The mayor’s big lie; can we trust her with the Sauble land claim file? (6-6)

Despite some efforts by known disrupters, the Amabel Property Owners Association successfully held a meeting October 8th to discuss the Sauble Land Claim.

The Sun Times and Wiarton Echo articles (http://www.owensoundsuntimes.com/2016/10/09/gammie-holds-sauble-land-claim-meeting) about the October 8 meeting reported Janice Jackson’ comments as:

Gammie has been in contact with [land claim lawyer] Lisus on a number of occasions, and council had to limit contact from everyone, except for Jackson and Clerk Angie Cathrae. “At $900 an hour we can’t afford to have Coun. Gammie phoning him on a daily basis, which is what he was doing,” said Jackson.

Jackson’s claim that I have phoned Lisus “on a daily basis” is a huge, ridiculous, malicious, and obvious lie.

My first contact with Lisus was on or about December 19, 2014, two months before we hired him.

My phone records show that from March 1, 2016 until now I did not call Lisus or his office, not even once.   This puts to a lie Jackson’s statement that I phoned Lisus “on a daily basis”.

My journal indicates that between my first contact with Lisus on December 19, 2014, and February 28, 2016, I called Lisus twice. My phone records will confirm this.

The first call was in May 2015 and my recollection is that I only left a voicemail and did not actually talk to Lisus.  It was a very short message related to some crown patents that I had sent him.

The second was a message left about October 9, 2015 letting Lisus know that I had couriered some documents that Janice Jackson had asked a lawyer friend of mine to send to Lisus.  The documents were unrelated to the land claim.  There was absolutely no discussion of the Sauble land claim.

There is no way anyone (except Jackson and her ilk) could get “Gammie phones Lisus daily” out of those two calls in two years, especially when one of the calls was not even about the land claim.

I cannot imagine why the mayor would risk what little is left of her credibility by telling such a huge and obvious lie, a lie that she had to know I could so easily prove false.

The only plausible explanation is that I am somehow getting too close to the truth about what she is doing with the land claim file.

It begs the questions “why is she trying to discredit and shut out those residents with the best understanding of what the 1854 era treaty, maps, field note and journals really say?”

It begs the question “what is she trying to hide?”

Just as ridiculous as the “big lie” (that Gammie phoned Lisus daily) is Jackson’s threat, captured by the press as:

Saturday’s meeting was recorded and if Gammie has harmed the town’s position in the claim in any way she says action will be taken against him. “I have sent a preliminary report to Jonathan Lisus and I will follow up once I hear the recording and he wants a copy of the recording as well,” said Jackson.

Freedom of expression is guaranteed by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, (subject to fair and just laws restricting things like defamation).

Recent jurisprudence indicates that a municipality cannot sue a citizen for defamation.

Specifically, in the case of Montague (Township) v. Page, Judge Pedlar found:

It is the very essence of a democracy to engage many voices in the process, not just those who are positive and supportive. By its very nature, the democratic process is complex, cumbersome, difficult, messy and at times frustrating, but always worthwhile, with a broad based participation absolutely essential. A democracy cannot exist without freedom of expression, within the law, permeating all of its institutions. If governments were entitled to sue citizens who are critical, only those with the means to defend civil actions would be able to criticize government entities.

Judge Pedlar then dismissed, on summary motion (no trial), the defamation lawsuit filed by the township of Montague.

At the October 8th meeting I exercised my right to freedom of expression.

There is no way that I can be charged or successfully sued by the town for anything I said or could have said at the meeting.  Jackson’s threat is empty.

I submit that Jackson’s empty threat was made to try to get me to stop sharing the truth with residents, to try to intimidate me into stopping my research on the land claim, and to try to intimidate me into silence.

This is not the first time Janice Jackson has threatened an executive member of the Amabel Property Owners Association with legal action.  The first time was just as ridiculous and empty as the current one.

Jackson’s threat will have just the opposite effect of what she intended and must have anticipated.  Another Amabel Property Owners Association meeting regarding the land claim is in the works, for July, 2017, tentatively the 22nd.  I will continue to participate as much as possible.

Several other very unusual and unexplained actions by Janice Jackson before the “big lie” and the “empty threat” gave me cause to wonder why residents were being kept in the dark again regarding the Sauble beach Land claim, including:

