland at the time of the alleged push.  The evidence said that I was not behind Kirkland at the time of the alleged push. The evidence said I did not do what Jackson swore under oath that I did. The evidence did speak for itself, just not in the way Jackson that implied it did.

If Judge Morneau got it as wrong as Jackson implied, then the crown would be duty bound to appeal.  Don’t hold your breath Ms. Jackson.

Both Jackson and Kirkland expressed surprise that a town employee who witnessed the events wasn’t called to testify. (Echo)

The employee they are talking about is Hailey Mossley.  Ms. Mossley claimed in a report that “[Craig] shoved Jay from behind – hand to Jay’s shoulder”.  Jackson claimed that Mossley was an “eye-witness” to the events.  Defence lawyer Elizabeth Barefoot established from the video and a bit of geometry that Ms. Mossley could not have witnessed what she claimed she did.  The crown did not call Hailey Mossley because Elizabeth Barefoot’s cross-examination of Mossley’s testimony would have killed the already barely breathing crown case.

“There was a third eyewitness and the Crown chose not to call that witness,” said Jackson. “When I asked why he didn’t call the witness he said the case was as good as it could get.” (Echo)

The crown did not have to justify his decision to Jackson.  I doubt that he said what Jackson claims he said.   I expect that the crown lawyer told Jackson that Mossley’s testimony could not help and was likely to hurt his case.

Jackson is trying to suggest by innuendo that it’s the Crown lawyer’s fault that I didn’t get convicted, because he did not call Ms. Mossley.  Jackson’s suggestion is ridiculous.  Crown lawyer Glenn Brotherston did the best he could with what he had. What he had was three lying witnesses.  He was wise not to call Mossley.

“The thing that saddens me is the judge seems to be sending a message that this kind of behaviour in a municipal office is OK,” said Jackson, who had not yet read the judgment. “You can’t just slam somebody into a steel door and that is OK.”  (Echo)

How can Jackson possibly know what message Justice Morneau was sending if Jackson has not read Justice Morneau’s judgment?  Does she read minds?

Judge Morneau did not say or seem to say or imply anything of the kind.  Jackson’s statement is seriously offensive to Justice Morneau and to the whole justice system.

If the crown had proved that I intentionally slammed Kirkland into a steel door then Judge Morneau would have convicted me.  But the crown did not prove that.  The crown could not even come up with any reliable evidence of that.

Jackson seems to think that I should have been found guilty by allegation, like I and others have been found guilty by allegation so many times in Jackson’s infamous kangaroo courts.  News flash 1 for Jackson – innocent until proven guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction.  The only entered evidence that I slammed Kirkland was Jackson’s testimony.  And that was found to be unreliable.  News flash 2 for Jackson.  In Canada we still have the rule of law …. not the rule-of-Jackson.

The TSBP code of conduct for council members section 5.2 indicates: “no member will maliciously or falsely injure or impugn the professional or ethical reputation of any member of staff, the public or member of Council”.  Jackson breached the rule.

The code of conduct also indicates “as leaders of the community, [members of council] are held to a higher standard of behaviour”. The mayor as a public figure is held to that higher standard.   The thing that saddens me is that Mayor Janice Jackson seems to be sending a message to the young and the old of TSBP that it is OK to lie and cheat and deceive in order to get rid of your political adversaries.  It is not OK.  It is a breach of the code of conduct and it is wrong.  Nd under oath lying with intent to deceive is called perjury.

Vote wisely.

Craig

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Acquittal! Jackson lied! Kirkland lied! Mossley lied!

September 5, 2018 I was accused of assaulting Jay Kirkland.  I was arrested, charged with common assault, jailed for 24 hours, paraded around handcuffed behind my back,  locked in a courtroom prisoner`s box, and treated as if I was a serious threat to all of society.  I was humiliated and shamed in the media and on social media.  I lost my seat on council.

The allegations made against me by Jay Kirkland, Janice Jackson and Hailey Mossley were false, and were knowingly false.  The allegations were concocted.

