City of Colwood Coun. Cynthia Day says the City has not given her enough time to prepare for a Censure Hearing that is to address Code of Ethics concerns.
On Wednesday,the City sent out a news release about its intent to schedule the hearing with Day after recent actions taken by her raised concerns that she may have violated the City’s Code of Ethics.
The City said Day was to be given ample notice of the hearing date along with all related information.
However, in a news release sent out by Day on Thursday, she said she has not been given sufficient time to prepare, with notice of the meeting sent to her after-hours on a Friday night “with nothing more than generalized statements as to what they believe (she has) done wrong.”
Day said she asked for more time to prepare but was denied and said the actions taken by the City are “procedurally unfair.”
“Censure Hearings are generally used to address the most serious issues,” Day said. “If I had more time to prepare, the damage to my reputation might have been avoided.”
Day said she would like to continue to serve Colwood residents and listed off committees that she has been part of such as the Victoria Family Court and Youth Justice Committee and the Intermunicipal Advisory Committee on Disability Issues.
Day said she has been disappointed by the process that has led to her present situation and she said she has not had a proper opportunity to defend herself.
“In a democratic system there must be a way for those affected by decisions to have a fair venue to be heard,” Day said. “As a member of council, I am no different, in fact I have had less opportunity to defend myself.”
The release sent by Day also makes note of the City’s policy on bullying and harrassment which, according to Day, does not have a process to protect a member of council or the public.
“I believe that an independent investigation should be allowed to happen before council moves forward so that we can all have a better understanding of the facts,” Day said.
However, Day said a request for extra time for an investigation has also been denied by council.
“I continue to work on behalf of the citizens of Colwood and to follow best practices in good faith,” Day said.
In December 2018, Day was arrested in an ongoing dispute with the City over the boulevard in front of her house. The City went to take rock walls — that her husband had put up in 1995 — down from the boulevard in December after being alerted about a tree that fell on a nearby home one year earlier.
Day refused to move from the area so the City’s work could not begin.
She was arrested for mischief but was released without charges, based on her giving her word that she wouldn’t obstruct work any further.
“The balance of council was compelled to respond to concerns expressed about Coun. Day’s recent conduct,” said Colwood Mayor Rob Martin. “We are committed to going into this process with an open mind and moving forward as a united council with a clear understanding of the line between what is and is not acceptable behaviour for council members.”