Council seat declared vacant

 In Press Releases

Following a vote at the April 12, 2017 regular meeting of Council, the Town of Gander is
announcing the Council seat formerly held by Wayne Lorenzen has been declared vacant.
The vote came about as a result of a complaint that Council received from a resident earlier this year.
The complaint stated that Mr. Lorenzen was in a conflict of interest because of a vote that he had cast
regarding a tax agreement between the Town of Gander and Nav Canada during a regular Council
meeting that was held November 25, 2015. Mr. Lorenzen was an employee of Nav Canada at the time
he voted on the matter.
Once the complaint was received the Town of Gander consulted with its solicitor as well as the
Department of Municipal Affairs about how to proceed. It was noted that a hearing would have to be
held to present evidence to Council and provide Mr. Lorenzen with an opportunity to present evidence
and question witnesses.
A hearing was scheduled, however, Mr. Lorenzen submitted his letter of resignation from Council on
March 31, 2017. Council once again consulted with the Department of Municipal Affairs as to whether
the hearing was necessary given Mr. Lorenzen’s resignation from Council, and it was suggested by an
outside legal expert that the hearing go ahead. The hearing was held on April 11, 2017.
Evidence was presented at the hearing, which confirmed that Mr. Lorenzen had indeed voted on the tax
agreement while still an employee of Nav Canada. Section 207(1)(d) of the Municpalites Act states that
“…a Councillor shall not vote on or speak to a matter before the Council or a committee of the Council
where the Councillor an officer, employee or agent of an incorporated or unincorporated company, or
other association of persons, that has a monetary interest in the matter.” It was made clear to Town of
Gander that Mr. Lorenzen was in a conflict of interest when he voted on the tax agreement.
Section 206(2) requires that “…a Council shall, by resolution, declare vacant the office of an elected
Councillor where that Councillor…(b) discusses or votes on a matter on which he or she has a conflict.”
Pursuant to Section 206(2) of the Municipalities Act, Council has declared the Council seat formerly held
by Mr. Lorenzen vacant.

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