To get a conviction, the crown must prove all three elements of assault beyond a reasonable doubt.  Those elements are:

  1. there must be force applied beyond an incidental touch or bump.
  2. there must be an intention to assault and an intention to harm,
  3. there must be an absence of consent.

The crown did not and could not prove any of these elements. My lawyer provided ample evidence that none of the elements were met.

In entering an acquittal, Justice Morneau, made the correct decision, the only decision she could given the evidence.   I have much respect for Justice Morneau and I am truly grateful for her acquittal decision.

I agree with her observation that “Ms. Jackson was perhaps more sure of herself, yet the evidence demonstrated the some of that assurance was misplaced.”  I read that as a euphemism for “the physical evidence demonstrates that Jackson lied”.

My lawyer Elizabeth Barefoot submitted that Jackson had laughed and said“oooh that’s assault I love it”.  Jackson vehemently denied both.  Then Ms. Barefoot played for Jackson and the court my audio recording, in which Jackson clearly laughed and Jackson clearly said “oooh that’s assault I love it”.   Jackson then changed her testimony from “I did not laugh /I did not say “oooh that’s assault I love it”” to “I don’t recall laughing or saying that”.  ( A transcript of the exchange is here  Transcripts excerpts august 20 and 21 court recording). These are two of the lies Justice Morneau characterized as “[Jackson’s] assurance [of her own testimony] was misplaced”.  Justice Morneau very kindly  characterized Jackson’s lies as memory lapses made because so much time had passed.   I disagree.  In a written statement September 6, 2107, a mere 24 hours after the event, Jackson wrote “I reacted by saying ”that’s assault, stop””.  Not “oooh that’s assault I love it””.  Her lie 24 hours after cannot be blamed on a memory lapse.  It was a deliberate lie. Both were deliberate lies.

Kirkland and Jackson made the same false statement.  It is simply not plausible that Jackson and Kirkland had the same lapse in memory.   They colluded before they made all of their false statements.

Jackson’s biggest lie was her description of the alleged assault.

Jackson stated to police September 6, 2017 [Excerpt Janice Jackson statement September 6 2018} and swore under oath on December 7 2017 excerpt gammiedec7bailrevtrans} and again on August 21 2018 [Transcripts excerpts august 20 and 21 court recording] that a) the door clicked shut, b) Gammie leaped forward c)and leaning forward, not flat –footed, d) with the full force of his body weight hit Kirkland in the back, with two hands, from behind, and e slammed Kirkland’s face and left shoulder into the door, then f) f) hit Kirkland a second time in similar fashion. Then the same testimony on August 20 Link].

In trial I used photographs and drawings [Gammie’s PPT with final slides] to determine and demonstrate my location and Kirlkland’s location through the alleged assault if JJ’s version were true.  I showed what the security video camera could see and what the camera could not see.  In testimony I demonstrated that if Ms Jackson’s version of events were true, I would have been visible to the camera during the lunge/ leap and I would have had to be at least partly visible to the camera during the pushes.  But I was not visible to the camera at all during the alleged lung push/push.  The inescapable conclusion is that Jackson Lied.

Judge Morneau said she “had the benefit of Mr. Gammie’s engineering analysis of what could or could not have happened.   Justice Morneau is by her own admission not overly tech–savy.  So I very much appreciate the time she put into understanding my very technical analysis of what really happened and what did not happen, and my conclusion that Janice’s version was not physically possible.

Justice Morneau said that “Mr. Gammie most likely did push Mr. Kirkland from behind”.   This should not be taken as a finding by Justice Morneau that I assaulted Kirkland or was guilty of assault.  As argued above there are three elements to an assault.  Judge Morneau rightly did not find that I had applied force.  Justice Morneau did not find that a push (if there was one)  was intentional.  And justice Morneau did not find that there was no consent.

The push if there was one was too trivial to be characterized as assault or force applied.

