In the interest of transparency, the City of Cornwall is releasing a full breakdown of the costs associated with two whistleblower complaints dating back to 2012.
The costs related to these two matters are as follows:
The first whistleblower complaint was originally filed on March 20th, 2012. As per the City’s Whistleblower Policy, the complaint was subject to a thorough review, and it was found to be unsubstantiated by a qualified, experienced and independent outside investigator.
The second whistleblower complaint was filed on May 31st, 2012. The matter was investigated and a report was completed and provided to City Council. The matter has since been placed before the Ontario Superior Court where it is now the subject of an ongoing proceeding. The figures outlined above represent the costs incurred by the City up to May 23rd, 2013.
The cost breakdown also includes expenses related a pair of investigations conducted by Stephen Fournier, the City’s Closed Meeting Investigator, regarding the handling of the whistleblower matters in in-camera meetings of City Council. In his findings, Mr. Fournier concluded that it was appropriate for City Council to handle these matters in-camera, as per section 239 of the Municipal Act. Mr. Fournier also concluded that the City could provide a slightly higher degree of specificity in its general description of a matter to be considered in an in-camera meeting. The reports from Mr. Fournier can be read in their entirety on the Council meetings page of the City website (www.Cornwall.ca).
The City of Cornwall put into place a detailed Whistleblower Policy in 2007. It is a fundamental principle of the process that the individuals involved and the nature of the complaint are kept confidential. As a result, the City cannot release the details of the persons involved or the complaint.