Emotions ran high as View Royal council heard from the public while debating the next step to garner approval to borrow up to $8 million for a new fire hall.
Ultimately, council voted to have staff look at the proposal before bringing it back to the public for a referendum, likely in the fall.
At one point in the meeting Coun. David Screech left the room in frustration as a member of the public decried a lack of communication between the town and residents.
Another resident accused council of lying to the public, at which point Mayor Graham Hill told her repeatedly “Madame, you are out of order” until she stepped down. Hill then warned members of the public to avoid “libelous” comments.
Hill said the job moving forward is to bring all the requested information to the public, despite his insistence that it has already been made available. Council also must convince residents the loan is the best move forward for the community.
“We really need to learn and understand the significance of what this is about,” Hill said, “so that you have some solidarity, some confidence, that the money that’s been identified, that the magnitude of this, is both smart and appropriate for both you and me.”
Coun. Ron Mattson did not attend the meeting.