In not finding any of the elements met, Justice Morneau was expressing reasonable doubt about both Kirkland’s and Jackson’s versions.

If anyone out there can demonstrate that it is physically possible for Kirkland’s or Jackson’s versions to have happened without the lunges and pushes being on the security video, please do so.

Until someone does so demonstrate, Jackson and Kirkland are caught in a big lie.

Hailey Mossley lied too, but not under oath.  claimed that: “Craig shoved Jay from behind – hand to Jay’s shoulder”.  sat in the foyer August 21 and 22 waiting to be called to the witness stand.  Ms. Mossley was in the video during the event.  On august 21 Elizabeth Barefoot showed that from where Ms. Mossley was in the video she couldn’t see anything.  It is no surprise that the crown decided not to call Ms. Mossop.  It appears that Ms. Mossop was treward for her effort anyway.

Jackson concocted the lies about what happened and what she had said and then somehow she convinced Kirkland to lie.  All to get me out of the picture.    Because I refused to recognize her claim to power.  Because I dared to publicly disagree.

If Jackson is re-elected, successful candidates will face this situation.   If they speak their minds instead of simply nodding agreement to Jackson’s agenda, they will be harassed and bullied, they will be falsely accused, and they may even be removed from council.

Do you want the head of council trying every trick in the book to get rid of those who refuse to salute her?  Do you want to be in a situation where the only residents with a voice are those that agree with the mayor? Electors beware.

 

Craig

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How lawyer Lisus fraudulently presented appeal of MNRF stop order as if it were the town’s (8-8)

On March 22nd the town was charged with violation of the endangered species act.

On March 28th, 2018 the MNRF issued a “stop order” to prevent further habitat damage.

On April 10th, 2018 lawyer Johnathan Lisus sent MNRF a request for a hearing regarding the March 28, 2018 stop order. (Also called an appeal of the stop order.)

The April 10th, 2018 letter is here   SBrucePeninsualHearingRequest-10-APR-2018.

The letter has Lisus’ signature. But the words are mostly Janice Jackson’s.

With few exceptions (which do not apply here), by law all TSBP decisions must be made by council. Not by Lisus. Not by Janice Jackson. By council.

With few exceptions (which do not apply here) all TSBP decisions must be open to scrutiny by the residents.

Shutting council and the residents out of the decision process contravenes the letter of the Municipal Act sections 5 (1), 5 (3) and 227, and is undemocratic.
.
The decision to appeal the MNRF March 28 stop order and the decision to use the contents of the April 10, 2018 letter were made without council knowledge or approval, and without resident scrutiny. The decisions were made by Jackson or by Jackson and Lisus.

The appeal/ request for hearing is presented as if was a town appeal/ town request. It is not. It is a Janice Jackson/ Johnathan Lisus submission.

Shutting out council and the public and submitting their own position to the MNRF as if it was an approved town position is fraud.

Submitting positions as if they were town positions when they are not also violated at least the intent of the TSBP correspondence policy (policy A.3.2).

Jackson damaged more habitat last week. MNRF conservation officers are investigating. I expect there will be a third charge. That would put the risk to taxpayers up to $5,000,000.

Time to replace the out-of-control Bulldozer Bee.

Craig

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Craig Responds to Lois Keays re Land Claim

What follows is a part of a facebook thread regarding the Sauble Land Claim (https://www.facebook.com/groups/1916023288690195/).

Lois Keays:
We seem to agree on a major issue. Exorbitant legal costs with no apparent benefit to the residents. Lisus legal costs were published by Ana Vukovic on this thread as $263,981.00 March 31, 2015 to August 30, 2018. Prior to that our law firm was Donneley and Murphy. I have Donneley Murphy costs 2012 to 2015 at $27,253.49. I do not have the figures prior to that.

In November 2014, Chippewa of Saugeen First Nation (“CSFN”) had a very weak case and we had a very strong defence developed. We had a very strong chance of winning the lawsuit, and a very strong chance of getting our reasonable legal fees paid by CSFN. But it seems Janice Jackson has changed all that.

