In last week’s edition of the Times, the front page article erroneously implied that local barrister Peter Howie suggested that council seek criminal charges against Mayor June Caul in a letter to town council. However, he stated it as a possible outcome of providing confidential documents to a private citizen, not a suggestion. His actual quote from the letter to council states: “I anticipate that it may be a challenge to decide how to move forward with this information. I note that it is common practice to dismiss public servants for these types of leaks and to refer such matters to police for investigation of the offence of breach of trust by public officer, contrary to section 122 of the Criminal Code of Canada.”

The Times apologizes for the misunderstanding.

Mr. Howie has provided the following clarification:

Contrary to what you wrote about me in your article, I did not ask that council refer the matter to the police for investigation. I simply noted that this, along with dismissal, would typically occur for a public employee who did the same thing. If I wanted the matter investigated by the police, I would have contacted them myself. If I wanted the mayor criminally charged for breach of public trust, I would have gone down to the courthouse and laid the charge myself. In informing council about the information I had received under MFIPPA, I knew it was highly unlikely that council would take any action against the mayor. However, I did hope to save the municipality money in that it would no longer be necessary for the Integrity Commissioner to do an investigation.

Peter Howie