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LETTER: Public deserves settlement details


PelhamToday received the following letter to the editor from a reader concerned about Niagara Region's settlement of a lawsuit:

Niagara residents have recently learned that the $850,000 lawsuit against former Regional Chair Al Caslin and former staff members Jason Tamming and Robert D'Amboise has been settled, although Chair Bradley will not disclose for how much. In 2019 the Ombudsman of Ontario wrapped up his years-long investigation, which was titled “Inside Job,” and found that there was an illegal scheme by these three individuals that compromised the hiring process to install Carmen D'Angelo as Chief Administrative Officer of Niagara Region.

Coincidentally, also in April of 2019, the St. Catharines Standard published an article stating that the majority of Regional Council agreed not to pursue charges against Mr. Caslin because they felt he “suffered enough” from his electoral defeat in 2018.

Now, you have to realize that these council members who stated that Mr. Caslin “suffered enough” are the same members that were behind closed doors recently deciding on the outcome of this lawsuit. As taxpayers of Niagara we paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for an investigation that was carried out by an integrity commissioner, a professor from London University, and finally an Ombudsman, which by the way was the only one that didn't charge and could have been the Region’s first choice, and now we finally are told by Chair Bradley that the amount of this settlement will be undisclosed.

Chair Bradley also mentioned in his statement that Niagara residents deserve better than the actions of these individuals. We do deserve better, and we deserve to know how much this lawsuit was settled for. We elected politicians to be open and transparent, and that is what we expect. This is the reason the residents of Niagara voted the last bunch out in 2018, and it appears that this bunch is no different.

Robert Milenkoff