Tantramar council votes not to remove Dorchester’s sandpiper statue

Sandpiper Shep will stay on her perch in Dorchester’s village square after Tantramar council voted unanimously tonight not to remove her.

At the same time, council directed the town engineer to confirm that Shep was installed safely “with the understanding that the statue is not a municipally owned asset at this time.”

“I  want to make it clear that leaving the statue in place increases the town’s risk,” Mayor Andrew Black told council.

“It puts the Town of Tantramar at an insurance and liability risk.”

Black said that in his opinion, protecting the public purse and lessening or mitigating risk are two of the most important roles of members of council.

He was commenting on the fact that the sandpiper statue was not commissioned either by the village of Dorchester or the town of Tantramar and was installed Saturday on municipal property by private citizens without authorization.

CHMA reports that Robin Hanson, the Oromocto artist who created the new fibreglass Shep, says he was approached by former Dorchester Mayor Debbie Wiggins-Colwell acting on behalf of local volunteers who later raised the money to pay for the $9300 statue.

During tonight’s Tantramar council meeting, Mayor Black said “it sets a precedence of a lack of respect for the decision-making process.”

He also said it threw the process for requesting proposals and quotes for municipal projects “out the window” in violation of laws such as the provincial procurement act and the town’s procedural bylaw.

“Normally, something like this would go through a process and we would in fact own that piece of property, but we don’t, so we had to try to figure out the best way to approach that,” Black told reporters after tonight’s council meeting.

Meantime, Councillor Wiggins-Colwell said she could not comment at this time.

Dorchester resident Bill Steele told Warktimes on Saturday he has filed a formal, municipal code of conduct complaint against her.

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2 Responses to Tantramar council votes not to remove Dorchester’s sandpiper statue

  1. Wayne Feindel Puppet of the people says:

    The way I don’t want to see it.
    The true rule of law for the town of Tantramar honed over hundreds of years is Robert’s Rules. Higgs application of “policy governance” is not the one used when council ends up in court for not fulfilling its fiduciary duties . Lack of respect toward citizens is well documented that government feel citizens are not genuine who complain (Court decision Moncton High School), and especially egregious are the remarks made by Premier about the Tri community of Tantramar. . What a unique situation to have a Sovereign nation as identified by King George !!! after the French retired to Europe. Probably ,why we are not taking a Day to celebrate the Coronation of King Charles 111.
    I think I’ll take a cue from the Movie Master and Commander ( close to the way things were) and take the lesser of the two evils and say I think it was a good thing my Villages’ dying breath was ‘flipping the bird” so speak at the Premier and his underling Mr. Peters.
    Having that the statement attributed to the Mayor concerning the Sandpipers return to Dorchester, that,” it sets a precedence of a lack of respect for the decision-making process” Unfortunately ,so did council. The Mayor is the voice of council not Andrew Black.
    Mind you he did declare it was his opinion, but it is recorded as the, Mayor Black said:. No point of order was called, and the person presiding the meeting did not have the Deputy Mayor stand in. A very reasonable observation but breaking a long established precedent supported by common law.
    In an audio of the meeting concerning the furnishings of the Veterans Hall you hear what sounds like a staff member yelling at Councilor Wiggins-Colwell, “whose the thief?” No point of order called, How about the Mayor Andrew Black reporting To Mayor Andrew Black. There is a precedent. No point of order Committee chair cannot be the Mayor in common law for that very reason.
    How about the new councilor not being informed by former councilors that the ward boundaries are only for election purposes. What are the ramifications of millions of dollars being allocated and the province hasn’t briefed the council.
    There are more examples and when council admitted they knew about the screw up with taxes, yet people had to come to a meeting just to hear the words , “we think we should have to look at it budget time, ”
    You think that tax payers who have to go through undue hardships or individuals, and hundreds of thousands of dollars being siphoned off by people the don’t do the work on the ground. Council you are in fact our petitioners. There is very little information that cannot go to the press. Council you need more citizens involved in a crazy world and a question period before and after every public meeting. YOU NEED HELP!. Finally, a study shows that councils that have no decision making powers conduct witch hunts against each other. Think of who forced the Code of Conduct legislation on municipalities .Well it sounds “moral” and reasonable until you finding out who saying citizens need to be ethical ..
    Think of this folks Councilor Wiggins-Colwell is risking loosing her salary over the Sandpiper caper. A councilor in Tantramar makes what it costs to run the Village of Dorchester office and council. Stand up and be recognized and act now.
    This is the time you can weld us together and make me a proud member of Tantramar..
    Councils first order of business is to call a special meeting (3 councilors can do it.) and draft a resolution to demand an apology from the premier. for his spiteful, hateful remarks..
    What is hateful you may ask is, “men, who having the enjoyment of power, do not discharge the duties of power; they are the men who, having the power to redress wrongs, refuse to listen…….” Despotism: Wilfred Laurier
    A chance for us to redeem ourselves and do better. Better yet Our Mayor now truly stand for a united community. Make sure you contact Fort Folly.

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