In 2015 or 2016 Janice Jackson, without legitimate authority, formed a committee of herself and Jay Kirkland and made the committee responsible for all decisions regarding the land claim. Jay told me later that the “committee” never met and that Jackson alone was actually making the land claim decisions. Jackson had without authority put herself in full control, shutting out the legitimate decision maker (council) and completely shutting out the residents.

For obvious reasons I cannot get into detail, but based on what I can see, which is limited, my feeling is that as a result of Jackson’s unlawful takeover, our position has been weakened. So now I expect that there is a greater risk of losing the lawsuit, and a greater risk that we will not recover our legal costs, and a greater risk that we will have to pay some of the legal costs of CSFN. Just an opinion.

The way to fix this is to get Jackson out of the Mayor’s chair.

While Mr. Gammie is very righteous in his undocumented analysis of the “Civil Litigation” while alleging that the Federal Government has no representative bearing in Crown controlled Reserve lands…or those subject to dispute, is ill-informed at best. While referencing my concerns as speculative, hear-say and red-herrings, I will contend that he has produced no documented evidence of his knowledge, but provides his views and opinions as fact. On one hand, I’m told I can access information and in the same breath told accounting of costs was removed (a fact of which I’m well aware).”
July 5, 2014 I presented my analysis to over 700 residents at the Sauble Community Center. My website at: http://craiggammie.com/Home.html has my July 5, 2015 presentation and about 29 other documents related to the case. I have not kept the site up to date. I plan to add the 2016 pleadings by the parties and my updated 2018 analysis and some excellent analysis conducted by David Dobson. My analysis is anything but “undocumented”.

What I said was that the Federal Government is not judging the lawsuit – the courts are.

“I was raised with an acute awareness of dishonoured Treaties.”

So was I. The treaty was not dishonoured.

”As to when I raised my concerns with the Town of South Bruce Peninsula about committing taxpayer funds, that was June 2015 when a response from Mayor Jackson told me I could get back to her in 3.5 years for a complete list of this Council’s accomplishments.

The mayor’s response, in my view, was improper, offensive and outrageous.

”You also suggest that this Land Claim has been in the Courts for 28 years…obviously without the financial involvement of the Municipality.”

The municipality has been financially involved since 1990 (as Amabel Township), albeit at a much lower level.

”And then I have this written quotation from Mayor Jackson: “Regarding the First Nations; We have not committed to full litigation. We have simply committed to discovering where we stand legally.”  So…what is it exactly? The Town of SBP is fully invested in litigation or merely “discovering” a position? Who was called for Examinations for Discovery?”
The mayor is not being truthful. We can change to the settlement route if we want to but unless there is a settlement we are committed to litigation. The third alternative of just not showing up to defend ourselves is not on the table.

I am pretty sure, but not positive, that there has been no discovery yet.

“As to the argumentative dismissal of my concerns about scarce municipal resources being used to encourage massive numbers day-tripping tourists, my reference is to the use of our “free” features, while adding huge burden to SBP infrastructure…roads, waste management, enforcement, policing, etc. etc. I have heard and seen…with my own ears and eyes, the toll it is taking on the ratepayers of SBP.”

I see your point. I agree with you. Tourism is a net cost to the taxpayers.

“Perhaps asking some of the ratepayers, not personally invested in a relatively insignificant commercial assessment at Sauble Beach, if they are happy with hundreds of thousands of dollars being spent on an idea of proprietorship. …..So what do we have? An insignificant commercial tax base from which to sustain an increasing demand on services, funded almost entirely by residential taxpayers, to ensure access by tourists to a natural resource…with virtually no cost-benefit.”

Please explain. Are you saying the $263,981.00 was spent on “proprietorship? Are you saying the $263,981.00 was spent to ensure access by tourists?

“I will do my due-diligence in finding fact based information regarding the First Nations filing of a suit, which is not forthcoming from the Town of South Bruce Peninsula. Instead we are asked to “believe” the assertions as described above.”

