A fourth Lantzville councillor has quit, bringing the business of the district – including the vote for a byelection – to a screeching halt.
Veteran Coun. Graham Savage quit Monday, shortly before council could vote on a byelection to fill three other positions recently vacated by politicians. The meeting dissolved immediately after his announcement – without a quorum of four politicians, council is unable to legally make decisions.
There’s been an exodus of councillors and senior managers just six months after the civic election. Twyla Graff, chief administrative officer, Jedha Holmes, director of financial services, and top vote-getters Jennifer Millbank and Rod Negrave quit in April. Councillor David Scott resigned last week.
Only Mayor Colin Haime, his wife Coun. Denise Haime, and first-term Coun. John Coulson remain.
Savage, a former government consultant who’s been involved in a range of committees and boards, quit at an open council meeting Monday after delivering a speech which called the last six months on council one of the worst and most negative experiences of his personal working and volunteer life. The functions and roles of governance and management have been confused, and much of their time is spent dealing with internal conflicts and dysfunction rather than governing the business of the community, he said, adding he’s no longer prepared to be a part of council.
“My resignation causes a problem. I fully realize that,” he said. “But I believe it’s time for the provincial inspector of municipalities to become involved in remediation, trying to heal this community, put right what’s wrong and particularly for the benefit of the community.”
The B.C. Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development and Inspector of Municipalities has not yet been reached for comment.