Courtenay councillor upset with Silverado over ads slamming city

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Courtenay Coun. Bill Anglin takes exception to a full page advertisement paid by Silverado Group of Companies entitled Tail is Wagging Dog at City Hall, which ran in the Record Oct. 2.

The ad displays a letter from Silverado CEO Ron Coulson to City CAO David Allen, cc’d to Mayor Larry Jangula, outlining Coulson’s decision to withdraw an application for a 31-lot subdivision on land north of Ryan Road. He reached his decision due to “our inability to obtain development approval from the city’s engineering department.”

Coulson suggests the future of his company’s venture is being controlled by a few ‘Johnny-come-lately’ bureaucrats.

“David, whether you like to hear it or not, the staff managing your engineering department is inefficient and ineffective as its processes,” Coulson states.

Anglin feels the letter crosses a line.

“I don’t appreciate our staff being denigrated in this manner,” he said Monday at council. “Public letters that identify specific individuals who work for the city are unwarranted and disrespectful.”

Though blame and criticism come with the territory, Anglin said elected officials have the ability to respond in a public forum.

“(But) To malign city staff in this manner when the individuals are unable to publicly respond to the allegations is reprehensible.”

Anglin praised Allen and city staff for following council’s direction. He also lauds the city for its participative — as opposed to autocratic — style of management.

“We have identified areas in our development process that needed work and have been working to address many of the concerns raised,” he said. “In fact, many of the ideas we are putting into place have come from staff, the new DART (Development Application Review Team) process being a great example.”

 

Going forward, he hopes there will be no need to name people.