It seems you do not believe what Janice Jackson says. I don’t either.

“The first order of business is to determine if SON (Saugeen Ojibway Nation) or SFN (Saugeen First Nation) are the claimants.”

The 2016 Plaintiff’s claim says “CHIPPEWAS OF SAUGEEN FIRST NATION”:

https://craiggammieblog.files.wordpress.com/2018/09/third-plaintiff-statement-of-claim-amended-april-21-2016.pdf

The town’s latest pleading:

https://craiggammieblog.files.wordpress.com/2018/09/south-bruce-2017-01-19-fresh-as-amended-defence-etc-of-south-bruce.pdf

That takes care of the first order of business. On to the second. Get Janice Jackson out of the mayor’s chair. October 22, 2018.

Craig

 

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Does Audio Recording and Transcript of the August 11, 2017 Council Meeting Beach Raking Discussion Suggest that Janice Jackson, Jay Kirkland, and Matt Jackson Are Guilty of the Offence of Damaging Piping Plover Habitat?

Section 37 of the endangered species act reads:

“If a corporation commits an offence under this Act, an officer, director, employee or agent of the corporation who directed, authorized, assented to, acquiesced in or participated in the commission of the offence is party to and guilty of the offence and is liable on conviction to the punishment provided for the offence, whether or not the corporation has been prosecuted for the offence.”

The audio of the August 11, 2017 council discussion of beach raking is at: http://saublesewer.devuna.com/AudioDocuments.html

(Choose “2017”, then August 11, 2017 Special Council Meeting.  The beach discussion starts at 00:43:00 [hr/min/sec] and ends about 01:03:41)

A transcript of the audio is at:

http://www.craiggammie.com//documents/Transcriptpartaugust112017councilrebeachrake.pdf

In law they are presumed innocent, but still the August 11, 2017 council meeting audio recording and transcript may suggest that Janice Jackson, Jay Kirkland, and Matt Jackson “directed, authorized, assented to, acquiesced in or participated in the commission of the offence” of damaging piping plover habitat at the beach August and September 2017, and may thus be accountable per section 37.

They should resign immediately. And if they are held accountable in a court of law, they should not be allowed to force the residents to pay their fines.

Also from the August 11, 2017 audio and transcript, it is clear that Ana Vukovic and I tried to stop the bulldozing of plover habitat.

Like so many others, I bet on the wrong horse in 2014.   I will not make the same mistake in October.

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Janice Jackson starts the mayoral race with a gratuitous and dishonest personal attack against her opponent Ana Vukovic (8-4)

In an interview with OSST reporter Denis Langlois, Mayoral Candidate Ana Vukovic properly stuck to the issues while candidate Janice Jackson chose to dishonestly bad-mouth Ana Vukovic (https://www.wiartonecho.com/news/local-news/jackson-vukovic-in-race-for-south-bruce-peninsula-mayor/wcm/5df68160-147e-4d30-a833-f87bd0e4a97a).

In what follows I provide counterpoint to Ms. Jackson’s ad hominem attacks.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“South Bruce Peninsula’s council sessions have been marred this term by “childish outbursts,” personal attacks and shocking tantrums, says incumbent councillor and mayoral candidate Ana Vukovic. The decorum has never been so bad, she said, in the 11 years she has been at the council table.”

“It’s a toxic environment. What I have experienced in the last year-and-a-half has been just unbearable. This has to be changed,” [Ana] said Friday in an interview.

“Vukovic, who submitted her nomination papers Wednesday to challenge incumbent Mayor Janice Jackson, said one of the key planks of her election platform is a vow to bring back “civility and respect” to local government. It is the job of the mayor to keep order in the council chambers, but that has not been done this term, [Ana] said.”