  • A 2014 consultant’s report commissioned by the town and received by the town and very favourable to the town was never released to the public.
  • A meeting agreed upon April 7, 2015 in which I was to share insights and evidence with land claim lawyer Jonathan Lisus was inexplicably quashed by Janice Jackson, and instruction was given to Lisus not to correspond with me at all, effectively shutting me out.
  • January 19, 2016, a council majority gave the mayor and deputy what they interpret as authority to address all legal matters (presumably including the land claim) without the knowledge or approval of the rest of council. (Council had no legitimate authority to delegate that decision making power).
  • In an August 13, 2016 council meeting I tried to talk about the land claim and the critically-flawed Dobson theory and was rudely shut down by Janice Jackson and members of her fan club.
  • A September 26, 2016 letter from J. Jackson and J. Kirkland, written by lawyer Lisus at taxpayers’ expense, falsely stated that after the lawyer was engaged I had “seized the opportunity to discuss [my] evidence with the Town solicitor”, and without grounds accused me of “conduct in the community that has the potential to be divisive and disrespectful to the process and those involved.”
  • About October 3, 2016 Janice Jackson sent emails around telling residents that the Land Claim meeting being put on by Amabel Property Owners Association on October 8 was improper. (Amabel Property Owners Association held the October 8 meeting anyway.  Given Janice Jackson’s history of disruption, she was asked not to come.)

The prospect of ten storey hotels lining the beach and signs saying “hotel patrons only on the beach” has many residents concerned.

With her “big lie” and her ridiculous ultimatum, and all the other shenanigans, is it fair to ask whether we should continue to trust Jackson to manage or co-manage the land claim file?

Sooner or later residents will find out whether Jackson is hiding something, and if so, what.   Anyone who has any insights please share by commenting on this post at www.craiggammieblog.com

I recommend commenting under an alias.   To avoid becoming a target of bitter retaliation.

 

Craig Gammie

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8 Responses to The mayor’s big lie; can we trust her with the Sauble land claim file? (6-6)

  1. yabder4 says:

    Craig, it is interesting how you feel it’s either you or Mayor Jackson. I would trust Council (including you) versus the lone wolf attitude you seem to have in life where you trump everyone’s opinions and actions. Humm, Trump / Gammie. I see the similarities. After a while i don’t even bother to read the drivel past the first 2 paragraphs. You’ll find that out when you run for Mayor, just as Trump will find out running for President. At least on Council, if you behave, we’ll see votes on the land claim, which I’m sure will always have you being the no vote as your record is illustrating. I had really hoped for 5 Councillors working together, not 4. Her big lie? What about your constant vengeance on anyone who gets in your demented way of spewing forth your theories. I support Jackson anytime over the alternative.

    • cgammie says:

      Yabder:
      I never said it was me or Jackson. I propose council instead of Jackson and Kirkland making all decisions including land claim decisions. Council should be making decisions on the land claim, not part of council. That’s the way the system is designed and that’s how it is supposed to work. And that’s the law.

      Your view of a council working together appears to be this:
      The mayor makes a proposal and the rest of council signs on, no matter how bad it is for the residents. For me to vote for a bad policy just for the sake of some “team” or “unanimity” would be to shirk the duty I was elected for.

      Exactly what vengeance have I taken against someone for disagreeing with me? Please be specific. And please support with facts, not gossip.

      Craig

  2. John says:

    Sauble Beach
    My thoughts on beach “Management” and “Ownership” – and why.
    Disabled persons access to the beach.
    For your consideration
    I have heard some people say they would like the beach to be the same way it used to be! I agree. In the 1950’s when my parents used to rent at Sauble Beach every summer and also when my parents built our cottage in 1958, we could drive down and park on the beach. This was very convenient.
    It is no wonder so many cars are lined up to go to the South Sauble beach on each weekend in the summer. There is convenient parking on the beach,
    Before my wife passed away nearly six years ago from ALS, she would have liked very much to watch her grandchildren play on the beach. This was essentially impossible because there was no way to get her to the beach in a wheelchair. At the 6th Street beach entrance, closest to us, there are a few wheelchair parking spots. You can even use the one accessible washroom there, but is essentially impossible to get anyone to the beach in a wheelchair unless you have several very strong people to carry the person in the wheelchair. I could have carried her on my back possibly, but then, I would have had to drop her on the sand to go back for chairs for us. Unfortunately, she did not get to watch her grandchildren play on the beach. I looked into electric wheelchairs that would travel in sand and the cost was prohibitive and neither the government nor the insurance would help with the cost. They would only fund “approved” ordinary wheelchairs.
    It appears to me the town looks at the need for disabled parking requirements only to meet a legislated requirement rather than the needs of the disabled.
    Another example to support my thought is the beer store in Wiarton. The disabled parking spot is the furthest parking spot from the store entrance and is in front of the loading dock. Does this only meet the requirement of the town? Or their disabled customers?
    The new grocery store in Wiarton got it right. They appear to have actually considered the needs of disabled people for parking. Good for them!
    I have developed a chronic progressing problem with my legs. I have a disability parking certificate. I can park in one of the disabled parking spots at 6th. Street. I can use the accessible washroom if I like. I have difficulty walking down the narrow curved soft sand paths to the beach. I usually have to use a cane. I do not expect to get any better. I expect I will eventually be in a wheelchair. I would also like to watch grandchildren and great grandchildren play at the beach. The present situation will prevent this unless I go the Saugeen First Nation “SFN” beach.
    My understanding is that the town will not consider parking on the beach. Therefore, for my personal needs, my wish is that the SFN will ultimately own the beach, and provide for parking on the beach, if that is the only choice to satisfy my needs.
    John Azulay

