Faraday Township’s reeve and council were at the helm of criticism from members of the community during their meeting on September 25.
Bob Smith, a firefighter from Station Two Paudash and resident Orville Ford, made it clear that they were very unhappy with the dismissal of former fire chief Bob Boardman.
Smith, who was supported by a group of firefighters from his station, told reeve Fred Maxwell and council, that the station had no input about Boardman’s performance which was the subject of his firing.
“We liked his leadership,” Boardman stated. “We liked his vision for the future.”
The other issues on the minds of the firefighters from Station Two were the “secret” meetings conducted by council and members of Station 1 just before Boardman was let go.
Smith said that his department wasn’t allowed to be made aware of what was discussed in these meetings. Concerning for Smith was councillor Frank Baker’s role in these meetings as he is also a member of Station 1.
“We feel it is a conflict of interest to have a member of council voting for both sides of the issue, are you a councillor first or a firefighter?” Smith questioned Baker.
What was brought to attention by Smith was the fact that some members of Station 1 were resisting the training program put in place by Boardman. “We need to have our training current and all corresponding administration brought up to date, for everyone, regardless of rank, time of service or role in the department.” Smith told council.
After the concerns were expressed by Smith, Orville Ford addressed council. He said that council has been a “dysfunctional and divided group” as he went onto list all of the issues that has taken place ever since the group was elected.
In regards to the dismissal of Boardman, Ford felt he wasn’t given a fair shot. He also questioned reeve Maxwell’s failure to address the personal attacks the former fire chief faced about the draft burning bylaw. “You have hung this man out as a scapegoat,” Ford exclaimed to the reeve.
At the end of his statement, Ford asked for Maxwell to be “transparent and accountable” and to “show the integrity to resign”.
Maxwell, who has been reeve for seven years, said he has no plans to resign.