Ms. Vukovic is correct. There has been a lack of decorum, and a toxic environment, and lack of “civility and respect”.  All in my experience are due to Ms. Jackson’s tactic of bullying and harassing any council member who dares to disagree with her, and also Ms. Jackson’s total disregard for the procedural rules, and use (abuse) of the rules to shut out any member who does not agree with her.  In my view Ms. Jackson created the toxic environment and Ms. Jackson is the cause of the disorder and chaos.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“Jackson, ….. said she has faced “unprecedented challenges” as mayor because of former councillor Craig Gammie.”

That’s ridiculous and unsupportable.  I broke no council rules. I was never found by council to be in breach of any rules.  But it’s true I disagreed with Ms. Jackson, and quite often.  I do believe her when she says she found my dissenting views challenging.  But that does not give her the right to make false and hurtful allegations, or to bully, or harass, or punish me (or anyone else) for disagreeing with her.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“[Ms. Jackson] said it was disheartening to watch Vukovic “distance herself” from the rest of council and support Gammie in his final months on council.”

Ana has a lot of experience and wisdom.  She has disagreed with the mayor and the “rest of council” on many issues.  But in every case she disagreed with and voted against the rest of council not because she wanted to vote with me, but rather because she had considered the matters at hand very carefully and had determined that the “rest of council” was on a track that was not in the best interests of the residents.

Ms. Jackson does not seem to understand that Ms. Vukovic is quite capable of thinking for herself.  Ms. Jackson’s arrogance won’t let her even consider that a mere councillor could be right and she could be wrong.  Ana disagreed with the Mayor.   And true to form, the mayor attacked Ana for it.

From the Langlois OSST article:

““I can see now that Ana has created a ruckus at the council table to position herself for a second mayoral run,” [J. Jackson] said.”

“Ana” did not “create a ruckus at the council table”.  If she had it would have been recorded as a breach.  That did not happen.  Ms. Vukovic called out the May 1 bullying and harassment not to “create a ruckus” but rather because it needed to be called out.

When a council member disagrees with Ms. Jackson it gets spun as “created a ruckus”. That does not make it a ruckus. It just exposes Ms. Jackson as insecure and untruthful.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“I have been utterly disappointed because I expected maturity from our most senior council member.” [J. Jackson] said.”

Considering the attacks on her, Ms. Vukovic has shown remarkable restraint and maturity.  It’s Ms. Jackson’s bullying and harassing actions that are juvenile.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“Gammie was twice escorted by police out of council meetings and issued trespassing tickets in 2015.”

I was twice removed from my council seat and charged on allegations of trespassing.  The allegations were absolutely groundless, all based on Ms. Jackson falsely accusing  me of breaching a council rule.  The trespassing charges were dropped, with no admission of guilt, or of breach of any council rule.

That false trespassing allegation was just another in a long series of false allegations against me, including:

1) That I defamed the CAO ($750,000 lawsuit 2012 – dropped when the town ceased paying the CAO’s legal fees),

2) That I contravened the Professional Engineers Act (charges dropped 2013, no admission of wrongdoing),

3) That I shoved the pointed end of a stick into a man’s stomach so hard he doubled over in pain (2014 – no stick ever came near the man – the discussion was recorded on video),

4)That I breached the Law Society Act (2017 – I was completely cleared by the law society),

5) That I contravened the Professional Engineers Act (2016 – did not even get to charges)

6) That I harassed the clerk (no one would put a complaint in – allegations were goundless),

(and more).

There was never any finding of guilt by a competent tribunal.

Anyone can make false allegations.  Usually without consequence to the one making the false allegations.  But often with serious consequences for the accused.  Making false allegations is nasty and cowardly.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“Council later invited Gammie back to the table (after the trespassing charges).”

Denis missed the point.  Ms. Jackson proclaimed in May 2015 that unless I apologized and the apology was accepted by council I was out for the term.   I proclaimed that I would not apologize because I did not break the council rule I was accused of breaking.  I was not invited back to the table.  I just came back.  Ms. Jackson decided not to call the police a third time because the town lawyer told her that removing me was improper and the trespassing charges were groundless and that trying to keep me out would be improper and if Ms. Jackson persisted a judge would order me back in.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“Council voted in December to declare Gammie’s seat vacant, which Jackson at the time said they had to do because he had missed three consecutive months of meetings without council’s permission.”

