Former bylaws manager suing City of Nanaimo

Notice of civil claim filed last week with the Supreme Court of B.C.

A former city employee is taking the municipality that once employed him to court.

Rod Davidson is suing the City of Nanaimo for breach of contract, arguing he was fired without cause and without any prior notice according to a notice of civil claim filed last week with the Supreme Court of British Columbia.

Davidson was the city’s former manager of bylaw, regulation and security when his position was axed last September as part of an ongoing restructuring effort led by Tracy Samra, the city’s chief administrative officer. His position was taken over by Brad McRae, the city’s chief operations officer at the time, who was later fired.

Davidson was hired in 2012 as the city’s parking manager before becoming the bylaws manager.

He had previously worked for the City of Penticton as a senior bylaw officer and had he had been part of the provincewide municipal pension plan for 15 years when he was hired by the City of Nanaimo, according to the civil claim, which states that when Davidson, who was 54 at the time, was hired, the city agreed that he could “work out his last five to six years” with them.

Davidson, who was earning an annual salary of $104,086, was fired less than three months before his five-year anniversary with the city, according to the claim. Shortly after he was fired, John Van Horne, the city human resources director, told the News Bulletin that the bylaws manager position wasn’t needed anymore.

Had Davidson reached his five-year anniversary, his monthly pension benefits would have increased, states the claim, which argues that the city breached its contract when it fired him without cause or warning in September. Davidson is seeking financial compensation for an undisclosed amount and is asking the city to pay his court costs.

Davidson received $52,046 in severance according to a document obtained by the News Bulletin under a freedom of information request.

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