Central Saanich to vote

By-election expected in March after resignation of Terry Siklenka as the former councillor vows to repay wages

Ex-Central Saanich councillor Terry Siklenka’s resignation was made official during Monday night’s regular council meeting but Mayor Alastair Bryson speculated a by-election isn’t expected to happen until sometime in March.

“We’ll be asking staff to appoint a Chief Electoral Officer,” said Bryson. “By the time we have one appointed I would expect we’ll be looking into March.”

Bryson spoke on the topic of Siklenka’s resignation, saying that had he had no knowledge of the then-councillor’s plan to take up work in the Cayman Islands.

He added that he would have sought a reconsideration from council had he known.

“Had councillor Siklenka not resigned last week I was prepared to use my authority as mayor to require council to reconsider its prior decision to grant leave in light of the new information,” assured Bryson.

Council then briefly discussed the issue of Siklenka’s resignation and their choice to grant him a leave of absence prior to that, with most of council agreeing that they would have made the same decision if they were provided with the same information again.

“In my opinion, a member of council would have to have significant reasons to vote to deny a duly elected councillor’s reasonable request for leave to deal with personal issues which he has stated are beyond his control,” Bryson said.

“This is especially true when the denial of leave would result in the immediate disqualification from elected office, as was the case in this instance.”

“With the information we had I would have still voted to grant the leave,” said Coun. John Garrison.

But other councillors weren’t as convinced that granting six months of leave was right decision.

“I’ve certainly learned a lesson in this,” said Coun. Adam Olsen, who added that leave on a month-to-month basis may have been a more appropriate approach.

“In hindsight granting six months of leave was a mistake. It was an act of goodwill that was taken advantage of.”

In-camera meeting minutes reveal the vote to grant Siklenka six months of paid leave was only opposed by one council member, Coun. Zeb King, who remained fairly quiet on the subject during the meeting, only wishing Siklenka well in his future endeavors.

Bryson also noted during the meeting that Siklenka had been in correspondence with staff and that he had voluntarily made arrangements to reimburse the municipality for pay and benefits received during his leave.

It is still unclear whether or not Siklenka will be required to repay the fees associated with his registration and non-attendance of the Union of Municipalities of British Columbia convention held this past September. The convention ran from Sept. 24-28 and Sikenka did not formally request leave from council until Sept. 29.



Just Posted

Sidney lowers flag to half mast in honour of former fire chief

Mel Baldwin died June 21 at the age of 83; served Sidney Fire for 46 years

Sidney BIA says sad goodbye to president and executive director

Susan Simosko and Donna Petrie leave, board members fill new positions

Tips from BC Ferries for travelling this Canada Day long weekend

Tips from BC Ferries for smooth sailing this Canada Day long weekend

Three Greater Victoria schools claim climate awards

Awards handed out by British Columbia Sustainable Energy Association

Video shows fireworks shot at swan in Alberta

Alberta Fish and Wildlife is investigating the incident in Grande Prairie

WITH VIDEO: Two endangered marmots released on Vancouver Island

With three new pups born in May, two more Vancouver Island Marmots… Continue reading

Surrey RCMP raises Pride flag amid din of protesters

There were about 30 protesters on either side, and 20 Mounties doing crowd control

Should B.C. get rid of Daylight Saving Time?

The province wants to know, as state governments down south make the move

Air Canada reviewing how crew left sleeping passenger on parked plane

In a Facebook post, the woman said she woke up ‘all alone’ on a ‘cold dark’ aircraft

Canadians crash out of Women’s World Cup in 0-1 loss to Sweden

Canada missed a chance to tie the game on a penalty shot

Four-year-old boy assaulted at B.C. soccer game

It happened at a weekend tournament in Ashcroft

Two bear cubs saved near Revelstoke after mother hit by car

Conservation officers trapped the cubs and transported them to a wildlife sanctuary

Heroism medal for B.C. woman who tried to save wheelchair-bound man stuck on rail tracks

Julie Callaghan awarded Carnegie Medal from U.S.-based foundation for ‘extraordinary heroism’

Most Read