Council could have presumed me innocent of the charges against me and given me permission to miss meetings.  Contrary to Jackson, council did not have to remove me.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“In May, Vukovic stated during a council meeting that she had been harassed by fellow council members and was called an “idiot, moron and psycho” at a special closed session.”

Ms. Vukovic was also called “a stupid old woman”, by bullies Ms. Jackson and Matt Jackson.  For disagreeing with the Mayor and the councillor.   Over a motion to add staff to the payroll at a cost of $300,000 per year to the taxpayers.  Which Ms. Ana Vukovic  considered unnecessary. Ana was bullied for considering the taxpayers.  Ana was bullied for properly representing the taxpayers.  Ana was bullied for doing what she was elected to do.

From the Langlois OSST article, Ms. Jackson’s comment about the May 1 bullying:

“However, Jackson said at the time that any words exchanged were outside of council meetings.“

It is true – the words were spoken outside of a formal council meeting.  But the words were spoken in council chambers.  Which is the workplace.   That made the nasty words “workplace harassment”.

And the May 1 words were also a breach of the council code of conduct (“no member will maliciously or falsely injure or impugn the professional or ethical reputation of any member of Council; every member has the duty and responsibility to treat .. one another appropriately and without abuse, bullying or intimidation; no member shall engage in any form of slanderous, malicious or demeaning communication in regard to other members of Council”).  Janice Jackson and Matt Jackson bullied, harassed, abused, slandered, demeaned, and all the rest.

Ms. Jackson’s response that the words were “exchanged outside of a formal council meeting” is typical J. Jackson spin/BS, and is an irrelevant distraction.

What is relevant is that J. Jackson did not deny that the nasty words were spoken.

What is relevant is that Ana filed a complaint against Janice Jackson and Matt Jackson under the Town’s harassment policy.

What is relevant is that J. Jackson did not deny Ms. Vukovic’s written allegations against her.

What is relevant is that an independent investigator is dealing with Ana’s complaint, with a report due, and with the Ministry of Labour watching.

That was the second complaint by Councillor Vukovic against Janice Jackson.  The first was, in Councillor Vukovic’s words: “in an email to me August 14, 2017 and also in the October 10, 2017 special closed meeting Mayor Jackson: 1) made false and hurtful claims that I leaked confidential information to a staff member, 2) falsely impugned my ethical reputation, 3) bullied me, and, 4) made vexatious comments to me that were unwelcome and were workplace harassment … in contravention of the council code of conduct”.

 Ms. Jackson buried that complaint.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“”Ana has voted against doing any beach maintenance whatsoever,” [Ms. Jackson] said.“

This is simply false.  And Ms. Jackson knows it is false.  Ana made a motion August 11, 2017 to do beach maintenance only with written permission from MNRF.  That’s nowhere near “Ana has voted against doing any beach maintenance whatsoever”.  Her motion was defeated by Ms. Jackson, Mr. Kirkland and councillor Jackson.

By ordering in the bulldozer, Ms. Jackson has breached the law, let the town take the blame, and made sure any consequences fall on the taxpayers, not on her.

From the Langlois OSST article:

“Jackson said as mayor, she has seized every opportunity to advance the town. South Bruce Peninsula is experiencing an unprecedented opportunity for growth, she said, and the town requires “a progressive, forward-thinking mayor who isn’t afraid to make tough decisions.””

A second charge was filed by MNRF against the town last week, for bulldozing the beach and damaging piping plover habitat in the fall of 2017.  Ms. Jackson’s decision to break the law regarding the beach at Sauble brought legal costs of $175,000 on the residents (so far) and put the residents of TSBP at risk of having to pay fines of up to $3,000,000.  And even more charges could follow.  Was that one of Ms. Jackson’s “tough decisions”?  Was that decision “progressive” and “forward-thinking”? I think not.  It was a reckless and dumb decision.

