The decision to censure Area B Director Mark Gisborne has been postponed after a letter was received from his legal counsel.
The decision to censure Gisborne was going to be made at a board meeting on Jan. 27. The decision is being made because of comments made by Gisborne during a meeting on Nov. 9, 2021 about proposed bylaws for the Random and Douglas Bay Road areas.
While delegates at the January meeting argued that Gisborne hadn’t made inappropriate comments and were concerned about losing an elected director, a letter from Gisborne’s legal counsel, Daniel Coles, prompted the board to postpone the decision.
In the documents submitted by Coles, it says that Director Gisborne had only 14 days to respond to the Chair’s report defining the reason for censure.
“As I expect you will agree, providing Director Gisborne with the Brabazon Report a mere 14 days before such a significant vote has not afforded him with a meaningful period of time to prepare fulsome written submissions,” said the letter.
The letter also says the comments made by Gisborne were not offensive towards individuals.
Chair Brabazon said he and other members of the board had time to read the letter and decided that more time was needed to make a decision about the censure.
“We have considered, we’ve all read Mr. Coles letter,” said Brabazon. “I’m going to move that the board postpone this item to the regular board meeting in February in order to ensure procedural fairness to Director Gisborne and provide the regional district the opportunity to consider the concerns raised by Director Gisborne’s counsel.”
“I think we should tread very carefully on procedural fairness. We want not only to do the right thing, we want to be seen to do the right thing.”
Gisborne said that the decision is very stressful and the decision to postpone the motion has made it more difficult.
“This matter is very stressful on myself, my family and my community,” said Gisborne. “As you can see, Daniel Coles is in attendance. He is willing to present, he is here on my dime. Waiting until next month to present will add further cost.”
The next board meeting will be held at the end of February.