    PARKING at Sauble Beach
    For your consideration
    I see the beach strip parking to be dangerous:
    As it is now, cars park diagonally and usually with their rear or front bumper very close to or actually on the road. Although there is provision for people to pay for parking from their cell phone, this is not the case for everyone. Nevertheless, one (and family) needs to walk from their parking place to a beach entrance on the road along with vehicle traffic. On a holiday weekend this, to me, seems to be dangerous.
    I have Dashcam videos and photographs of people having to walk toward traffic, on the road, in wheelchairs, to pass the motorcycle parking, near the town centre. Surely this is dangerous.
    I would suggest that at least parallel parking be incorporated along the beach with a reasonable width sidewalk installed between the parking and the dunes.
    A better alternative might be to have no parking along the road and incorporate parking on the beach only, unless a business provides parking on their property.
    I believe the town has some responsibility for safety as well as the people who are putting themselves in danger.
    John Azulay

    OWNERSHIP of the BEACH
    For your consideration
    The current litigation for the “Ownership” of a portion of North Sauble beach is only going to perpetuate the “us and them” status and attitude. Regardless who wins, each “side” becomes or continues to be an enemy of the other.
    It is time for this process to stop.
    I propose that the direction this should take would be to the goal of, or the equivalent of:
    • Equal and joint control of the entire North and South of the beach from the Southern tip on the beach on the SFN reserve to the mouth of the Sauble River.
    • Neither party will exclusively “OWN” the beach.
    Beach Ownership:
    • The Ontario or Federal government could own the beach.
    • A not for profit “government” corporation might be set up to manage the beach.
    • A not for profit corporation might be set up with joint and equal ownership by TSBP and SFN.
    • An appropriate portion of the beach would still be part of the reserve.
    In any case there would be a board of directors consisting of an equal number of appointed trustees from the Town of South Bruce Peninsula and the Saugeen First Nation. This is similar to the position paper from the Federal Government on this issue.
    • A forum for any decision or vote must consist of all appointed representatives.
    • Establish a “going in” status quo position for the beach. This might be physically the same as it is right now except for the new management.
    • All meetings are at a “round” table so there is no appearance of leader.
    • Chairperson would be appointed by the quorum for one year and alternate between TSBP and SFN.
    • Seating at the discussion table must be alternate TSBP and SFN.
    • Any initial or ongoing funding would come equally from TSBP and SFN or the Provincial or Federal government.
    • All revenue from parking and people using the beach would only be used for the maintenance or improvement of the beach. (I agree with individuals paying to use the beach. People litter the beach – not cars. Paying to park is also appropriate but separate).
    This is a basic concept and would need much more work to build it. I think it would be worth the effort.
    I know there will be many nay-sayers. – It won’t work – It never worked before – The “rules” will prevent it – Etc. It may be new territory, and we may be first, but I believe it is worth the effort. We do know for sure it won’t work if we don’t at least try. Adopt a “can do” attitude and make it happen.
    Those who have deeds to property on the beach should have the choice of being appropriately compensated or have their property excluded from and be separate from the “beach” property.
    John Azulay

    • cgammie says:

      John:

      Here’s another idea.

      We have owned the beach North of Main for 160 years. SFN has owned the beach south of main for longer. The arrangement worked fine. Let’s just keep it that way.

      Craig

    • cgammie says:

      John:
      You said:

      “The current litigation for the “Ownership” of a portion of North Sauble beach is only going to perpetuate the “us and them” status and attitude. Regardless who wins, each “side” becomes or continues to be an enemy of the other.”

      SFN sued us, claiming the beach to 7th street. We replied that the treaty only gives SFN to main street. All agreed to try mediation. It failed in 2008. And in 2014 John Close put a proposal out. The people of TSBP rejected it. The first nations chief said he would not accept it. The federal government did not say. The Ontario government was silent and the private owners were not even at the table. It was a failure.

      So the parties agreed to get a competent adjudicator to decide.

      No rancor. No animosity. No guns. No weapons. No Oka-style barricades. And we are certainly not “enemies”.Just settling a dispute in a court of law (the civil way).

      I think you’ve been watching too many old Hollywood westerns. Or too much American news.

      Craig

  3. John says:

    What does Hollywood westerns or American news have to do with it? We are in Canada – At least the last time I checked. How is court the civil way? Only the lawyers win.

    • cgammie says:

      westerns – settlers and FN are “enemies”

      american news – candidates are “enemies”

      court is the civil way compared to pistols at 25 paces

      Craig

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