(The misguided nature of many of Ms. Jackson’s “tough decisions” will be the subject of a future post.)

A vote for Janice Jackson is a vote for more bullying of anyone who dares to disagree, and for chaos, incivility and a toxic environment.

A vote for Ana Vukovic is a vote for honesty, integrity, transparency and civility.  And a lot of experience and common sense.

 

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MNRF Lays Second Charge Against TSBP For Damaging Piping Plover Habitat (Craig’s 8-3)

In April 2016 Sauble Beach habitat of the endangered piping plover was extensively groomed by a company registered to Deputy Mayor Jay Kirkland under contract to the Town of South Bruce Peninsula.  Council did not authorize the grooming of habitat, and was not informed that the grooming would be done.  The grooming was clearly in violation of the applicable town policy.  No charges were laid.

In April 2017 Sauble Beach habitat of the endangered piping plover was again extensively groomed, this time by a numbered company under contract to the Town of South Bruce Peninsula, that numbered company being registered to James Ray Kirkland, brother of Deputy Mayor Jay Kirkland.  Council did not authorize the grooming of habitat, and was not informed that the grooming would be done.  The grooming was clearly in violation of the applicable town policy.

On March 21, 2018, following a nine month investigation, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry  charged the town with contravention of the Endangered Species Act, alleging that the April 2017 grooming damaged piping plover habitat.

In August and September 2017 plover habitat was again extensively groomed, this time including bulldozing of habitat, this time by town staff.  Council was warned beforehand that the grooming would be unlawful.  Once again, council did not authorize the grooming of habitat.

On July 25, 2018 the MNRF laid a second charge against the town, alleging that the August/ September 2017 grooming damaged habitat in contravention of the Act.

With the two charges, the town is facing up to $3,000,000 in fines if convicted.

And there could be more charges.

Because the taxpayers are already paying the Town’s hefty legal fees ($176,085 to date and increasing rapidly), and because any fines will be paid by taxpayers, it is incumbent upon the town to be open and transparent and honest about this matter.

Yet there has been no word from the town regarding the most recent charge. And the legal fees, which have not been authorized by council, are also being kept from the public.

Habitat is defined at Sauble Beach as 500 meters each way North and South of a nest, from Lakeshore Blvd. in the East to the edge of Lake Huron in the West.  An area that was habitat while a nest is present continues to be habitat for at least one year , and as many as five years, after the birds have left the nest.

The Endangered Species Act prohibits damage or destruction of piping plover habitat. Since November 2012 TSBP policy also clearly prohibits mechanical grooming of habitat.

Council has never authorized, by resolution, grooming of piping plover habitat.  Janice Jackson, Jay Kirkland and Matt Jackson were warned in the special council meeting of August 11, 2017 that what they were considering was illegal and could bring serious consequences.

There is indication that Janice Jackson, using authority she does not legitimately possess, sanctioned the grooming of plover habitat spring 2016, spring 2017, and fall 2017.  There is indication she had support from Jay Kirkland and Matt Jackson.

There is indication that Janice Jackson, using authority she does not legitimately possess, sanctioned the grooming of plover habitat spring 2016, spring 2017, and fall 2017.  There is indication she had support from Jay Kirkland and Matt Jackson.

Some residents are saying that Janice Jackson directed the impugned grooming and is trying to hide her brash actions and the consequences of her brash actions out of fear that public knowledge of her role in the affair and the charges and the legal costs will harm her re-election prospects.

Some say she is trying to hide her actions out of fear that she will be personally charged, or will be personally held accountable for the town’s contravention.

The town appears in court next on August 29, 2018 for an attempt at resolution (for example a guilty plea).  If the matter cannot be resolved, a trial date will be set.   Many are watching closely.

 

Craig Gammie

Squabble Beach

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